This module will help you to understand how to create viewports in your layout at the required scale.


A viewport is a “window” created in a Paperspace layout that displays the information generated in the Modelspace to a specified scale. A layout can have multiple viewports of different shapes. Viewports can be created from the Ribbon View tab > Viewports panel.

Command-line: To start the Viewport tool from the command line, type “MV” and press [Enter].

Creating Viewports

Expand the Rectangular drop-down to see the various viewport options.

Rectangular: Creates a rectangular viewport by specifying the two opposite corners.

Polygonal: Creates a polygonal viewport with multiple lines and arc segments.

From Object: Creates a viewport from an existing closed polyline, ellipse, spline, region, or circle.

Activating Viewports

A viewport can be ‘activated’ by double-clicking inside the viewport. This allows the view within the viewport to be adjusted. Objects in Modelspace can be selected and modified. Zooming in or out in an active viewport will adjust the scale of the viewport. It is possible to tell if a viewport is active by the viewport border. A thick border indicates it has been activated. You will also see the ViewCube and Navigation Bar inside the viewport.

Inactive                                                               Active


Viewport Scale

Objects in Modelspace are typically created full-size. The viewport scale controls the scale at which these objects are displayed in the viewport. For example, a 1:100 plan would be drawn (or referenced) at full size in Modelspace, but be displayed in a Paperspace viewport with a viewport scale of 1:100. The scale of the viewport can be modified from the Viewport Scale drop-down of the Application Status Bar.

To change the scale, first, click on the viewport to select it.

Change the Viewport Scale from the Application Status Bar. The viewport will zoom in or out to the chosen scale.



Locking Viewports

Once a viewport has been configured you may wish to lock it to prevent accidental changes to the view or scale.

To lock a viewport, click on the viewport to select it. Click the Lock Viewport button on the Application Status Bar. It is still possible to activate the viewport but zooming in or out will zoom in Paperspace, not in the viewport.

Once locked, the Viewport Scale is no longer adjustable.

Working in Modelspace from Paperspace

It is possible to make adjustments to content in Modelspace without switching back to the Model tab.

Activate a viewport by double-clicking inside it. Click the Maximise Viewport button on the Application Status Bar to expand the activated viewport to the full screen.

The viewport will be enlarged with a red border to indicate it is maximised. Maximising the viewport and working on the Modelspace in this way allows you to zoom in and make changes without affecting the scale or position of the view within the viewport.

Once finished, click the Minimize Viewport button on the Application Status Bar to return to Paperspace with the scale and position of the view in the viewport unaffected.

Controlling Layers within Individual Viewports

Layers can be turned on and off and displayed differently in individual viewports. Once a viewport is activated, from the Ribbon Home tab > Layers panel click the Layer Properties button. In addition to the usual properties (See module 03-Drawing Organisation for further details on Layer properties). The following properties are available and control the individual viewports appearance.

VP Freeze controls the appearance of a Layer in the activated viewport.

VP Color allows you to override the printed colour of elements drawn on this layer for the activated viewport. This can be especially important if using CTBs in order to get elements to print different values between viewports.

VP Linetype overrides the plotted Linetype of elements drawn on this layer for the activated viewport.

VP Lineweight overrides the plotted Lineweight of elements drawn on this layer for the activated viewport.

VP Transparency overrides the plotted transparency of elements drawn on this Layer for the activated viewport.

VP Plot Style overrides the style applied to the layer in the activated viewport.


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