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In Revit Architecture 2011 Essential Training, author Paul F. Aubin shows how to create compelling architectural designs using the modeling tools in Revit. This course covers the entire building information modeling (BIM) workflow, from design concept to publishing. It also covers navigating the Revit interface, modeling basic building features such as walls, doors and windows, working with sketch-based components such as roofs and stairs, annotating designs with dimensions and callouts, and adding 3D geometry. Exercise files are included with the course.
An important aspect of working with linked files in Revit is managing existing links. This is true both Revit and DWG links. Sometimes the connection to a link file can become disruptive. You may wish to point the link file to another file, open a different version, or sometimes you just simply want to check the files you have and reload the ones that you know have changed since the last time you loaded them. All of these actions take place in the Manage Links dialog. So, let's go ahead and take a look. I'm going to open a file, so I'm going to use the shortcut on the QAT, and in the Chapter5 folder of the Exercise Files I'm going to open this file here called Managing Links.
Now, the first thing that I'm going to see when this file opens is a warning that Revit is telling me that it can't find one of my linked files. So this may be something you'll see in your own projects, and who knows what could have happened? Somehow the location to the file has changed or maybe somebody renamed the file, and it's offering me two choices. I can either open the Manage Links dialog to correct the problem, or I could just simply ignore the problem altogether and continue opening the project. Now, either one would be fine, but in this movie we want to talk about managing links, so why don't we go ahead and open the Manage Links dialog to see what we can do about correcting the problem.
So when Manage Links opens, you can see that there's actually three tabs. We have CAD Formats - there aren't any CAD links in this particular project, we have a Revit tab where we have two links, and then a DWF Markups tab which we also don't have any in this project. Now, Building Site you can see is listed as the first Revit link, and I will go ahead and highlight it. Its current Status says it's Loaded, its Reference Type is Overlay, and there are actually two choices there: Overlay and Attachment. The way this works is Overlay is a one- level deep link, meaning that the file the we're currently in is called Managing Links.
If I were to create another Revit file and load in Managing Links as a link in that file, it would leave behind Building Site, because Building Site is an Overlay, so it would only go forward one level. If I change Building Site to an attachment, then Managing Links would pull Building Site along with it, and you would actually get what we call a nested link, meaning one link inside of another. So, in your projects, if you need a link to follow through, even if the host file gets linked yet again, in other words a nested link, you can switch to Attachment.
The Saved Path is listed over here, and if it only lists the file name, what that means is Revit is finding the file in the same folder as the current project, which is the case here. So the current project is called Managing Links, and the linked file is called Building Site, and they both live in the same chapter5 folder. And the Path is set to Relative, which just simply means it's not writing the Path all the way back to the hard drive letter, like C, or D, or whatever your drive letter is. It's simply showing only as much path as it needs to to find the file, which in this case is just the name of the file.
Now, Shed is another Revit file that's currently listed as Not found in the Status. It's also an Overlay and so on, and the reason it's not found is because its saved path is at a folder called Links and then Shed, and this folder called Links doesn't exist in the Exercise File folder. So, it's looking for a folder that doesn't exist, and when it gets there, it generates an error because there's no folder to be found. So let's deal with that problem. All we have to do is select Shed, and down here we can click the Reload From button.
This will open up our dialog box and show us the current folder we're in, chapter5 in this case, and it turns out that Shed is located right there in that folder. If you weren't in that folder, we could certainly use the Look in dropdown here, and we could browse out to other locations to locate the file. And when we select the file and we click Open, it will now show its Status as being Loaded. It will update the Path to reflect its new location, so it eliminates the Links part of the Path and just simply lists the name of the file. Let's go ahead and click OK, and you can see that now the Shed file appears linked over here, off in the side of the building.
So, all the Shed file is is really just a simple outbuilding over here. So, let's just go ahead and zoom in a little, and you could see that we've got the Shed building over here at the edge of our site. So that's what happens when you open a file, and the link cannot be found. Now, if you need to do any work in Managing Links after the fact, the dialog is not open, you can find it on the Insert tab, and here's Managing Links right here. That will reopen the same dialog and go to your Revit tab, and you can choose whatever you'd like.
For example, maybe I don't want to see the Shed right now. I could select it, and I could Remove it. If I Remove it, that actually deletes it from the list. It's gone, and that file will no longer be part of this file and if you ever wanted it back, you'd have to re-link it all over again. I could Unload it, which is a little less permanent. Unload will warn me that I can't undo this, and I'm going to go ahead and say Yes, and you'll see the Status is listed as Not Loaded; however, it's not listed in red because it's not seeing that as an error, because it was a choice that I made. I wanted to unload it. And when I click OK, the Shed file will disappear.
So, sometimes you don't need to load a linked file, you want to speed upload times, and you're not working on that portion of the project, so you can simply unload it, and then anytime you need to get it back, you simply go back to Manage Links, click the Revit tab, select the Shed, and I don't need to do Reload From this time. This time all I need to do is click Reload, because I'm reloading it from its current location, so I don't need to tell Revit where to reload it from. I just simply need to say, hey go grab it at its last known location and I click OK, and the file will appear. And so that's all there is to it.
So, Manage Links gives you access to all of your CAD and Revit links in your project. You can use this tool to load, unload, change the path, and even remove links permanently from your project. This is an important tool to acquaint yourself with if you plan to use links in your workflow.
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