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AutoCAD® software provides a flexible development platform for specialized design and drafting applications. Its open architecture enables you to customize AutoCAD to suit your unique purposes. Examples of customizations include Autodesk’s industry-specific design software and thousands of add-on applications from members of the Autodesk® Developer Network. AutoCAD provides the ObjectARX® programming environment with the object-oriented C++ programming interfaces, the managed AutoCAD .NET API, the complete Visual LISP® development environment and the ActiveX® interface.
This is a self-paced tutorial guide for a smooth introduction into the programming world. This is a "one-stop shop" learning path for users who know Autodesk products but are absolutely new to programming and are thinking about taking the plunge.
The AutoCAD developer documentation explains the components that make up the available APIs for AutoCAD and AutoCAD-based products.
The ActiveX documentation is installed with the program and is organized into two guides:
The ActiveX API documentation can also be found locally in these folders:
The components of the Managed .NET documentation are installed as part of the ObjectARX SDK and available as part of the product Help. Starting with AutoCAD 2018, the .NET Developer’s and Reference guides are available online and as part of the ObjectARX SDK. In earlier releases, the . NET Developer's Guide was available in the AutoCAD Help system only and the. NET Reference Guide was only available as part of the ObjectARX SDK.
A CHM version of the AutoCAD 2017 Managed .NET Developer’s Guide can be downloaded and copied into the Docs folder of the ObjectARX SDK.
The Managed .NET Reference Guide can also be integrated with Microsoft Visual Studio.
Member and parameter descriptions from the Managed .NET Reference Guide can be displayed within the Microsoft Visual Studio environment as part of the Intellisense feature set. This allows for some basic information about a member or parameter to be displayed in a tooltip while working in a code editor window or to be accessed from the Object Browser without the need to open the Help Viewer.
Download the appropriate file below and extract the XML files into the Inc folder of the ObjectARX SDK.
The Transmittal object allows you to determine the dependencies a drawing file has and automate tasks related to the ETRANSMIT and ARCHIVE commands. The documentation related to this API is part of the ObjectARX Developer's Guide in the ObjectARX SDK in for AutoCAD 2015 and earlier.
Starting with AutoCAD 2016, the documentation was added to the product help.
The CAD Standards Plug-in object allows you to determine create a custom plug-in that can be used with the Batch Standards Checker or STANDARDS command. The documentation related to this API is part of the ObjectARX Developer's Guide in the ObjectARX SDK in for AutoCAD 2015 and earlier. Starting with AutoCAD 2016, the documentation was added to the product help.
ObjectARX Wizards and AutoCAD .NET Wizards for AutoCAD and Visual Studio