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Creating compound inside symbol doesn't update symbol

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I had a button/icon defined as a symbol. It's a filled circle with a white shapes on top. I used it everywhere but decided I wanted to try it in a different colour on an other artboard, without changing the other artboards. To change the fill and not the Icon I wanted to create a compound, so I could re-color the symbol without losing the shapes/icon on the circle.

When I selected the layers inside the symbol and converted them to a compound, not each instance of the symbol had the same change.

They DID all change into a compound but when I selected the shapes inside the compound to 'substract', only the active shape was affected. The symbol in the librady doesn't follow the substract changes either.

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Hi Peeps :)

I wasn't sure if I needed to raise a new post about this, but having searched the forum for "symbol with compound" this topic was at the top and I thought my problem is similar, albeit on a different platform.

I use Windows 10, latest build.

I am creating a "knob stack" in order to create an animated knob within some music software I am creating a theme for.

Having done some research and watching some of the tutorials I found two particular features of interest.

Creating a symbol is great because I can flesh out an idea for my knob stack, render that, and try it in my software. Once I was happy that I had at least cracked the principles I can then update the symbol and all 49 of its instances will update accordingly.

I also learned about compounds, which allows us to create a non-destructive version of a Boolean operation.

I already have a circle which forms the diameter of my knob.

I then created another 12 smaller circles around the periphery of the main circle, each overlapping slightly.

I then created a "subtract" compound which subtracts the smaller circles from the large circle, thus making indentations in the large circle.


This worked a treat in my "master" symbol, but, unfortunately, all the other instances appear to show the 12 smaller circles added rather than subtracted.

I have ensured that I have "sync" on, so I am sure that is not the problem.

When I look at the compound objects for the other instances the Boolean operation is indeed "add" and not "subtract" like the master symbol.

I suppose that the best thing to do is to upload a copy of the file here so that someone could have a look. I have spent quite some time checking things over so I am "almost" happy that it isn't "operator error." But I am still only really scratching the surface of this software so it could still be possible that I am missing something.


cheers, and thanks



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I realised that perhaps my attached example is a bit complex (for me anyway) so I thought I had better make sure that I could replicate this issue.

I created a single ellipse.

I turned that into a symbol.

I then duplicated the symbol so that I now had another copy.

I went back to the symbol and added another ellipse which overlaps the first ellipse.

I selected both ellipses and held down the alt key while clicking the subtract button so that a compound was created.

While I was editing the symbol I could see the other instance updating instantly, but as soon as I created the compound using the subtract tool the other instance didn't update and when you check the compound Boolean operation in the copy it is now add instead of subtract.


In the meantime I have carried out a destructive subtract instead.





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On 8/19/2019 at 12:34 PM, Sean P said:

Hi MatthijsR,

This is a known issue that is with development to be fixed. I'll pass your report on and get it bumped. Thanks for letting us know!

Have you any idea when this issue may be fixed?

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Hi synkrotron,
Sorry for the delay. I had thought I'd replied to you last week, but it doesn't look it got posted! I can confirm that this is indeed the same issue. I will pass your example on to development however. Thanks for letting us know, unfortunately I don't have any idea for when it is going to get fixed however.

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