What Does Visretain Do in AutoCAD?

What Does Visretain Do in AutoCAD?

AutoCAD is a powerful software used by architects, engineers, and designers to create detailed and precise drawings. One of the many features that make AutoCAD versatile is the “Visretain” command. In this article, we will explore what Visretain does and how it can be beneficial in your AutoCAD projects.

Understanding Visretain

Visretain is a system variable in AutoCAD that controls the visibility and appearance of objects when their layers are changed or restored. By default, when you modify a layer property, such as its color or linetype, the changes will affect all objects on that layer. However, by using the Visretain command, you can preserve the individual object properties even if the layer properties are modified.

How Does Visretain Work?

When Visretain is set to 0 (zero), which is its default value, any changes made to a layer property will be applied to all objects on that layer. This means that if you change the color of a layer from red to blue, all objects on that layer will also appear blue.

However, when you set Visretain to 1 (one), any changes made to a layer property will only affect new objects that are created on that layer. Existing objects will retain their original properties even if the layer properties are modified.

The Benefits of Using Visretain

The use of Visretain can greatly enhance your productivity and workflow in AutoCAD. Here are some key benefits:

  • Preserving Object Properties: With Visretain enabled, you have more control over individual object properties while making changes to layer properties. This allows for better organization and consistency in your drawings.
  • Efficient Editing: By retaining the original properties of existing objects, you can avoid the time-consuming task of reapplying specific properties to each object after modifying layer properties.
  • Clearer Communication: Visretain ensures that your drawings accurately represent your design intent, especially when collaborating with others. Your colleagues or clients will see the drawings with the intended object properties, even if they modify the layer settings.

Enabling Visretain

To enable Visretain in AutoCAD, follow these steps:

  1. Open AutoCAD and navigate to the command line at the bottom of the program window.
  2. Type “VISRETAIN” and press Enter.
  3. The command line will display “VISRETAIN = 0” by default, indicating that Visretain is currently disabled.
  4. Type “VISRETAIN” again and press Enter.
  5. The command line will display “Enter new value for VISRETAIN: 1” to enable Visretain.
  6. Press Enter to confirm the change.

Congratulations! You have successfully enabled Visretain in AutoCAD. Now you can enjoy its benefits and create more efficient and consistent drawings.


The Visretain command in AutoCAD is a valuable tool that allows you to preserve object properties when modifying layer properties. By enabling Visretain, you can maintain better control over your drawings and enhance collaboration with others. Remember to use this command wisely and adapt it to your specific project requirements for optimal results in AutoCAD.