Spatial Manager™ for AutoCAD - FAQs: Export ("Professional" edition only)

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  • Objective of this section
    • To learn how to define export processes and their parameters and manage coordinate transformations
  • Topics in this section
    • Targets: data sources
    • Export parameters: AutoCAD objects selection, objects report, treat closed Polylines as Polygons
    • Transforming the coordinates: source and target, favorite coordinate systems, searching in the coordinate systems table and transformation parameters

How can I Export AutoCAD objects as spatial features?

You can export AutoCAD objects as spatial features into files or databases by executing the SPMEXPORT command of Spatial Manager™ for AutoCAD, which you will find in the "Spatial Manager" AutoCAD ribbon. This will launch the "Export" wizard of the application, which shares some of the steps with the Import wizard. The command not only exports the selected objects but saves their XDATA as data tables


While running the "Export" wizard, you can select the export parameters that match your needs:


  • Export selection:
    • Select all objects: all objects in the drawing will be exported
    • Only selected objects: only a selection of objects will be exported. You can select the objects before execute the Export command or by using the Selecting button on this window
    • Select objects in a layer: only the objects included into an AutoCAD Layer will be exported. You can select this layer using the drop-down list on this window
  • Treat closed polylines as polygons: when checked, all closed Polylines in the drawing will be exported to the target as Polygons features. Most of the time the closed polylines represent polygonal elements on the target data format and this conversion can be automatic
  • Objects report: the application shows here the total number of the objects which will be exported and any warning previous to the export process, such as the total number of unsupported objects which will not be exported or others

How can I configure the spatial Target when exporting from AutoCAD

When you export using Spatial Manager™ for AutoCAD you must to select the exporting destination. If needed, you also must to select the data provider and its parameters


First, you select the destination for the exported data: a file or a table inside a file or a database (or inside a schema of a file or a database)


Next, you select a file type (the data provider). This step is not required if you have selected some destination which defines its own data provider (such as a SQLite table or a PostGIS table)


Then, you configure the export data provider connection parameters, if needed (Image: sample of the KML/KMZ files data provider)

How can I define a Transformation of coordinates when exporting?

When you are Exporting AutoCAD objects as spatial Features using Spatial Manager™ for AutoCAD, you will see that you can choose a Transformation of coordinates from the source to the target, in the "Export" wizard. That means that the application will calculate a geometric transformation between the source and the target data, which will depend on the chosen CRS for the source (drawing) and for the target (outcoming Features) data. You can choose the appropriate CRSs by clicking on "CRS catalog...", in the CRS dropdown list for the source or for the target data. In the CRS table you can:

  • Filter the CRSs by type (Geocentric, Projected, etc.)
  • Choose a CRS by clicking on its row in the table
  • Search CRSs by typing the search criteria in the "Search" box. You can type here as many words as you like separated by blanks. The application will find all the rows including all these words in a column of the table

After choosing a pair of valid CRS for a Transformation, you can choose the geographic Area to apply it to (the application will choose by default the most common Area for this Transformation)

Note 1: as you will see, the CRS dropdown list will include more and more CRSs as they have been previously chosen in other Transformation operations, so that you can choose your "favorite" CRSs directly from the dropdown list without having to access the CRS Table all the time

Note 2: if the application "knows" the CRS of the source and/or the target data, they will be chosen by default. You will be able to modify this choice except in cases where only one CRS is valid; for example, for a KML or a KMZ file the only valid choice is the CRS WGS84 (SRID 4326), because these types of file are always defined using this CRS



Are there limitations or modifications in the original objects when exporting?

Yes, there are some limitations and also automatic changes in the objects when they are exported using Spatial Manager™ for AutoCAD

  • Limitations:
    • Some types of objects (such as complex 3D objects or MText) are not supported in the exporting processes, and they will be automatically filtered from any export selection. The objects report on the first window of the export wizard warns to the user about the number and type of these kinds of objects if any has been selected to export
  • Modifications
    • Some objects, such as Blocks or External Reference, are exported as Points (Insertion Points). In the case of the Blocks or XRef, you must to Explode them before exporting if you want to export their internal objects. The objects report on the first window of the export wizard warns to the user about the number of Blocks and XRef Insertions if any has been selected to export
    • The geometry of some objects will be automatically modified to fit

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