Seriously off topic: creating a semi-circle in Visio 2010

I wanted to depict the CS and MV as two halves of a circle (coloured differently) and I really couldn’t work out how to do it.  I found reference to the Fragment command but that is nowhere to be seen on the ribbon.  Ultimately, I managed to do it.  Here’s how:

  • Click the little downward arrow next to undo and redo in the top left of the Visio Window.


  • Click More Commands.  Click Customize Ribbon.  Click on the bottom most tab (under main tabs) –in my case this is “Icon Editor” and click New Tab.  Rename the tab and the group –I called mine Paul and Advanced respectively.
  • Now, at the top underneath “Customize the Ribbon” click “All Commands” and then locate “Fragment”.  Ensure your new group is selected and click “Add > >”.


  • Click OK.
  • Draw a circle and dissect the circle with a straight line, e.g.


  • Click your new tab.
  • Ensure both the circle and line are selected.
  • Click Fragment.
  • You now have two semi-circles.  You can colour each now.  Smile



A better example

OK, let’s create a funky representation of the MV like Markus does on the FIM TechNet documents:

  • Draw a circle.  Dissect it with one vertical and one horizontal line, like so:


  • Select the lot and use your new Fragment button.  Now draw a second circle half the size and place that in the centre, like this:


  • Now you can rotate and colour and you’re sorted:


Woo hoo, now I can draw some sensible FIM conceptual stuff…


About Paul Williams

IT consultant working for Microsoft specialising in Identity Management and Directory Services.
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18 Responses to Seriously off topic: creating a semi-circle in Visio 2010

  1. E says:

    Awesome, thanks for sharing! Makes me wonder why they hide them so well:))

  2. Panu says:

    For just creating a semi-circle, there is a shape for it (Visio 2010). Took me a while to find it, though. Just search for “sector graphical” in shapes.

    • Thanks for this. Great info.! Although one has to ask (to whomever is listening), is “sector graphical” really in your top list of search terms when looking for a semi-circle or ellipsis? :):)

  3. tee4u says:

    Awesome..!! Thanks

  4. Mohammad says:

    Fucking Awesome mate. Cheers from Sydney

  5. Charles Cooper says:

    Really useful tip. Thanks for taking the time to share.
    Charles Cooper

  6. Enkhbilguun Erdenetsogt says:

    Awesome… It’s super easy to follow your tutorial and understand the concept.

    Thank you. It’ll help me a lot.

  7. Jim says:

    I stumbled on this 4 years later and please accept the biggest thanks possible!!

  8. Shannon B says:

    Seriously off-topic but seriously awesome. Thanks for the tip! Using Visio 2013 and things aren’t getting any better! 🙂

  9. José M. says:

    I was sure there was a way … but never found it.
    Thanks so much

  10. Michael says:

    Thank you. Brilliant

  11. Niels Fanøe says:


  12. Robert says:

    Thank You very much for this post! Found completely accidentally, many years after You’ve created it.

    I think this is one more example, that UI in the M$ Office 2003 family was far more useful in term of using advanced functions of each software from it. You were able to find some features simply by accident, digging thru the items in all menus. Ribbon interface hide this possibility very well.

  13. Gary says:

    Sweet! Just what I needed. Thanks for posting!

  14. Phill says:

    You have no idea how helpful this was.

  15. Pingback: Microsoft Visio Tips – phdcomputerexperiance

  16. Mustafa says:

    Yes, but where’s the command to create a four-dimensional poly-tetrahedron? Knowing MS, probably buried under “grammar correction”.

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