Autodesk + Esri = Awesome!

One of the most exciting announcements made at AU was a strategic alliance between Esri and Autodesk. On November 15th, Amy Bunszel welcomed Autodesk CEO Andrew Anagnost and Esri CEO Jack Dangermond to the stage to discuss the collaboration during the technology keynote address.

Redlands, CA based Esri is the maker of ArcGIS, a widely-used mapping and spatial analysis tool. The collaboration between Esriand Autodesk is a natural fit, as most AEC customers already use ArcGIS and its related suite of tools.

Anagnost stated that “Ideas have to move smoothly from one team to the next if we are going to address all the big challenges we have to address together.” Esri products model geography and environmental data. This information could be leveraged by Autodesk products to design smarter buildings and cities. Autodesk and Esri will be working together to improve the workflow between GIS (geographic information systems) and BIM (building information modeling).

At the time of this writing, details about product changes or new services have not been released. However, the promise of a more seamless workflow between geospatial data and Autodesk’s collection of AEC tools is welcome news to many users.

In the words of Andrew Anagnost, designers and engineers will truly be able to “make anything; anywhere.”
Esri CEO Jack Dangermond (left) and Autodesk CEO Andrew Anagnost (right)

For further reading about the collaboration between Esri and Autodesk, click here. To view the technology keynote from Autodesk University, click here (discussion between Andrew Anagnost and Jack Dangermond starts after 48m:30s). 

Note: This article was updated to reflect that Esri is not spelled in all caps. Also, I had Amy Bunszel's name spelled incorrectly. Oops!


How Many Hidden Pop Song Lyrics Can you Find?

Chris decided to make his interview more interesting by incorporating pop song lyrics into his answers.

How many can you find? 


Infraworks 360: Can't Open a Model from the Cloud or Model Builder

Infraworks 360 is the new hotness and I am learning more and more about it every day.

A common issue we have been seeing lately is the inability to open cloud models after upgrading to the 2017.3 version. The root cause of this is that older versions of Infraworks were more forgiving about proxy settings.

If you are running into problems with Infraworks, the first place to look is in the Infraworks log files. This will help determine if the issue is on the proxy side or a local permissions issue.

The location of the log files is C:\Users\<<USER>>\AppData\Roaming\Autodesk\Autodesk InfraWorks\logs

The two most common causes for this are:

1) Proxy settings. Infraworks 2017.3 seems to be more "finicky" about having these websites open / marked as safe to your network. The link above contains a list of websites that your IT folks will need to "whitelist."

2) Permissions to the model download location. To access the settings, go to the menu next to your name and click Application Options.

  • On the General page, uncheck "use system proxy settings." 
  • You will be able to change the cache location paths after a re-start of Infraworks. Make sure these are pointing to a location where you have full read/write access.

Good luck and happy modeling!


Quick FYI: Where is Civil 3D 2016 Service pack 4?

Note that there is a typo when viewing the Civil 3D 2016 sp4 download on

Also note that starting with this service pack and all service packs going forward, users will be able to access downloads only from Service packs will no longer be posted to the general public site.  Don't shoot the messenger!



Civil 3D 2014 - Civil 3D 2017 Performace FIX! (Becuse I love you)

This fix is being officially for sure published for real in a few days...but you heard it here first.

In some cases, users were experiencing unexpectedly slow opening and saving of Civil 3D files.

Affects versions

Civil 3D 2014
Civil 3D 2015
Civil 3D 2016
Civil 3D 2017

This fix is not language-specific.

Install the Performance Improvement

Be sure to close Civil 3D and any other AutoCAD based application before installing updating files.

You will need local administrator rights to apply the update.

Important Notes:

The update needs to be implemented on every user’s machine. The performance problem will return if an unpatched version of Civil 3D is used to open a file.

The performance problem is fixed at the time a file is saved in the updated version of Civil 3D. The first time a user opens a file the update will not be evident. Performance will greatly improve after the first save.

External references will need to be resaved to see the benefit of the update.

Civil 3D 2017

The performance issue has been addressed in Civil 3D 2017 service pack 1.1. All users must be updated to the current version to see the benefit of the update.

Note: If you installed the service pack version 1.0, uninstall it and install sp1.1.

Civil 3D 2016

The performance issue has been addressed in Civil 3D 2016 service pack 3. All users must be updated to the current version to see the benefit of the update.

Civil 3D 2014

1.       Locate the file: C:\Program Files\Autodesk\Autodesk AutoCAD Civil 3D 2014\AeccNetwork.dbx
2.      Check the version of this file. The old file version is 10.3.894.0 (3.17mb)
3.      Rename the current AeccNetwork.dbx to OLD_AeccNetwork.dbx
4.      Download AECCNETWORK.dbx (version 10.3.902.0)
5.      Place the new version of aeccnetwork.dbx in c:\Program Files\Autodesk\Autodesk AutoCAD Civil 3D 2014\

Civil 3D 2015

1.       Locate the file: C:\Program Files\Autodesk\AutoCAD 2015\AeccNetwork.dbx
2.      Check the version of this file. The old file version is 10.4.524.0 (3.08mb)
3.      Rename the current AeccNetwork.dbx to OLD_AeccNetwork.dbx
4.      Download AECCNETWORK.dbx (version 10.4.940.0)
5.      Place the new version of aeccnetwork.dbx in C:\Program Files\Autodesk\AutoCAD 2015\

Tips for Implementing the Improvement Enterprise-wide

This fix works when opening a file and resaving it. The first time a file is opened after the fix is implemented, it will open slowly. After the file is re-saved, the file size will be reduced and opening time will be reduced.

Resave all Sheets

For smaller projects, an easy way to force Civil 3D to open and save multiple files is to use Sheetset Manager.

Right-click the name of the sheet set and select Resave All Sheets







Scripts have been provided by Autodesk as a good faith effort to assist customers with large numbers of effected files.

Scripts are provided as-is and are not officially supported.

Civil 3D version
Old aeccnetwork.dbx
New aeccnetwork.dbx


Local admin rights are needed to run the batch file.
Function of the Scripts:

The script should be run from a computer that has the appropriate version(s) of Civil 3D installed.  The script uses the command line version of AutoCAD to open and resave drawings.

The script currently does not check the version of the DWG file before updating. Care must be taken that the correct script is run against the appropriate version of each Civil 3D file. More information on Civil 3D versioning can be found here.

At the conclusion of the script, a list of re-saved files is generated. This file list is named temp_dwg_filelist_201X.txt and will be located in the same directory in which the repair_201X.bat is found.

1.       Download and extract the zip file containing the scripts.
·         Note that aeccnetwork.dbx is version-specific.
·         Be sure to have the correct version in the same directory as its corresponding batch file.
2.      Log in as administrator on a machine running Civil 3D version 2014, 2015 or 2016.
·         Permissions are needed to copy the aeccnetwork.dbx to the Program Files folder on the local machine running the script.
·         If you receive an Access denied error, “0 files copied,” change the permissions of the program folder containing aeccnetwork.dbx to allow full control by the admin user. 
3.      Launch a Windows command line (CMD.exe)
4.      Run the batch file and add the path to effected file folder after the batch file name.
·         This parameter is what directs the script to the files.
·         UNC pathing is not supported by this BAT file. (Used a mapped drive instead.)

The script will proceed to open and save all DWG and DWT files found in the specified path, including subdirectories.

A list of modified files can be found in the file temp_dwg_filelist_201X.txt.