When reviewing any Revit addin suite, I’m often interested in the unique tools that you just can’t get anywhere else. CGS Revit Tools has quite a few of these… and in this post I will describe just a couple of examples.

Also, in some very good news for What Revit Wants readers, for three months CGS are offering an exclusive, limited-time, 30% off of retail discount (yes!) offer if you email orders.usa@cgsplus.com and specifically mention What Revit Wants. You can also just click on the CGS banner in the left sidebar. I think you will find that this is a very comprehensive suite, and with this generous discount it is very good value indeed.

Now, on with the review..

CGS Revit Tools comes with a built in spreadsheet editor called BIM Query. So, unlike some other Revit addins, you don’t actually need to open Excel and deal with input/output files – you can modify the data directly in a special editing canvas and then ‘Apply’ it directly to your model. It is quite fast at extracting the data to the spreadsheet (depending on size of model and number of categories selected).

Resize Section Box is a very useful addition to the suite, as it allows you to quickly match a Section Box to a Room, Space or View. This is a pretty powerful and unique implementation, as other Section box tools often only deal with model elements:

The BIM Manager panel provides a very comprehensive set of cleanup tools, very useful for detailed model review and audit:

There is also a tabular Type Editor, which allows quick and easy navigation, duplication and modification of family type information:

There are various tools provided to easily align text and labels. Here is a quick demo:

The Legend by Category tool helps automate the creation of Legends for an entire category at once!

And CGS Revit Tools offers a lot more, including:

  • ability to create finish floors based on rooms
  • automate assembly view creation
  • visibility automation / toggle switches
  • a ‘Zoom To…’ tool
  • Sheet view automation
  • Create views for rooms automatically
  • Tool to give your elevations that nice ‘depth’ effect

Additionally, a Content Admin Kit is included for free:

Among other things, this allows you to easily create a calculated value and then Execute to update that formula or relationship as needed. The Update Category tool will update a selected Category for a given folder to the current Revit version in a batch process.

As you can see, this suite covers a lot of ground and can save you time by automating repetitive tasks. Quick cost analysis: if it saves you 6min / day, that is one hour per fortnight, saving you almost 25 hours per working year. Let’s say you make about $25 / hr… The suite will have paid for itself at least 4 times over in the first year alone. So, yeah, it might be worth a look 🙂

Reviewer’s Note: I tested version 2015.2.250.0

Special pricing* (if you email orders.usa@cgsplus.com in the next three months and specifically mention What Revit Wants, you can take an additional 5% off the already discounted web prices below, meaning the total discount is 30% off retail):

# of Licenses
 Current Web Pricing
What Revit Wants discounted price

*Note: For pricing in Australia and New Zealand, please contact Cadgroup.

Check out this blog for some real-world applications and workflows for using this suite:

Help can be viewed online at this link.

Some related screenshots: 

Have you ever experienced the “Missing Third Party Updater” message?  It comes about when an Updater (addin or macro) is in use, and then does not exist on a PC that is new to the project.

From sasha.varsanofieva
You must close all local files, open and click do not warn on your central, and then recreate locals. Otherwise the locals will continue to write the tag back into your central and from your central into the locals.

In my case, this wasn’t enough to fix the issue.  The updater message still showed.  I did this:
  1. Opened the Central with Audit and Detach ticked
  2. Clicked the “Do Not Warn…” option
  3. Saved the file as a Central with a different filename
  4. Closed the file and opened it in the usual method (with Save New Local ticked)
  5. The warning did not show anymore

I don’t think the API programmers should get scared just yet, but is there a day coming when visual programming will completely replace custom code?  Julien seems to think so:

“I firmly believe Dynamo could be used for many many purposes, and addin-like behavior is one…
Definitions are easy to share and update. Users can tune them with only some basic Dynamo skill. It is not the same with addins. It is a lot of work to manage and deploy. And users will not be able to tune things. Same thing for macros.”

Read more:
API or not API: addins vs Dynamo in Revit | AEC, you and me.

Heads-up: https://twitter.com/Jbenoit44/status/414322858823659520

Sometimes you just need to hear an idea and you innately know “this is going to be useful…”

Quick Select command for Autodesk® Revit® to select by element type and its properties. Expand the element or family type and select the properties that you wish to filter by. Click OK and all those elements will be selected. 

  • When in “Or” mode, the command will select all elements that match any of the properties. 
  • When in “And” mode, the command will only select elements that match all the selected properties. 

Example of potential uses:

  • select all Casework on a particular Level – done
  • select all Filled Regions with a given area – done
  • select all Walls whose Top is Attached – done

As with most addins I post about – its free.  Download on Exchange at:
this link

Heads-up via:

UPDATE: most of the links seem to be dead now… here is latest from archive.org:


What is it?  It is essentially a cleanup utility for Revit backup files.

AroCLEAN offers to clean these files backups and copies to take care of the free space on your disk storage space…

Click to download


Serial valid to Jan 2014:

From here:

Translated page

A while back, I mentioned the YourRibbon addin called Hotkey, which allows you to assign a HotKey to a specific component, not just a command.  There is another one called Color by the same dev.  Using this, you can override colors in your working environment in Revit, turn color on while working in Revit and back to black when it’s time to print.  Video below:

Free full version keys for Revit 2012
Do you have a few Revit 2012 projects still hanging around?  Enter the following activation keys into YourRibbon for a full free version of YourRibbon for Revit 2012.

HotKey 2012: 4463-3674-7375-3951

Color 2012: 4485-3674-4382-1336

From the download page:
Download — YourRibbon for Autodesk Revit

Can I transfer my settings for HotKey and Color?
Yes.  The the file hotkey.xml and color.xml stores your settings and can be copied from computer to computer.  This is a great way for one person to setup the firm-wide standard.

Download the add-in:
Topo From Lines | Autodesk Revit | Autodesk Exchange Apps

Update it:
Use this files in this ZIP to replace the files installed in C:ProgramDataAutodeskApplicationPluginsTopo From Lines.bundle

Read the post:
Topo From Lines now available on the Autodesk App Store | Boost Your BIM – making Revit even better

Heads-up thanks to Belinda Thompson

Oh, but if you want a super high resolution contour import, check out:
What Revit Wants: Using Civil3D to increase your Topography resolution in Revit

In some ways, vanilla Revit is like the base model option package of a new vehicle – no shiny wheels, 20 speaker sound system, or sports handling package.  But some add-ins can make you feel like you are driving the top of the range, fully optioned model …

Here are just a few of the things the KiwiCodes Bonus Tools lets you do:

  • determine the “source” file path to RFAs of loaded Families and re-path family files
  • replace Groups with Families
  • create Floor elements from Room boundaries
  • duplicate Sheets and the Views that reside on them
  • add points to a Topo from a selected Family
  • create an outline edge of a Topo element (these can be 2D or 3D lines!)
  • Export Template and Import Room Data from Excel (including adding Room Placeholders) – bit timesaver
  • Convert a Navisworks XML report into clash points and 3D views placed on sheet(s)
  • and there is much, much more…

For the sheer amount of timesaving and productivity tools included, the low price represents good value for money.

To download a trial of KiwiCodes Bonus Tools, go to:

For more details on the tools included:
Bonus Tools Details