AutoCAD Tutorial

AutoCAD 2002 Web-Publishing Feature

By Alireza Parsai, March 26, 2003


AutoCAD 2002 contains a fantastic feature called Publish-to-Web. With this feature you can create HTML pages based on your drawings. Such pages can be used for presentation purposes either on your extranet/intranet or as a presentation tool on your notebook/PC. With Publish-to-Web you can either create images or DWF files. DWF files give you more flexibility in presentation.

After the following introductory material are two tutorials that will help you learn to put this useful feature into practice.

Drawing Web Format  (DWF)

You can use AutoCAD to create drawing Web format (DWF) files. A DWF file is a 2D vector file that you can use to publish your AutoCAD drawing on the World Wide Web or an intranet network. DWF files can be opened, viewed, and plotted by anyone using any of the following applications:

  • Autodesk Express Viewer

  • Volo View

  • Volo View Express

  • Internet Explorer

To view DWF files with Internet Explorer you have to install one of the first 3 applications.

There are 2 major methods for creating DWF files: Plotting the file and Publish to Web.

When you are plotting the drawing, use one of the following virtual plotters to create the DWF file [Figure 1]:

  • DWF ePlot (Optimized for Plotting).pc3

  • DWF eView (Optimized for Viewing).pc3

Figure 1

The created DWF file can be opened in any of mentioned applications. You can view the file, change the zoom factor, control the visibility of the layers, etc. Figures 2 to 4 show you some samples in Internet Explorer environment.

Figure 2

Figure 3

Figure 4

Creating Web Pages With Publish to Web

To create web pages use the PUBLISHTOWEB command. Invoke the command with one of the following methods:

Standard toolbar:

File menu: Publish to Web…

Command line: ptw or publishtoweb

The command uses a wizard. The following tutorials show you how to use this wizard.

Tutorial 1: Creating Image Web Pages

1. Start AutoCAD 2002. Open the following files:

2. Invoke PUBLISHTOWEB command.

3. The “Publish to Web – Begin” appears [Figure 5]. Make sure “Create New Web Page” is selected. Click Next.

Figure 5

4. In the next dialog box enter the information as shown in the figure 6. Click Next.

Figure 6

5. PTW can create two types of images: JPEG and PNG. Select JPEG and make sure the Medium size is selected from the drop down list to the right [Figure 7].

Figure 7

6. Select the type of arrangement for images on the web page [Figure 8].

Figure 8

7. Select the color and font arrangement for the web pages [Figure 9]. Click Next.

Figure 9

8. I-drop enables you to drag and drop drawing files from the web page into your drawing [Figure 10]. Don’t select this option. Click Next.

Figure 10

Figure 11

9. Select the drawings and layouts that should appear on the web page(s). Assign proper titles to the images and arrange them on the list if necessary [Figure 11].

10. Select “Regenerate All Images”. Click Next [Figure 12]. The images and web pages will be created. This might take a few minutes based on the number of drawings and drawings complexity.

Figure 12

11. Click Preview [Figure 13]. A web page appears in the web browser window [Figure 14].

12. Back to AutoCAD Click Finish.

Figure 13

Figure 14


Tutorial 2: Creating Dwf Web Pages

The steps in this tutorial are very similar to the last one with slight changes.

1. Follow the steps 1 to 3 in the previous tutorial.

2. Enter the proper information in the text boxes [Figure 15]. Click Next.

Figure 15

3. Make sure that DWF is selected [Figure 16]. Click Next.

Figure 16

4. Select the proper web page layout [Figure 17]. Click Next.

Figure 17

5. Select the theme [Figure 18]. Click Next.

Figure 18

6. Enable i-drop [Figure 19]. Click Next.

Figure 19

7. Prepare the image list [Figure 20]. Click Next.

Figure 20

8. Select “Regenerate all images”. Click Next.

9. Click Finish.

10. Close all the open files.

11. Create a new drawing.

12. Start My Computer or Windows Explorer.

13. Open the folder “C:\Dynamic Presentations”.

14. Double click “acwebpublish.htm”.

15. Browse the images by clicking the links to the left. You can control the appearance of images by right-clicking on them [Figure 21].

Figure 21

16. Click the restore button on the upper right corner of the window.

17. Move the mouse pointer over the i-drop icon at the bottom of the image window.

18. Drag the icon to the AutoCAD drawing area.

19. Release the mouse button.

20. Follow the instructions in the command line. A copy of the drawing file is inserted into the drawing area as a block. You may need to invoke zoom-extents to view it.

About the Author

Alireza Parsai is the founder of He is a mechanical engineer with more than 12 years experience with AutoCAD. Alireza is an Autodesk Authorized Author, the AutoCAD consultant for Al Khawarizmi Institute, a contributing editor for Augiworld magazine, a writer for CAD Digest, an instructor for AUGI Training Program, and an elected speaker for Autodesk University 2002. He has written 7 books in Farsi, 3 booklets in English, and more than 30 articles for different magazines and newsletters. You can reach him at or visit his website

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