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Sunday, April 1, 2012

"Can you provide us with a sample file"

Here on RFO we often get questions that tend to be kind of hard to troubleshoot without the actual file to look at. So one of the most frequent responses (besides the ones providing you with a solution to your problem off course) you might get to a question is: "Could you provide us with a sample file to look at?".

When it comes to troubleshooting families, this is very rarely a problem, unless you don't want to hand it over to a public forum. In that case, think about getting a private consultant to look at it. Or just lighten up a bit... But that's a completely different story all together.

In the case of a project acting up, it might be somewhat more complicated. Off course you could do a save as, delete all unwanted geometry, views, sheets and then purge the entire thing. But unfortunately, that usually doesn't give you a small enough file either. Revit has the habit of retaining a lot of data in the projects database so it stays bloated.

Another option, which does kill all redundant data from the database (and is way faster too), is this:
- Windowselect the offending geometry and it's immediate surroundings.
- Go to the filter dialogue box and check off all categories you don't want to include
- Group the items that remain (including the item giving you a headache)
- Find the group in your project browser, right click and choose Save Group. This will save just the Group as a separate Revit project. If all is ok this file should be a whole lot lighter then the original.
- Open the Group in Revit to see if the problem is still there. If so, you can now upload it.

If not: then there are a few reasons which could have caused the problem in the first place:
1. for geometry not displaying correctly: it's a Graphics Override. You released this override when Grouping and using Save As. So check your View Template, Visibility Graphic Overrides, Phase settings and so on.
2. For geometry doing all sorts of wacky stuff but doing this in plain sight, the problem 9 out of 10 times lies in constraints you put on one or more elements you grouped. With Grouping and Save as you removed those constraints which made the problem go away...

See below for some screenshots:

Cross select the offending Geometry

Filter out unwanted categories and create a Group

Find in the Project Browser and Save out the Group

Why should we all pay for this forum???

A few days ago Revitforum transitioned to yet another "class" up in the hosting plans. Due to ever increasing traffic from both members and visitors the hosting service made a compelling argument to trade up another step.
During this transition the site got hacked for a short period of time. Although it is sad that happened I believe that this hack-attempt and other trolling, spamming and hackefforts we encountered recently are also a symptom showing this site's growth and struggle in becoming a real and mature Revit community which is here to stay. Just like in the real world, watching your kids grow up sometimes causes some major anxienty attacks when all seems to take a turn for the worse.
Usually it turns out ok though, and I am confident the same will happen with RFO.

In an effort to counter all this internetscum in a better way, the Admin team decided it would be best to transition to a dedicated server which brings more possibilities in taking defensive measures. Unfortunately this also means costs for the domain hosting also more then double to something around 3.000,- dollars.

Long story short: it's donation time! For all you people out there frequently visiting Revitforum (or not, that's ok too...): we started a new donation rally to help pay for another year of hosting this great site.
So why would you want to do this?

I cannot and will no speak for anyone else. I can just provide you with MY reasons to shell out some cash to keep this great place around.
If you are around the forum from time to time you might know me... I'm the guy with the opinion on everything, frequently trashing a thread with some so-called funny remarks. I'm also top poster, and one of the most valued member around (if you consider rep points a good marker for that...;-), which for the sake of argument, I shall for now).
Looking at my post count, which excludes most of the BS, I was online typing up messages for around 10.000 minutes in the last 16 months (2-3 minutes per post on average). So one could make the statement that I already invest a lot in this place, why make it even more by actually donating?

Well, because I to learned a lot of new stuff here too. I found great new tricks, learned about addins I would otherwise have never known about, got the chance to debate with Autodesk staff on important topics, measure my skills with some of the best in the Revit universe, and so on. Basically, I learned more then enough to compensate for the 170 hours I spent here.
Even though this forum costs me a lot of time in answering other peoples questions, it also saves me a lot of time with invaluable input for my own problems. And if I can say this, surely this goes for everybody else around here too?

So yeah, this is for free. It's the internet, you will always find your recources for free. Until you don't... And where does that leave you? Where do you stand when RFO, or other places you visit to get the answers to your questions, no longer exist? Right, then you'll need to contact me, and guys just like me, in that other merit we have: as a professional consultant.
And although I sincerely believe not all answers relating Revit in your firm can or should be provided through an internet forum, I also sincerely believe that a lot of questions aren't worth the bill I would send you if you ask me as a consultant.

Basically it boils down to this: you could make me and my fellow consultants very rich by letting this site go down the drain and then having to pay us by the hour for your answers, or you can send a check for just one hour of a standard consultants fee and be done with it for an entire year.

Will this answer ALL your questions about Revit? Probably not, some things are not suited for public forums. Will it be worth the investment? Hell yeah, cause you will have questions that we do solve, whether it's asked by you or someone else.  And with solving those questions we will save you money. We are a support team of 1700 active men and women at your disposal. We will help you get your work done within the deadlines. We will make your projects better. We will lead you to solutions you would have never thought about on your own. We will bring your Revit skills to another level, one you could have never dreamed of reaching on your own.
And all we ask in return is your help to preserve this place for the future. We ask of you that the next time we save your butt, you think about the time we just saved you and your boss and donate that amount so we can keep on doing this for another year.

Read more about donating here.