Creating Levels using Seed File or DGNLIB file:



This wiki should help you to decide between placing your Levels within a Seed File or DGNLIB file.


Using MicroStation CONNECT Edition you can create either a Seed file or DGNLIB file and configure your workspace to use either one or both.  It is entirely up to you.  You may find having some items in the seed file and some in a dgnlib works for you. 

MicroStation CONNECT gives you a choice to set your configuration in either Standards, Workspace, Workset, Role and User cfg files.  You may decide at what level, how many users and based on project or position who can see and has access to what resources.    

MicroStation Connect look under File/Settings/Configuration/Configuration Variables.

For MicroStation Connect I suggest reviewing the changes to the Workspace. 

By Seed File:

Create a standard seed file and create all your desired levels with symbology. Open MicroStation, Select New, Select Seed File those levels are created in your New DGN File.

When you have created your seed file place it in your workspace or desired location. Make sure the variable MS_SEEDFILES is point to your seed file folder location.

Create a new DGN, look in level manager you will see the levels are directly in the file. If you send this file to someone they will receive all the levels whether they have been used or not. This however will increase the file size and the more levels the larger the file size.


Using DGNLIB files gives you more options to load or not load certain levels into a new DGN file. If you would like to create a DGNLIB for multiple disciplines or projects this can easily be done. Think of the levels as being reference to your active file. You will see all the levels in your level manager but they are stored in the DGNLIB file. Once you have selected a level and drawn elements on that level that is when the level is copied into you active DGN file.

Level Libraries can be attached in two ways.

  1. Open Level Manager, Select Levels, Library, Attach and select DGNLIB file.


       2. Using variable MS_DGNLIBLIST point to a folder to load DGNLIB files (i.e. DGNLIB/*.dgnlib).


You may choose to load the DGNLIB’s at various configuration levels. You may want to load company standard levels in a Standards.cfg that will get loaded for all users all the time. Then load specific discipline or project levels using the User.cfg or Project.cfg.

If you send your file to someone they will only receive the used levels which have elements on them. If you DGNLIB has 100 levels in it, but only 10 have been drawn on, they will get only those 10. If you want them to have all the levels you will need to send them your DGNLIB or import the levels into the file.

Looking at the image below you see the Default level comes from the seed file which is created in the active file. There are four levels which are bold that have elements on them and have been copied into the file from the DGNLIB file. The levels with nothing on them still show they are coming from the library file.

In level manager if you have the File column turned on you will see where the levels are coming from. To turn on File column or other options, Right Click in box next to Name, this will open the options box for you to check or uncheck various columns.

These methods can be used together or separately to give you the desired results for your specific need or client needs.

Seed file method is nice if you do not have a lot of levels and all users want to have all levels. This way you only have one file to manage. Sending out files you know all levels are include for sure even though file will be a little larger.

DGNLIB file method does give you more options for company and client needs. Users can get only the levels needed. If you have a very large level list this will help keep your file size smaller.

We recommend you decide what works best for your company needs and workflow.

See also

Other language sources


 Original Author:Todd Moser