Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Managing Productivity is for everyone

Autodesk gives CAD Managers a list of 4 items for building a "productivity checklist" (from the 2007 Autodesk Official Training Courseware for CAD Management) , but I submit everyone can take heart to 2 of the 4!

  1. List all the systems, Configurations, and peripherals you are responsible for maintaining.·

    This can be partially achieved by using the Autodesk CAD Manager Tool called the "Autodesk Product Manager" that comes on every AutoCAD 2008/2009 installation CD/DVD.
    With this tool, you can get a list of all the installed Autodesk applications on your PC or on a group of PCs or even on your entire network.

    Here is a sample query results from the CAD Manager tool. You can save your results to an Xls or print it.

  1. Identify the key support resources you need if any of the items you are responsible for fail.

    If we aren't already, the Avatech
    National Support Center (NSC) can be your support resource and can assist with most of your Autodesk technical support needs. Fast, dependable and accurate technical support is just a phone call away at 800-808-7645 Monday-Friday 8 am - 7 pm Eastern time (excluding Avatech Holidays).
  1. Identify how quickly your support resources can respond in case of failure.

    The Avatech NSC is staffed with dedicated support specialists ready to take your call or typically respond to your issues within 2 business hours.
  1. Analyze your findings and bring any items you are not comfortable with to your management team's attention to determine if your response and uptime parameters are acceptable.

    With a little bit of research and helping hand from the National Support Center, you can better analyze your productivity status and ability to respond to issues

At Avatech Solutions, your success is our success. Find out today how we can help you get and stay productive.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Getting technical help this holiday season

Avatech offices are closed for 2 days during the holidays

To celebrate the holidays,
Avatech Solutions, Inc. offices will be closed on the following days this holiday season:

Thursday, December 25, 2008 and
Thursday, January 1, 2009

No Technical Support services from the Avatech National Support Center will be available on these days. You may still submit your support issues to us 24 hours a day/7 days a week via email at support@avatech.com. Business and services will resume at normal times on the days following the above holidays.

Autodesk holiday hours

Autodesk will be closed and/or operating with limited staff during this holiday season as well, affecting the following services:
  • Registration and Activation
  • Customer service
  • Subscription Technical Support
  • Technical Support Escalations
Here is a summary of planned Autodesk operating hours during this time:

December 22 and 23: Normal business hours, full staff
December 24 & 25: Autodesk offices are closed for the holidays
December 26: Minimal staff – no phone support. Email requests only
December 29, 30 and 31: Normal business hours – reduced staff
January 1: Autodesk offices are closed for the holidays
January 2: Normal business hours, reduced staff

If you have support issues that need to be addressed, please act on them immediately to avoid delays due to closures and times of reduced staffing.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Updates and Service Packs and Versions, OH MY! What is going on?

When you look at the Product Information dialog, (Help->About->click the Product Information button) Under the "Product service pack" label it shows Version 3. You thought you downloaded and installed Service Pack 2 and when checking the website to see what was downloaded it shows "AutoCAD update 2". What gives?

With the 2009 release, Autodesk has changed some of its terminology. When you install an update, the version of the update ADDS to the version you have installed, therefore, when you install update 2 onto the original version, the Product service pack reads "Version 3".

This makes it a bit confusing especially since the Update number and the Version number do NOT match in current versions. In previous versions, the service pack number you downloaded and applied was the same as what showed in the "Product service pack" that displayed in the Product information dialog. Now the former Service Packs are now known as Updates and may be released more frequently (more than once per year).

Always review the readme file for the particular product update; as it will help you decide if you need to install the respective update. A screenshot from the AutoCAD 2009 update 2 readme is shown above.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Autodesk Service Packs and Updates 12-18-2008

The following have all be listed within the last 60 days. Be sure to read all the readme or FAQ files before you execute any update or service pack. We highly recommend you have a backup of your files before you begin as a precaution.

If you run into an eror you cannot easily fix, remember we're just a phone call away - 800-808-7945.

AutoCAD 2009 Update 2
Published date: 2008-Oct-30

Applies to: AutoCAD® 2009

AutoCAD LT 2009 Update 2.01
Published date: 2008-Nov-11

Applies to: AutoCAD LT® 2009

AutoCAD Architecture 2009 Product Update 2

Published date: 2008-Oct-28

Applies to: AutoCAD® Architecture 2009

AutoCAD Electrical 2009 SP2

Published date: 2008-Oct-27

Applies to: AutoCAD® Electrical 2009

AutoCAD Mechanical 2009 Service Pack 2

Published date: 2008-Oct-17

Applies to:
AutoCAD® Mechanical 2009
Autodesk® Inventor™ Professional 2009
Autodesk® Inventor™ Routed Systems Suite 2009
Autodesk® Inventor™ Simulation Suite 2009
Autodesk® Inventor™ Suite 2009

AutoCAD Revit MEP Suite 2009 Product Update 2

Published date: 2008-Oct-20

Applies to:
AutoCAD® MEP 2009
AutoCAD Revit MEP Suite 2009

AutoCAD MEP 2009 Product Update 2

Published date: 2008-Dec-12

Applies to:
AutoCAD® MEP 2009

Autodesk Mechanical Desktop 2009 Service Pack 2

Published date: 2008-Oct-17

Applies to:
Autodesk® Inventor™ Professional 2009
Autodesk® Inventor™ Routed Systems Suite 2009
Autodesk® Inventor™ Simulation Suite 2009
Autodesk® Inventor™ Suite 2009
Autodesk Mechanical Desktop 2009 (AIP - Routed Systems)
Autodesk Mechanical Desktop 2009 (AIP - Simulation)
Autodesk Mechanical Desktop 2009 (AIP)
Autodesk Mechanical Desktop 2009 (AIS)

MapGuide Enterprise 2009 Update 1 for Windows

Published date: 2008-Oct-21

Applies to:
Autodesk MapGuide Enterprise 2009

Revit MEP 2009—English

Web Update #3 Service Pack – November 2008

Important Note:
Web Update #3 is not a full install; rather it is using Service Pack technology similar to AutoCAD® based products. Prior to installing the Web Update #3 Service pack, please verify that you have already installed the First Customer Ship build or Web Update #1 build of Revit MEP 2009. The full install of Revit MEP 2009 (64-bit) can be downloaded from the Subscription Center.

* The service pack contains changes from all previous service packs.
* The service pack can be applied to both the standalone and suite versions of Revit MEP 2009.

AutoCAD 2009 Update 2 for AutoCAD Revit Architecture Suite 2009

Published date: 2008-Nov-11

Applies to:
AutoCAD® 2009
AutoCAD Revit Architecture Suite 2009
Revit® Architecture 2009

AutoCAD 2009 Update 2 for AutoCAD Revit Structure Suite 2009

Published date: 2008-Nov-11

Applies to:
AutoCAD® 2009
AutoCAD Revit Structure Suite 2009
Revit® Structure 2009

Monday, December 8, 2008

Undocumented Feature of AutoCAD 2009: Layer Manager

In AutoCAD 2009, if you change settings to tell AutoCAD to use the old-style Layer Manager, it might actually be good for performance. To change the mode of the Layer Manager Palette (dialog) do the following

  1. Enter LAYERDLGMODE at the command line and hit the Enter key to access the setting
  2. Enter 0 at the command line and hit the Enter key to set the value

This will make the Layer dialog appear like what you’ve seen in previous versions and make the dialog "modal" again; so you must close the dialog before performing the next command. This can help speed up the performance of AutoCAD, because when you have multiple drawings open and you switch between drawings while the default 2009 Layer Manager Palette is open, AutoCAD must re-populate the list of layers in the Layer Manager window; refreshing the list each time you switch. This can take a bit of time and, in larger drawings or drawings with XREFs, it can cause AutoCAD to become unusable.

LAYERDLGMODE is an undocumented system variable; therefore it won't be found in the Help file.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

(Your Company Name Here) National Support Center

In an economy that is merely creeping forward, sometimes we forget that the job still has to get done. Projects must still go forward. Meetings still have to take place. And problems must still be solved.

You've got to remain productive and the Avatech National Support Center (NSC) is equipped to help you do that.

Do you have a surplus of spare time to troubleshoot an error or a few hours it might take to figure out how to migrate to a new version of the software? Can you afford the downtime it takes to determine why a feature doesn't work the way you expected it to? We do. We are your technical partner and we're here to help.

For quick responses, and knowledgeable and complete solutions, depend on us to deliver. We're your National Support Center.

You've got questions? We've got solutions. Call us today to find out how we can help you stay in the game. 800-808-7645.

Try us out for free! See details at: http://www.avatech.com/service/support terms and conditions apply.