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Kevin C

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About Kevin C

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    Chartered Architectural Technologist
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    United Kingdom

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  1. It's not just the memory leak problem, which you are quite correct is still here. It is the host of other issues which Vectorworks has basically ignored the users over the years with the continual 'bodges' and 'workarounds' for functions that are basic necessities in architectural design. Items like doors, windows, stairs, handrails, walls, roofs, floor slabs, schedules, elevations and sections should simply just work. I am sick and tired of being told that when a part of vectorworks does not do the job properly that there isn't a bug, it is working as designed. What this means to me is that when there is a feature, it should work properly for real world situations and not just in a lab. Yes, all the new features are great, but we need a tool that works properly, that means continually reviewing the legacy items and fixing the problems that have been documented many times over the years. Typical examples of where the system is just wrong: If you have a door in an external wall with a side screen and have the external wall components activated haver a look at what happens when you try and elevate it or look at it in 3D - doesn't work never has done Setting out of components - Who in their right minds sets out from the centre of an object - you choose a point for setting out and anchor it. Doors and windows - come on guys, If you want to put a door in a wall, you choose the position of the door to suit your construction - outside face of wall / inside face of outer leaf etc. - you NEVER EVER set to 'centre of wall' Ths means you require to 'offset' the position - this is trial and error based on thickness of the wall and where you want the item placed. God forbid you change a component in the wall that changes the overall thickness and as a result every single component which you have painstakingly placed correctly will require to be reset. If you use styled components and update that way, it wipes all the other data from the components (like scheduling), so don't try. Our drawings do not just contain presentation information, we are now meant to be able to interrogate a model and extract quality data from it. Continually having to do 'workarounds' means that we are always having to 'cheat' to get the data out - not very forward thinking is it. I have also considered ArchiCAD - it is a very good piece of kit, but the physical cost to change my practice over, means it is prohibitive - Vectorworks knows this. There will come a point however, if VW doesn't provide me with a competent piece of software, I will have to bite the bullet and just change to another (might even change to REVIT). Sorry for rant - but getting frustrated again with VW. Just downloaded 2020 SP2.2 and had to uninstall and reinstall the entire program and the upgrade install failed yet again.
  2. Peter, As businesses we take long and hard decisions about choosing the 'best' delivery method for our business model. Vectorworks can be a great design tool and that is why I chose it for my company many years ago (2009), but there are so many bugs that actually prevent me from using the software from anything other than basic 2D work as working in 3D is nay on impossible - generation of hidden line elevations and sections should be instantaneous THEY ARE NOT RENDERING. The big problem is that to change supplier, would cost (for me) between £15K and £20K once you take the cost of software and basic training, not counting the downtime - Vectorworks knows this and since we are on the hook, there is very little that can be done. I'm not going to even start on the tools which do not work properly and are not fit for purpose - roofs / walls / doors / windows / spaces / worksheets - basically all of the tools that are needed to work within a full 3D / BIM environment.
  3. Quick update - we are still experiencing major memory leaks in the majority of files since the upgrade to 2020. None of the service packs have sorted the problems. We have one project which we are desperately trying to move forward to full production drawings, but VW keeps crashing. All Macs were completely stripped out over Christmas and reinstalled with clean OS and primary software, which with SP2.1 should have fixed the problem - It hasn't. Can you please update when this problem is to get sorted.
  4. Try this one - https://www.pdf2go.com/compress-pdf I generally set it for 150 dpi. There are other functions on the site - split pdf's / merge pdf's and lots more.
  5. Unfortunately, You have to forget everything that Vectorworks tells you to do. Of all the tried and failed installs (and there has been many) , the only way I have now found that works is to completely remove Vectorworks, reboot the computer and then do a clean install of the SP2 full installation. This means that you lose your customisation, but a small price to pay to stop the continual crashing of the software. You could keep a copy of the user settings and then over-write them, but it's easier to start from scratch (trust me). Not sure about you, but over the Christmas shutdown this year, I will be stripping out all of the office computers and installing a fresh operating system (Catalina) - I haven't decided on which order to put the software back in - Any thoughts?? Office 365 SketchUp Pro Parallels (for NBS Builder and Elmhurst Energy Design software that doesn't work on the Mac) Vectorworks 2020 And that's just the main ones??
  6. Well we are now midway through the third week in November - Service Pack 2 ?????? What would be decent of VW is just to admit there is a problem - apologise for it, then devote resources to fixing it. Obviously the software industry does not admit its failures, but I think that VW ( and all other software providers) forget that in today's world of total reliance on computers, people's livelihoods depend on being able to use the software which they have purchased - we cannot just change to another provider and they know this. There are different situations that users are reporting - this problem is across the board, which means that something is wrong at the core of the software. Can you please fix it.
  7. Just had the same problem again (not for the first time since upgrading to VW 2020) - This is just a simple 2D site development layout, no renderings or complex 3D model - Really not good enough. 500GB SSD Hard drive - There should be more than enough juice in my mac to cope with this.
  8. Julian, The problem which I have is that I invested heavily in both Vectorworks and Apple over 10 years ago (I now realise that it may not have been the best business decision), so unless I make the decision to change to PC over the next 4 years - that's when I will be due to upgrade my youngest mac, I will have to stick with apple products so I do not have the luxury of switching to Revit due to the poor physical performance of Vectorworks although I could change all my machines over to running 100% boot camp (seems a waste though). Vectorworks Architect has over the years progressed greatly in 'pure BIM workflow' and to its credit, it is probably one of the best on the market. However, BIM workflow does not generate income into a business, production information generates income and this is where Vectorworks falls down every time. The ability to create and visualise a building model that can have proper production information referenced both to and from it is a critical point in all projects nowadays. Clients know that we can produce high quality models and renderings and expect us to be able to collaborate with others on a level playing field - Ie be able to export ifc models that contain all the project information for costing, scheduling etc. The fact that the defect standard format in the world is Revit, with nearly all third party information being created in revit format and bloated to such an extent that renders the BIM objects pretty well useless only compounds the issue for Vectorworks users. I am seriously considering changing from VW to another design software solution, as Vectorworks year after year just ignore the basic production faults with the program and ignore the paying users who rely on the software to pay the bills, like the ability to generate a door schedule that can have internal and external doors on the same schedule and not have to worry that the guess what we construct to default and standards that are different in different countries - like the vast majority to external doors are a standard size (I.e. we have to use what is available to for a contractor to buy from a merchant) and get them to fit - usually with a barrier free threshold into a standard brick opening width and height. Guess what vectorworks cannot do this. This is just one example, also working with wall constructions made up of more than a single component - you cannot generate a section which is of any use at a detail level of greater than 1:100 - ability to attach objects to components of a wall and not left / centre / right. People will say that there is a custom setting, but if the wall thickness changes - the custom setting is useless. Another problem is hatches, Vectorworks Architect at least is (or should be) primarily a building design program, not an graphic design program. It should have the ability to produce high quality graphic representations but not at the expense of detailed building design - This is where it fails.
  9. Agreed, But if you remember one of the 'improvements' this year was a more compressed pdf file. This just hasn't happened, just some tools to compress the raster images within the pdf. Not much use when your pdf's don't have any raster images in them. I don't have full blown Acrobat (4 licences is a lot of money just to reduce a file size!
  10. Ok, I seem to be in the minority, but my team has not noticed any improvement - only slowdown. Wed must just be doings things completely wrong. One thing however that continues to amaze me is that it is assumed that we start a project with a brand new clean set of files every time - this is not the case. We use styles and objects from libraries that have been built up over years of use. If VW is trying to say that the software will only work to its fullest capability when the project is started and only using objects etc. that have been created in that specific version of VW, please tell us and we will try and change to suit. On another item which was championed as being a new 2020 feature - reduced and optimised pdf file sizes. Yes, VW gives options for compressing image etc. but the basic pdf file for say a site layout drawing is now far larger than 2019 and hardly compresses at all when using third party compression tools anymore. Simple line drawings have never been an issue, but if you have any fill or hatch on a drawing and want to add some detail, it's a joke. I now have files which I cannot sent to local authorities because the file size is greater than 5MB - This means I cannot submit for planning consent or building warrant without having too strip all the detail out of a drawing.
  11. Can anyone provide a list of product enhancements for the Vectorworks Architect / Fundamentals modules that actually took place this year. We have now upgraded all machines in the office to VW2020 (SP1 came out yesterday - still to see if that stops the crashing) and apart from the changes to introduce 'barn doors' and tinkering with the doors and windows model - but not fixing the underlying issues with the whole module, cannot really seen anything. I am definitely not interested in a fancy new graphics interface with lovely icons - That does not improve productivity or efficiency. The new and improved Graphics module is to put not too fine a point on it, its not worth the paper its written on, as if anything, Vectorworks is much slower and much less responsive than before, it is also much more liable to crashing - we have even had 'panic reports' from one of the iMac's recently with the only change to the system being the upgrade to VW2020 - This has never happened before. We have had to change all the graphics settings to "best compatibility" to be able to carry out any work. My understanding of the 'improvements are as follows: Live data Visualisation - This is after the fact and assumes that all items are correctly attributed. Note that the allocations of spaces and zones is integral to this tool. This is a problem unless the usability of the space tool has been overhauled to a point where it works - the space tool is far to complicated and on a working model, spaces have to be deleted to made the drawing manageable (the program slows to a crawl and to carry out any amendment takes forever). GIS Improvements - It is extremely unlikely that we would use such a tool and there are very few benefits if any from the examples shown that would persuade me to invest in ArcGIS History-Based modelling - Apart from spending an inordinate amount of time to prepare a level of detail that is not required for that vast majority of building projects, I can see no benefit in this tool Graphics module Improvements - As mentioned previously, we have four iMacs in the office, all 27" i7 5K Retina with at least 24GB Ram and 4GB graphics cards (mine has an 8GB) and this 'fantastic new feature' has done nothing but slow the whole system down to a crawl. If this is an improvement, I can only presume that the extra coding in the program slowed it up so much that VW needed to change the graphics system to try and maintain the status quo - It didn't work. IFC referencing - Have not tried, but way down the line List Browser Direct editing - It is not user friendly, far too responsive. Is there any way of switching it off??? Section views - Only useful if walls and floors / doors windows slabs and roofs all interconnect properly and don't all disconnect at the first change to the model - Wait to be convinced if there is any improvements Walkthrough animation - hopefully this will be good, will wait and see. But again, not a productivity improvement Widget groups - This is akin to the "improvement" to the OIP last year where you mandated that class selection be carried out using a 'hierarchical display' - not funny and not useful. Can anyone please tell me what functional improvements have been made. All I really want to for VW to improve what for all intents is / could be, a fantastic program without destroying the systems that actually work and fixing what is blatantly obvious to all working users that which is broken - doors / windows / stairs / roofs / walls etc. I.e. allow us to design a building the way we want to design it and be able to produce proper production and detail information - not just pretty pictures.
  12. Help please. We are trying (and failing miserably) to create a window schedule of a 1.5 storey house that has rooflights and dormers. We can create window and door schedules easily enough, but when we try and include dormer windows or rooflights - they are just ignored by VW - Help.
  13. I think that the biggest problem with the dwg import is the settings that VW applies each time. First, when importing a dwg file, the dwg file seems to take precedence over the existing VWX file and over-writes all of the class settings in the VWX file (it should be the other way around). When I am working with other consultants, you learn how they assemble their files and work with them, but a lot of people forget that AutoCAD works on the basis of using line colours to define pen thicknesses - VWX does not. Also when importing a dwg file, why is the fill set on solid for every AutoCAD layer that is imported? It would be great if there could be an option to have a tab setting so that the imported class can have fill on or off and also to be able to change dwg layer colours during the import process at the same time as setting the line weights.
  14. If this year's features are not yet locked in - could you consider asking the engineers to look at the following (for stairs anyway) Ability to have stairs that can have multiple levels / storeys (I.e. a single stair object for a three storey house or multi-storey building), or at least the ability to continue a numbering sequence Being able to draw an single continuous polyline that will snap to a stair and landing edge in 2D and 3D so that a continuous handrail can be created Being able to control the length and location of handrails and have them linked to the stair object and snap to it in 2D and 3D Ability to attach custom balustrades (of any profile) on the stair object and have user control over the height / cap style / extension of the post (I.e. does the post have align with the FFL or can it be set an an arbitrary level of our choosing and potentially protrude into the floorspace below with a decorative cap detail) Incorporation of the design flexibility of the old custom stair stool into the main stair tool (without the graphical faux-pas of the old tool - I.e stringers going haywire)
  15. This is what doors and windows have needed - Please can you at least try and incorporate these features into the door and window tools..


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