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Thread: DFS as opposed to Revit Server

  1.    #1
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    DFS as opposed to Revit Server

    Hi everyone.
    Big post incoming.

    This is my first time posting and i think i should prefix this with a bit of background.
    I work for an IT company that has contracted me out to manage a another companies IT.
    The company I'm managing is a multi-discipline Engineering firm.
    Office is 4 different states all over Australia and 1 in another country and are in the midst of massive expansion.
    I don't know **** about Revit/Cad and I'm crash coursing real hard thanks to you fine gentlemen and by catching a first class flight on Seat of My Pants Airlines.

    The set up:

    We have an SMB drive in the head office with majority of projects there.
    Other sites have a Synology NAS for local projects that don't require the head office to get involved.
    All sites are linked by a Draytek Lan-to-Lan VPN. A system I am not keen on. I think we all know why.
    We have minimum two hydraulic modelers and general Revit modelers on each site working across projects if needed.
    All sites have 400/400 Fibre connections except head office which has a 50/50 fibre link (for the next 24months this had been renegotiated before I started).

    The issue:

    Boy is this slow. 30 minute opening times and 15 minutes syncs when modelers are working over VPN on head office models.
    Getting a lot of complaints...obviously.

    The questions:

    BIM360 - I'm pretty bloody keen on this. I'm pushing it hard.
    Revit server - I can set this up no biggy.

    BUT in the event the money people end up just looking at me and rubbing their thumb and index fingers together while ignoring the fact that sitting around waiting for models to load is a much larger waste of *rubs thumb and index fingers together*, would a DFS solution work?

    Pros:
    We have the hardware on site at present to implement it.
    It would be in sync.
    The links to site are up to scratch.

    Cons:
    My concerns are the quality of the sync.
    The chance of potential corruption etc.

    I don't claim to be the repository of all knowledge but I have a sneaking suspicion that I can't find anything on a Revit DFS environment for a reason.
    Probably to do with Revit being a whole different box of frogs when it comes to networking it.

    TLDR The previous nerd was happy to let the revit guys flounder around while waiting for models to load/inevitably corrupt over the VPN.
    I think he lacked imagination and the drive to take this company to the next level.
    Is a DFS drive a viable alternative or should I put the hard sell on management to get BIM360 or infrastructure for Revit Server?

  2.    #2
    Forum Co-Founder Twiceroadsfool's Avatar
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    DFS won't work with workshared Revit files. It will ruin the centrals, plain and simple.

    Sent from my Phablet. Please excuse typos... and bad ideas.

    Aaron Maller
    Director
    Parallax Team, Inc.

  3.    #3
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    Hi CrashCoursing,

    I second against using DFS. C4R or BIM360 is best choice for your scenario but if the money guys don't allow it, I recommend running your Revit Server in the cloud for best performance. AWS in Sydney in your case, https://aws.amazon.com/about-aws/glo...e/?nc2=h_l2_cc

    I responded to another user on this forum a few days back with the same recommendation. Check the second page for my recommendations.
    https://www.revitforum.org/workshari...aring-wan.html

  4.    #4
    Forum Co-Founder Twiceroadsfool's Avatar
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    If the money guys dont approve C4R/BIM360, you can also just set up Revit Server, and not bother with AWS at all. Revit Server doesnt need to cost anything, other than a windows license and a couple of cheap machines.

  5.    #5
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    AWS saves the WAN headaches of Revit Server plus he has another location outside of Australia. AWS already spend millions upon millions to optimize their networking. why bang your head against a wall when somebody else has already done that for you.

    Back in 2012 when I came upon this method there was no C4R or BIM360, Revit 2013 had just come out and they changed from that old hub and spoke model to accelerators and hosts model. I was junior IT guy and my senior was trying all kinds of different solutions to make Revit Server work across multiple office in the US and some overseas. It was a nightmare either at the storage,local LAN,WAN, or VPN there was always an issue. Multiply that by many offices locations and you get the idea. I noticed it all boiled down to latency either at the storage, LAN, or WAN level. So I asked the owner if I could try AWS and that solution is still running today.

    BTW C4R and BIM360 were built on AWS and licensed to Autodesk by some very smart dudes

  6.    #6
    Forum Co-Founder Twiceroadsfool's Avatar
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    Believe me, I'm not misunderstanding how it works. We were running "Personal Accelerators" back in 2013 as well, but it had its own share or peculiarities. C4R and BIM360 are also *officially supported,* and maintained by other people. Meaning if something DOES hiccup or go wrong, there is a support system in place.

    If you want to run Revit Server on AWS, awesome. But good luck getting support for anything if it hiccups, or breaks, or shreds a model. In a "there is no other way to accomplish what we are after" scenario, i totally get it. But when someone posts "Hey i setup revit server on AWS and i got a fatal error and now i cant open my model," i hope youll still be here posting, helping them recover it.

  7.    #7
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    Thanks guys. Very helpful. I'm going to do both and RND it until I'm satisfied it is stable.
    Good to cross DFS off.

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