Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Shared Coordinates and Worksets

Ordinarily we are not permitted to save changes to a linked Revit model. The lone exception is when we use Publish Coordinates. Any time we makes changes to a model that we've published coordinates to we are attempting to save a change to the linked file. For example when you publish coordinates for the first time you'll get this message.

When we get around to saving the host project file we'll be greeted with this message.

That message is the one that is indicates Revit is going to change data in the linked file. If this file is open by someone else already we'll be politely rejected, though the message is a bit oblique.

But then this message will likely appear right after you click Close for the previous message dialog.

Followed by a repeat appearance of the previous message, "Failed to open document". This means Revit couldn't save the change to the shared coordinates because the file is currently open (read only). This means to be successful we need to make sure nobody is working on the linked model, at least for long enough to let us publish or update the shared coordinate information.

When worksets are being used this changes because Revit can still reach into the file and interact with an individual workset instead, unless someone already is doing that. It is recommended to Import/Link a central file, not a local file. Users should not be working in a central file so it is less likely that publish coordinates will compete with someone. Local files are usually created on the user's PC. This means using Import/Link on a local file will likely fail to work for everyone on the team. We aren't usually mapped to user's computers for file sharing. Let's come back to worksets in a moment.

We'll get the following message when we decide to change the position of a linked model that we've previously used published coordinates on.

This gives us the opportunity to commit the change to the linked file immediately (click Save Now) or postpone that action till we are really done adjusting the link (click OK). Yet another message can appear if someone has changed the linked model since it was loaded or publish coordinates was used.

As the dialog suggests, Reloading the linked file will resolve the situation easily. If we are dealing with worksets again it is possible to have a similar message appear, related to the situation where other users have used Synchronize with Central recently.

This too can be resolved by Reloading the linked file, as long as we cancel the action. If we click OK then Revit will allow us to leave the modified linked file in its new position. After we reload the link Revit won't prompt to Save the new position, a quirky outcome. We need to use Publish Coordinates on the link again, we can just leave the location name the same to publish the revised data.

In the past we could find another user listed in the borrower column for the Project Information workset when someone used the Publish Coordinates feature on a linked file. With 2014 I find that Revit seems to be able to resolve this transaction more reliably. When I am working in my local file and another user publishes coordinates I don't find any other users listed against worksets in the Project Standards group.

To reliably publish coordinates to a linked model:
  • If it isn't a workset project I need to
    • ask any other user to save and close the file temporarily
    • Reload the link (Insert ribbon > Manage Links dialog)
    • Publish Coordinates 
  • If it is using worksets I need to
    • Reload the linked model (Insert ribbon > Manage Links dialog)
    • Publish Coordinates

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