Before you can work with interfaces and categories, you need to know what they are. An interface is a collection of properties. For example, the IJInsulationThickness interface contains several properties that describe insulation. Interfaces are software grouping mechanisms and are not visible to the software user. A property is a unique characteristic of an object that can include both data information and display information. A category is a collection of interface properties, which is visible to the software user.
You can create new interfaces and properties and add them to new or existing part classes that you define for the catalog. You can also modify existing interfaces and properties, such as changing the display name of a property.
The Catalog task only displays user-defined interfaces and does not expose system interfaces and properties for modification. As a result, some properties that appear on the property dialog box for selected model objects will not be available to you for modification.
The Schema Browser is very useful to help you find which interfaces contain particular properties that you are interested in modifying. This utility is delivered with the Programming Resources Installation setup. After you install and run this application, use the Find command to locate the display name of the property that you want to modify. For more information, see Using the Schema Browser.
There are no software restrictions to prevent you from modifying interfaces and categories in a live catalog; however, we do not recommend this as you may be editing something that another user is accessing simultaneously. Ideally, all catalog changes should be made at the beginning of a project before modeling begins. Because this is not always possible, we recommend that you create a "live" and a "test" catalog database. You should make all changes in the test catalog and verify the changes in a test model. After the changes are verified, an administrator should select a convenient time to have all users stop modeling, create a backup, and then use copy and paste to move the changes from the test catalog to the live catalog.
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