The issue we have is that we have people distributed around the globe working on a job. Each individual works on a local copy of the drawings, uploading the daily results to a shared directory. The project databases for each of these individuals is strictly local; having been set up by default on a separate drive.
We noticed that although two people downloaded the same drawings, they appeared differently. This has lead to questions about how the project database D:\Users\Authorized User\AppData\Roaming\Autodesk\AutoCAD Electrical 2011\R18.1\enu\Support\user\LocalJob.mdb is being used. When does it get updated? If we zip up the drawings that exist on the C drive and they get picked up overseas, how do we know that my database gets updated with my foreign friends changes and her database gets mine?
How should we set up our projects?
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The project databases are meant to be local. This speeds up project wide changes.
It sounds like you need to setup some type of control on when/who is making changes to drawings. If everyone is working on the same project, you will have problems with different designers making different changes to the same drawing. The actual database has nothing to do with the design of the drawings. It is only meant to act like a "scratchpad" for keeping track of where all the components are in each drawing. You can delete it and it will rebuild the next time you open the project.
Doug McAlexander has a nice writeup on how to use sub projects for organizing larger projects.
Maybe this can help you.
When you say the dwgs look different, you need to be a bit more specific. Are the colours different? Text moved? Different blocks?
It could be that you have several fonts differing between machines. I know that if the specifed font is missing, ACAD will select another font in it's place. These fonts can cause text to look different and even cause the text to "move" according to text size.
Different colours could just be due to different monitors and/or graphics cards. Even something as small as a a different brand of globe in the lights. Ambient light will also play a large part in how the colours look.
Thank you for the replies. I suspected that the local databases tended to be rebuilt.
There is some concern, here, first, that the databases may periodically need to be deleted and rebuilt. Now, there are instances in the drawings that we have where information is duplicated. To get around creating two wires in a wire list, one of those instances is handled by drawing just a raw line on layer 0. The specific trigger for this query is that from what was supposed to be the same drawing revision, one individual showed a fully dressed wire, while the next individual showed a line. In reality, I think that one of the individuals had an out of date drawing. The goal of the query, then, is to assure that we understand how the databases work and reassure ourselves that we can keep a stable process.
It sounds like your issue is definitely workflow oriented.
It is important the only one person is working on only one drawing at any given time for you to not have the issue you saw. It is also important that when the designer releases the drawing back to the server that he/she deletes the local copy so that the most current one is always on the server.
You might want to look into using something like Vault for drawing control. It will check a drawing out to a given person thereby locking it out from revision by anyone else and also provide revision control to know who did what when.
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