Making Good Use of ZWCAD: Saving and Viewing Slides in ZWCAD

By: Owen Zi

When working with CAD, we may find we need to show drawings in the form of images. Other times, we may need to show how a drawing progressed over time, or we may need to create simple presentations directly inside the CAD software.

In these cases, slides may be of help. ZWCAD allows you to save and view slides of the screen.

Making Slides

Slides are made with the MSLIDE command, which saves screen images as SLD, WMF, or EMF files. The command captures the current view as a slide; only visible entities are included. Slides cannot, however, be modified or plotted.

(SLD files are compatible with AutoCAD; WMF and EMF files are used by Windows and can be read by many image editing programs.)

The content of the slide varies in model and paper space. In model space, the slide captures only the visible entities in the current viewport; in paper space, the slide captures all visible entities and all viewports.

Viewing Slides

The VSLIDE command views saved slides. (You can also enter VSNAPSHOT, the older name for this command.) The command opens a file dialog box, which lets you select SLD, WMF, and EMF files for viewing.

The image of the slide replaces the current view in the drawing area. To remove the slide, enter the REDRAW, PAN, or ZOOM commands.

Presenting Slides

If you need to present a slideshow (a series of slides), you can do that directly in ZWCAD by writing and running a simple script file.

For example, you have five slide files named S1.SLD, S2.SLD, S3.SLD, S4.SLD, and S5.SLD saved in the d:\Slide folder. You need to show them one by one, five seconds apart, over and over again. This can be automated by a script, which looks like this:

vslide d:\Slide\S1
delay 5000
vslide d:\Slide\S2
delay 5000
vslide d:\Slide\S3
delay 5000
vslide d:\Slide\S4
delay 5000
vslide d:\Slide\S5
delay 5000

The two repeating lines are the primary function of the script:

* vslide d:\Slide\Sn -- loads the nth slide file (Sn.sld) stored in folder "Slide" on drive D. You do not need to include the ".sld" file extension.
* delay 5000 - displays the slide for 5,000 milliseconds by delaying the loading of the next slide by five seconds. Each slide remains on the screen for five seconds.

With the help of "RScript", the entire script repeats itself. Pressing ESC quits the presentation. By copying the two lines multiple times, more slides can be displayed.

Running the Script

Enter the above script in a text editor, such as Notepad. Save it as a text file with the file extension of .SCR. Now the script file is ready to run.

In ZWCAD, start the SCRIPT command, and then open the SCR file. Notice how the slides are displayed in the drawing area, in sequence, for five seconds each, automatically.

SLD slide files cannot be edited. If you need to modify the contents of the slides, make new ones to replace the originals with the same filename.

Slides are a small tool in ZWCAD. They are useful for demonstrating your drafting work - particularly when accompanied by scripts. We tend to rely on professional presentation software, so it is good to remember that slides in ZWCAD can also help us out.


As the flagship product of ZWCAD Software Co., Ltd., ZWCAD ( ) is a powerful CAD solution, which is highly compatible with DWG format. ZWCAD meets the needs of broad-based target groups of 2D/3D design industry, including architecture, engineering, construction, mechanics, manufacturing and electronics. So far, it has become the leading brand in China's CAD industry and now competes successfully in over 65 countries, with more than 100,000 users throughout the world.

For more information, please visit or contact ZWCAD team at [email protected]

(C) Copyright 2008 ZWCAD Software Co., Ltd. All rights reserved.

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Owen Zi is author of article written on ZWCAD. He is Director of Overseas Department of ZWSOFT. For more information, please visit: or contact ZWCAD team at [email protected]

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