We make this easy for you to remember in Hatch Embroidery by using the Output Design Toolbox. We will explain here why this is important.
First you should always save the design as .EMB if.......
1. You created the design in Hatch Embroidery
2. You have a design created in another software > you open that design in Hatch and make changes in Hatch Embroidery.
Second you will "Export Design" to your machine stitch file.
Because .EMB is your "working file". The .EMB file has the capability to remember all the settings, original colors, object outlines, stitch types, etc. If you want to come back to work on the design later, you should always open the .EMB file. This will be the same as you are continuing where you left off.
The machine format file (that you export to in Hatch) should be done after you have saved to .EMB. The machine format is your "stitch file" or your "stitching file". This is the file that you will use for stitching on your machine. This is the file format that your machine can read.
A stitch format file only retains the information that is needed by the machine. Such as the needle penetrations, which is based on a x/y axis. It can save commands for the machine such as color stops/changes, trims, jumps, etc.
e.g. the machine does not know you have a satin stitch. It only knows that you have a needle penetration that is so far apart and up or down on an axis gird. But your working .EMB file will retain that it is a satin stitch so that you can re-open and make changes to the satin stitch if needed.
You should prepare and save your designs in the order listed in the Output Design Toolbox
NOTE about Auto Start and End: You do not always need to change the Auto Start and End and if not, you can skip this step. Hatch will default to the center needle position for start and end. The reason is because many machines require this and cannot stitch the file if it does not start in the center of the design. It's also riskier in hitting the side of the hoop if you do not start in the center. If you do want to change this, you will need to make this change each time you "export the design" to your stitch file. It's not necessary when saving to .EMB
Remember: Auto Start and End will always default to the center of the design for the start and stop needle positions each time you open the design. Therefore, if needed or desired you will need to make this change each time when you export to your machine format.
Alternative ways to save and export designs:
If you do not need to make changes to the Auto and Start and End or you have already made the change to the design you have other ways to save and export the designs:
1. Via the icons on the top toolboxes
2. Via the File Menu
Here are a couple of videos for additional help in saving and exporting designs: