19 Kudos

Fusion 360 offline mode??

Status: Implemented
by crfuentes on ‎08-18-2013 02:56 PM

I have tried fusion 360. The interface looks great and I really like how the surfaces of the model are displayed in the viewport. The program runs more smoothly than fusion 2013 and generally has a more user freindly look to it. It really is  a big step from 2013 R1


  I have some complaints!!!! I dont like this idea of having to be online to use the program. I know lots of people will benifit from the cloud and I know you guys have been working hard to implemiment this technology into the software. Im sure with all the time spent its not going anywhere. But I would really like the option to choose between offline and cloud mode.

The startup interface is a slightly cumbersome. in the sense that I cant just run fusion exe, press new project and get to work. What if Im working on a secret project and dont want to worry about my design getting into another users hands?? If I can work in the cloud, but keep all my work secure I suppose I can learn to accept the direction of fusion 360.


Is anything being done to address this cloud/offline issue? Ive read on various forums where people post comments about their frustration with fusion and the "cloud". Im not asking to have the feature removed. Id just like the option to be offline and keep my work on my machine only. Id like to be comfortable in knowing that I can always access fusion with or without an internet connection as well. Those are my two main things.


Thank you

Status: Implemented
by borud on ‎08-18-2013 03:50 PM

The most worrisome aspect in the short term for me is not being able to start the software if I am offline or if the Autodesk site is down -- which I have experienced.



by Distinguished Contributor bmdesign ‎08-19-2013 01:31 AM - edited ‎08-19-2013 01:35 AM

Interesting to see what Autodesk says to this. One way to make this happen in practise would be to embed i.e. 'git' into the product, having it take care of the synchronization, online/offline issues and merging. Git is designed to be used as a library - not only an end-user tool (which I could reason, it's actually not designed for).


Personally, I don't need offline support. I would - however - welcome the ability to merge designs edited by multiple people. Autodesk would "only" need to make a merge handler that lets the user select the changes in graphical UI (not a trivial thing but doable).

by Valued Contributor tdtwohy on ‎08-19-2013 07:37 PM

It seems they insist in that format... oh, the comments i've made about this.

I used a Beta version called "Forge" that worked on my Mac (!)... but now the tool has been improved but has this annoying web dependance.

Always wanting Nanny AutoDesk before it will let you work.

A tethered mobile phone can access Mama AutoDesk anywhere... but moving files up and down, no control over when updates start (extra data costs even potential additional Autodesk charges beyond the monthly rate) and strange ideas about ownership (intellectual property issues).

Rented tools... ugh.

If only I could just afford to buy Inventor year after year :smileysad:

by *Expert Elite* on ‎08-20-2013 01:11 PM

The Fusion team has made it clear all along that an offline mode is important and coming (and have surveyed users about this), but I think it's important to keep in perspective what the "cloud" is really about- it's not about renting software or a new business model, it's a lot deeper. It's distributed processing. 


I'm a solo user, an independent inventor/ designer/ entrepreneur. I've worked as such, almost entirely from home, for most of the last 30 years.  I'm not at all concerned with collaboration in the cloud, beyond occasionally sharing ideas with clients/ partners.  But I don't think collaboration is the main advantage to distributed processing, it's just the easiest to explain and market. The deeper advantage has to do with the ability to leverage distributed processing power to do tasks that would require a far more complex (and expensive) program on the desktop, with exponentially more difficulty in dealing with platform differences, a slow upgrade cycle, and therefore reduced capabilities.  Ultimately, this "cloud based" approach (a term I personally dislike) will provide more powerful software to more people for much less money.  Yes, this requires an internet connection- though eventually it should come with a robust offline mode and good local file storage and backups.  Around here (US, West Coast), basic home internet packages start around 10 Mbps and much faster is normal, but in parts of the world that isn't possible, and there is a real need for offline use in the field for many people. The offline options need improving.  Where you draw the boundaries, what functions are absolutely necessary offline and what can be connected only- those are real questions. 


I'd bet that Autodesk is spending significantly more, not less, in developing this approach- which is really profoundly differnt.  And I know with certainty that a good part of that motivation for that investment is exactly to be able to reach out and connect with the "makers" and other user groups that the information / manufacturing revolution is making into viable communities. They correctly perceive this as a huge potential market and a profound change in the manufacturing world.  As someone who was out on the bleeding edge of the "maker" movement in both electronics and modeling- long before the term was coined- this is a particular concern of mine. I want to see Fusion accessible to the largest possible group, including keeping the cost to a level- like free in some cases- that works for each type of user.  I think the Fusion team is on the same page here. 



by Distinguished Contributor bmdesign on ‎08-20-2013 10:05 PM

+1 for Ron's thoughts

by doug.norton on ‎08-21-2013 08:41 AM

Like Ron I am an independent designer who works both from a home office and often at my clients' location.  Here is the problem for me;  because in 2013 Fusion was integrated and you could swap back and forth between working in Invetor, then at the click of an icon, be in the Fusion environment, I used both quite extensively.  


As a subscriber I am always an early adopter of upgrades and had done so when 2014 became available.  I put some extensive work in a project and then went to a client's location to continue the work.  I do not have internet access at the client location (common to a lot of client locations acuatlly)  and bam!  No fusion.  


This is a substantial problem for me, as I have migrated most of my work to 2014 so I can't go back.  What was Autodesk thinkiing?  There was no warning that they were going to take away one of the most useful tools in my workflow.  


I am keeping my fingers  crossed that they will correct this in a soon to be released update for those who are loyal subsctibers.  


Doug Norton

Industrial Designer

Whitby Ontario Canada.

905 409 8487

by Alumni kat.ingalls on ‎08-21-2013 04:48 PM - last edited on ‎09-06-2013 11:22 PM by Board Manager

Hey guys! You have perfect timing. We were actually wondering why this request hadn't been posted yet!


Kevin Schneider, Fusion's senior manager,  just posted the development roadmap earlier this month in the "Announcements" topic. Check it out, "straight from the horse's mouth" (sorry, Kevin!):


...and most important of all -  Offline mode ( interesting there is no idea for this, but don't worry we are on it )

by Alumni kat.ingalls on ‎08-21-2013 04:50 PM
Status changed to: Accepted
by Contributor TRACERfire on ‎09-05-2013 12:28 PM

I have a few ideas about offline mode as well.. perhaps there could be a series of options within the preferences menu:


- specify a duration of time where the most recent local save is pushed to the cloud

- a setting save the most recent version to the cloud only on exit (otherwise work entirely offline)

- save to cloud after X number of local versions (either manual or autosave)

- if collaborating, allow other users to pull your local files into the cloud (perhaps a preview of an local file can by default be loaded to the cloud for other users to view?)


I'm just coming down from an all night work session... so feel free to comment if I don't really make much sense :smileyhappy:

by Distinguished Contributor bmdesign ‎09-06-2013 01:47 AM - edited ‎09-06-2013 01:50 AM

The selection on how to do the version handling matters immensely to workflows.


I would suggest not to invent yet another way for Fusion 360, but to see whether i.e. the model succesfully used in GitHub (git or hg in general) will work for Fusion 360 - at some point in time.


This should not be seen from one user's point of view, but from the whole organization's colaborating on a design.


I wrote this because some of the suggestions above (by TRACERfire) sound alarming to me, coming from the git/hg/svn software development world, and having used version control systems for some time.


> - specify a duration of time where the most recent local save is pushed to the cloud


This is okay. Only one automatic save should ever be visible to the user (this has to do with versioning, discussed in a different thread).


In my opinion, automatic saves don't need to be pushed to the cloud at all. The need for cloud pushing would be either:

- the user himself/herself is moving to another machine and wants to continue working there

- the user wants to expose his designs to the rest of the group

- the user reached a certain stage in design and wants to store that as a 'committed' version (with name and ability to later revert to it)


Local automatic saves serve none of these cases (maybe with the exception of the first one, but for me it would be okay to only see saved versions if I switch computers).


> - a setting save the most recent version to the cloud only on exit (otherwise work entirely offline)


This is the case where autosave to the cloud does make sense. I have changes done and I'm ending the program. If possible, I would expect an (unnamed) save to be made (like current autosave) that I can pick up from another computer. However, I will not want this to be visible or accessible by others in the team (only explicitly saved data should, imho).


> - save to cloud after X number of local versions (either manual or autosave)


Why? What's the benefit?


> - if collaborating, allow other users to pull your local files into the cloud (perhaps a preview of an local file can by default be loaded to the cloud for other users to view?)


Absolutely not. This has to do with workflow. I want to keep control of what is useful / exposable to the team by making the saves (commits). There is no case like this (in software development and version control) that I know of, where others could "snapshot" your current state of files (no matter how messy it would be). To me, it's counterintuitive and also smells highly counterproductive.


[ Actually, one case comes to my mind. From some people, it's difficult to get commits, at all. Usually, this means there is something wrong with their work, and the real reaction should probably focus on that (i.e. why cannot they commit). In normal workflow, 1..n commits per day is the norm.


I'm really interested to see whether and how Autodesk can fit in version control in the CAD mix. Disclaimer: I haven't used Vault, ever, and am not aware of how closely its model matches that of textual version control tools - those used i.e. in software development.]


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