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wezelboy

Pie in the sky

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I think it would be awesome if VW drawings could be based on a server based transactional database (like mySQL) instead of a file so that multiple users could do edits to the same drawing at the same time.

Like I said... pie in the sky.

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We were discussing this issue recently in the context of what ArchiCAD does. I talked to a friend of my who is an SQL programmer, and he verified that the file structure of such a database is actually hidden behind the scenes, and that the user typically interacts with software running on the server to coordinate changes to records so that users don't write over each other. So while this is possible to do, it requires another software level and changes the nature of the file format and structure.

I don't think VW will make it to the future in the big leagues if they don't bite the bullet and work towards this capability.

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Version control is cool, but that's not what I'm talking about. It is doubtful that a binary VW file would ever be mergeable, which makes version control less useful for people who want to edit the same file at the same time.

I've already made a wishlist post about being able to integrate a VC system into Vectorworks. It is definitely doable with the SDK, but I haven't had the time...

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Thanks for the links Christiaan.

Sounds like the master/satellite model is using a kind of version control where the file is divided into parts and only one person can check out a part at a time.

It's definitely a step in the right direction.

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I find that one of the biggest drawbacks to the new Viewport capability is that filesize, if the Viewport image is cached, becomes incredibly large. That in itself would not be an issue if it weren't for the fact that intermediate "saves" require writing the whole file. I have a very moderate project that has a 350MB filesize and takes over a minute to save on a relatively fast computer.

With a database structure, saves can easily be made incremental. Only objects that are changed are saved. In fact, for many SQL-based accounting programs saves are almost instantaneous and automatic.

I just think the reasons to go to a database file management system are inexorably compelling.

I'm not sure how ArchiCAD is structured (anyone know?), but in a typical database system the file or files are accessed by the "master" process, and can have inscrutable and irrelevant actual filenames. The master process catalogs all objects, and handles save and other management requests from workstations on an object-by-object basis (in the case of accounting and other typical database systems, these objects are records).

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