Upgraded V5 to V7 - Feel a bit lost


I’ve not used Omnigraffle for a few years and recently upgraded from V5 to V7. I spent hundreds of hours using V5 (software UI design mostly) but have found V7 significantly different to slow down my productivity. I know I just have to get on and learn the new version, but any suggestions for doing this as quickly as possible?

I’m doing mostly furniture design and planning home renovations.



I’m in the same boat.

I recently upgraded from 5 Pro to 7 Pro. I love the more macOS feel of the integrated panels vs floating panels. I find these more natural to the current state of macOS.

The Infinite Canvas feature is also really great… in theory… but I am struggling with how to get a canvas to export a single page as an entire 8.5"x11" page guaranteed. The alignment and visualization is very different with the Infinite Canvas vs the v5 canvas style. I’m trying to adjust, but continue to find it difficult.

I mostly use OmniGraffle in software and network architecture diagrams. These can be particularly unwieldy and unpredictable when designing on canvases.

The Presentation Mode is another killer addition. I had already been using OmniGraffle to present my diagrams to groups. I found it a natural extension of my design communication style.

I have begun experimenting with using OmniGraffle for designing video game levels and worlds. I think the Infinite Canvas will be instrumental in that process for me.

Could you say more about this? Are you building a large canvas, and then the “Print canvas on one page” setting is not working as you expect? Or are you building a canvas that should be about 1 page, and finding it hard to get the layout exactly right?

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@sjw71 Hmm… we don’t have a specific “OmniGraffle 7 for the OG5 expert” guide…

The OmniGraffle 7.3 manual is available here: https://support.omnigroup.com/documentation/omnigraffle/mac/7.3/en/

If you’d like something less reference, more guided lessons, you might look at the tutorial we wrote for OmniGraffle 6.5.

It’s visually a bit out of date with OmniGraffle 7, but going through that and asking specific questions here or in emails to omnigraffle@omnigroup.com might provide a little structure for your quest to learn OmniGraffle 7?

Thanks. I may just work my way through the manual. After a few hours I’m starting to discover more.


Yes, I am building a large canvas. It stretches many pages wide, bit only one page tall (landscape oriented.)

The canvases exported “pretty” in OG5 because each canvas was always a page. But now with Infinite Canvas, it cuts off space that’s empty. Maybe to save file-size?

But I actually liked the guaranteed sizing because it meant that recipients of the diagrams could print them from PDF if desired.

I also like the infinite canvas because it means I can build in 360º expansion and not be stuck or pigeonholed into a visual design methodology.


Most of my diagrams depict application infrastructure and network details. Thinks like server names, IP addresses, port numbers, application names, middleware platforms, OS types, etc.

However, not every canvas is diagram. Because of the printable nature of the OG5 canvas model, I had taken to including title slides and brief summary slides which get automatically cropped now in OG7.

The only workaround I can think of is to create a useless unprinted layer at exactly the dimensions required in order to ensure the document prints as desired. Or to just work in OG5.


It would be nice to have a checkbox in OG7 to export the canvas at full page with the orientation selected.

I would be happy to supply both the graffles and exported PDFs if you’d like them.

If you turn on size uses printer pages, OmniGraffle 7 will increase for you based on a full page & will show your canvas based on full page sizes. You may be happiest, from what you describe of your project, if you turn off all autosizing except for leave down on. In your canvas inspector, try these options. To turn on/off autosizing directions, click on the arrows or to toggle them all, click the center of the autosizing canvas icon in the Canvas Inspector.

Thanks for the feedback. I hope that these options get you closer to what you are looking for.


I do have this set already. These options seem to help when in OG7, but not when exporting, at least to PDF.

That doesn’t sound expected to me, but without seeing all of your settings it is hard to know for sure. May sure your export area is Current Canvas instead of All Objects if you need the white space, otherwise it will export all of your objects as one without the canvas itself. Feel free to drop us an example document using Contact Omni from the Help menu & we might be able to suggest a better solution. A screenshot of the settings used when you export to PDF would be a great as well.



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I’m a dummy dum dum. That did the trick! :-D

tyvm <3

Not at all! People have different purposes when using OmniGraffle, and the defaults aren’t always ideal at guessing intent. It can take some time to find the best settings. It isn’t your imagination, there are quite a few settings. We are here to help if you have questions.

I am so lost with all of this… I really HATE the infinite canvas - I need to embed drawings into Word documents and/or print them. I cannot figure out how to configure a FIXED 8.5x11 canvas that doesn’t auto-grow or move my stencil items around.

And the sensitive scrolling behavior… OMG… I’m ready to go back to Windows just so I can use Visio.

I really regret upgrading… sweeping changes and suddenly I can’t work.

In the Canvas inspector, turn off Autosizing (a shortcut for this is to click on the box in the center of the arrows to toggle all of them on/off at once), turn on “Size uses printer pages”, and you should be all set. (If you create a new document from the built-in template “Paper Sizes > US Letter”, your document will already be created that way.)

If you’re like me, you’ll probably also want to set the Canvas Scroll Margin to 0% so scrolling stops at the edges of your canvas.

Hope this helps!

Thanks for the help.

Did a bit of reading on the forum and the manual and came to the same conclusion.

But, when I did the above, with a new document that I had created and placed some stencil items into, the “white part” completely disappeared and was left with no canvas at all.

So, I kept clicking on/off the auto-size box, as well as adjusting the other parameters until I was ready to open a vein.

Finally, I just deleted the entire file and created a new one with the above settings and then it worked as expected. I have no idea what I did to create the scenario I described, but now it’s working as you describe.

If I wanted to “learn to love” the infinite canvas, what happens when I am ready to print? It looks like I have to remove/drag back elements to make them fit, disable auto-size and click canvas size buttons for 1 page in each direction.

I’ll keep playing around with this…

Just go back to 5 if you can.

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