Today I was trying to open a particularly stubborn DWFx file. In Autodesk Design Review 2013 it would stall completely. ADR 2018 would throw an error, crash or stall as well. I ended up using Autodesk 360 and Navisworks 2019/2020, and these were able to read the model.

 

However, in the process I found these links to install the very latest version of Autodesk Design Review:

 

Its also quite weird that the main Autodesk Design Review page still links to the 2013 version, not the 2018 version?

https://www.autodesk.com.au/products/design-review/download

In the old pre-BIM360 days, if you really had a problem where a Revit user didn’t relinquish elements in a workshared model, you could either

  1. Pretend to be that user and sync (yes just by changing your user name in Revit Options), or
  2. Detach that Central model and Save As.

Modern day BIM360 Revit Collaboration doesn’t allow either of those to happen easily…

So how do you relinquish elements in a BIM360 cloud Revit model?

Here’s how:

  • Open Revit and a model
  • Then go to Collaborate and Manage Cloud Models.
  • Browse to your BIM 360 Project and then the actual Model
  • Use the icon to view the model Actions menu and choose “Relinquish”
Screenshot from Revit 2018
Screenshot from Revit 2018

When prompted, choose “Force Relinquish”

Choose the User and then click Relinquish
Choose the User and then click Relinquish

and Continue

Confirm by pressing Continue
Confirm by pressing Continue

Then, wait for the process to complete.

Finally, it is probably a good idea to Sync with Central 🙂

 

Revit Help Links (note, the process is basically the same for all current versions):

What happens if you enable BIM360 Design Collaboration on a project, but would then like to switch it off? I asked Autodesk this question, and here is part of the response (in italics):

Unfortunately we cannot disable active services on specific projects. Once a service is active, it remains active.

If the project is underway and there is information that cannot be moved (such as issues/ RFI’s, etc), then my recommendation would be to make sure no one has access to the Design Collaboration module on the project.

If you would like to see a feature implemented that allows the ability to deactivate a service, you can share your thoughts and request it via the Ideas Board using this link: https://forums.autodesk.com/t5/bim-360-ideas/idb-p/2032

 

In light of the above, if you do want to make sure no one has access to Design Collaboration, switch it off per-person in the Project Members page as shown below:

Try this first:

Using the latest installation file –

  • Uninstall Autodesk Desktop Connector
  • Restart
  • and then re-Install Autodesk Desktop Connector
  • Login with your details

Did it launch?

Other things to try:

Logout from Autodesk services prior to starting Desktop Connector. You can do this easily with the sign out option at top-right of Autodesk Desktop App.

Through Task Manager – Details, attempt to “End Task” on these. Probably AdskLicensingService.exe won’t close.

Then try to start Autodesk Desktop Connector again from the Start Menu.

You can monitor starting of Desktop Connector in the tray.

 

Other errors that may pop up:

A360 – Service Unavailable

“Requested service not available”

Just try again on this one. You can also check Autodesk Health Dashboard at https://health.autodesk.com/

The 2020 release season is here…

Links are for Autodesk 2020 trial versions, you will need your own official Autodesk licenses to activate.

 

Autodesk Revit 2020 Direct Download Links – WIN 64 – EN

https://trial2.autodesk.com/NetSWDLD/2020/RVT/DEB896FF-86A4-4C44-89A4-46C550BEDB60/SFX/Revit_2020_G1_Win_64bit_dlm_001_007.sfx.exe

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https://trial2.autodesk.com/NetSWDLD/2020/RVT/DEB896FF-86A4-4C44-89A4-46C550BEDB60/SFX/Revit_2020_G1_Win_64bit_dlm_007_007.sfx.exe

 

Revit LT 2020 Direct Download Links

http://trial2.autodesk.com/NetSWDLD/2020/RVTLT/1AE76102-B066-40B6-B420-7119BE7E8FCD/SFX/RevitLT_2020_G1_Win_64bit_dlm_001_004.sfx.exe

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Navisworks Manage 2020 Direct Download Links

http://trial2.autodesk.com/NetSWDLD/2020/NAVMAN/89ED309E-DEA4-4070-9CE7-DB285722CD73/SFX/Autodesk_Navisworks_Manage_2020_Multilingual_Win_64bit_dlm_001_002.sfx.exe
http://trial2.autodesk.com/NetSWDLD/2020/NAVMAN/89ED309E-DEA4-4070-9CE7-DB285722CD73/SFX/Autodesk_Navisworks_Manage_2020_Multilingual_Win_64bit_dlm_002_002.sfx.exe

 

Autodesk Navisworks Simulate 2020 Direct Download Links

https://trial2.autodesk.com/NetSWDLD/2020/NAVSIM/57A5CFFD-773D-4741-8DF6-CE51F5847396/SFX/Autodesk_Navisworks_Simulate_2020_Multilingual_Win_64bit_dlm_001_002.sfx.exe
https://trial2.autodesk.com/NetSWDLD/2020/NAVSIM/57A5CFFD-773D-4741-8DF6-CE51F5847396/SFX/Autodesk_Navisworks_Simulate_2020_Multilingual_Win_64bit_dlm_002_002.sfx.exe

 

Autodesk Screencast 3.6 – free screen recording utility for AutoCAD+LT 2013-2020, Inventor+LT 2014-2020, Revit 2013-2020, Fusion 360, InfraWorks, SimStudio (Win)
http://download.autodesk.com/us/support/files/screencast_app/ScreencastSetup_V3.6.exe

 

DWG TrueView 2020:: free AutoCAD DWG file viewer, version converter and measure tool (any DWG version, incl. DWG2018; for Windows 10/8.1/7)
https://trial2.autodesk.com/NetSWDL…7D/SFX/DWGTrueView_2020_Enu_64bit_dlm.sfx.exe

 

Autodesk AutoCAD 2020:
http://trial2.autodesk.com/NetSWDLD/2020/ACD/DD1F773A-1D42-4410-B712-ADFFB842921D/SFX/AutoCAD_2020_English_win_64bit_dlm.sfx.exe
http://trial2.autodesk.com/NetSWDLD/2020/ACD/DD1F773A-1D42-4410-B712-ADFFB842921D/SFX/AutoCAD_2020_English_win_64bit_dlm.sfx.exe

 

AutoCAD LT 2020:
http://trial2.autodesk.com/NetSWDLD/2020/ACDLT/7F468CAC-1BC9-4C74-8B11-E85973E5059E/SFX/AutoCAD_LT_2020_SWL_English_Win_64bit_dlm.sfx.exe

AutoCAD Architecture 2020:
http://trial2.autodesk.com/NetSWDLD/2020/ARCHDESK/6B7B4098-B868-4BC5-BAE9-55023FD693EB/SFX/AutoCAD_Architecture_2020_English_Win_64bit_dlm_001_002.sfx.exe
http://trial2.autodesk.com/NetSWDLD/2020/ARCHDESK/6B7B4098-B868-4BC5-BAE9-55023FD693EB/SFX/AutoCAD_Architecture_2020_English_Win_64bit_dlm_002_002.sfx.exe

AutoCAD Electrical 2020:
http://trial2.autodesk.com/NetSWDLD/2020/ACAD_E/E6E5783E-9B32-4275-AC81-05FEFB14EA74/SFX/AutoCAD_Electrical_2020_English_Win_64bit_dlm_001_002.sfx.exe
http://trial2.autodesk.com/NetSWDLD/2020/ACAD_E/E6E5783E-9B32-4275-AC81-05FEFB14EA74/SFX/AutoCAD_Electrical_2020_English_Win_64bit_dlm_002_002.sfx.exe

AutoCAD Mechanical 2020:
http://trial2.autodesk.com/NetSWDLD/2020/AMECH_PP/0AF6D34F-9E17-4473-B268-A4E11BC0A93F/SFX/AutoCAD_Mechanical_2020_English_Win_64bit_dlm.sfx.exe

AutoCAD MEP 2020:
http://trial2.autodesk.com/NetSWDLD/2020/BLDSYS/95E105B8-ECE3-4B07-A05D-4C76E43BD40B/SFX/AutoCAD_MEP_2020_English_Win_64bit_dlm_001_002.sfx.exe
http://trial2.autodesk.com/NetSWDLD/2020/BLDSYS/95E105B8-ECE3-4B07-A05D-4C76E43BD40B/SFX/AutoCAD_MEP_2020_English_Win_64bit_dlm_002_002.sfx.exe

AutoCAD MAP 2020:
http://trial2.autodesk.com/NetSWDLD/2020/MAP/1666DE37-3355-46E6-A1C8-69AB3F5F0417/SFX/AutoCAD_Map_2020_English_Win_64bit_dlm.sfx.exe

AutoCAD Plant3D 2020:
http://trial2.autodesk.com/NetSWDLD/2020/PLNT3D/1896C40C-5BF8-4FB2-92D2-1F5D732E992A/SFX/AutoCAD_Plant_3D_2020_English_Win_64bit_dlm_001_002.sfx.exe
http://trial2.autodesk.com/NetSWDLD/2020/PLNT3D/1896C40C-5BF8-4FB2-92D2-1F5D732E992A/SFX/AutoCAD_Plant_3D_2020_English_Win_64bit_dlm_002_002.sfx.exe

AutoCAD Raster Design 2020:
http://trial2.autodesk.com/NetSWDLD/2020/ARDES/361F4178-3CAC-4794-A841-7FB6F900B33D/SFX/AutoCAD_Raster_Design_2020_English_Win_64bit_dlm.sfx.exe


Inventor Professional 2020: English links:

http://trial2.autodesk.com/NetSWDLD…ro_2020_English_Win_64bit_dlm_001_003.sfx.exe
http://trial2.autodesk.com/NetSWDLD…ro_2020_English_Win_64bit_dlm_002_003.sfx.exe
http://trial2.autodesk.com/NetSWDLD…ro_2020_English_Win_64bit_dlm_003_003.sfx.exe

 

Inventor LT 2020: English links:
https://trial2.autodesk.com/NetSWDL…nventor_LT_2020_English_Win_64bit_dlm.sfx.exe

 

Autodesk Inventor Nastran 2020 (x64)
http://trial2.autodesk.com/NetSWDLD/2020/NINCAD/E858B3EC-14C0-4348-A649-7DE22DE14DD8/SFX/Autodesk_Inventor_Nastran_2020_R0_Win64_dlm.sfx.exe

 

Autodesk Point Layout 2020:
http://trial2.autodesk.com/NetSWDLD/2020/PNTLAY/1.2019.03.13/ESD/Autodesk_Point_Layout_2020_Win_32-64bit_en-us.exe

 

3DSMAX 2020: Multilanguage:

http://trial2.autodesk.com/NetSWDLD…ds_Max_2020_EFGJKPS_Win_64bit_001_002.sfx.exe
http://trial2.autodesk.com/NetSWDLD…ds_Max_2020_EFGJKPS_Win_64bit_002_002.sfx.exe

 

3ds Max Interactive 2020:

http://trial2.autodesk.com/NetSWDLD…ve_2_2_0_0_EN_Win_64bit_dlm.sfx.exe

 

AutoCAD Raster Design 2020: English link:

http://trial2.autodesk.com/NetSWDLD…ter_Design_2020_English_Win_64bit_dlm.sfx.exe

 

Autodesk SketchBook Pro 2020 v8.6.5:
https://trial2.autodesk.com/NetSWDLD/2020/SBPNL/10AACA17-1C6D-4E1B-B6CE-7E2AAB1568AD/SFX/SketchBook_Pro_2020_ML_Win_64bit_dlm.sfx.exe

 

Vault Basic: English links:

Vault Basic – Client 2020:

http://trial2.autodesk.com/NetSWDLD…EDDE5723A25/SFX/VBC2020_ENU_64bit_dlm.sfx.exe

 

Vault Basic – Server 2020:

http://trial2.autodesk.com/NetSWDLD…8CB8A042BBD/SFX/VBS2020_ENU_64bit_dlm.sfx.exe

 

ReCap Pro 2020.0.1: Multilanguage link:

http://trial2.autodesk.com/NetSWDLD…Cap_600110_Multilingual_Win_64bit_dlm.sfx.exe

 

You can also obtain many of these links through AVA, or this forum thread:

Autodesk Virtual Agent

What’s New pages:

AutoCAD 2020

Having recently installed some more storage hardware, and previously posted about moving folders with symbolic links, I then decided to move my BIM 360 Glue cache folder and Navisworks Cache folder to a secondary hard drive. I did this using symbolic links.

You need to:

  • start a Command Prompt as Administrator
  • use the commands shown below

Moving BIM 360 Glue cache storage location:

if exist "%localappdata%\Autodesk\Bim360Glue 2016\LocalCache" rename "%localappdata%\Autodesk\Bim360Glue 2016\LocalCache" bim360glue2016.old
mklink /d "%localappdata%\Autodesk\Bim360Glue 2016\LocalCache" R:\BIM360Glue2016
if not exist R:\BIM360Glue2016 MD R:\BIM360Glue2016
robocopy /mir "%localappdata%\Autodesk\Bim360Glue 2016\bim360glue2016.old" R:\BIM360Glue2016\

Moving Navisworks cache storage location:

if exist "%localappdata%\Autodesk\Navisworks 2019\LocalCache" rename "%localappdata%\Autodesk\Navisworks 2019\LocalCache" Navisworks2019Cache.old
mklink /d "%localappdata%\Autodesk\Navisworks 2019\LocalCache" R:\Navisworks2019Cache
if not exist R:\Navisworks2019Cache MD R:\Navisworks2019Cache
robocopy /mir "%localappdata%\Autodesk\Navisworks 2019\Navisworks2019Cache.old" R:\Navisworks2019Cache\

After you have run the scripts above, you can delete the old folders with the .old suffix (Navisworks example shown below).

It is extremely easy to reduce the size of a point cloud dataset using Recap. “Decimation” is the process of discarding points from the data to improve performance and reduce disk usage.

With the release of point cloud support in Revizto, you can now bring a point cloud into the Revizto platform in a number of ways:

  • Export from Navisworks
  • Export from Revit
  • Import points directly in RCP or RCS format

Once the reality capture model has been added to Revizto, you sync it to the cloud. From there, you can download and view the point cloud on your iPad, and of course you can start creating issues that relate to the captured condition on site. You can even overlay 2D drawings onto the reality capture data.

The decimation process is very easy :

  1. Open your Recap file (add scans and index first if necessary)
  2. Click Export
  3. Give your file a name

  4. Click the settings button
  5. Move the slider to adjust your point decimation – you might use around 50mm decimation for a lot of site applications.

  6. Save the file

There are other considerations, such as:

  • How can you set up coordinate systems to work with Revit, Navisworks and Revizto?

These will be considered in more detail in another post.

If you have Desktop Connector installed, you probably realise you can ‘upload’ Revit models and other files to BIM 360 Docs by dragging and dropping to the folder in Windows Explorer (using Desktop Connector). However, when you try and link this using the BIM 360 shortcut in Revit, you might not be able to see the file…

Here is a workaround that may allow you to link a non-initiated Revit model into your Revit file:

  1. Ensure you have Autodesk Desktop Connector installed
  2. Start Link Revit command from the ribbon
  3. Update: Click on the Address drop down
  4. Click on This PC
  5. Browse to BIM 360 from the window below:

  6. Select the file (non initiated) that you want to link

You should get the BIM 360 prefix in Manage Links:

Here is a video of this process (with audio, This PC – BIM 360 workflow):

https://knowledge.autodesk.com/community/screencast/3a990f58-ed3a-4dfb-9398-e4ab08fcebe5

 

Here is another short video of this process here (no audio, copy-paste directory from Windows Explorer method):

https://knowledge.autodesk.com/community/screencast/02ecf93e-6359-45e4-9253-48481e4e8ea6

I have developed a working BIM360 to on-premises backup mechanism. There were a few different ways to go…

 

I initially considered:

  • Hacking Windows Explorer to touch the files in the BIM 360 node and try and trigger the BIM360 Docs download and copy to local PC or network location
  • Developing a Forge app that essentially pulls the desired models out of the BIM 360 cloud to desired location?

In the end, I decided to use the Revit API (Dynamo and Python), along with VirtualBuiltApp, to essentially reverse engineer a folder structure from the local CollaborationCache folder. These ideas are hinted at here.

 

In simple terms, the BIM 360 Docs on-premises backup workflow is:

  1. Create a super federated BIM 360 model (with all other BIM 360 models linked into it)
  2. A Dynamo script reloads all links in order to cache them locally
  3. The same script interrogates, then determines the target file name and folder from VirtualBuiltApp
  4. Dynamo then copies the files into their ‘backup’ location on the local network

 

Some more detail is presented below:

 

A) Cache Cleaner CMD Script (may not really be necessary, as the ‘reload’ should overwrite superseded cache anyway):

Kill Revit if Open… be careful of below steps, particularly if Revit has crashed recently. You might need these local copies 🙂

cd "%LOCALAPPDATA%\Autodesk\Revit\Autodesk Revit 2018"
cd CollaborationCache
rmdir oldCache
mkdir oldCache
for /d %i in (*) do move "%~i" oldCache

 

B) Manual steps to setup Revit model environment to run the script:

  1. Open Revit
  2. Open Federated BIM 360 file (worksets closed)
  3. Unload all links
  4. Open all Worksets

 

C) Dynamo Script:
Run Dynamo (Python) script that reloads and unloads all links (this collects .rvt into cache). Key Python commands to use are: RevitLinkType.Load() and RevitLinkType.Unload(None).

Potential Problems:

  • Coordination Monitor alert, no longer exists
  • Instance of link needs Coordination Review
  • “Some numerical data within the imported file was out of range. This numerical data has been truncated.”
  • “Geometry in the file … has extents greater than 20 miles (33km).”

Local cached Models appear into

%LOCALAPPDATA%\Autodesk\Revit\Autodesk Revit 2018\mainCacheFolder\hostModelIdFolder\LinkedModels\*.rvt

 

D) Dynamo Script continues to:
Rename and copy to desired target location. How do we determine this?

Using proprietary VirtualBuiltApp schema:

  1. Use known directory data along with known JSON data for the BIM 360 files (harvested previously by our proprietary systems)
  2. Build list of target paths
  3. Run copy from Dynamo to copy to target network directory

Part of the script:

 

Note: you can actually browse some BIM 360 Docs data in a .sqlite3 file located in path shown below. You can use DB Browser for SQLite as a viewer.