Revit Server… across different domains!

Yesterday, I was working with this really cool architecture / engineering firm (to be kept secretive, just take my word that their stuff is amazing and has been featured in more than a few magazines) on setting up their Revit Server. But this isn’t the run-of-the-mill configuration… We already setup Revit Servers in their different offices (even sites across oceans). This time, it will be between different domains!

First, we established a domain trust with one of their partners. Then we setup Revit Server onto their partners’ Revit server. At the end of the day, we got all of their Revit Servers talking to each other and their models are happily working between the various offices AND their partners offices, AND taking into consideration of site link costs and their connection speeds. Here’s a overly simplified diagram. Yes, it can be done.

6 thoughts on “Revit Server… across different domains!

  1. Joe B December 14, 2010 / 1:58 am

    Jame, How did you do it? I have been to Autodesks office in Boston twice over the past three months and they don’t have the answer. I work for one of those really cool architectural companies and would love to discuss this further. Please contact me.

    • thejame December 18, 2010 / 2:16 am

      Hey Joe, For your multi domains, make sure you have trusts between the domains of your partners/consultants to enable the servers to talk to each other (resolve permissions, names, and all the other communication). Once communication is enabled (that’s a biggie), THEN you start configuring the servers for Revit Server. Another way we’ve done this is by only allowing conditional forwarders on the DNS on the different domains. This is good for partners who don’t have the technical know-how to set this up. Hope that helps!

      • Christian January 28, 2011 / 1:43 pm

        Hi Jame, following your tutorials, we set up a connection witch works with small files. But huge files give always errors inside Revit.
        We are using openVPN to connect the servers. They are part of one domain. File sharing works (even big files).
        Do you know how the communication works between the servers and the clients (http or SMB?)
        Any background info will help.
        Thany you, Christian

      • thejame February 23, 2011 / 5:30 pm

        Hi Christian,

        How big are your Revit files? What kind of throughput do you have? When you first setup Revit Server with large files, you will want to make sure the various other RS’s have a good connection since entire model will be duplicated to the remote (aka local) RS. Once the initial push to the remote RS are completed, the subsequent data transfers are dramatically reduced. Hope that helps!


  2. vermag July 9, 2011 / 12:41 pm

    Hi, I was wondering and read at many places that for Revit Server a normal workstation can work. Then why an enterprise working on 15-20 projects and with 100 users should choose a high end server… like 2 xeon 4 core processors, 24GB RAM and SAS HDD…. What actually hapens inside Revit Server… apart from File sharing?

    • thejame July 15, 2011 / 4:20 pm

      It’s not just File Sharing like how Windows file shares. RS uses IIS on top of Windows Server to process file management, including keeping version control and revision data of the Revit files. If your Revit files are small and you’re working with a small group, then yes, a normal workstation will work for your RS implementation. Simultaneously having large numbers of users accessing RS will significant tap resources that will affect productivity. Even some of our WORKSTATIONS are dual Xeon quad core processors with 24GB of RAM… but then we work with sky scrappers and large models. Every office is different and depends on the work you do. Maybe you found that 15-20 projects with 100 users are working fine with a normal workstation – you’d be the first.

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