One of the ways Civil 3D maintains a dynamic link between entities is through the use of Data Shortcuts. Each data shortcut represents a “pointer” that identifies a shared object’s name as well as the drawing where the object is saved. Using data shortcuts, objects such as alignments, profiles, pipe networks and surfaces can be stored in separate drawings yet still update automatically when changes are made to the data they depend on.
Since a data shortcut represents a reference to a specific object in a specific drawing, renaming the object (or file) or deleting the object (or file) can easily create a broken link. If a data shortcut link is broken, it can affect every drawing in the project with a dependency on that link.
In the event you have a data shortcut in your project that has gone “dark”, there are a few things you can try in an attempt to restore the connection. If you are interested, the video below walks through several broken link scenarios including…
1. Renaming an object after a data shortcut has been created
2. Renaming a drawing that contains a data shortcut object
3. Moving a data shortcut object to another drawing
4. Swapping a data shortcut object with a new object
5. Restoring a deleted data shortcut object
In the big scheme of things, data shortcut repair is something you shouldn’t have to deal with very often. That being said, you never know when accidents may happen.
While the strategies in the recording may not solve all of your data shortcut mishaps, they should help point you in the right direction the next time you go searching for the missing link.