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Kevin McAllister

Cloud Services - I thought I'd give it another try

Question

Yesterday (yeah, not great timing :$) I set out to try Cloud Services again. Overall the experience was pretty positive and I'm going to keep pushing forward to get it to work for me. Here are a few things that came up as part of the process.....

1) I seem to now have both a Vectorworks Cloud Services folder in my home directory and within Dropbox because I set up the Dropbox option. Is it ok to just have one of these? Its not really clear from the documentation how to approach this and why I would want both.

2) The Vectorworks Cloud Services website needs some tweaking. In the image below you can see that the in process files across the top display poorly and the file name is unreadable. The file at the bottom with the 13 Sep 2016 15:49 date and time shows the original upload time and never updates to show the last modified time which isn't terribly helpful in a syncing scenario.

Screen Shot 2016-09-13 at 6.01.55 PM.png

3) I get facetted curves. I think this means the the 3d Conversion Resolution preference on the Cloud Services virtual machine is set to something lower than what I have mine set to...... Not sure how to work around this. All the settings for controlling facetted geometry really need to be unified somehow in a future version of VW (already a past wishlist item). Obviously I can't send a client a facetted elevation....Screen Shot 2016-09-13 at 7.23.25 PM.png

4) All of the drawing labels extend beyond the line in the drawing label. They look fine on my machine. This is either a cross platform translation issue (I'm Mac, Cloud Services is windows) or an issue where VW is unaware of the font spacing, not sure which.

Screen Shot 2016-09-14 at 11.41.16 AM.png

5) Does VW Cloud Services always use the most recent version of VW to process or does it use the same version as the file it receives? My trial was done with VW 2016. At some point soon I'll try again with VW2017 :D

Any assistance with any or all of these would be greatly appreciated.

Kevin

PS. @JimWhave you thought about pinning the Forum's formatting bar to the bottom of a posting window instead of the top. As this post got longer I had to scroll up to access the smiley faces....

Edited by Kevin McAllister

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I've only been using the web page status for testing Dropbox integration since those files don't show up on the Local Files tab of the Desktop app. For everything else I've been using the Desktop app Status dialog. I had no idea I could also use Nomad. Great tip!

Specific to font issues, I have two fonts that I've been struggling to get work. The are used in all of my files from the last 10 years. The fonts work both on a Mac and on Windows so it is some sort of Cloud Services or Vectorworks issue. I have gotten other fonts to work and read all of the Cloud font documentation.

One thing that would be immensely helpful for Mac cloud users is a list of the actual fonts (manufacturer or Font Foundry) use by the Cloud. I've looked at the font list on this page - https://cloud.vectorworks.net/portal/fonts/ but its not that specific. When I installed a Mac version of Century Gothic for example, generate a file containing it and send it to the cloud for processing, the font doesn't work with the one installed on the cloud. I'm guessing the version of Century Gothic that's being used is a specific Windows version.

Thanks,

Kevin

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On September 22, 2016 at 6:02 PM, Kevin McAllister said:

I wondered if there might be a bug in there somewhere. I think the length of the line may be linked to the "Update any plugins that need updating before Publishing" and whether it is checked or not.

It seems like the Cloud has issues when things are made "bold" in Vectorworks and a "bold" version of a font doesn't exist originally (eg. Vectorworks or the system is faking a bold font). The cloud seems to look for a font that doesn't exist. This may just be because the Cloud is PC based and I am Mac based.... not sure.

Kevin

 

 

I did some testing and it seems like the lenghth of the line is not affected by the "Update any plugins that need updating before Publishing" setting. The issue occurs when original font is replaced by another font, which is exactly what happens on the cloud. If the cloud cannot find the original font, it maps it to Arial. At this point the plug-in reset is not happening, so the new font might be longer or shorter than the original. The cloud server is not trying to do any other "faking" as you call it. And yes, since the cloud is Windows based, and you are Mac based, there is apossibility that some of the fonts do not work for that reason. Most of the time this can be fixed with proper font format conversion, but I have seen cases in the past where I convert a font to the proper required format and I am still unable to make it work. If you could send me the specific fonts that you are having issues with, I can try this on my end and see if I could make it work somehow. Otherwise, I would send it to a Vectorworks engineer to see if they can do anything to make this specific font work on the cloud.

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On September 21, 2016 at 8:24 PM, Kevin McAllister said:

And I have no trouble with my fonts when processing regular jobs using the Dropbox based folder, but my fonts don't work with the regular Vectorworks Cloud Service folder...

 
 
 
On September 22, 2016 at 5:15 PM, Kevin McAllister said:

Is there an order to which Cloud Services looks for fonts with respect to these separate folders? Or does it always look for the required fonts in the same folder as the Vectorworks Document?

 
 
 
 

 

In general, we recommend keeping the fonts on the same storage type as your vectorworks files. They don't have to be in the same folder, though. You could have a dedicated folder that only contains fonts as long as this folder is within a Dropbox folder that Vectorworks Cloud Services has access to. For example: If you have a Dropbox "full access" integration, and your .vwx file is in Dropbox, put your font files in any Dropbox folder as well. If you have Dropbox "limited access" integration, the .vwx files as well as the font files have to be inside the Dropbox > Apps > Vectorworks Cloud Services folder or its subfolder. 

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On September 23, 2016 at 6:04 PM, Kevin McAllister said:

One thing that would be immensely helpful for Mac cloud users is a list of the actual fonts (manufacturer or Font Foundry) use by the Cloud. I've looked at the font list on this page - https://cloud.vectorworks.net/portal/fonts/ but its not that specific. When I installed a Mac version of Century Gothic for example, generate a file containing it and send it to the cloud for processing, the font doesn't work with the one installed on the cloud. I'm guessing the version of Century Gothic that's being used is a specific Windows version.

 

Century Gothic is a font that is available on Windows by default, so I am guessing that the Mac version that you have installed is slighlty different.

Since the cloud server is Windows based, all Windows system fonts naturally work with Vectorworks. However, in order to add the Mac system fonts, we had to do font file conversion and install those Mac fonts on the cloud. Over time, we are finding that some of these fonts are not working properly, even though we would be expecting them to work. We could try making the font list more specific per your suggestion - we could probably just identify if we are listing a Windows system font or a converted Mac font. Do you think that would help?

If you convert your version of the Century Gothic font into a Windows version, and send that along with your file to the cloud, does it work?

You could try using this free online font converter: https://onlinefontconverter.com 

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Hi Iskra,

Thanks for these replies. I have now solved my font issues and learned a lot about how VW on a Mac interacts with fonts.

 

I initially tried the online font converter your are suggesting. Unfortunately every time I click on Download File I get a 405 error regardless of what font I try. I have been using Transtype 4, which is a professional font converter.

 

I think more detailed lists of what the fonts are on the VW Cloud would be immensely helpful. You will find that the majority of VW users are Mac based, having used VW before there was even a Windows version.

 

To clarify I said "Vectorworks or the system is faking a bold font" not that the VW Cloud is. Technically this is the case for many fonts on the Mac where VW generates an interpreted styled font if one doesn't exist.

 

I did a large followup post on my font findings here and what I had to do to make my troublesome font work - 

Thanks again for your assistance.

 

Kevin

 

 

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The Vectorworks Cloud Services website needs some tweaking. In the image below you can see that the in process files across the top display poorly and the file name is unreadable.

 

On 9/23/2016 at 3:31 PM, Kevin McAllister said:

Brilliant! I never would have found that on my own since I'm not uploading files from the website.

KM

 

Hi Kevin,

We have just released a newly designed Vectorworks Cloud Services website, which now has a better way of displaying job status and the names are not truncated. Opening of the status bar is now at a more obvious place, not hidden behind a file upload button. Now, you can open the status by clicking more... on the progress bar in the lower left corner of the page, but it will say Status... with the next release, for even better clarity. Your feedback was really appreciated. This release has numerous other improvements, which were requested by other users as well. The release notes can be found here: https://cloud.vectorworks.net/portal/releasenotes/

 

I hope you will enjoy using this new version of Vectorworks Cloud Services!

 

Regards,

Iskra Nikolova

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3 hours ago, inikolova said:

 

 

Hi Kevin,

We have just released a newly designed Vectorworks Cloud Services website, which now has a better way of displaying job status and the names are not truncated. Opening of the status bar is now at a more obvious place, not hidden behind a file upload button. Now, you can open the status by clicking more... on the progress bar in the lower left corner of the page, but it will say Status... with the next release, for even better clarity. Your feedback was really appreciated. This release has numerous other improvements, which were requested by other users as well. The release notes can be found here: https://cloud.vectorworks.net/portal/releasenotes/

 

I hope you will enjoy using this new version of Vectorworks Cloud Services!

 

Regards,

Iskra Nikolova

Hi Iskra,

Thanks for the update. I'll check it out.

Cheers,

Kevin

 

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