2020 | 006 – Favorites Palette

By Eric Bobrow

Jan 30


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ARCHICAD Training Lesson Outline

  • Favorites Palette - basic usage, management, export/import for migration to another project or template
  • Parameter Transfer using eye-dropper and syringe; options for controlling which parameters are transferred
  • Parameter Transfer within a Library Part Settings window


  • Opening and closing the Favorites palette
  • Adding a new Favorite
  • Double-click to apply to Default or Selection
  • Editing one or more Favorites
  • View options in the palette
  • Use of folders
  • Filtering options
  • Search options - text string; use space " " to see all of a particular tool type
  • Use of Favorites from within a settings dialog
  • Built-in limitations: Renovation Tag is ignored
  • Selective use of parameter transfer to limit settings changes
  • Troubleshooting issues with Favorites - library management
  • Migration of Favorites to equivalent parts in new Library


  • Setting up the options
  • Sorting by option type or tool type
  • Duplicating saved settings
  • Use with syringe
  • Use with Favorites

Parameter Transfer within a Library Part Settings window

Method for usage:
Inside object settings, window settings or door settings dialog, navigate to a new part, and instead of simply clicking on the part, use the syringe tool keyboard shortcut (Command-Option on the Mac, CTRL-ALT on PC) and click. ARCHICAD will transfer as many parameters as it can to the new part, making it as similar as possible to the original style (includes size, surfaces, many other options that often are time consuming to set).

Use cases

  • Switching window or door types
  • Cabinets
  • Migration of Favorites

ARCHICAD Training Lesson Transcript

ARCHICAD Training Lesson Index by Julie Caliri

Description | Comments
Keywords | Categories
Course Reference | URL
IntroductionIntroduction, reminder to use Slack, note on course website that the videos, links, transcripts and training outlines will be on there; overview of the 2020- 005 Course0:00:00
Favorites PaletteWindow>Palettes>Favorites
You can set up a keyboard shortcut for Favorites
0:06:16Favorites Palette
How to add a FavoriteWith the Favorite palette open, select the element on the plan you want to add and then click the Star icon with the + sign, then give it a name; in the Favorite Palette you can rename it and change attributes0:07:38Adding a favorite
There's a setting within the Favorites Palette to filter to active tool only. If turned off, then we’ll see that even if in the Door tool, we can see all the columns, for example.0:10:01
How to edit the settings of a FavoriteWhen in the Favorites palette, right-click an element to edit it0:10:59Edit Favorites
Using a FavoriteDouble-click on a Favorite and then draw it. If you double-click a different Favorite it will apply those settings0:15:07
When you change an element, it will keep its anchor point0:18:50Anchor Point
Favorites foldersThe folders and elements in the Favorite palette can be modified (renamed, sorted, etc.)0:21:16Favorites Folders
You can view the elements in different ways (list, medium and large thumbnails) by selecting an icon next to the Search bar.0:23:27
Importing IFC files, Revit familiesEric briefly addressed callers questions about importing IFC files and Revit families0:29:35IFC and Revit files
Filter & Search OptionsType in key words in Search bar; use the "Filter to Active Tool" key to narrow searches0:32:47
Quick Link to FavoritesYou can get access to favorites in the settings dialog, whether it’s the Wall tool or the Window or Object tool by clicking the little star icon in the top section.0:39:49
How to Import/Export FavoritesFavorites can be imported/exported; click the Settings icon in the Favorites Palette and click Import/Export. Option as either as a single file, .prf (a preferences file) or as a folder (in that folder you’ll have named files, each one that defines a particular favorite). You can export all or selected ones; If there are any duplicates ARCHICAD would show you the option to overwrite or append. Append would bring it in but give it a new name with a suffix, and overwrite would update it.0:41:18Import, Export, .PRF
Note: Favorites do not carry the Renovation tag with them when using syringe to transfer settings0:56:55Renovation tag
General Parameter Transfer notesThe Parameter Transfer uses the eye-drop to pick up and inject parameters from one object into another. For example, eye-drop one window and I use the syringe to inject it into another window, and it changed to be exactly like that other window (the use of the eye dropper and syringe without any modification - it transferred all of the settings). If you want to change it so it had dividers , but I didn’t want to change the size, then use the syringe and hover over it and click on Transfer All Settings, then click Element Transfer Settings, and it gives options of which parameters to transfer.1:01:12Parameter Transfer
Redefine an elementYou can make a favorite different than it was originally set to be, and you can redefine it based on something that you’ve got selected in your environment, by right-clicking the element and selecting Redefine, and transferring all the settings1:08:57
If you change the parameters of an element after it has been placed in the drawing, it will not automatically update to the changes.1:10:40
A caller mentions he keeps all his commonly used objects off to the side of the project area, but they then shup up in 3DEric suggested using the marquee to select the area to show in 3D so those objects aren't included, or to use a cutting plane once in 3D to cut those objects out1:11:30Marquee tool cutting plane
Favorites Palette vs kit of partsPros of using the Favorites Palette: it's available, regardless of where you are in the project, it’s just a floating palette or a docked palette. It can be quickly jumped into using folders, you can find different things.
Cons: as the list gets longer and longer, it can get cumbersome (even though you can organize it into folders) and you can’t necessarily have as much information related to the elements as you can in Interactive Legend.
1:13:11Favorites Palette, Interactive Legend
Sill and header value in Element Transfer SettingsIn your door or window settings, you have a choice whether you’re anchoring the sill or the header.
For windows, it’s very common to say that the top of all windows are the same, so even though some are smaller and some are larger, they all line up on the top, and they may line up close to the same or at the same height as the top of the door.
For doors, people prefer setting the sill – the base of the door in relationship to the floor, so, if you have shorter or taller doors, they still are all sitting relative to the floor level as opposed to changing – floating up and down.
So, you can always move doors and windows up or down in your model as you need to. With split-levels, sometimes that’s a very important consideration, but in the favorites, you will generally want to use the header for windows and the sill value for the door.
You can to include or exclude the elevation value of the sill or header in the Element Transfer Setting.
1:16:03Sill value, header value
How to use Element Transfer with the syringeWhen you’re hovering over an element, and you’re pressing down with the syringe, you can click on the option that is the most recent one you were using, or choose another option in the list, or to open up the parameter transfer settings dialog, where you can manage it.1:19:12Element Transfer
How to set up new variations of Element Transfer SettingsGo to Edit>Element Settings>Element Transfer Settings and click New in the dialog box, give it a name and select the parameters you want. You can export your settings to use in other projects1:19:38New Transefer Settings
Troubleshooting favorites and libraries when migrating a projectWhen you open up an older project using the Migration Assistant, you get the ability to migrate libraries. The favorites will automatically migrate to the later library if ARCHICAD says, “These library parts are very equivalent, and we don’t expect any issues at all using the new library.” Sometimes, they create different versions of these library parts, ones with more options or that support some of the new technologies that they’ve introduced in later versions of ARCHICAD, in which case they maintain in the Migration Libraries legacy versions of the parts, and those legacy versions still will work, for the most part, but they are deprecated (meaning it’s not recommended using them if you’re starting fresh, preferred you use the updated ones).1:23:00Migration Assistant, Migration Libraries
Eric continued on showing how to decide if you want to add or remove migration libraries, how to deal with duplicates, how to edit favorite elements, renaming them, fixing missing layers, finding equivalent objects, how to use the updated library parts
When you bring a file forward or a project or a template, the layers are still there, you shouldn’t see missing layers. If you’re importing favorites from one file into another, it is possible the favorite is set for a layer name that does not exist, so you need to edit the favorite to set it to use a layer that’s available.1:40:59
If you see question marks in the favorites, you’ll need to make sure you load whatever is missing in your environment so that they are available.
Best Practices:
For the short term and for any specific project that you’re in the middle of working on, if you migrate it forward and you use the migration of the libraries, in general, it will work pretty well.
For the template, where you want a good, clean base, it's worth going through your favorites and anything that you’ve built into the model to make sure it’s only using the latest version of the library.
How to import/export favoritesWhen you have Favorites palette open click the little gear icon, and there’s an Import/Export option in the palette. Select that and you can choose either export or import, and save out either one file (typical) or a folder of files, and then you can import into another project or your template.1:49:12

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