And Where Was That? (FREE)

And Where Was That? (FREE)

Win32 and 64, English

Ljubomir Blanusa
Often you must find one drawing in your archive, but all you know is a specific text you hope it contains. This add-in enables instant and easy search for you and your team.

General Usage Instructions

Basic usage:

-to start this add-in, at the command prompt type keyword AWWT, or click on AWWT icon in Autodesk® AutoCAD® add-ins.

-to ADD drawings locations for which you want to scan and index, click the Settings tab and drag and drop folders of your interest to list. Once folders or files are there, click Scan/Update to finish the process.

-to SEARCH by keyword, once you already have the files scanned, click the Search tab and enter the search words, and your list of file candidates will show up.


Advanced team usage:

"And Where Was That?" was also designed to be used by many users over a network utilizing your Microsoft SQL database server.

In this case, after one computer has performed document scan on your network area storage (NAS) folders, everyone else will be able to do keyword search.

If you choose this method, you must have installed and working MS SQL server v2012 (free for everyone and available for download from Microsoft, with the download size of about 1.3GB). It can be any Microsoft SQL server, as long it has full text search features. Currently free version is called SQL Server Express with Advanced Services.

Once you have SQL server, ask your admin to add a new database named awwt with full access. Access can be Windows Authentication or Login/Password. Whatever he chooses, fill this information in "And Where Was That?" database settings window. That's it!


Examples of search expression: 

-to search for drawing containing words both "blue" and "tower" type: blue tower

-to search for phrase, use quotation marks: "blue tower"

-to exclude words use "-" sign: blue tower -small

-can even type just the beginning of words : blu tow



Q: I have added folders to list of folders to scan, but nothing happens.

A: After you have finished with adding or removing items in list, click "Scan/Update" button to finalize.

Q: I have noticed that during "Scan/Update", my running instance of AutoCAD has lost some responsiveness.

A: Unfortunately, this happens since AutoCAD is not fully async capable. However, it affects only instance of AutoCAD running "Scan/Update".

Q: I have made some changes in drawings already scanned. When will those changes be visible?

A: Just click "Scan/Update", and program will find all changed files and update data.

Q: Some files were skipped during scan. Why?

A: Because of speed, program will skip all files currently open, damaged or otherwise require user attention for any reason.

Q: I don't see the same results as my colleague even though we are on the same database server.

A: Your colleague may have included some of his/her local files, not available on network and thus to you. Only he/she can see their local files.

Q: I don't want others in my team to see texts from my files, but still want to be able to use this program and search by keyword.

A: Only you can search your local files.

Q: During Scan/Update, Excel starts with "Data connections have been blocked" and asks if to "enable" or "disable".

A: Your dwg is on a network location and contains Excel embedded OLE content. To be able to scan this content, click "enable". Alternatively, you can try to change security zone for your network drive, or in Excel options, Trust center, External Content, click on Enable all Data Connections

Q: I cannot connect to fresh installation of My SQL Server.

A: How to setup Microsoft SQL Server itself is not discussed here, but as a general guidance - please verify with your SQL database administrator that you have:

-MS SQL server with "full text search" features (e.g. "MS SQL Server", or "MS SQL Server Express with Advanced Services")

-server settings set to allow remote connections, and enabled TCP/IP connections

-server set to accept current Windows user or a user with a custom login/password

-local machine where the server is running has firewall inbound rule set to accept remote connection to SQL port

-Once this is all set, check if you have created empty database named "awwt" with full access to the user.



Ribbon/Toolbar Icon Command Command Description


Opens "And Where Was That?" palette window where you can search archive of drawings by knowing just a part of the text inside each drawing.


The installer that ran when you downloaded this app/plug-in from Autodesk App Store will start installing the app/plug-in. OR, simply double-click the downloaded installer to install the app/plugin.

You may need to restart the Autodesk product to activate the app/plug-in.

To uninstall this plug-in, exit the Autodesk product if you are currently running it, simply rerun the installer, and select the "Uninstall" button. OR, click Control Panel > Programs > Programs and Features (Windows 7/8.1/10/11) and uninstall as you would any other application from your system.

Additional Information

How it works:

In the first step, program will find all files of interest. Then, every file is internally opened and best effort is made to find all the texts bits and remember them. If you have remote database (MS SQL database server), then this information is passed to database and set available to all who have this app.

Once this is finished, instant search is possible by using keywords. If the remote database is present, every connected party will be able to use this information. You can search by some of words from the drawing, or you can also search by filename.

Known Issues

Security issues:

Your data never leaves your local machine. However, if you choose to use this app also with the remote database (MS SQL Server), then security of your data depends on network and remote server security. Also, it is up to you to decide whether you trust your team members or not.


Company Name: Ljubomir Blanusa
Company URL:
Support Contact:

Author/Company Information

Ljubomir Blanusa

Support Information

For questions on using this add-in, please contact

Version History

Version Number Version Description


Added latest support. No change in version number.


Added 2017 support


  • new feature: support for overridden dimension text


  • bug fix for a rare "file scan error" bug
  • new feature: support for embedded OLE Microsoft Excel table inside drawing


  • Search algorithm improvements, now simplified and more optimized for engineering data.
  • Cleaner overall look and feel.


Initial release.

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