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Selection by attributes, AutoCAD – Microstation

The selection of attributes is a way to clip_image001filter objects according to special criteria; both Microstation and AutoCAD do it similar although one of the two programs has some extra features in the case of this tool. I am using for this example AutoCAD 2009 and Microstation V8i.

With AutoCAD

This is activated with the qselect command, or with the icon placed on the right in the properties side panel.

In AutoCAD 2009 it has to be found, is just on the right on utilities, having selected the home tab.

Once you have chosen a panel unfolds allowing to:

clip_image002– Apply the selection to the entire drawing or only to a partial selection

-Choose the type of object (line, circle, text, etc)

-Define the matching condition using operators

-Filtering the color, indicated as value

And then it is possible to add the selection to a new set or an existing collection.

Additionally, it also sounds very practical objects selection from the property table that although it does not have much functionality for this purpose it used to be practical to select objects of the same type previously selected.

There are other kinds of selection, what happens now is that, with the Ribbon, I can not find them so easily. But it can be done from the command bar, input the “select” command, then enter, and then the ‘?’ symbol, and then enter. This will give us other forms of selection that AutoCAD has and even there aren’t filters, are useful. Although for comparison we should also consider what Microstation makes with the element selection.

clip_image003With Microstation

The command gets active with “edit / select by attributes“.

While the panel is quite similar to AutoCAD, there are more alternatives for selection such as:

– Levels Filtering (layers), this works with a simple drag or by using ctrl or shift key.

-The types are almost the same of AutoCAD, while allowing 22 types against the 12 that allows that. Equally, the selection can be with simple drag, and may have several types at the same time while with AutoCAD is only one at a time. Hence, AutoCAD uses the functionality of adding objects to the collection.

“It is possible to filter data symbols, in AutoCAD’s case only allows color, Microstation allows the style and line thickness.

clip_image004-The inclusion or exclusion properties are equal in both programs

-It’s interesting one more option in which it may be selected objects, or trace, with this zoom goes to where the objects are or display them.

clip_image005-Then there is an option to choose whether they are off or on (on / off)

-The “execute” button performs the action, at the same time there are two more buttons that let you view other filtering properties

“The operational criteria are like in AutoCAD (equal to, major, minor etc) and run in the bottom button ” tags “, but with the proviso that you can add multiple criteria at once using ” and, or ” operators


And the extra tip, which is very good, in “tools / select from element” it can be selected the right properties of an object in the drawing. This is handy because it is used in case you want to choose all objects that have the property of a specific one, it is easier because instead of guessing properties it is selected one and then extended to more types of items or adds other requirements.

clip_image007You can also save the criteria as .rsc file and call it later.

Then in Settings you can specify other finest criteria like font properties or names of blocks (cells)


It’s the same in both programs, so it’s only the fact of getting used on take advantage or suffers. It might not be bad AutoCAD improves its functionality a bit.


  1. Joseph

    This is awesome!! Thank you!!

  2. David Graves

    An experienced user would know that it is not the same.
    For example, in AutoCAD if you need to select all lines less than or equal to 1/4″
    To clean up a drawing or reduce the level of detail, it can be done in AutoCAD
    using the filter command, but it is impossible in Microstation.
    Microstation is only concerned with the Attributes (color, level, text value, etc.)
    but it goes no deeper.

    • eg!

      That os true. It can be done with bentley map or geographics using the dialog cleanup

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