Repeating Recent Commands

There are several ways to repeat previous commands.  Most users know that you can hit either the Spacebar or the Enter key to repeat the most recently issued command.  This is particularly useful when repeatedly performing  the exact same task, such as digitizing polylines, or placing a lot of different block references.  Combined with setting a short right-click of the mouse button to mimic pressing the Enter key* (see below), and it can be a huge time saver.

Many users also know that one of the top two selections on the right-click menu (when no command is running) are the previous command, plus a fly-out option called “recent Input”, which provides a list of your 20+ most recently used commands.  If your hand is on the mouse, this is often a much faster way to issue a variety of often repeated commands during a digitizing or editing session, especially if the icons that launch those commands reside on different ribbon tabs.

A lesser-known, but equally useful way to repeat commands is with the up arrow on your keyboard.  Simply tap the up arrow key repeatedly to sequence through your most recent commands, right on the command line (or in dynamic input).  If your hands are on the keyboard, (for instance, when creating geometry by entering precise coordinates), this can be far faster, and less of an interruption, than reaching for the mouse.

Give these methods a try if they are not familiar with them, so that they are in your bag of tricks next time you need some short-cuts.  They each come in handy for different circumstances.

*If you do not have your right mouse button set to double-duty – that is, short-clicks mimic the ENTER key, and longer clicks open the context-sensitive menu – then you are missing out on another great time saver.  For years, the default mode for your right mouse button used to be “ENTER”.  With the advent of the MicroSoft convention of right-click menus, Autodesk changed it to launching a context-sensitive menu.  However, you can easily set up the right mouse button do both, so that you can instantly select command line options and end commands with a quick click.

I frankly cannot work without this option set, and don’t even understand why it’s an option.


To make your right mouse button pull double duty, simply right-click anywhere in the drawing editor and select Options.


  1. In the Options dialog box, select the User Preferences tab
  2. In the Windows Standard Behavior section, click the
    Right-click Customization button
  3. In the new dialog, enable the time-sensitive right-click option.
  4. Click the Apply & Close button – then close the Options dialog.

That’s all there is to it.  Now, when you quickly tap the right mouse button, it is the same as pressing the ENTER key on your keyboard.  Use it to accept default command line options, to end commands, to repeat the most recently used command, and any other time you used to have to go looking for the ENTER key.

To get the context-sensitive menus you’re used to, simply hold the right mouse button a little longer.

The default duration of ¼ second works for me.  Experiment a bit – if you need to adjust it, you can define any duration, in milliseconds.

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