AutoCAD - Command Alias – An easy method of editing keyboard shortcuts

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By Dennis Collin


I find the quickest method of using any software product is usually via a keyboard shortcut. AutoCAD is no exception to this, with most commands being accessed by a one or two key alias. Whilst the default shortcuts are fine for most users, sometimes it can be helpful to adjust the shortcuts to suit personal taste or make AutoCAD behave like previously used software.

This can be achieved by editing the keyboard shortcuts file, the ACAD.PGP file, which is a simple text file. Typically found here:

Local Disk\Users\USERNAME\Appdata\Roaming\Autodesk\AutoCAD 2020\R23.1\enu\Support

Users can employ a text editor (e.g. Notepad) and then edit or print out a list of favourite shortcuts for future reference. An easier approach to edit keyboard shortcuts on the full AutoCAD is to use the Express Tools, Command Alias edit facility. This permits quick and easy editing of shortcuts.


Not only can regular commands be edited, but ‘shell’ commands can be configured too. These can access operating system commands from within AutoCAD e.g. The ‘Pbrush’ command will execute Windows Paint application which can prove useful with screen capture functions. Personally, that shortcut seems a bit long winded, a shorter alias like ‘PBR’ requires less typing, but that can easily be done with a simple edit!


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