Tuesday, December 12, 2023

Revit 2024 - New Home Screen

With the recent updates to 2024 we now have an option for a new HOME screen, presenting more options for how to preview and find projects. So far it's working pretty well for me. I noticed today that some projects are "not found" while using it however. Those same projects turn up in the old Home while not showing up in a search in the new Home screen. At first I thought it was related to the number of characters in the project name or the use of special characters but so far that isn't the case.

Ah the quirky stuff...

Tuesday, August 22, 2023

Ghost Tooltips Be Gone

This seems to be a recent phenomenon. I noticed it first in Navisworks and then occasionally in Revit or AutoCAD. What is that you ask? Well it's hard to describe. When I use a command and then move my cursor away from it to do something else a tooltip appears for that previous command. In some cases I didn't use the command, merely my cursor was hovering over it before doing something else. It's weird.

I've tried disabling tooltips entirely but there doesn't appear to be a way to do that in Navisworks, or if it is possible I've not stumbled on to it yet. Similar for Revit and AutoCAD.

A practical very recent example, I used Refresh and after it completed I moved my cursor to the far right side of the screen to activate the Properties panel and the tool tip for Refresh appeared. The only way the tip will disappear is to move my cursor back over the tool. However in the fifteen or so minutes since that happened no tips have appeared no matter what I do. It is so weird and annoying.

Strange stuff, maybe it's just my PC...

Wednesday, August 09, 2023

Manage Cloud Models Dialog in Revit

The Manage Cloud Models dialog that Revit displays is a terrible design. Utterly ineffectual.

No search, no options for changing from icons to a list and it seems that it fails to list all of our projects at times. A very disappointing experience trying to use it...EVERY time. I have a sense of dread every time I think I need to open it. Lately I think...what's the point, it's not going to show me what I need.


Monday, August 07, 2023

Delete Toposolid Points

Seems like a simple thing but only the Delete key on the keyboard will delete a point in the toposolid, at least while using Revit 2024.1. No, the Backspace key doesn't "delete" either.

Tuesday, August 01, 2023

2024.1 Schema Warning

Glynnis with IDEATE posted information at the Autodesk User Forums that you should be aware of if you're using 3rd party tools and are going to deploy, or have deployed, Revit 2024.1. Ironic that this update is the one that has caused a potential disruptive issue since many firms wait for this point release to deploy. I've taken her initial post and copied it here, go read the entire thread for any more recent commentary. Thanks Glynnis!

There's been a lot of chatter about the Schema error that was landing in a post about What's New in 2024.1 so I took the good suggestion from @RobDraw to start a new thread here.

What is a Schema?

I welcome other people's input on this, but from my perspective, a schema can be best thought of as a blob of Revit metadata, held in Extensible Storage workset, that has a unique GUID. This blob of data is most often used by 3rd party developers but is also used by Autodesk (or companies acquired by Autodesk). The structure of that data, per each GUID, needs to be the same. If a developer alters the data structure, then a new GUID is needed to avoid the error.

What causes a Schema error?

In order to experience a Schema error, you need to have two files (or a file with a linked file) that have the same schema GUID but with a different data structure. Whichever file is opened first 'wins' within the active Revit session. This makes solving these problems REALLY hard because the file that displays the error is not necessarily the file with the 'problem' schema. It's also why this problem seems to be squashed sometimes and then resurface later. If you only ever open one Revit file at a time within a session of Revit, you'll never see the error.

What's the New Problem

The new problem seems to relate to Revit files that are upgraded to 2024/2024.1. The 11 July Revit 2024.1 release notes show that in there were changes made to the API to try and fix an outstanding schema condition. It feels like that change may have created some new conditions. We have an open case with Autodesk on this issue.

This is the latest schema article on this at Autodesk

Autodesk Revit schema issue article

Monday, July 31, 2023

Dept of Subtle - Select Everything in a Property's Field

Sharing this because someone observed me selecting a parameter value and was curious about how I selected everything. If they didn't know...maybe you don't either?

When you just click in a parameter field in the Properties Palette or Type Properties dialog the cursor will usually land where you click. You can use Home or End keys to move the cursor to beginning or end of the entry. You can also use the CTRL + A button to select everything in the field.

If you want to select all of (with the cursor) what is entered, in order to replace it entirely, this is very subtle...

When you move your cursor over the field, as you click...drag the cursor arrow down (or up) away from or out of the field. Done correctly it will select everything in the field. Once familiar with the motion it is quite easy to do.

Originally I realized that clicking in a field past the end of the entry (in empty space) would select everything. That was useful to me but the width of the field is usually not wide enough to do that every time. Yet, every now and then when I clicked in a field I'd select everything. Eventually I took time to notice why it was happening. Happy selecting?!

Saturday, July 29, 2023

Move Room Tool

Following on yesterday's post about rooms and their tags. It occurred to me that a Move Room tool might be helpful (via Dynamo or app). I imagine being able to start the command and choose a room. Then I'd choose between options for This Floor or Another Floor.

If This Floor is selected I'd choose between options for Move All Associated Tags or Delete All Associated Tags and then I'd be prompted for a new location.

If Another Floor is selected then under the hood the room would be deleted, I'd choose between tag options, and then prompted to choose another plan view to open, followed by placing the room in the new location.

Multiple room selection might be useful too? I don't often move a collection of rooms together. It's certainly possible that could be necessary and very helpful if so.

Whatcha think?

Friday, July 28, 2023

Room Tags and Leaders

For many years I wished room tags would turn on a leader IF I dragged a room tag outside of the room's boundary. I got my wish in Revit 2023.1. I also got more than I wished for which is not that uncommon unfortunately, thus the saying, "Careful what you wish for".

When we are moving rooms around things go awry. If we drag a room to a new location the tag turns on the leader instead of bringing the tag along with it like it would for other tagged elements. When I move a room that already has a tag with a leader the leader will update and point to the new room location. However, if I decide to remove the leader the tag returns to the original room location, not its new home. I have to turn on the leader, to wake it up, so it will point to the new room location. Then I have to turn off the leader to get the room tag to jump to its new home. Here's an image of the sequence I describe above.

I should be careful to select the room tag and move it with the room. That doesn't contend with all the other possible views that have tags referencing the room though.

The documentation review and cleanup we have to do when rooms are relocated is a necessary part of the design process, with all the potential changes that can occur. In the past warnings were generated when a room and its tag(s) were not reconciled. We could then deal with those warnings by activating the Warning dialog and clicking the Move to Room button. When such a warning occurred while opening a model we could resolve them all at that time too.

Yes, we'd still have to review and fine tune them most likely but all the tags related to the room would at least be in the room. We can also choose to delete all the tags in a view and use Tag All Untagged. What if most of the room tags were positioned nicely with and without leaders? We'd lose all that work and have to do it over again.

It's my opinion that dragging a room's tag outside a room should be treated as different from dragging a room outside its boundaries and we should have a different result for each.

  • Drag a room tag away from its room and turning on the leader is cool and it should remain view specific.
  • Drag a room (to within new boundaries) should leave whatever condition is true for all of its room tags but move them along with the room proportionately (see next).
  • Drag a room and if there is no leader the tag should follow the room and not turn on a leader. If the leader is active then it should maintain its position relative to the room but move along with it.
  • Delete a room and the associated tags should be deleted too (which is what happens). We can then place that room elsewhere and tag as required.
Documentation review and adjustments are unavoidable but these actions should mitigate how extensive the task might be as well as be more consistent with what I'd expect to happen when I move rooms around.

Thursday, July 20, 2023

Slanted Walls Don't Miter

What if I'm asked to create a vertical bottom wall that will transition into a slanted upper wall? Initially the wall configuration looks like the walls on the left in the following image. I added another vertical wall at the top of the slanted portion just for fun.

Each wall doesn't know anything about the other so there is no attempt by Revit to miter them together. We might have expected them to join? If we consider what happens in plan views for a similar layout (see image) I don't think it's unreasonable to think that might have happened. If an automatic join occurs in plan views maybe using Join will work in a section? No. Wall Join tool? No. Attach? YES!

To resolve the clumsy look of the left walls and end up with those on the right side of the image we can take advantage of the Attach tool. We just need to add reference planes to define where the miter joint should occur. Then Attach - Top will fix the bottom wall and Attach - Base will fix the upper wall. Repeat as required until all walls relate to each other better.

Thursday, July 13, 2023

Phasing and Replacement Windows

Over the years people have often complained about trying to document replacing existing windows with modern windows but maintaining the existing opening. This means swapping windows with families that are the exact same size. This is related to the wall that Revit creates to infill a wall that has a demolished window. You may have encountered this warning message?

That message appeared when I attempted to place new windows in the New Construction phase after demolishing the existing windows first. I was careful to set up views assigned to different phases and phase filters so there wouldn't be any display conflicts.

I got interested in this issue again recently because of a thread at the Autodesk User Forums for Revit Architecture. A fellow member was sharing how much trouble Revit has been giving them trying to do this kind of work. After some back and forth I narrowed it down to one window family and another member realized that family uses a void to cut the hosting wall in the family itself versus the usual opening.

This led me to write some hypotheses for testing purposes. I wrote:

Hypothesis A: Within phasing we can replace Existing Window A with New replacement Window B using the exact same sizes (same size opening dimensions) IF they both use an OPENING in the family to cut the host.

Hypothesis B: Within phasing we can replace Existing Window A with New replacement Window B using the exact same sizes (same size opening dimensions) IF they both use a VOID in the family to cut the host.

If either of the above are false then...

Hypothesis C: Within phasing we CANNOT replace Existing Window A with New replacement Window B using the exact same sizes (same size opening dimensions) IF one uses an OPENING and the other uses a VOID, in the family, to cut the host.

I did some testing using the latest release of Revit, 2024.1 and I determined the following:

Hypothesis A is TRUE
Hypothesis B is FALSE
Hypothesis C is neither

I find that I can replace a Void based window with an Opening based window but not the reverse. Also any alterations to the hosting wall in the project; such as length adjustment, or top/bottom offsets, attach/detach will place the void type window at risk of being deleted. Weirder still is that it might not delete all of them, one or more.

It seems that the short answer is: eliminate window families that use a void to cut the hosting wall IF you intend to place identical sized windows in phased projects; to demonstrate existing window replacement without altering the existing openings. Windows created this way will not work for this task. A logical next hypothesis is to anticipate similar behavior in door families.

I speculate that this warning happens because an opening cuts fully through the host while a void (or combination of voids) might cut more and/or less of the host as it travels through it. I suspect that the infill wall can't abide the shape a void might create and that in turn means a void won't be viable as a window to alter the location of the infill wall. I think it's similar to curtain walls only supporting non-rectilinear panels with the system panel families.

I'd love to hear that the developers will test this against their own experience and expectations. I know that a lot of people rely on voids to shape the opening in a host wall to match a variety of actual construction techniques for openings. To eliminate voids in families as an option for this kind of project (replacement windows (and doors?)) is not ideal. They'd probably have to revisit the entire logic of infill elements where demolished hosted elements occur. Perhaps leave it up to us to fill in holes?

Wednesday, July 12, 2023

Revit 2024.1 Now Available

 Like the post title says, the latest release/update is now available. Read all about it at The Factory blog.

Friday, June 30, 2023

Revit 2024 - Template Views Crop Boundary Controlled by Scope Box

 There are new multi-discipline templates for Revit 2024 (imperial and metric).

In the new multi-discipline template the views that are placed on sheets are controlled by a Scope Box. When you look at the properties you'll notice that Crop View is disabled (gray).

We can turn off the visibility of the crop boundary but we have to disable the association with a scope box if we want to change the crop independently. Of course if we like and want to take advantage of the scope box being defined and used for the views, we need to open a view that isn't constrained by the scope box so we can adjust the Scope Box extents (it's called Views Overall)

Wednesday, April 26, 2023

Blog Post Takedown - Revit 2008 Released - 2007

 Got a strange email this evening telling me a post from 2007 about Revit 2008 being released has been taken down (draft status) because it contains links that violate the DMCA. The links pointed to a place you could download Revit 2008 once upon a time... I didn't check if they still work. I just deleted the post since Revit 2008 is a bit irrelevant no?

The great and powerful internet watchdog is watching...

Wednesday, April 05, 2023

Revit 2024 Installation

Imagine my surprise when I started to install Revit 2024 this morning and I was greeted with a message that it couldn't install because Autodesk Access is running. That "software" is the least impressive body of work Autodesk has released yet...

I closed Autodesk Access and installation has resumed...thank goodness :)

Edit: I should add that this was the fastest installation of Revit I can remember except for maybe the earliest few releases.