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resullins

Revit and Egnye

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resullins

Confession time, I'm not great with Revit. I work in AV, and as an industry we still mostly work in CAD. However, we are starting to have to do small bits of work in Revit, and we are having a few growing pains. 

 

Our company uses a program called Egnyte for file management, which has an app which basically uses a Network drive as cloud storage. Kind of like OneDrive, but you can map it. Now, there is an option to force certain folders to sync for offline access, which we have told anyone who accesses the Revit files to NOT do. However, we're still having issues. We are all opening without creating a local copy, as the central model, from the OPEN dialogue box in Revit. But the file is acting weird, and we keep having to restore an old copy of it, which is probably the most annoying thing ever. 

 

So, my assumption is that even though Egnyte is not synced to individuals' desktops, it has to be caching data somehow, which is screwing up Revit. 

 

Is there any way to use Revit on this kind of platform? Or does it need to live on a hard server and everyone just accesses via Remote Desktop or something? We are geographically spread apart even without the plague shutting down the office, so this will be a permanent setup, whatever we do. 

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resullins

Also, I'm 99% sure I'm right that this setup just will NOT work and that we'll have to go to a server. But A. I want to make sure I'm not missing something. B. I want it in writing from people smarter than me before I take it to the guy in charge, who definitely assumes he's smarter than me. And C. I need recommendations on the best way to set this up for multiple users across the country... 

 

 

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tzframpton

This topic has been asked and discussed for at least ten years, and is still asked today among new Revit users in the community and the answer has always been and always will be - it does not work. So your assumptions are correct. 

 

You do have options, and Remote Desktop to a local machine on the network isn't a great or ideal workflow either. The only two viable options are this: You can purchase a BIM 360 license and use Autodesk's cloud service, or you can have your I.T. department set up Revit Server. Without a doubt, BIM 360 is the easiest and overall cheapest (all things considered) option for those who use Revit on a consistent and frequent basis. BIM 360 works so well, that by all reasonable accounts, it's the only option available. It provides a 99.9% uptime rate, unlimited backup storage, user permissions and access to other tools that make your Revit world much easier. In short, it's very much worth it. 

 

https://www.autodesk.com/bim-360/bim-collaboration-software/design-collaboration/revit-cloud-worksharing/

 

I've been using it since its inception back in 2015 and I have never looked back and couldn't imagine not using it. It also handles the Central and Local files automatically so no more "create local copies" and outdated sync issues, etc. 

 

I would immediately suspend the use of any cloud based file syncing application. 

 

-TZ

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resullins

Yup... that seems to be the same thing I'm finding everywhere. In the back of my mind I just feel like with cloud-based work flows becoming the norm, Revit would surely have kept up since its inception. Clearly, I was wrong. 

 

 Thanks for the confirmation. 

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tzframpton
16 minutes ago, resullins said:

Yup... that seems to be the same thing I'm finding everywhere. In the back of my mind I just feel like with cloud-based work flows becoming the norm, Revit would surely have kept up since its inception. Clearly, I was wrong. 

 

 Thanks for the confirmation. 

Revit Central Models is a very complex system of many different files constantly writing, as far as my understanding goes. Revit CM's aren't a simple single file that pushes one update when you hit sync, it's much more complex than that - it's a vast array of files that are live linked to real-time user activity. This is why you can pick something in Revit and it alerts you that someone else has borrowed the element. I believe this is the reason why file syncing cloud storage applications don't work with Revit and probably never will, unless Egnyte or similar apps would work with Revit's team to develop a way to have the platform work, like most already have with, say, a Word *.DOC file. 

 

-TZ

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resullins

Yeah, that was my assumption. That all cloud programs handle their data differently, but by their very design and nature, aren't "real time" like we think they are. It's an understandable shortcoming, just REALLY annoying. Or... maybe they need to start rolling BIM 360 into the Revit license? Just a thought. I don't know. Clearly I'm no expert here. It just seems like a pretty big shortcoming in today's work environment. 

 

I did see that there a couple of companies working on an Egnyte plugin, so maybe that will be a good option. One is in a facebook group with me, and sent me a screenshot to prove that is is ACTUALLY being worked on currently. So we'll see. That could be helpful, although I wonder if Autodesk with sabotage stuff like that to keep BIM 360 as the desired, supported method? They can't be happy about there being other options. 

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f700es
1 hour ago, resullins said:

maybe they need to start rolling BIM 360 into the Revit license

Yes!

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resullins
3 hours ago, f700es said:

Yes!

 

I mean, if one is essentially almost useless without the other, I would want them to come with. Perhaps give a discount if they don't want it? But standard usage seems to dictate you would need it. How many companies have all of their employees IN the office every day anymore? 

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f700es

Indeed. The PM team was asking about BIM360 and I told them we had 3 complete AEC Collections licenses and low-and-behold BIM360 is extra!

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tzframpton

Of course BIM 360 is extra. Why would anyone assume, given all the tools you are getting and all that it delivers to the end users, that it would be offered for free? I think if you stop and consider how much an internal team of I.T. labor, equipment, setup and maintenance time it takes for a single company to duplicate what BIM 360 is, the extra cost is justified. We're not talking about accessing word documents from a remote location, we're talking about complex models that can and do get up into the gigabytes of file size with multiple designers able to work at the same speeds as an internal wired network with no hiccup in Revit's natural workflow or process. 

 

I think the opposite. I think it's unfair to automatically include BIM 360 because many people don't need to use it and why pay for the extra service for something you'll never use. 

 

-TZ

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resullins

@tzframpton I'm not claiming it should be free, but bundled. I guess my question would be... I've asked this question in a couple of different groups, and pretty much everyone gave me the same answer. "Use BIM 360." So what's the percentage of serious users that AREN'T using BIM 360? Because I have absolutely considered what kind of infrastructure and IT people it would take to replicate what it does. I've clearly done enough digging to figure out why it doesn't work on other platforms. And honestly, it would be smart to bundle BIM 360 for exactly that reason. It would get more people to automatically consider it, easing the frustrations that a lot of companies have with Revit in general. 

 

I guess I just feel like it would be smarter to get that in up front somehow. Like, the bundle I have with my company has a CRAP ton of stuff I'll never use, but doesn't include something I would need to use Revit? I've just been at a lot of companies that sort of get sucked in to Revit without having everyone properly trained all the way up front. So by the time you realize you need Bim 360, or a server infrastructure, or whatever, it's just this HUGE extra cost that no one budgeted for and now no one wants to shell out for. So they make you stick a bandaid on it until starts hurting reputation or billing. That's what we're having to do.

 

I don't know, I'm rambling, and I'm clearly not a marketing expert. But I feel like AutoCAD could do something with their bundles to make that more accessible from the get-go, and make the idea of Revit slightly easier to swallow. 

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f700es

Agreed, no one said that it should be "free". I can list a ton of stuff in my 3 seats of the AEC collection that we will NEVER use and AutoDesk spent MILLIONS on R&D to develop as well.
 

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