Slinger's Thoughts

May 5, 2009

Do you think Autodesk got it right this time? Yeah, me neither.

Filed under: SharePoint — Tags: , — slingeronline @ 8:30 am

Well, I found out from our company’s CAD Support lead that Autodesk has it’s 2010 versions out now.  I figured if there was a chance that they fixed the white screen issue in Internet Explorer, maybe this was it.  I’m downloading the file now and I’m going to install it and let you know.  I’ll be back after the jump.

Well it’s installed.  I opened the program itself, just to see how it loads and see if there were any configuration options.  (There wasn’t anything useful to configure during the installation.)  It also appears that I will have to try this several different ways.  I had the 2009 version installed.  It didn’t uninstall ‘09, so I will try it out this way.  I will also uninstall 09 both before and after 2010 is installed and see if there is any noticeable difference.

Well, I clicked on a file stored in SharePoint.  Now it’s asking for a shape file. I don’t have any so I cancelled out of it twice.  The drawing opened, but I’m not holding my breath.  I have been let down by Autodesk before and I expect to be let down again. There are some features that may be useful, like the “batch plotting” feature, but how the hell do you get that to work with online storage?  (I think they are really missing the point of online content management systems.)  I clicked on the batch plot option, and it added the drawing I had open.  I wanted to add another drawing, from our SharePoint site to it.  You can pick a file from network file shares, ftp sites, and of course from a Buzzsaw site.  But you can’t select a generic website.  So, unless I map a document library to a network file share, that option isn’t going to work.  (That option won’t work for us for sure, since we have more document libraries than we have available drive letters.)  We’ll mark off points for that one. 

Now let’s uninstall 2009 and try again, see if we get better/different/worse results.  I am fully expecting to see the dreaded WSOD before I am done. When uninstalling 2009 it asked if I wanted to repair, reinstall, or uninstall.  Apparently these programs are not aware of other versions of the same program.  I won’t fault them on that one, although I really don’t see a reason that a newer version couldn’t check for an older version and uninstall it. I clicked on the file, I get asked “Read Only” or “Check Out and Edit.”  I’ve been choosing “Read Only.”  And then nothing happens.    More points off.

Okay, let’s uninstall and then re-install 2010 and see what happens there.  (That’s two strikes against, if anyone is keeping track.) I also think it’s interesting how the installer wants to close Internet Explorer and Microsoft Outlook. Internet Explorer I can halfway understand, but it shouldn’t need to do anything to Outlook, as far as I know. I won’t count this one against, but I wanted you to be aware of this.

I’ve uninstalled everything related to the 2009 versions, reinstalled the 2010 version, and everything seems to be working ok. It still asked for the shape files, but I won’t complain about that.  That would be a matter for people who are more experienced with AutoCAD.  No white screen yet, so that’s a good thing. (I give it a week of testing before it shows up on someone’s computer.)

So for Autodesk’s latest free viewer, I would grade it a solid C.  But it also gets a weeklong detention for not paying attention in class and making it work with all Electronic Content Management solutions instead of just the proprietary Autodesk ECM application. 

My suggestions for Autodesk;

  • Take the Buzzsaw link out.  Not everyone uses Buzzsaw.  Our company certainly will not use Buzzsaw. Make that link work with any generic http location.  That will enable the solution to work with SharePoint, as well as a myriad of other online storage solutions.
  • Uninstall previous versions in the installer, or at least check for previous versions and halt the installer.
  • Make batch plotting work with http referenced files. (See my comments about Buzzsaw)
  • I don’t care about the jazzy interface that makes my computer crawl.  I don’t want the application to look super fancy.  Make it look like every other Windows based app.  I don’t mind a ribbon, but I’m not looking for eye candy in my applications.  If I wanted my programs to look like they had a custom interface different from Windows, I would load Window Blinds and let that program hog my computers resources.  Give me a default GUI please.
  • Options? Are there any? How about letting users decide how they want their program to load, or to run?  If they are smart enough to be using the program to begin with, why not give them some options in how the program handles information?

The “Holier than Thou” attitude that seems to be built in to Autodesk’s latest programs doesn’t really appeal to me.  And Autodesk had really better get on board with the whole Electronic Content Management shift that is taking place across the entire industry.  SharePoint (Windows SharePoint Services) is free. Buzzsaw costs a fortune, and doesn’t do as much.  If I was going to spend the money, I wouldn’t spend it on Buzzsaw.  There are so many other ECM systems and programs out there, that limiting yourself to your own product, is a good way to piss off your clients.

If anyone else has had a different experience, I want to hear it.  So do the other people who read here.  Let us know if you got DWG True View 2010 to work right, or not. 

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9 Comments »

  1. The reason to NOT uninstall old version (during new install)is because as you found out the latest version (the one being installed) might suck & be unusable; then what do you do, reload the one you just uninstalled?! NO WAY! I have had 2 versions of Acad loaded on my machine for the last several versions for this important reason. Invariably, for the next few months I have to go back to the older version for something, & if it had been uninstalled I would be screwed.
    Amen on the ‘holier than thou’ attitude of Autodesk. I really wish a serious competitor would come on the scene (& not get bought up by Autodesk) because competition is what Autodesk needs. They no longer (did they ever?) seek to server the customer. They only serve their $ bottom line. When a service provider ceases to remember they are serving, they loose touch w/ their customers, & ultimately loose customers. I am considering my 2008 as my last Acad upgrade for a few yrs. I don’t want all the fluff Autodesk is insisting I buy that does not help my productivity; yrly releases are for $ only, not for providing a better service.

    Comment by Mike — May 5, 2009 @ 1:40 pm

  2. Hey Slinger,
    Although I dislike earlier versions of ADR, I am OK with version 2010.
    I do not blame AutoDESK for keeping Buzzsaw menu, at least the default open dialog now is the windows style, withou Buzzsaw in it.
    I installed ADR from this url: http://adrdownload.autodesk.com/Release/DoDownloadSetup.aspx, it did uninstall previous version of ADR and DWF Viewer, also gives an option to install DWG TrueView 2010.

    I have no problem with Shape, maybe you need to check your dwf publish settings.

    P.S. we are using IE8 and WSS V3 x64.

    Comment by Zhang Mingquan Mike — May 6, 2009 @ 3:10 am

  3. Sorry, just noticed you were talking about DWG TrueView.
    You can add
    into WSS DOCICON.XML, then it will ask you to open it as readonly or edit, always choose Edit will open dwg at local, no matter AutoCAD or DWG TruewView.

    We are developing a Drawing Management System based on WSS, not sure it will be exposed to pbulic, if true, I will tell you:D

    Comment by Zhang Mingquan Mike — May 6, 2009 @ 3:33 am

  4. The content is stripped, attach it here: Mapping Key=”dwg” Value=”icdwg.gif” EditText=”Autodesk AutoCAD” OpenControl=”SharePoint.OpenDocuments”

    Comment by Zhang Mingquan Mike — May 6, 2009 @ 3:35 am

  5. Slinger,
    I am unable to open dwg files from sharepoint with true view loaded on the client machine. Can you give me any hints on how you got this to work, other than the uninstall and reinstall on 2010?

    Comment by David — September 23, 2009 @ 3:38 pm

    • David, if you look through the blog here, you will find everything I had to go through for the previous iterations of DWG True View. Unfortunately I don’t have an answer specifically for 2010.

      Comment by slinger — September 23, 2009 @ 4:05 pm

  6. When trying to open a DWG file, I get the following error message. I have only loaded trueview 2010.

    Any help would be appreciated.

    Faulting application aclauncher.exe, version 18.0.55.0, faulting module msvcr90.dll, version 9.0.30729.1, fault address 0x0006c955.

    Comment by David — September 29, 2009 @ 1:47 pm

  7. Hi,

    My boss found a workaround regarding 2011 and win7 x64. Don’t know who actually discovered the plausible solution. This issue has created a lot of frustration among us at the ICT dept, so I thought I should share the workaround it with you guys.. :)

    Regedit
    HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\Wow6432Node\CLSID\{6C7DC044-FB1E-4140-9223-052E5ABE7D24}

    BrowseInPlace = 0 (hex)

    Delete the following key:

    HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\Wow6432Node\CLSID\{6C7DC044-FB1E-4140-9223-052E5ABE7D24}\EnableFullPage

    Then DWG Trueview 2011 will (hopefully) work when clicking on a dwg file on a SharePoint site… Good luck :)

    Comment by Silje — October 15, 2010 @ 12:23 am

  8. Great work Silje,

    I have been struggling with this for a good few days.

    Your workaround for 2011 and Win 7 x64 works a treat.

    I am now able to show SP2010 working with CAD files sensibly.

    Many Thanks.

    Comment by Donal — December 6, 2010 @ 6:12 am


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