Configuration of 12d Model is done by editing one of the many files that are read when the project starts.

Configuration files typically end with ” .4d
Examples are ‘drainage.4d (definitions of pits and pipes), survey.4d (definitions of survey instruments), linestyl.4d, symbols.4d and there are many more.

On Start up, 12d Model looks in 3 locations for these configuration files, in this specific order ‘Working‘ folder, ‘User‘ folder and ‘Setups‘ folder.
A fourth and fifth location can be optionally added, the ‘Customer’ folder and ‘absolute, or full, path’ folder location into the environment file (But this is typically not used, or recommended).

When 12d finds the particular configuration file, it uses that (*.4d) file, and does not look for it in the other folders. Thus, when modifying these files, it is important to understand the logic in saving the file in the correct location, so it is used for just this project or all company projects for this client.
Using the ‘linestyl.4d’ (line styles) file as an example:

  • The ‘Working‘ folder is the folder that contains the project.
    If a linestyl.4d file is in the Working folder then it will be found by 12d Model, and will be used.
    Note: No other versions (copies) of the linestyl.4d file matter except for the one in the Working folder.
  • The ‘User‘ folder is the folder where you (the user) put your configuration files.
    If a linestyl.4d file is found in the ‘User’ folder (and is not in the ‘Working’ folder) then it will be found and used by 12d.
    Putting configuration files into the ‘User’ folder means that they will apply to all projects on your computer. You as the “User” can then tailor or adjust this file to your needs.
    The default folder for ‘User’ is ‘C:\12d\12.00\user’, but this can be configured.  Many firms configure 12d so that the ‘User’ folder is on an shared folder on their server.  This ensures that the same linestyles are available on every workstation (for all 12d Model “Users” within the organisation).
  • The ‘Setups‘ folder is created when 12d Model is installed, and contains a linestyl.4d file with standard linestyles.
    The linestyl.4d file in ‘Setups’ will only be used if 12d does not find one in the ‘User’ or in the ‘Working’ folder.
    The Setups folder is ‘C:\Program Files\12d\12.00\setups’.  Files in this folder are read only.

Since the configuration (*.4d) files are only loaded when a project is started, modification and testing will often require you to restart your project to have the changes read and visible within the working project.

As your configuration (*.4d) files can be located in one of three locations. The easiest way to check which location is currently being used is to write the file and look at the panel location which is being displayed. Refer to images below as an example;

If you would like to learn more about the writing of 12d Model Setup Files, and the option available, please visit this post: Writing Setup Files in 12d Model

Further information and explanation of the 12d configuration files can be seen at the 12d Model Webinar link provided below.

It is essential that you understand the order in which 12d Model will search for these files, before moving onto files located in either the “$User” or “$User_lib” locations.