The .AddIn file

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What is the .AddIn file? The .AddIn file is an XML format file which tells Inventor various things about your program. Inventor knows where to look for .AddIn files and so can pick up information about your AddIn. Open an example .AddIn file to get familiar with its contents, you'll be able to find one here:

 

C:\ProgramData\Autodesk\Inventor 2013\Addins

 

or in a directory similar.

 

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?>

<Addin Type="Standard">

    <!--Created for Autodesk Inventor Version 17.0-->

    <ClassId>{213C79E5-0949-4CD8-93EA-77058D01BC48}</ClassId>

    <ClientId>{213C79E5-0949-4CD8-93EA-77058D01BC48}</ClientId>   

    <DisplayName>Ch1AddInAddInServer</DisplayName>

    <Description>Description of Chapter 1</Description>

    <Assembly>C:\Users\Owen\Documents\MyAutoDeskStuff\Ch1AddIn.dll</Assembly>

                <LoadOnStartUp>1</LoadOnStartUp>

    <UserUnloadable>1</UserUnloadable>

    <Hidden>0</Hidden>

    <SupportedSoftwareVersionGreaterThan>16..</SupportedSoftwareVersionGreaterThan>

    <DataVersion>1</DataVersion>

    <UserInterfaceVersion>1</UserInterfaceVersion>

  </Addin>

 

Here are the most imports parts of an .AddIn file:

 

ClassId and ClientId which are simply unique identifiers to make sure Inventor does not confuse your AddIn with other AddIns.

 

DisplayName and Description are strings which will appear in the AddIn manager. (You can find the AddIn manager under the Tools tab, Options panel of the Inventor ribbon.) DisplayName appears in the main list, and Description appears at the bottom of the dialog when you click on the name in the main list.

 

The Assembly is the path to the DLL which contains your AddIn, and so it is this entry which tells Inventor where to find your program. If your DLL is in Inventor's bin directory you can simply list the name of the AddIn without the full path, for example:

   <Assembly>ScrewMaker.dll</Assembly>

 

The UserUnloadable element specifies whether the user can unload the AddIn. Assumed to be true if this value is not specified (i.e. user can unload the add-in). Value can be 0 or 1.

 

The optional Hidden element defines whether the AddIn is visible in the AddIn Manager or not. A value of 1 indicates that it is hidden, although the end-user can still right-click within the AddIn Manager and choose "Show hidden members" to display all AddIns. The default value is 0, i.e. not hidden.

 

The UserInterfaceVersion is explained here.

Text, images and diagrams © 2021 Owen F. Ransen. All rights reserved. (But copy the source code as much as you want!)