I'm hoping someone can clarify this situation for me.
As standard procedure, my company automatically saves backup files of each drawing we create. A few months ago, we began using a service called Egnyte, which is a cloud-based file management system, since we are located across a couple offices and travel often. In short, our files are accessible on a web interface for all, and also synchronize to a few of our computers locally. The local copies maintain directory structure, etc., so we use the files as if they were only stored locally. (However, after saving a file, the new version automatically uploads to the cloud server and downloads to the other users.)
Egnyte allows the option to save all versions of files (or a specific amount), which we have enabled. Despite this, our .dwg files have maintained just one or two versions each. We've noticed other strange version issues, as well, but none as significant or obvious. After going through a lot of trouble-shooting with Egnyte, we eventually found that the .dwg files were "moving" to the .bak location, and a new .dwg file was being created.
I create the file "example.dwg" and begin working on it. I save it, and a file "example.bak" is also created. What actually seems to be occuring is that "example.dwg" is moving to the new location "example.bak" and AutoCAD creates another "example.dwg". It is not over-writing the old file.
Because of this behavior, Egnyte sees the .dwg file as a new file each time, and not simply just a new version of the file that has existed for a while. We, therefore, haven't been able to take advantage of the version history features of Egnyte.
My question is: Can anyone confirm that this is how AutoCAD behaves? I'd like to trust Egnyte when they tell me what is going on, but it would be nice to have confirmation that AutoCAD is designed like this.
Also, is there a way to specify the location of the .bak file? I know there used to be a command MOVEBAK, but that doesn't seem to be recognized any more. I do not know if keeping the .bak files in different folders will help necessarily, but it is worth testing.
Can anyone else recommend a best practice for saving backups that would not create a new .dwg file each time?
Thank you for your help.
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GCIIEvan, As a contractor we work remotely at sites using AutoCAD MEP and Navisworks. We tried using a software called Webdrive that makes an FTP site act like a mapped network drive. It was extremely slow and unusable.
We are seriously considering using Egnyte. I like the idea of Egnyte using a local NAS drive to work with files locally for speed and have it sync with our main office and other sites. We also use "Project Navigator" in Autocad MEP which will only work with a mapped drive.
I'm not sure what you mean about AutoCAD creating another .dwg. Autocad makes periodic backup saves of your .dwg file as a .bak. If Autocad crashes (which happens a few times a week, or day, depending on how my day is going) you can recover your work from the last save point by using drawing recovery manager, or by simply finding your drawing "example.bak" and changing the extension to "example.dwg"
Are you satisfied with how Egnyte has been working? Have you got it to play nice with Autocad?
Any insight would be appreciated.
AutoCAD does not make "periodic saves" using a .bak file necessarily, but, rather a .bak file is created everytime the _qsave command is given, either manually or using automatic saves.
Using Engyte revealed behavior that would otherwise go unnoticed: In order to create the .bak file with each save, AutoCAD actually "moves" or renames the .dwg file to the .bak file and then creates a new .dwg file of the same name. For all intents and purposes, it appears to just save the .dwg and create a .bak file, but that is not the case. As a result, Egnyte was seeing this behavior as the rapid erasing and creating of a new file, therefore it did not recognize the .dwg as the same file and did not save multiple versions.
Our company has compensated by disabling the creation of .bak files, and Egnyte has since behaved as expected -- it creates a new version of the .dwg file with each save and sync. We are comfortable with not creating .bak files because we have enabled automatic saving and because Egnyte has previous versions should we need to recover from a corrupt file. Essentially, Egnyte's saving of multiple versions has nearly the same benefit as having a .bak file. (Our company's settings actually specify to maintain every version of our files, though that can be customized.)
In general, though, we are happy with Egnyte. As you noted, working with files locally is great, and keeping our files in the cloud is espcially convenient. There are a lot of other features that have proven very useful, like creating "public" links to files/folders, and being able to create accounts for our vendors and customers to be able to share with us.
There are some quirks that we have needed to work out, including with AutoCAD. One negative that we have had to compensate for is file locking. When accessing files from the web interface, you can "lock" files to prevent editing. However, working from their "Personal Local Cloud" (which is what allows for local copies of the files that continuously sync with the cloud), when you open a file for editing, it does not lock it. Others are able to open it and simultaneously edit it. When each person syncs, whichever version was saved last becomes the latest version.
For example, a word document exists with the phrase "The dog ran around the yard". My coworker and I both open the file at the same time. I edit it to say "The dog went to sleep", save it, and it syncs with the cloud. My coworker takes a bit longer with the file and edits it to say "The dog loves attention", saves it, and it syncs with the cloud. My coworker's version is now the latest, and my edits are not reflected in the latest version. They'll exist as a "previous version" saved by Egnyte, but that is not the version that will sync with everyone else.
I hope this helps.
My question is: Can anyone confirm that this is how AutoCAD behaves?
When you save a file, AutoCAD writes the contents of the editor to a .TMP file. Then it renames the .DWG to .BAK, then it renames to TMP to DWG. This is to avoid data loss in case of a power or network interruption. The TMP and the DWG are never open at the same time. This assumes BAK file creation is enabled also.
I can tell you EGNYTE is deleting files after they have been written -specifically dwg files are written then deleted within a couple of minutes. USE EXTREME CAUTION since this is a "known" issue. Their customer service punts to Autodesk...
Egnytes guru is Don David extension 104 and I hope he can help.
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