It’s possible to class certain parts of a drawing as background, meaning you can take advantage of the hide background tool, even when the backgrounds of your drawings don’t hide by default.

Learn more about hiding backgrounds.

Why don’t the backgrounds of my drawings hide by default?

Countfire includes a number of default background “Definitions” which generally work with most drawings, and allow you to hide the backgrounds.

Occasionally, you will encounter drawings where the background doesn’t match the default definitions, and you can’t hide the backgrounds.

In cases where you can’t hide the background, use the define background tool to add additional definitions specific to your drawings.

How can I add background definitions?

  1. Click on the dropdown arrow next to the "Background" button

  2. Click on “Customise”

  3. Select the parts of the drawing you would like to class as background

In the clip above, you can see the background doesn’t initially hide. Then, after activating the customise background tool and selecting a number of background elements, all similar elements are classed as background, and the background for the whole drawing is able to be hidden.

Background definitions apply to all drawings within the current discipline.

How can I restore background definitions?

If you add background definitions that you later need to remove, you can restore them.

This resets all background definitions, for all drawings within the current discipline, back to the defaults.

  1. Click on the dropdown arrow next to the "Background" button

  2. Click on “Restore defaults”

In the clip above, you can see background does hide, however, once the restore defaults button is clicked, all background definitions are reset back to their defaults, and the background doesn’t hide.

How can I control what is being defined as background?

You can use the "Restart" tool to remove everything classed as background, including the defaults, and start from scratch.

  1. Click on the dropdown arrow next to the "Background" button

  2. Click on “Restart” (this will enter you into the define mode)

  3. Select the parts of the drawing you would like to class as background

This is particularly helpful when counting grey symbols, which automatically hide when switching the background off, because grey is classed as background as default.

Can I define elements that aren’t strictly part of a drawings background?

You can use define background tool to class any element of a drawing as the background.

For example, if you have circuit lines on electrical drawings that are hindering you from making clean selections, you can use customise background tool to class those circuit lines as background, and then use the hide background control to hide them.

What do I need to be careful of?

Background definitions work by classing as background, all elements that have the same properties (colour, size etc) as the elements you select while in define background mode.

Because background definitions apply to all drawings within the discipline, it’s important to do a sense check on each drawing to ensure you haven’t accidentally classed any symbols that you need to count as background.

Whether this is a problem depends on the design of your drawings, however, by briefly toggling the background on and off (Shortcut = B) on each drawing before you start, you can quickly gain a sense of how your current background definitions work, and whether you have symbols incorrectly classed as background.

If you do, simply restore your background definitions.


Learn more

Creating a new symbol description

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