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Grouping Entities

In LayOut, groups are a way to keep related elements organized in the drawing area. Groups can also make selecting and copying multiple elements easier. For example, if you know you’ll always want to select a text box and a shape together, make it a group so you just need to select it once.

Under the hood, a group is an entity that holds other LayOut entities. You can nest a group within a group to create hierarchies of groups.

Under the hood, a group is an entity that holds other LayOut entities. You can nest a group within a group to create hierarchies of groups, or “nested groups.” Going even further, entities within groups can be assigned to different layers. This gives you the convenience of groups, but with the organizational control of layers. It’s important to note, however, that groups on shared layers can’t be included with groups that use regular/non-shared layers. Don’t worry, though, LayOut will warn you if you try to do that.

To create a group, follow these steps:

  1. With the Select tool (), select all the entities you want to include in your group.
  2. Select Edit > Group from the menu bar. Or context-click the selection and choose Group from the menu that appears. Everything in the selection becomes grouped within a bounding box.

To edit a group, double-click the group entity with the Select tool. All entities outside the group’s context appear faded. If you have nested groups, you can continue double-clicking to open the group that you want to edit. When you’re done editing the group, click anywhere outside the group’s context.

If you no longer need a group, select the group entity and choose Edit > Ungroup from the menu bar. Or context-click the selection and choose Ungroup from the menu that appears. Everything in the group becomes a separate entity again.

Note: Creating a group changes how LayOut’s inference cues work. After you create a group, the group geometry loses access to some inference cues. However, the following inference cues remain at your service:

  • The center grip can still inference other entities, and you can move the center grip to any point in your group. (See Arranging, Moving, Rotating, and Scaling Entities for details about inference cues and moving the center grip.)
  • External edges of the group continue inferencing other entities.
  • The group can inference the document’s red and green axes.

Tip: After you group entities, you can continue drawing inside a group with the drawing tools.
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