"To Change Plotting Pen Attributes"


You can change the attributes and assign your own line font, thickness, or color to a pen using the table.pnt file. Any attribute that you specify overwrites the default instructions.

The format for an entry in the table.pnt file is as follows:

pen # pattern values units; thickness value units; color values; <color_name>;

  • pattern—Specifies plotted line font definition drawn according to defined values in the given units. Values are created in the following order: first line segment length, first space length, second line segment length, second space length, and so on. For example: pen 3 pattern .1 .05 .025.05.

  • thickness—Specifies plotted line thickness in the given units.

  • color—Specifies color used for plotting; defines color using proportions of red, green, and blue on a scale 0 to 1. Works only on color plotters.

  • <color_name>—Corresponds to the default Pro/ENGINEER color that the system assigns to a particular entity type (to access the default system colors, click View > Display Settings > System Colors, and then, in the System Colors dialog box, click Scheme > Default.

Note: When changing attributes for pen plotting, consider the following:

  • All units must be set in inches (IN) or centimeters (CM). Using millimeters (MM) results in a syntax error.

  • It is possible to assign more than one color to the same pen in the table.pnt file.

  • Separate multiple color names by spaces or commas.

  • Separate attributes by semicolons.

  • Include any or all attributes for each pen.

  • Attributes that were not included in the table.pnt file appear unchanged, as in normal plotting.

Plotter Configuration Files

You can save or modify a .pcf file with the name of the text in the Destination box in the Print dialog box or create from a file.

When Pro/ENGINEER is installed, plotter configuration file options are available in addition to those that you define within the plotter configuration file directory.

You can also use a plotter configuration file (filename.pcf) in interactive and batch plotting to preset some or all of the plotting options. Pro/ENGINEER displays the name of your .pcf file without the extension in the list available from the button to the right of the Destination box in the Print dialog box. If your .pcf file has the option button_name defined, this string appears in the list.

When creating plotter configuration files, keep in mind the following requirements:

  • You can maintain a plotter configuration file locally, or place it in another location. If you place it somewhere else, you must indicate its location by setting the config.pro configuration file option pro_plot_config_dir.

  • You must enter the contents and the name of the plotter configuration file in lowercase characters.

  • The plotter option is mandatory.

  • All numeric arguments for the plotter configuration options are mandatory.

The following sample shows a plotter configuration file:














model 2

In the preceding example, the .pcf file instructs the system to print any size drawing to an E-size Postscript printer. Notice that the configuration file is set up to generate a segmented plot.

The following list presents valid options for plotter configuration files. The default value for each option is italicized.

Note: These options are not the same as Pro/ENGINEER configuration file options.


yes, no

  • yes—Enter the name of the plot file.

  • no—System uses the name of the object as the default name for the plot file.



Adds the specified name to the selection list. Otherwise, the system uses the name of the plotter configuration file.



Provides one-line help for an item specified by the button_name option.


yes, no

Defines the default in the Print to File dialog box.

  • yes—Separate files are created by default.

  • no—A single file is created by default.


yes, no

If set to yes, deletes the plot file from the directory in which it resides after it plots successfully.


0, 1, 2, 3

Defines the amount of checking for overlapping lines in a plot or 2-D export file, such as IGES, before making a file. Interprets the values as follows:

  • 0—Does not check for overlapping lines or collect lines of the same pen color.

  • 1—Does not check for overlapping lines, but collects lines of the same pen color for plotting.

  • 2—Partially checks edges with two vertices, and collects lines of the same pen color for plotting.

  • 3—Does a complete check of all edges against each other, regardless of the number of vertices, font, or color. Collects lines of the same pen color for plotting.


paper size, variable X Y units

Specifies particular paper size to which to plot (for example, A1). You can specify a custom size by entering a variable, followed by the paper dimensions and units.


List of possible paper sizes

Specifies all of the paper sizes (separated by spaces) that can be used for your plotter model, for example, a b c. This limits sizes in the Size list to only those in your list.


no_slew, value

Sets the plotter pen speed along both the x- and y-axes, where the value can be from 0.1 to 100.


path and name

Specifies a default pen mapping table that supersedes other pen mapping information. Paths can contain up to 260 characters.


yes x1 y1 x2 y2, no

Sets the Plot Area button in the Plot list of the Shaded Image Configuration dialog box as the default.


create, append, default

Creates a new plot file, or appends the new data to another plot file.


yes x1 y1 x2 y2, no, default

Set to yes, enter a portion of the drawing to plot. The x- and y-coordinates are mandatory. They are normalized values from 0.0 to 1.0 (0,0 corresponds to the lower-left corner of the plot) that indicate which portion of the window to plot. For example, to clip half of the window in the center of the screen, the line would read: plot_clip yes 0.25 0.25 0.75 0.75.


yes, no, default

If set to no, generates a plot without format.


directory name

Specifies the directory to which the system is to write plot files. Use the full path name, for example, /home/users/plotfiles. Paths can contain up to 260 characters.


yes, no, default

If set to yes, generates the plot with a label.


<value> in, <value> cm

Sets the height of the plot labels. Enter a numeric value for this option, followed by the units in inches (in) or centimeters (cm).


current, by_layer #, default

Specifies a layer of the drawing to be plotted. In by_layer#, where # is the layer ID number.


any positive number, 1.0

Specifies the scaling factor for the hidden line font in your plot. Enter any positive number, such as 2.0, as a value for this option.


yes, no

  • yes—gives descriptive extensions to plot files when it creates them. The extensions are as follows:

  • hp—Hewlett-Packard plotters

  • hp2—Hewlett-Packard hpgl2 plotters

  • cal—Calcomp plotters

  • ver—Versatec plotters

  • ger—Gerber photoplotters

  • ps—PostScript plotters (including color)

  • no—all plot files have the extension .plt.

Note: Pro/BATCH does not support this option.


yes, no

  • yes—The media type is roll paper.

  • no—The media type corresponds to the default setting of the particular printer.


fit_paper, model #, plot #, default

Specifies a scale factor for scaling a model or drawing for plotting, where # is the scale value from 0.01 to 100.0.


yes, no, default

If set to yes, generates a segmented plot.


current, range low high, default, all

Specifies sheets to plot. To indicate a range of sheets, set this option to range, followed by low and high values for the range.


<value>, <x value> <y value>, <x value> <y value> <units>

Sets the offset of the plot from its origin. Enter only the x-offset value or both the x-offset and y-offset values. You can only specify units (such as mm) when you have given the offset in both directions. For example:

plot_translate .25


plot_translate .25 .35

- for offsetting 0.25 in the x direction and 0.35 in the y direction.

Note: When a single value is given, it is used for both x and y.


yes, no

Scales the output plot file to the full size of the screen window.


yes, no

Determines whether the plot is based on zoom or full plot.

  • yes—Plot is based on zoom.

  • no—Plot is full plot.


command, windows_print_manager <plotter or printer name>

Specifies the command for the system to use when sending a plot to the printer on your system. For example:

  • In UNIX, you can specify a plotter command as one of the following:

plotter_command lp -d <plotter_name>


plotter_command lpr -P <plotter_name>

  • In Windows NT or Windows 95, you can specify the plotter command as:

plotter_command windows_print_manager <plotter or printer name


hardware, software

Sets the type of plotter handshake initialization sequence, generated in the plotter files. For each of the two modes, you must set the data port of the host computer appropriately:

  • Software handshake mode is Xon/Xoff.

  • Hardware handshake mode requires hardware control.

Note: Consult your system manager for more information on handshaking.


desired plotter name

Establishes the default plotter when making plot files.


yes, no

  • yes—Rotates a PostScript plot 90 counterclockwise when plotting (portrait). That is, the horizontal on the screen corresponds to the short edge of the paper.

  • no—Does not rotate a PostScript plot. Plotting of parts, and assemblies assumes a landscape format (that is, the horizontal on the screen corresponds to the long edge of the paper.

Note: Does not affect shaded PostScript output.