Aligning and Positioning in Crystal Xcelsius

In Crystal Xcelsius, you can easily get sucked into spending hours lining up the edges of the components in a visual model. Avoid the meticulous adjusting of components by using the built-in alignment and position functions found under Format in the main menu. These functions are Align, Make Same Size, Space Evenly, and Center in Document.

The Align functions

Use the Align functions to automatically align the boundaries of a selected group of components, helping you achieve symmetry and flushness without burning out your eyes (a side effect of doing this manually!). You can get to these functions by choosing Format --> Align from the main menu.

The six Align functions are

  • Left: Aligns the horizontal position of the selected objects, putting the left edges in line with the first selected object
    The first selected object refers to the component in the selected group that is listed first in the Object Browser. Components, by default, are listed in the Object Browser in the order of placement onto the canvas. Therefore, the component in the selected group that's placed onto the canvas first is typically considered the first selected object. This is the component that is used as the standard for any alignment and sizing.
  • Right: Aligns the horizontal position of the selected objects, putting the right edges in line with the first selected object
  • Top: Aligns the vertical position of the selected objects, putting the top edges in line with the first selected object
  • Bottom: Aligns the vertical position of the selected objects, putting the bottom edges in line with the first selected object
  • Center Horizontal: Aligns the horizontal position of the selected objects, putting the horizontal center in line with the first selected object
  • Center Vertical: Aligns the vertical position of the selected objects, putting the vertical center in line with the first selected object

The Make Same Size functions

Use the Make Same Size functions to make the components in a selected group the same size based on a specified dimension. The Make Same Size functions are found under Format --> Make Same Size in the main menu.

  • Width: Makes the width of selected objects the same as the first selected object
  • Height: Makes the height of selected objects the same as the first selected object
  • Both: Makes both the width and the height of selected objects the same as the first selected object

The Space Evenly functions

The Space Evenly functions enable you to easily distribute the selected group of components across or down in an evenly spaced fashion. These functions can be found under Format --> Space Evenly in the main menu.

  • Across: Spaces objects evenly between the leftmost and rightmost objects
  • Down: Spaces objects evenly between the topmost and bottommost objects

The Center in Document functions

The Center in Document functions enable you to center a selected group of components to the middle of the canvas. These functions can be found under Format --> Center in Document in the main menu.

  • Vertical: Aligns the middle of the selected objects to an invisible vertical line in the middle of the canvas
  • Horizontal: Aligns the middle of the selected objects to an invisible horizontal line in the middle of the canvas
  • Both: Aligns the middle of the selected objects to both the imaginary vertical and imaginary horizontal lines in the middle of the canvas
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