ABC Pro for Civil: AutoCAD External References (XREFS)

The first post in this series on the Autodesk BIM Collaborate (ABC) Pro for Civil, will showcase a basic AutoCAD functionality:  External Reference (XREFS).  The short answer is: YES.  The only stipulation is to make sure to set the Path type to Relative Paths, to ensure that references remain when other users open drawing files.

Creating the reference will have a normal feel, users will just need to browse to the Autodesk DOCS location facilitated by the Autodesk Desktop Connector (ADC).  No matter what user in the ABC project creates the reference, the drawing will open as expected for all.


AutoCAD Workflow:  creating XREFS from the ABC:

First, USER1 starts by creating an External Reference (XREF) to an Aerial Image and Parcels drawing file.  The drawing is saved on the ACB Project, the path to reference will be set to USER1

Next, USER2 can open the drawing file with loaded XREFS from the ABC Project.  The shown path to the references will be to automatically updated to USER2, and Image and Linework will be shown.

Users sharing drawing files over the ABC with XREFS behave as expected, as long as is set to Relative Path.


Viewing Drawings with XREFS on the Web via ABC:

Autodesk BIM Collaborate (ABC) allows users invited to the project with the correct entitlement, and appropriate privileges assigned will have access to the files.  In this case both users, USER1 who created the Drawing with XREFS, and USER2 who is viewing the file can browse to the same file and get the same viewing results:


Simple AutoCAD functionality that is clearly supported by the ABC for collaboration of drawing files across the team in a project and web access.

Please visit our other posts testing functionality on the Autodesk BIM Collaborate (ABC) Pro for Civil:
     •    Using AutoCAD Live Maps Service (geolocation) on the ABC
     •    Sharing Reusable AutoCAD on ABC Pro
     •    Map 3D: Connecting to FDO files on ABC Pro
     •    Map 3D: working with Images on ABC Pro
     •    Map 3D: using Web Source Connections
     •    Civil 3D: sharing Pipe Catalogs on ABC Pro
     •    Civil 3D: storing Survey Databases on ABC Pro
     •    Civil 3D: working with Reference Templates on ABC Pro

About the Author

Leo Lavayen

Civil Applications Expert<br><br>As an Applications Expert, Leo is responsible for supporting, training and implementation of software for survey and civil engineering professionals. He has more than 17 years of experience helping large and small, public and private clients in the eastern United States.

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