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Thread: C4R Opinions

  1. #1
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    C4R Opinions

    We've been researching C4R and I've read through a lot of posts here on the forum, but I'd still like to get some more general feedback on users' experience with the product.

    We have a specific project coming up where we'll be working with two other architecture firms, in addition to the rest of the consultant team. There is concern among some of the design team that using our traditional workflow of uploading a model weekly/as needed through Newforma, ShareFile, etc. for other design team members to download will not be enough for this project that has an aggressive design schedule. My current thought is for the three architects to be working in separate files (we're doing the core and shell, the others on interior lab layouts).

    My concerns with C4R are the downtimes of service, workflow of managing linked models, and the actual usefulness of additional features (like the communicator). Any thoughts?

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    Quote Originally Posted by LKeyser View Post
    We've been researching C4R and I've read through a lot of posts here on the forum, but I'd still like to get some more general feedback on users' experience with the product.

    We have a specific project coming up where we'll be working with two other architecture firms, in addition to the rest of the consultant team. There is concern among some of the design team that using our traditional workflow of uploading a model weekly/as needed through Newforma, ShareFile, etc. for other design team members to download will not be enough for this project that has an aggressive design schedule. My current thought is for the three architects to be working in separate files (we're doing the core and shell, the others on interior lab layouts).

    My concerns with C4R are the downtimes of service, workflow of managing linked models, and the actual usefulness of additional features (like the communicator). Any thoughts?
    working on a model using C4R is basically the same as working in a work shared model in your office or multiple offices. There is a central model in BIM360 and C4R opens locals that everyone works on separately then STC when they want to. Linked files just have to be initiated to BIM360 via the Collaboration tab then they are linked into your main model as is normal. Regarding service downtime, while I'm not bothered to much by it I can see where a large project team could be annoyed with the outages. But to me, the advantages of being able to real time collaborate on a project model and the low cost of C4R outweigh those annoyances. We use Communicator sparingly and for me it's main purpose is to let me know whom is in the model at anytime during the day/night. When we first started using C4R we used Communicator chat to talk back and forth but since have just reverted to email groups to communicate. Overall I think that C4R is a great product and the only downside are the occasional service outages.
    Last edited by Dave Jones; December 8th, 2016 at 07:35 PM. Reason: spelling

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    Forum Addict tzframpton's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LKeyser View Post
    My concerns with C4R are the downtimes of service, workflow of managing linked models, and the actual usefulness of additional features (like the communicator). Any thoughts?
    I've been using C4R pretty much since its inception. Here's my direct answers to your three inquiries:

    Downtime: Yes, you will experience the occasional downtime. And yes, it'll be a bit frustrating. But it's really not that bad considering it's never been down for more than a couple of hours, and it doesn't happen as frequently as some might think. Those who have expressed severe discontentment (such as myself) usually is a bit unjustified. Me, personally, C4R would go down when I procrastinated. Ugh...

    But think of the alternative, for the price. You will not get a better "uptime", with a backup from every single sync you can roll back to, and a performance that runs as good as a LAN over several offices. It's not 100% perfect, but it works and works well. I feel like it has gotten way better too.

    Workflow of linked models: Linked models work just fine. It's only a pain in managing linked models when you're receiving them separately and need to upload/overwrite to C4R. This is a cumbersome process. But if every Link is a live working model that a team is actively modeling in, then there's no need for the download-from-client/upload-to-C4R/overwrite process.

    Communicator: Don't really use it. I mean, it's an IM app... what else is there to say? Most of the time we've used Office's Lync, or just pick up the phone and yell "Can you sync and RELINQUISH this time!!" lol....

    End note: I like C4R. It works great for me. I have three of my clients on C4R and I could not be more pleased, even with the occasional unscheduled downtimes.

    -TZ

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    We've been using C4R on more and more projects, and the amount of time we save not having to worry about uploading/downloading consultant models is worth it in my opinion. Its nice to be able to see changes faster (you still do have to manually reload the link or reopen the project to see changes to linked C4R projects).

    Being able to work on the model outside the office network is handy too. It makes it much easier to go to a site meeting and make updates or work from home.

    There is downtime occasionally, and it is annoying, but they get it back pretty fast (if your internet goes out that's a different story). When its down you usually can't do much locally because your local model can't check anything out from the central model.
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    Quote Originally Posted by jmk View Post
    We've been using C4R on more and more projects, and the amount of time we save not having to worry about uploading/downloading consultant models is worth it in my opinion. Its nice to be able to see changes faster (you still do have to manually reload the link or reopen the project to see changes to linked C4R projects).

    Being able to work on the model outside the office network is handy too. It makes it much easier to go to a site meeting and make updates or work from home.

    There is downtime occasionally, and it is annoying, but they get it back pretty fast (if your internet goes out that's a different story). When its down you usually can't do much locally because your local model can't check anything out from the central model.
    Pretty much spot on jmk.

    -TZ

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    Quote Originally Posted by tzframpton View Post
    I've been using C4R pretty much since its inception. Here's my direct answers to your three inquiries:

    Downtime: Yes, you will experience the occasional downtime. And yes, it'll be a bit frustrating. But it's really not that bad considering it's never been down for more than a couple of hours, and it doesn't happen as frequently as some might think. Those who have expressed severe discontentment (such as myself) usually is a bit unjustified. Me, personally, C4R would go down when I procrastinated. Ugh...

    But think of the alternative, for the price. You will not get a better "uptime", with a backup from every single sync you can roll back to, and a performance that runs as good as a LAN over several offices. It's not 100% perfect, but it works and works well. I feel like it has gotten way better too.

    Workflow of linked models: Linked models work just fine. It's only a pain in managing linked models when you're receiving them separately and need to upload/overwrite to C4R. This is a cumbersome process. But if every Link is a live working model that a team is actively modeling in, then there's no need for the download-from-client/upload-to-C4R/overwrite process.

    Communicator: Don't really use it. I mean, it's an IM app... what else is there to say? Most of the time we've used Office's Lync, or just pick up the phone and yell "Can you sync and RELINQUISH this time!!" lol....

    End note: I like C4R. It works great for me. I have three of my clients on C4R and I could not be more pleased, even with the occasional unscheduled downtimes.

    -TZ
    One thing to be aware of is the behavior of linked DWG files - if you use them. You cannot link DWG files into a C4R model in the cloud - they need to reside on a local drive. This means that people working on those C3R models in different offices will need to pay close attention to linked DWG pathing and updating.
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    Forum Addict tzframpton's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jsnyder View Post
    One thing to be aware of is the behavior of linked DWG files - if you use them. You cannot link DWG files into a C4R model in the cloud - they need to reside on a local drive. This means that people working on those C3R models in different offices will need to pay close attention to linked DWG pathing and updating.
    Very good point. Thank you for throwing that out there. C4R only supports Revit links natively, all other links are local only. Furthermore, you cannot link a Revit model locally - it has to live on C4R, and, has to be a Revit model that exist in the same project.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by tzframpton View Post
    Furthermore, you cannot link a Revit model locally - it has to live on C4R, and, has to be a Revit model that exist in the same project.
    Not anymore. We changed that earlier this year. You can link local Revit models if you so choose.

    -Kyle

    Back to lurking...

  9. #9
    Forum Addict tzframpton's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kyle View Post
    Not anymore. We changed that earlier this year. You can link local Revit models if you so choose.

    -Kyle

    Back to lurking...
    I stand corrected. Thanks for the clarification. I guess I've never thought to try it.

    -TZ

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    jmk
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kyle View Post
    Not anymore. We changed that earlier this year. You can link local Revit models if you so choose.
    You can link local models into a cloud model (we do this)
    You can't link in cloud models from other projects. You also can't link a cloud model into a local model.

    Where that gets tricky is if you have a long term client, and you have one site plan that you need all models to link into. You don't want different versions of the site, but you'd need one cloud project for each deliverable building. Hopefully a mechanism to deal with this situation will be developed.
    Last edited by jmk; December 12th, 2016 at 08:14 PM. Reason: Removed not updated update

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