By Dennis Collin
I recently got asked whether the listing of layers and properties can be exported to Excel. I started looking at Lisp and other routines, but in fact this process is even more straightforward. Simply use the Copy and Paste function. To export the layer listing to Excel, open up AutoCAD’s layer manager, rearrange or hide columns that need to be supressed. Select the layers that you wish to export (or press CTRL+A for all) and copy to clipboard (CTRL+C). Switch to the Excel Application and choose paste (CTRL+V). The headers and data are populated as you would expect, with True or False values to functions like On/Off, Freeze / Thaw and a mix of text or numeric strings for layer names and pen thickness etc.
This function has been in both AutoCAD and AutoCAD LT for many years since the 2007 release, but copying layer information performs a useful function when checking drawing settings without having to use an AutoCAD license or making use of a separate viewer.
It is also possible to paste this information into the AutoCAD drawing. The data is pasted as a tab delimited Mtext entity, rather than a nicely formatted table, but if using the Excel method this data could be formatted more easily using AutoCAD (and LT’s) data link facility.