RefNotes (Reference Notes) Preferences
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RefNotes (Reference Notes) Preferences

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Our Preferences settings allow you to configure our software quickly to work closer to the way you work. Although we recommend reviewing the Preferences early in the process of using our software, you can make changes to the Preferences at any time.



The RefNotes Preferences include settings for the organization of your Reference Notes (RefNotes).

Changing a setting in the Preferences does not affect any existing projects. We engineered this preventive measure to keep users from altering the contents of current projects unintentionally. If you make a change in your Preferences and want to apply it to an existing drawing, you'll need to delete and purge any items that would be affected by the new Preferences settings. When you place these items back in the drawing, the new Preferences will be applied.

Do You Work in an Office With Multiple Land F/X Users? Read This First!

Preferences are saved in what's known as a Preference Set. If you work in an office where multiple people use our software with an office server or shared online folder, it's extremely important to realize that your office's Preference Sets are shared by everyone. That means if you make changes to an active Preference Set, you're making those changes for everyone who uses that Preference Set. Before delving into changing your Preferences, make sure you have a good understanding of what Preference Sets are and how they work.

If you're not sure whether you should be making changes to a Preference Set, ask your CAD manager.

Accessing the Preferences Screen

Preferences on FX Admin ribbon


F/X Admin ribbon




Preferences on FX Planting ribbon


Preferences flyout buttons on any of the other F/X ribbons



Preferences on FX Admin toolbar


Several toolbars (FX Admin toolbar pictured)

Preferences on FX Admin menu


Any of the F/X pull-down menus

(F/X Admin, F/X Site, F/X Planting, F/X Irrigation, or F/X Details)






or type *FXPreferences in the Command line




The Preferences screen will open. (See image below.)

Reference Notes Preferences: Overview

Reference Notes Prferences screen, overview

1. Reference Notes Divisions & Subdivisions

  • New: Create a new division or subdivision.
  • Edit: Modify an existing or subdivision.
  • Delete: Delete an existing division or subdivision.


For detailed information on the divisions and subdivisions, see our RefNotes Divisions documentation.


2. User Fields: Create, edit, or delete your own user-defined fields for a selected division.


3. Apply the present settings as your defaults in the current Preference Set for:


4. Once you've configured all your settings, save them into a Preference Set. More Information

RefNotes Divisions and Subdivisions

The RefNotes Preferences allow you to customize the organization of RefNotes you create. You can build an effective organization system for your Reference Notes by selecting an applicable division for each of your Reference Notes.


Our default RefNote organization system is based on the Construction Specifications Institute (CSI®) organization structure, which we describe in great detail in our CSI® Format for Organization webinar.


The CSI® divisions are listed in the format shown below. The number or letter(s) before the name of each division represents the code that will be assigned to RefNotes placed in that division:


  • 02 Existing Conditions
  • 03 Concrete
  • 04 Masonry
  • 05 Metals
  • 06 Woods, Plastics, and Composites
  • 11 Equipment
  • 12 Furnishings
  • 22 Plumbing
  • 26 Electrical
  • 31 Earthwork
  • 32 Exterior Improvements
  • 33 Utilities
  • C Curb
  • D Demolition
  • E Electrical
  • F Fence
  • G Gate
  • I Irrigation
  • K Rock
  • P Paving
  • R Rail
  • S Site Furnishings
  • ST Stairs
  • W Wall




You're free to number your RefNotes as you see fit. However, as you'll see below, using the division system and relying on these numerical codes is a great way to keep your RefNotes organized and easy to locate when you need them. The CSI® divisions make up a logical organizational system that allows you to file each of your RefNotes into a category of related items. For example, you can group all RefNotes having to do with stairs into the Stairs division. Any time you need to place a RefNote having to do with stairs, you'll know exactly where to go.

Although the default divisions and subdivisions in this section are based on CSI®, keep in mind that this organizational system is completely customizable. You can opt to show only one or the other, add divisions, and even make up your own organizational system. You can also create multiple Preference Sets, each with its own organization of divisions, for use with different clients or agencies.

For more detailed information on divisions and subdivisions, including the CSI® divisions structure, see the RefNote Divisions section of our Reference Notes Organization documentation.


Adding and Editing Divisions

Adding a New Division

To add a division, click the New button beneath the Reference Note Divisions list.

Adding a new division




New division settings

Select the Division tab.


Enter an abbreviation and a name for the division.


If you want, you can also enter a schedule title for this division in case you run a RefNotes Schedule for only that division. If you leave this field blank, the title of the schedule will default to the division title plus the word Schedule (example: General Schedule.


Click OK when finished.


The Schedule Title field also supports the | character to enter a secondary language title. So for instance, for the division C for Curbs, for the schedule title you could enter Curb Schedule | Tableau des bordures. Note that these secondary language titles only appear with the Table style output for RefNotes Schedules.




Your new division will now be included in the Reference Note Divisions list and will be available for you to select when adding a RefNote.




Editing a Division

To edit a division, click the Edit button beneath the Reference Note Divisions list.

Editing a division




Editing divisions, settings

Enter a new name and/or schedule title for the division.


Click OK when finished.




Your changes will be reflected in the Reference Note Divisions list, as well as when you select a division for a new RefNote.

Although you can edit the names of the RefNote divisions, you cannot change the number of an existing division. If you need to renumber a division, our recommendation is to create a new division with a new number, and then edit any Reference Notes as necessary to assign them to the new division.




Adding and Editing RefNotes Subdivisions

Reference Note subdivisions provide yet another level of organization, breaking your divisions down into categories that make it much easier to locate the RefNote you need when you need it. Each subdivision is assigned a specific number. You can either keep the default subdivision numbers or set your own


Adding a New Subdivision

To add a subdivision, select the division you want to add it to, then click New.

Adding a subdivision




Subdivision name and starting number

Enter a name and starting number for the subdivision.


Click OK when finished.


Your new subdivision will now be included in the Sub-Divisions list and will be available for you to select when adding a RefNote.




Editing a Subdivision


To edit a subdivision, first expand the division that contains it. Select the subdivision and click Edit.

Editing a subdivision




New name and starting number, subdivision

Type a new name and starting number for the subdivision.


Click OK when finished.


Your changes will be reflected in the list, as well as when you select a subdivision for a new RefNote.







User Fields

The User Fields and Field Values sections allow you to assign custom fields to each of your divisions.



User fields allow you to attach custom data to your RefNotes and list that data as columns in the RefNotes Schedule. For example, you can create a Color field and then create custom values to assign to RefNotes under that field (such as Terra Cotta, Gray, etc.). You can then choose to include a column in the RefNotes Schedule that lists that value for each of your RefNotes in that division.




The User Fields section starts out blank for each division. You can add new fields by selecting a division (example: General) and then clicking New to add the field.



You can also Edit or Delete existing fields.




You can choose to add and edit user fields on the fly while adding or editing individual RefNotes. You may find it easier to create these fields in this way, as you need them. We offer the option to add and edit them in the Preferences as a means of fine-tuning your system of user fields.

User Fields




Name and column width, custom User Field

Enter a name for your custom field.


Enter a width for the field as it will appear in the RefNotes Schedule. Click OK when finished.




Dual-Language Divisions, Subdivisions, and Schedules

Need to show a RefNote division or subdivision in two different languages in your RefNotes Schedule? We've added the ability to assign two languages to each of your divisions and subdivisions.




When creating or editing a division or subdivision, use the | key after your primary language title, followed by your desired secondary language title.


In this example, we'll create a subdivision that's titled Brick in English, but add a secondary title of Brique (French for "brick"), which means we'll give it the title Brick | Brique.

Secondary language option




RefNotes Schedule, Table option

When you place a RefNotes Schedule in a drawing that includes RefNotes from that division or subdivision, take care to select the Table option as your schedule destination.




Your secondary language title will be listed beneath the primary language title of that division or subdivision in the schedule.

Schedule with secondary language terms, example

Customizing RefNotes Text Styles

Your installation includes a standard set of Text Styles for a variety of specific uses in your drawings.


Each of our Text Styles is meant to serve a specific purpose. For example, the Text Style Callout Title is assigned a font (for example, Arial, Helvetica, etc.), point size, width, and layer (i.e., the layer where it will be stored in your drawings). When you place a callout in a drawing, the title of that callout will have this Text Style's current settings. You can edit these settings by selecting the Text Style in the General Preferences.


Open the Preferences as described in the Preferences Overview section above. Select the General option at the top of the screen to open the General Preferences.



Select a Text Style from the list (example: CALLOUT TITLE).



Click Edit to customize the settings of the font you have selected.

Editing Text Style settings




Text Manager

The Text Manager will open.


Here, you can modify the settings of the selected Text Style by changing the Specifications options.

For more detailed information on customization of our default Text Styles, see our Text Manager documentation.

Default RefNote Callout Style

Click Default Callout to set a default style of RefNote Callouts, which will apply automatically to projects associated with the current Preference Set.

Default Callout button




Default Callout dialog box

The Default Callout dialog box will open. Configure your preferred settings for the leader and callout box styles of your RefNotes Callouts. More information on setting your callout style


Click OK to save your default callout style.

Default RefNote Schedule Style

Click Schedule Defaults to set a default style of RefNote Schedules, which will apply automatically to projects associated with the current Preference Set.

Schedule Defaults button




RefNote Schedule settings for defaults

The RefNote Schedule dialog box will open. Configure your preferred RefNotes Schedule settings. More information on the available schedule settings


Click OK to save your default schedule style.

RefNotes Layers

An entire reference note may be on a single layer in your drawing, or parts of a reference note can be on different layers. To find out which layers contain your reference note:


1. Explode the RefNote. (Select the entire reference note, type Explode in the Command line, and press Enter.)


2. Select the part or parts of the RefNote whose layer(s) you want to find out.


3. Check the Layer entry in the AutoCAD Properties palate. The layer of the selected object will be listed here.


To edit the layer, open the General Preferences, select the layer in the Layers pull-down menu, and click Edit.

Line Colors and Layers

Do our default line colors conflict with your office standard? Fear not; we offer an easy way to change your line colors to suit your preference. Learn more about customizing your layer and line colors on our Land F/X Layers documentation.

Saving Your Preferences in a Preference Set

Preferences control the look and feel of your usage of our software to match your office standards. However, some projects may require different preferences, such as those produced for a client whose requirements differ from your office standard. These projects may require different text styles, or callout looks, or schedule setups, different colors, or any of the various items covered in Preferences.



Once you've configured your Preferences, you can save them as a Preference Set. You can create multiple Preference Sets – one for each client, project type, region ... the choice is yours. When starting a job for a particular client, for example, open the Preference Set you've created for that client. Your standards for that client will be applied automatically as you draft.



Preference Set options

In all six Preferences screens, the Preference Set options are in the bottom left corner.


For detailed information on creating a Preference Set, see our Preference Sets documentation.

Other Preferences Categories

  • General: Customize Text Styles used by our software (such as for schedules, callouts, titles), as well as license information and several other options, including layer settings and line colors.
  • Planting: Customize plant codes and plant labels.
  • Plant Sizes: Customize the list of plant sizes, default plant size, the number and type of fields in the schedule, and the default cost for each plant in your project.
  • Irrigation: Customize the valve callouts, pipe data, and irrigation schedules.
  • Details: Customize the Detail Module size and callout

Related Webinars

  • Getting Started with RefNotes: Our Reference Notes (RefNotes) tool provides a quick way to spec and place site furniture, play structures, hardscaping materials, retaining walls, and pretty much any other item you need in your landscape plan. We'll go over the basics. (58 min)
  • Implementing Your Office CAD Standards: Find out how easily you can adapt your own office standards to Land F/X – and how effectively the software will then apply them to your projects. (1 hr 2 min)
  • Customize for Office Color Standards: This webinar covers the necessary tools and techniques for a black belt in the art of office standards – from CTB plotting files to valuable Land F/X tools that enable instant layer color conversions and office color setup. (1 hr 2 min)
  • Planting F/X Setup for a Multi-Office Firm: Wondering how to acquaint your office with our planting tools? Michael Bain, CAD manager at Boffa Miskell Limited, walks through his introduction of Land F/X into the New Zealand firm with 7 offices and 70+ landscape architects. Michael shows how easy it was to get the firm's standards into the software, and provides real numbers showing the time savings they experienced right away. (1 hr)
  • Customizing Land F/X: Learn how to work with specific blocks, layer names, sheet protocols, and other distinct elements that make up your firm’s practices and preferences. (1 hr 3 min)
  • Setting up Templates and Preferences for Repeat Clients: To save time and increase your accuracy, learn how to deliver a consistent drawing package for your repeat clients by setting up project templates and Preference Sets. (50 min)


Issue: You are unable to open any of the Preferences screens, and your office has our Cloud Data option


Issue: You opened the Preferences, and the buttons and options are grayed out, and you are not able to make changes


Preference Sets troubleshooting


Having issues with Reference Notes? See our RefNotes Troubleshooting section.

Last modified on Monday, 06 February 2023 16:51
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