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Share plant database in work group folder but cannot use at the same time

Sally yang

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Hi All, 

I recently set up the plantdatabase in our workgroup folder for our small office (two workstation). I clicked Landmark-Choose database place and located the workgroup folder.


The problem now is, our two workstation cannot open the plantdatabase at the same time... If one opens, the second one will meet an error message. I have attached an image.


Is this normal? Or did we do something wrong?



vectorwork database read.PNG

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13 minutes ago, bgoff said:

sounds like the setup might be wrong! First does your workgroup folder work properly for other files other than plant database?


Thanks Bgoff, yes it's been working for a while (about three months) for other files. We share customised planting schedule, hardscape schedule and hatch. Also we have exported some commone plant symbols shared between two stations. We just didn't figure out how to share plant database until this week. What do you think could be the problem? 

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  • Vectorworks, Inc Employee

Question. Are you opening the Plant database on its own or through Vectorworks? Open Plant data. Also Do you have this issue (Plant Database not running with this step) if you "get plant data" within Plants in Vectorworks.

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  • Vectorworks, Inc Employee

So if you are both pointing to the correct location, and you each "get plant Data" in the plant preferences> plant style dialog box. Either can access the info?


Ensure you are using Edit Plant Style and then Get Plant data.


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Yes, I mean we didn't do it at the same time. One person right click the figure, edit style, then get plant data, then the plant database can be accessible. Then if this person leave the plantdata base open, the second person try to do the same thing then the error message will come out. Does that mean the first person who opened the planting database needs to close it first? 

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Hi @Sally yang...yes, unfortunately our experience is that the database, which should be a centrally managed resource capable of supporting multi-user environments, CANNOT be accessed by more than one user at a time. If you try, the second user attempting to open will likely be encountered with an error and potentially a crash.


It can be stored and accessed by each user in the workgroup folder, which is what we do, but currently you have to coordinate its usage since it cannot be accessed by multiple users at the same time.


We have an annoying standard in our office...whenever someone needs the plant database they should ask around the office to make sure no one else is using it. Not exactly the intent of true multi-user tools.

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@ericjhberg Thank you !. Yeah, that's going to be a big headache then..as a planting design focused office we are so excited to see this database being used in projects. We have been trying to add maintenance notes for some common plants we use in design,  and hoping when we accumulate enough data one day the planting schedule we can pull out a column for maintenance notes. But if we cannot editing the plant database at the same time it simply means the efficiency of adding the notes will be decreased. Hopefully newer versions can be improved! In saying that, do you know can I copy my database to another station? Because my plant database have a lot more notes than the other one. If can, at least both work station can have similar plant database to work with...

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To my knowledge you can move plant database files from one USER folder to another, which would at least sync you short term.


This isn't a real sustainable strategy, but may be useful in the short term. Instead, I still recommend WORKGROUP folders as the way to go to collectively manage the database...it just means that you have to coordinate its use a little better.


One of the ways we have done this is to set aside time for plant database updates and the selection of "Favorites". We then have created Favorite resources files, complete with Plant Symbols pre-defined to specific plant records. These are symbols we use repeatedly. This has allowed our users to still select plants and actively plant projects without the need to spend time in the database.


Just a thought.

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