To retain the integrity of the AutoCAD® 2015 menu structure, all you need to do is Export your custom Tab from a previous version, then Import it into A2015. When exporting your customized tab, the key is having a target location for the tab. That target location will be a new customization file – .CUIX – created from the Transfer tab of the CUI.
How to Export Your Custom Tab for Transfer to Another Version or Computer
1. Launch the version of AutoCAD with the custom Tab that you want to transfer, then open the CUI.
2. On the Customize tab, navigate to your custom tab—hopefully under Partial Customization Files >CUSTOM—then right-click on your tab and click Copy.
3. Click the Transfer tab. [The next couple steps are, curiously, necessary.]
4. Expand Ribbon, then right-click on the Tabs node and click New Tab. Press [Enter] for the default name ‘New Tab.’
5. Right-click on New Tab, then click Paste. Your custom tab will appear under the Tabs node (along with New Tab). Now, right-click on New Tab and Remove it.
6. Now click the small Save the Current Customization File button to open the Save As dialog box. Give it a name and click Save, then click OK to close the CUI and save your changes.
At this point, you have saved a .CUIX containing a custom tab with a custom panel. The next step is to open that file in the target computer or version [A2015 perhaps].
How to Transfer Your Custom Tab to Another Version or Computer
1. Open the CUI in the target version/computer, then click the Transfer tab.
2. Click Open Customization File, then navigate to and Open your custom .CUIX.
Note: If you saved a .CUI file from A2009 or prior, change the Files of Type to the Legacy file of .CUI to see your customization file in the Open dialog box.
3. Expand Ribbon, then Tabs, right-click on your custom tab, then click Copy.
4. Click the Customize tab, then navigate to Partial Customization Files >CUSTOM.
5. Expand Ribbon, then right-click on the Tabs node and click New Tab. Press [Enter] for the default name ‘New Tab’.
6. Right-click on the New Tab node, then click Paste to paste the tab copied from Step 3, above. Now you can right-click on New Tab and Remove it.
7. To associate the imported tab with a workspace, under the Workspaces node, click the name of the Workspace where you want this tab to live.
8. Under Workspace Contents on the right, click Customize Workspace.
9. Under Partial Customizations Files >CUSTOM >Ribbon >Tabs, put a check in the box beside your new tab. You will then see your new tab listed in your Workspace Contents.
10. To see your tab on the ribbon, click Done, then click OK to apply and close the CUI.
Hopefully you now feel a bit more confident about retaining your customization files … I know I certainly do!