Overview: In this lesson, you learn how to organize your entities in the structure tree, then view them on the Structure Browser.
After completing this lesson, you will be able to:
- Configure the structure tree.
- Query in the Structure Browser.
- Create a new configuration file.
- Filter, group and sort entities in the Structure Browser.
Tutorial: How to use Structure Browser
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The structure browser is an interactive tree that displays the entities in the current model. Using the configurable structure tree on the Structure Browser the BIM model can be organized in a way that you want to view the elements. Once you configured the tree, you can easily save this structured tree as a .cst file. By default, the .cst files are stored in the Support Folder.
Place the cursor over a toolbar or ribbon panel, then right-click and choose Structure in the context menu.
Or type structurepanel in the command bar, then press Enter.
Procedure: Using the structure browser
- Open the structure browser.
By default, the structure browser displays on the left-hand side on your screen. With a search field at the top of the panel (1).
- Click the horizontal stripes button (2) to load a configuration file in the list. Click 'Select Configuration...' to select a .cst file, which specifies a configuration (3). The current configuration displays on the left. Based on the selected file the BIM model will be organized in a tree-structure.
- Click the expand/ collapse icon (4) of a node to expand or collapse the node. Right-click on a group name to select 'Expand All' or 'Collapse All' and expand or collapse all the subnodes at once.
You can Show, Hide or Isolate the entities, selected in the structure browser, in your model space, by right-clicking on the selected names (5).
This context menu also provides you to zoom (6) into a specific entity in the model.
The following illustration shows the Structure Browser.
Procedure: Querying in the structure browser
- Typing something in the Search field at the top of the structure browser will issue a simple Text search: e.g. if you type ‘wall’ in the search field and press Enter, the structure browser will be filtered to everything with 'wall' in its name, including walls and curtain walls.
- Text searches can be useful for a quick search, but more powerful queries are possible using expressions.
- An expression starts with the $ E.g. if you enter $type = wall and press Enter, the browser will be filtered on entities that have the BIM type = wall. Thus, using this expression, the curtain wall doesn’t show up in the browser anymore.
- Expressions can be more complex, such as filtering on multiple properties. E.g., you can enter $type = wall and height > 5000 to filter on all walls with a height over 5000 mm.
- Logical expressions can be nested using brackets: $type = wall and (height > 5000 or height < 4000).
Procedure: Managing the tree-structure
The tree structure of the Structure browser represents the hierarchical set of rules in a graphical form. Each rule has a filter property, a grouping property, and a sorting property. Organizing the properties in the Structure Browser enhances the performance of your project while querying the entities among others. When you have a tree for your BIM model you can establish a hierarchy across its building element types, buildings, stories, etc. You can use the hierarchy to manage the properties at various levels of the data display.
Do the following to configure the tree-structure:
- Right-click on the name of your drawing in the Structure Browser, then choose Configure in the context menu.
The Configure Structure Tree (7) dialog box displays.
- Select any existing rule in the structure tree, then click the Add icon (8) or right-click and choose Add Rule in the displayed context menu. This menu can also be used to delete and rename the existing rule.
The new rule is added below the previously selected rule. Type a new name for the newly created rule by clicking its name field (9).
- Select the Group (10) node of the rule, then use the Add icon or right-click and choose Add Grouping Property (11) in the context menu.
The Select Property dialog box displays. Select a property on the list that you want to use to group the properties in your Rule setting. Then, click the OK button. The new property is added to the Group node.
If you use the Filter node to add a property, the selected property will be added in this node.
- To move an item in the tree, select the item, then click the Move Up (12) or Move Down (13)
- Select the Show/Skip (14) tab to sort the entity types or exclude them on the Structure Browser.
- Select the Options (15) tab to set the entities action in the model using the structure tree. You can here specify whether or not selecting an entity in the Structure Browser also selects the entity in the model space.
- Do one of the following to save the configured tree:
- Click the OK (16) button.
- Click the File (17) menu in the dialog box and choose one of the available options on the list (18).
The following illustration shows the Configure structure tree dialog box.
Opens a file dialog to select another .cst configuration file.
Saves the current configuration and keep the file dialog open.
Save as (21)
Saves the current configuration under a different name and keep the file dialog open.
The following illustration shows the Select Property dialog box.
Contains general properties.
Contains various types of entity properties.
Contains various types of properties for BIM and Quantity extensions.
Procedure: Managing the tree-structure with custom properties
In BricsCAD, the user-defined/custom properties are available to add in the Select Property dialog using the GUI. The select property dialog provides a list of dynamic properties for the drawing based on the current workspace.
Note that custom properties, through the select property dialog box, can be used to group the tree structure.
Do the following to group the tree-structure using the existing custom properties:
- Right-click on the name of your drawing in the Structure Browser, then choose Configure (25) in the context menu.
The Configure Structure Tree dialog box displays.
- Select the Group node of the rule, and click the Add rule or property ( )icon.
Or right-click on the Group node and choose Add Grouping Property in the context menu.
The Select Property dialog box displays (see below image for the select property dialog).
If you have custom properties, these properties will be shown under Extensions (26) and grouped by its namespace.
- Click the expand/collapse icon of a node to expand and collapse the node.
The following image shows the IFC 2X3 (27) and User (28) namespaces in the Select Property dialog. For example, the User namespace is expanded to display the property set (29) and properties (30) that are in this node.
- Select the property to use for grouping in the tree structure, and press OK.
The property is added (31) to the group node.
- Press OK (32) to use the property for grouping entities in the Structure Browser.