Filter and Sort the List of Layers

You can control which layer names are listed in the Layer Properties Manager and sort them by name or by property, such as color or visibility.

A layer filter limits the display of layer names in the Layer Properties Manager and in the Layer control on the Layers toolbar. In a large drawing, you can use layer filters to display only the layers you need to work with.

There are two kinds of layer filters

The tree view in the Layer Properties Manager displays default layer filters and any named filters that you create and save in the current drawing. The icon next to a layer filter indicates the type of filter. Five default filters are displayed

NoteThe default filters cannot be renamed, edited, or deleted.

Once you have named and defined a layer filter, you can select it in the tree view to display the layers in the list view. You can also apply the filter to the Layers toolbar, so that the Layer control displays only the layers in the current filter.

When you select a filter in the tree view and right-click, options on the shortcut menu can be used to delete, rename, or modify filters. For example, you can convert a layer property filter to a layer group filter. You can also change a property of all layers in a filter. The Isolate Group option turns off all layers in the drawing that are not in the selected filter.

Define a Layer Property Filter

A layer property filter is defined in the Layer Filter Properties dialog box, where you select any of the following properties you want to include in the filter definition:

You use wild-card characters to filter layers by name. For example, if you want to display only layers that start with the letters mech, you can enter mech*. See “Wild-Card Characters” for a complete list.

The layers in a layer property filter may change as the properties of the layers change. For example, if you define a layer property filter named Site that includes all layers with the letters site in the name and a CONTINUOUS linetype, and then you change the linetype of some of those layers, the layers with the new linetype are no longer part of the Site filter and are not displayed when you apply that filter.

Layer property filters can be nested under other properties filters or under group filters.

Define a Layer Group Filter

A layer group filter includes only those layers that you explicitly assign to it. If the properties of the layers assigned to the filter change, the layers are still part of the filter. Layer group filters can be nested only under other layer group filters.

TipLayers from the layer list can be included in a filter by clicking and dragging the selected layers to the filter.

Invert a Layer Filter

You can also invert a layer filter. For example, if all the site plan information in a drawing is contained in multiple layers that include the word site as part of the layer name, you can display all information except site plan information by first creating a filter definition that filters layers by name (*site*) and then using the Invert Filter option.

Sort Layers

Once you have created layers, you can sort them by name or other properties. In the Layer Properties Manager, click the column heading to sort layers by the property in that column. Layer names can be sorted in ascending or descending alphabetical order.

Wild-Card Characters

You can use wild-card characters to sort layers by name.



# (pound)

Matches any numeric digit

@ (at)

Matches any alphabetic character

. (period)

Matches any nonalphanumeric character

* (asterisk)

Matches any string and can be used anywhere in the search string

? (question mark)

Matches any single character; for example, ?BC matches ABC, 3BC, and so on

~ (tilde)

Matches anything but the pattern; for example; ~*AB*matches all strings that don't contain AB

[ ]

Matches any one of the characters enclosed; for example, [AB]C matches AC and BC


Matches any character not enclosed; for example, [~AB]C matches XC but not AC


Specifies a range for a single character; for example, [A-G]C matches AC, BC, and so on to GC, but not HC

` (reverse quote)

Reads the next character literally; for example, `~AB matches ~AB

NoteTo filter on a layer name that contains a wild-card character, precede the character with a reverse quote (`) so that it is not interpreted as a wild-card character.
See Also