Show, hide, or change the grid

The lines of the grid crisscross each drawing page like the lines on traditional graph paper. The grid helps you position shapes on the drawing page.

Show or hide the grid

  • On the View tab, in the Show group, select or clear the Grid check box.

    Tip:  The grid is not usually printed, but you can specify that you want it to print: right-click the page tab, click Page Setup, and on the Print Setup tab, select the Gridlines checkbox.

Change grid spacing

Most of the templates in Microsoft Visio use a variable grid by default. Variable grid lines change as you zoom in or out of your drawing, and are useful when you want to align shapes precisely.

For some drawings, such as space plans and engineering diagrams, you may want to set a fixed grid, so that grid lines represent the same distance regardless of zoom level. For example, you can set the grid to match the size of ceiling tiles. If you set a fixed grid for tiles that are 40 cm by 40 cm, you'll notice that the grid lines always match this distance on the ruler, regardless of the zoom level.

  1. On the View tab, in the Show group, click the arrow for the Ruler & Grid Dialog Box Launcher.

  2. Set grid spacing to variable or fixed by doing one of the following:

    • For a variable grid, in the Grid spacing Horizontal and Vertical lists, click Fine, Normal, or Coarse. Fine is the smallest grid spacing, and Coarse is the largest.

    • For a fixed grid, in the Grid spacing Horizontal and Vertical lists, click Fixed. For Minimum spacing, type the spacing you want.

Change the origin of the grid

The grid origin is set to the same position as the ruler zero point. If you move the ruler zero point, the grid origin also moves. You can, however, set the grid origin independently from the ruler zero point.

  1. On the View tab, in the Show group, click the Ruler & Grid Dialog Box Launcher.

  2. Under Grid origin, enter x (horizontal) and y (vertical) coordinates for the point from which you want the grid to originate, and then click OK.

Change the position of the ruler zero point

By default, the zero point is the lower-left corner of the drawing page. Do any of the following:

  • To change the position of the zero point on both rulers, hold down the CTRL key and, from the intersection of the two rulers, drag to where you want the new zero point.

  • To change the position on one ruler, hold down the CTRL key and drag from the ruler.

  • To return the zero point to the lower-left corner of the page, double-click the intersection of the two rulers.

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