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Joel 2008-01-25 09:44 AM

Some questions about the Cisco stencils for Visio
(I've cross posted this to the OmniGraffle users mailing list as well, just as an FYI)

As we work more at bettering our Visio support, one singular fact has presented itself: Lots of people really really need to make use of the rather large library of Cisco stencils that are already available for Visio.

One of the problems that presents itself here in regard to that is that the large majority of those stencils are making use of the Enhanced MetaFile format (EMF), which OmniGraffle Professional currently does not parse. We are currently discussing talking to the folks who wrote the Visio binary file format parser for us to tackle this issue, in the meantime I am considering undertaking the task of creating these Cisco stencils for OmniGraffle (more or less from scratch), however I do have some questions...

I have seen a number of existing Cisco stencils for OmniGraffle that are fairly abstract, as shown here:


I also notice that the actual Cisco stencils in Visio are far more complex and detailed such as:


So, the question is: Which of these styles are needed by the Graffle community most?

My guess is that it's the latter, but before I start working on my gameplan here I need to know what direction I'm heading in.

Please let me know here or over in the mailing list thread, and thanks!

sathomasga 2008-01-25 10:41 AM

Actually, the "abstract" ones are much more valuable to me. Part of the reason I use OG instead of Visio is the ability to do nice three dimensional diagrams easily.


sylencer 2008-01-31 08:44 AM

Abstract first!
I would also like the abstract ones first, because they are the most valuable.

But sometimes the complex ones would be useful, too, as they are a great method to document real port adapter combinations in a device.

The best would really be fully working Visio Stencil import!

Line Echo 2008-02-02 08:32 AM

The abstract stencils are more useful since they are used more often. They are the used by networking people everyday to do design and conceptualization and have become the default icons for designing networks.

I have been making my wn stencils using by extracting them from powerpoint that cisco provides. But they don't get the shadows and nice things like that.

The actual pictures are used much less frequently and would be less of a prioirty.

mtalbot 2008-03-07 12:26 AM

Having both types of Cisco stencil objects available within OmniGraffle would be [I]fantastic[/I]. It would almost eliminate the need to keep Visio in my toolbox.

The more complex stencil objects are really great when documenting device configuration, installation, and usage, but I use the Cisco abstract objects far more frequently if that helps prioritize your game plan.

An effort to produce the full Cisco stencil library would be [B]most[/B] appreciated.


jacobss 2008-04-03 06:15 AM

The detailed ones please, though I am slowly adding them in. But it would be real nice to import these once the new ones come out seemlessly.

I do allot of network as-builds, and a square box with the label of 3750-48 10/100 does not look as good as a Visio. I don't think the way Visio ( Microsoft) wants me to think so the program I find is debilitating to my creativity. Or else I would just use that.

To that note I have found a cheap work around, since my Cisco products are limited. I bring it up in Visio running Parallels and then screen shot it with the OSX function and bring the .png into OmniGraffle.

Yes I would love to have the entire Cisco Visio catalog all 86 Megs of it, but in reality I have worked around part of the issues. And so far the number has not exceeded 30 device types.

I also use HP servers, and IBM products, etc.... But then it is all the same, I have a functional work around. Not as nice as a straight import but it is functional, with out much pain on my part.

Kaz219 2008-12-03 01:26 AM

is there any progress here? The cisco icons available on graffletopia are quite old, and newer machines are missing...

climbaz 2009-04-13 02:56 PM

I am really hoping to be able to import visio stencils and really want to use OmniGraffle. I'm stuck with Visio in Parallels at the moment because I really depend on the detailed cisco drawings.

As a network engineer, I have the full cisco drawings for network layer 2 and layer 3 drawings. The visio drawings are important to be able to provide the right detail for complex drawings.

The abstract ones are pretty and I suppose I would use them for a general network map but the cisco drawings are just right.

How's the progress going on importing visio stencils or recreating them? As they update their stencils it would be great to just import them. That's a big project to redo them though. Well, good luck and let us know when it's good to go. I will very happy switch to switch to OG.


Joel 2009-04-13 02:59 PM

As of OmniGraffle Professional 5.1, importing Cisco stencils has become much much easier, so we've let making them anew fall behind some, as it's easier to just open the Cisco stencils directly.

DerekAsirvadem 2010-05-15 06:20 PM

I use the detailed stencils much more often, but I need the "abstract" stencils for the simple diagrams.

For me the problem is the quality of stencils is poor (objects not carefully thought out; no grid alignment; relation between objects on the same stencil; poor handles; obese objects; etc). I expect an Omni produced stencil to be good quality, no fat.

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