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CAD Professional's Resources

If you have an CAD layout or a template you would like to share with us, please contact us: info@xkeys.com


"The mouse is death!! This is a phrase I’ve heard, in reference to one working efficiently on his computer."

- Brian M. Curran, CAD Consultant at

"What it means is, given the choice between using your mouse to execute commands vs. using keyboard shortcuts to execute commands, it is often times quicker using keyboard shortcuts. I’ve found this rule of thumb to be true when using different computer software applications, including when using AutoCAD."

"The AutoCAD Cheat Sheet is a list of what I consider to be the most useful command aliases for doing generic drafting in AutoCAD. If you don’t know, the command aliases are AutoCAD command keyboard shortcuts."

Download Brian's AutoCAD Cheat Sheet free here:

Relative Coordinate Entry Pad

AutoCAD X-keys Layout

Our AutoCAD aficionado used the red layer of an to create this custom numbers pad for relative coordinate entry (because nothing is absolute!). Grouping the "@" and comma keys with the numbers improves the ergonomics of this system and eliminates the finger gymnastics of Shift+2 every time you start relative coordinate entry. The green layer features commonly used standard functions. Download the legend file here: (44 KB)


X-keys Professional DataCAD Keyboard

X-keys layout for DataCAD

“I have been using both flavors of X-keys for several years now with DataCad. I find them absolutely indispensable.” -- Harry Korshak

Invoke frequently used commands and macros from an  with the single touch of a key. This X-keys layout makes DataCAD fly and it is only an example of what may be done. DataCAD users can easily program favorite macros and template files into keys grouped in the way which makes the most sense to them.

AutoCAD X-keys Layout

Download the tutorial and get the table of codes we used here:  (118 KB)

Get the DataCAD legend file for printing or editing here:  (240 KB)

Get DataCAD's list of keyboard shortcuts to help with your programming here:  (8 KB)


X-keys Professional layout for Protel

This X-keys layout for Protel was generously provided and beautifully packaged by Cliff Huston of Propeller Head Design (E-mail: Prop-Head@attbi.com). His PDF file includes key legends, a print ready overlay for commands on the second layer, a list of the Protel Shortcut keys he's programmed into the X-keys, and tips for using the template as well as the X-keys.

Download the package here:  (97 KB)

Create your own X-keys template by Cliff Huston. This self-extracting zip file contains Protel database files which allow you to open and modify the template in Protel:  (136 KB)

This file contains notes on using the Protel database file above:  (38 KB)

Protel Keyboard Shortcuts

From Protel Help Files:

    The Shortcuts are divided into seven sections
  • PCB Editing Shortcuts
  • PCB Keyboard Shortcuts
  • PCB Special Mode Dependent Keys
  • Shortcuts to Speed the Routing Process
  • Default Schematic Menu Shortcut Keys
  • Default Schematic Shortcut Keys
  • Frequently used Keyboard Shortcut Key Combinations

We've compiled them all here in one logically arranged pdf:  (21 KB)