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What are the differences between and 'issue' & a 'revision'?


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As a practice we're looking to put a document issue register into our Vectorworks drawing file, so that they automatically update [as far as possible] when title blocks are updated.


Stupid question, but what actually is the difference between Issues and Revisions?


At the moment we update our Revisions in the Title Block Manager in VW[23], then manually update our document register in .pages. We've never used Issues in VW.


I've been working on a draft document register in VW using the Title Block Project Revision History pre-formatted report, but cannot get any revision increments to appear. We think it might be because we need to use 'Issues', not 'Revisions'. However, we just needed to understand the basics!


Any help/clarity would be greatly appreciated.

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Aha!  Very interesting you should ask!  We have always wondered too.


However, I have it on very good authority (i.e. @Martyn Horne told me), that an 'issue' is the moment at which the file is issued, and what for, e.g. Issue 1, 06/10/23, Issued for Information.  In ISO19650 this would be the 'P01', 'C01', etc.


A revision on the other hand is what has been revised on the drawing, e.g. 'Rev. A, Door Position amended'.


Thus on Issue 1, we have:

revised the door position, rev A

changed the position of the column, Rev B., etc.


Now I may have got the wrong end of the stick here but I think is it eminently sensible and totally logical, albeit nothing like how we use it in the UK.


We use 'Revisions' alone.


Unfortunately, neither system is 'compliant' as we cannot add 'Checked' and 'Approved' to the revision, so we add it to the sheet.

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A link below to a post in an old thread on this topic, which aligns with my U.S. architectural experience on the usage of the two terms.

Additionally, Revisions are usually indicated on the sheet with Deltas and Revision clouds around the revised area(s). 



Edited by rDesign
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4 hours ago, Liam-HEM said:

I've been working on a draft document register in VW using the Title Block Project Revision History pre-formatted report, but cannot get any revision increments to appear. We think it might be because we need to use 'Issues', not 'Revisions'.

Yes, with the project revision history worksheet, once you have done your revision changes you then need to add an issue for the revision numbers to show in the worksheet. The title block manager can be tricky to work with though I understand it has had undergone some improvements in vw2024.

My process for what it’s worth:

Open title block manager

Go to select sheets and choose the sheets revise

Add revisions

Go to select sheets and choose the sheets to issue (if different from the set you’ve just revised)

Add an issue

Go to select sheets and choose all sheets you want to appear in the project revision history worksheet.

Make sure “update project revision history worksheet” is checked.

Close title block manager.


Hopefully the worksheet updates correctly!


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For me issued for would be the project phase of the drawings:  Issued for coordination,  issued for building permit,  issued for tender, issued for construction etc.
Revision would be:  I've issued drawings for building permit but I've made a change to the drawings like moving an exit door.


At least that is my understanding.  Of course I've never used Revisions because my drawings are always perfect ;).


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  • 2 weeks later...
  • Vectorworks, Inc Employee


I'm quoting from @Julian Carr who I work with who had a big input into the TBB which took a bit of inspiration from our local VAA Title Blocks.

"A revision is made when a drawing is changed. An issue is made when a drawing is issued to one or more parties. When an issue is made, the revision status of each sheet is stored in that issue, which serves as a record of what drawings with what revisions were issued to what parties.


It is fair to say that a lot of people merge issues and revisions into their revisions list which is poor practice and leaves them open to professional diligence issues should there be some dispute with what was constructed. In my opinion both issues and revisions should be utilised on all projects and a good number of architects and landscape architects in Australia do this. It is less common in the US however but the feature is there because we designed it with the older VAA Title Blocks and so Vectorworks adopted it with their Title Block Borders.


Most users do not show issues on the drawing however, only revisions. The issues there serve as a record in the file and can be used to generate document transmittals (AKA Project Revision History worksheet)."




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So, that being the case, that revisions are the individual edits on a drawing and the issue is the issue number of the drawing itself, e.g. 'P01.01' in ISO19650 parlance, how do you get a Data Tag masquerading as a Revision Marker, i.e. the triangle, to pick up specific revisions on the sheet and vice-versa?


A data tag can see the 'current revision number' on a titleblock border but not a specific revision in the list of revisions for that drawing.

Edited by shorter
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