CAD Managers

Active Contributor
Posts: 26
Registered: ‎09-13-2006
Message 1 of 11 (1,602 Views)

Large File Size

1602 Views, 10 Replies
11-15-2011 07:10 AM

I am hoping one of you have seen this issue before and can help me out.


We use both ACAD and CIvil 3D here. Most of the engineers use ACAD 2010 and our survey and I use Civil 3D. I have been having a problem with the drawing size rising to 2 or possibly as high as 5 MB when saved in ACAD 2010. If I open these same drawings in Civil 3D 2010 and save them the drawing size drops typically below 1 MB (to a size I would assume is correct). I have run the scalelistedit routine on these and it does not have the same affect as when I open them and save them in Civil 3D.


I am really frustrated by this because it happens on many project drawings and I end up re-saving them on a daily basis. It is not on just one computer or one drawing - it is throughout the office and I could probably say all used drawings by ACAD 2010.


Any suggestions would be appreciated.




*Expert Elite*
Posts: 23,705
Registered: ‎11-06-2003
Message 2 of 11 (1,595 Views)

Re: Large File Size

11-15-2011 10:56 AM in reply to: Terraeng

Is R2010 set to save to a lower DWG format?


5MB is of concern to you? Is this a low-server capacity issue, or a slow network capacity issue, or a user low-PC spec issue? Or do you "email" files and concerned about that limitation? Please elaborate.


Also, Civil is a vertical and if your files contain AEC objects created with it, they appear as proxy Objects in plain AutoCAD: both programs are not quite the same based on file content.


That's the size of our an average DWG file early in a project, no one thinks twice about it.

Dean Saadallah Blog | Facebook | Google+ | Twitter | PINS
Active Contributor
Posts: 26
Registered: ‎09-13-2006
Message 3 of 11 (1,595 Views)

Re: Large File Size

11-15-2011 11:07 AM in reply to: pendean

This actually comes down too performance issue. I understand the difference between ACAD and Civil 3D and have the object enablers installed  to work with them. THe problem is when I save the drawings in Civil 3D 2010 the drawing file size may be 900kb. Afterwards the drawing will be opened in ACAD 2010 and basic editing done, and once it is saved it will end up being 2-3 MB. Understandably that in itself is not large BUT it does not make sense that the size would grow that much by saving in plain ACAD. Would that mean then that all companies could only have Civil 3D and no ACAD to compliment it?


My guess is that I am missing something small because I did not have this issue in the 2008 versions.


THanks for your input.

*Expert Elite*
Posts: 5,698
Registered: ‎10-12-2006
Message 4 of 11 (1,586 Views)

Re: Large File Size

11-15-2011 02:50 PM in reply to: Terraeng

All sorts of things to look for, among them scale list (think you've already covered that), automatically inferred constraints, certain programs include a routine to automatically purge data that don't/can't be called from vanilla AutoCAD, and (I think this may be your case) options like "Maintain visual fidelity for annotative objects".

If you are going to fly by the seat of your pants, expect friction burns.
Adopt. Adapt. Overcome. Or be overcome.
A good question will be halfway to a good answer.

*Expert Elite*
Posts: 23,705
Registered: ‎11-06-2003
Message 5 of 11 (1,578 Views)

Re: Large File Size

11-16-2011 04:45 AM in reply to: Terraeng

You did not answer my first question: that's makes all the difference.


And you are also writing that your hardware is on the low-end and not able to address 2-3MB DWG files (down from 5 in your first post...?): I can't imagine how low a system or network you have, you've not shared that information, but it must be quite significant. Can we assume you've not really upgraded anything since R2008 was in your office 5+ years ago?

Peer-to-Peer network? No switch to connect users if you do have a "server"?

Dean Saadallah Blog | Facebook | Google+ | Twitter | PINS
Distinguished Mentor
Posts: 506
Registered: ‎04-28-2010
Message 6 of 11 (1,541 Views)

Re: Large File Size

11-20-2011 08:37 AM in reply to: Terraeng



What hardware are you using, and what OS - it's going to make some difference.  Also, I'd say you have a real recipe for disaster usng both plain acad & C3d in the same office.  The two programs are just different enough that it can cause real headaches trying to use both.  With C3d, your engineers should be able to do more real design work on their own, much faster than annotating womething done by a tech and returning it to them (this from a tech).


I'm with Pendean on this.  Now a days, it's not uncommon to see file sizes of 20meg or better, especially if point clouds or raster images are involved.  You hardware may be the biggest problem you have.



Homebuilt box: I5-2500k, MSI P67A-GD65, 12gig DDR3 1600 ram, ASUS ENGTX460 Video card, WD Velociraptor WD4500HLHX HD, Win 7 64 pro.
Active Contributor
Posts: 26
Registered: ‎09-13-2006
Message 7 of 11 (1,481 Views)

Re: Large File Size

12-19-2011 08:36 AM in reply to: Terraeng

My apologies for the delay, things are extremely busy here and my goal is to really ensure this is resolved.


I will try to explain my network environment also (I am far from an IT expert but doing what I can). It was suggested that this could be a network issue. Our server works as a file server - users access all the drawings in the projects. They use ACAD 2010 for the most part, I do most of the Civil 3D work (i.e. points, tins, etc.). Users have Windows XP  - two or three have Windows 7 -  they all have at least 4GB RAM (I know the max recognized is approx. 3.5). I have nothing special about my computer except I use Civil 3D and others use ACAD.


I do appreciate the assistance you are giving.



*Expert Elite*
Posts: 191
Registered: ‎10-06-2008
Message 8 of 11 (1,366 Views)

Re: Large File Size

04-12-2012 04:13 PM in reply to: Terraeng

Ok, our office uses Revit, Civil 3D, AutoCAD MEP, AutoCAD Structural and AutoCAD, so I know a few things about how this works or well, doesn't work.


Bottom line is if a project utilizes the features in Cvil 3D, AutoCAD MEP or other verticals, then it should ONLY be opened in Civil 3D or TrueView.


If the project doesn't use any of these features, then it should ONLY be opened in vanilla AutoCAD or TrueView.


Bottom line is mixing the two is dangerous, although there are ways to deal with it, such as using DWGConvert to explode all AEC objects in place.


What happens is you edit the file in Civil 3D, then someone with regular AutoCAD opens and edits it, then saves it, any Civil 3D information or AEC objects (even if all you did was erase something, it adds AEC objects to the file) gets saved as proxy objects, which if opened again in regular AutoCAD will usually produce errors when running an Audit and definitely increases the size of the file. Everytime that you open and save the drawing in either program from then on (unless you used DWGConvert as mentioned above), you add to the problem. Civil 3D will usually handle it ok; however, regular AutoCAD will not deal with this properly. We actually have one file that this has happened with from an outside consultant that when we recieve an update from them, it will take 30 minutes to open the file. Then we have to manually select everything and copy and paste it into a new file using regular AutoCAD, as at this point, even the DWGConvert method doesn't help.

New Member
Posts: 1
Registered: ‎10-08-2010
Message 9 of 11 (989 Views)

Re: Large File Size

06-14-2013 03:24 PM in reply to: chriswade

This is a REAL problem and I'm surprised that Autodesk has not fixed this.  We are constantly receiving files from Civil Engineers that when opening in AutoCAD balloon in size.  I have one file that is over 100mb.  Yes over 100mb.  We just cannot work like this. 


If anyone has a good solution please let me know!

Distinguished Contributor
Posts: 143
Registered: ‎10-15-2009
Message 10 of 11 (966 Views)

Re: Large File Size

06-18-2013 12:01 AM in reply to: bla2001

I'm here working on 2 GB files which don't bog the system down to anything like you have described. As other posters have said, Audit errors will be generated in those mixed object drawings, which combined with the proxy object conversion process sounds like what is bogging down your system. In our office we only ever pass the drawings down from C3D, never back up, as the problems you are describing MUST occur.

Post to the Community

Have questions about Autodesk products? Ask the community.

New Post
Manufacturing CAD & IT Manager Resource
Additional information for installing, licensing & deploying Inventor, the Product Design Suites and Factory Design Suites.