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Can't draw a line ??? Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
So, I just downloaded OmniGraffle (standard edition) for the 14 day trial. So far, I'm not impressed. I can't even seem to draw a line where I want. I have succeeded in creating some layers and drawing some rectangles, and changing the line style, fill, and shadow of them. However, when I try lines, I am completely baffled.

The help document says to select the Line tool, click once to anchor the source of the line, then double-click somewhere else to terminate the line.

However, when I try to do that, here's what happens:

I choose the Line tool. When I click once, I don't see anything on-screen until I move the cursor. As soon as I move the cursor, a line appears that is anchored at the exact center of my canvas, and extends to the current position of the cursor. From then on, anywhere I move the cursor, the terminator of the line follows. OK... ???

So I double-click somewhere, and the line terminates as promised. It extends from dead-center of the canvas to wherever I double-clicked. It doesn't matter where I originally single-clicked to start the line; it always starts at dead center.

Then, if I go back to the Selection tool and try to move the line, I can't. When I select the line, and I get a little circle at each end of the line. Just grabbing the line and trying to drag it does nothing. If I try to move the anchor at the source end of the line (the circle dead-center on the canvas), I get the cross-hair cursor which indicates I should be able to move the anchor, but the anchor will NOT move. If I try to move the circle at the termination end of the line (where I double-clicked), I get the same cross-hair, but as soon as I try to drag the point, the terminator immediately jumps to dead-center on the canvas, right on top of the source-end anchor.

From that point on, the line is a single dot. Nothing I do to it will move it in any way.

Has anyone seen this behavior before, and have any clue what I'm doing wrong?

I am using OmniGraffle 5.2.3 (v138.17.0.133677) on a MacBook Pro running OS 10.5.8. I defined my own page layout, which is 11 x 8.5 inches ("letter landscape," if you will). My document has 2 layers. Layer 1 has some rectangles on it, with various styles. Layer 2 is the currently-selected layer that I'm trying to draw on, and it is blank.

I wonder if you might have gotten snap to grid turned on, with a really big grid spacing, or something like that.

I would try quitting the application, removing the file Library/Preferences/com.omnigroup.OmniGraffle.plist and launching again.
Don't think that's it. Snap to grid is enabled, but the major grid spacing is 1 inch and the minor grid spacing is 8, so that seems fairly "normal". (If you like to work in inches.)

I have discovered that if I repeat the steps in a new document, it behaves normally. Only this original document that I started playing with is misbehaving.

Additionally, in my original document, if I lock Layer 1, then drawing lines on Layer 2 behaves as expected. However, as soon as I unlock Layer 1, then all lines on layer 2 start at dead center on the canvas again.
Quite likely Layer 1 has a large shape or rectangle taking up most of the canvas. When you're using the Line Tool, it's attempting to connect to that shape, and unless you draw the line to some place outside of the shape it won't draw, unless there are magnets on the rectangle to connect to.

If you need the shape to be there, then locking Layer 1 is the easiest method to get around this, another alternative would be to disallow connections to it in the Properties: Connections Inspector.

Hope this helps.
"Vroom! Vroom!!"
Ah... yup, that was it. I had put a border around my page in the bottom layer. Turning off "allow connections" for that border rectangle made the difference.

Thanks so much for all your help, both of you!
I have the same problem when i am trying to do a swimlane document. For some moronic reason the simple process of linking two points on flow shapes is impossible... This is the first day in a long while I have missed my PC as Visio does this very straightforwardly.... Whats the deal with this software..? Why can you not simply link two boxes...?

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