Customizing Hotkeys

Reference Number: KB-00238
Last Modified: February 25, 2022

The information in this article applies to:

Chief Architect Premier or Chief Architect Interiors


I know that many Chief Architect tools have a keyboard shortcut, or hotkey, already associated with them, but I want to specify which hotkeys activate specific Chief Architect tools. How can I do that? 


You can specify which hotkeys activate which Chief Architect tools in the Customize Hotkeys dialog.

To access the Customize Hotkeys dialog

  1. Select Tools> Toolbars and Hotkeys> Customize Hotkeys  from the menu.

    Select the Command Name to change the hotkey and get more information about that tool.

  2. In the Show Commands/Hotkeys Containing field, type part or all of the name of a tool or hotkey to see a list of tool names and hotkeys with that string of characters.

  3. Click on an item in the Command Name column to select it.  

  4. When a tool is selected, notice the Tool Available In section displays a list of the view types where the selected command can be used. The Tool Description section shows a brief description of the selected command.

To create a custom hotkey for a command

  1. Click on a command to select it.

    In this example, we will create a hotkey for the 3D> Materials> Adjust Material Definition  command.

  2. Click in the Assign a sequence... field, then press the key combination you want to use.

    For the purposes of this example, hold down the Shift key and then press A on the keyboard.  

  3. Now click the Assign button to create the "Shift +A" keyboard combination for this hotkey.  

    Set a hotkey combination or sequence for any command

    • A sequence of hotkeys can also be used for a single command or tool. For example, you can assign the letter W, followed by the letter E to a command.

      Note: To assign sequential hotkeys, do not hold down the keys at the same time, but instead click each key in the sequence you wish to assign to the command. 

    If you attempt to assign a hotkey which will conflict with the hotkey for another command, you will receive an error message detailing what the hotkey conflicts with.

    This dialog will also allow you to choose whether to remove the current associated and assign the new hotkey, or to return to the dialog to choose a different command for it. You cannot begin a multiple hotkey sequence with any key that is currently in use as a 'stand alone' hotkey.

  4. Click OK to return to plan view, and now you can use the newly assigned Adjust Material Definition hotkey in a 3D view to quickly activate this tool.

To create a list of hotkeys

A list of the hotkeys available to the current program user can be saved in .html or .xhtml format.

  1. Select Tools> Toolbars and Hotkeys> Create Hotkey List to open the Save Hotkey List File dialog.

  2. Browse to the location in which you want to save your list.

  3. Specify a File name for your list, then click Save.

  4. This creates a hotkey list that can then be opened in a web browser window and printed.

To export customized hotkeys to share with another user

  1. Select File> Export> Export Hotkeys

  2. In the Export Hotkeys File dialog that follows, choose where to save the hotkeys .xml file, specify a File Name, and then click Save.

  3. This file can now be shared with another user using an external hard drive, email, or any other method of file transfer.

    You can also export hotkeys and keep the .xml file created in this way as a backup should you ever need to reinstall Chief Architect or move to another computer.

To import custom hotkeys

  1. A custom hotkey .xml file can be imported by selecting File> Import> Import Hotkeys .

  2. In the Import Hotkeys File dialog that follows, browse for the location of the hotkeys .xml file, select it, then click Open.

  3. The custom hotkey file will be imported and its associated hotkey sequences will be assigned to commands. To view what hotkeys are assigned to each command, select Tools> Toolbars and Hotkeys> Customize Hotkeys .