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Types of Drawing Documents

Drawings are normally created with the model resolved; that is, all information about the model is available in the drawing document. You can improve performance in creating, opening, and working in drawing documents with the following:

Detached Drawings The model is not loaded into memory. Create when saving drawings. You can add detailing without the model. You are prompted when the model is required. When you load the model, it loads completely. You can save drawings as either resolved or detached, so you can save a detached drawing as a regular drawing and vice versa.
Lightweight Drawings A subset of model data is loaded into memory; the remaining model data is loaded as needed. In a new drawing, create a lightweight drawing by specifying draft quality views. Opening a lightweight drawing is faster than opening the same drawing with fully resolved models. You can toggle between resolved and lightweight mode while in a drawing. Lightweight is the default mode forLarge Assembly Mode.
Reduced display data drawing files Tessellated data for shaded and draft views is not saved with drawing documents when you clear the drawing option, reducing file size. The data is available in the model file.
  Resolved Detached Lightweight
Model required Yes Required for some options Yes
Load, rebuild performance Normal Somewhat slower (load required) Faster
Resolve/load models always resolved load completely, no unload resolve/lightweight
Memory footprint high not as low as lightweight low
Produce largest SolidWorks assembly drawings not in all cases not in all cases yes
View creation normal normal faster
Appearance normal axis and highlighting colors different, broken link on drawing icon and view icon feather on drawing view icon
Line font per edge yes yes yes

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