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Thread: Company Strategy for Managing Vendor Created Add-ins

  1. #1
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    Company Strategy for Managing Vendor Created Add-ins

    So I'm just fishing for everyone's feelings on this. I've seen a host of new add-ins come online from vendors that make managing the model and designing "OH SO EASY!!!"

    I get bombarded daily about some project team that "needs" a new add-in from some vendor somewhere. I'm hesitant to start approving these add-ins as I need time to test them for various things (read the EULA, understand what information from our model is transmitted to vendor servers, how the add-in impacts existing standards, etc.)

    As the BIM Manager my primary concern is maintaining a stable and consistent Revit environment for all my users. I have to manage the design platform so I generally don't allow any add-ins I haven't tested and feel comfortable with. I've had users use old add-ins that can bork a project and/or destabilize Revit. Additionally, I've had older designers complain that the newer designers rely on these tools instead of "learning how to design" I'm not 100% sure I buy it, but I also know, vendors make these tools as a means of generating sales, so I'm still skeptical.

    Just curious, what is your stance in your firm when users request you give them some design tool that just can't live without. (common ones i get are Openings Studio by Assa Abloy, Allegion's Overtur, Steni System Solutions, Brick Designer, etc.)

    Thoughts?

  2. #2
    Administrator Twiceroadsfool's Avatar
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    I recommend (to our clients) that it be exactly how you suggest: BIM Managers control the vetting of 3rd party addins, and everyone gets the same addins, deployed with the software updates managed by the company.

    AAOS is a hard NO from me (i hate it)

    Allegions Overtur is a Yes.

    ACME Masonry Designer (if thats what you mean) is a Yes.

    But i also run creepy crawler stuff on peoples machines, so if they try to install User Side addins, they get broken. LMAO.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Twiceroadsfool View Post
    But i also run creepy crawler stuff on peoples machines, so if they try to install User Side addins, they get broken. LMAO.
    The invisible hand approach. I like that. We don't allow users to put anything on our machines. I'm curious, why are you OK with Overtur but not Openings Studio?

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    Administrator Twiceroadsfool's Avatar
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    Because they work very differently.

    Both, of course, have an agenda, and their agenda is getting them more involved in your Door Hardware Spec. But Overtur does it by reading and associating with the data YOU already decide to put in your door schedule, the way that YOU typically do it (using your office standards). The AAOs stuff shoves a bunch of crap in to projects, that makes my blood boil. Even if you arent using their content. Its a hard no from me.

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    Thanks for the feedback.

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    Moderator cellophane's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Twiceroadsfool View Post
    But i also run creepy crawler stuff on peoples machines, so if they try to install User Side addins, they get broken. LMAO.
    care to elaborate? I'm intrigued!

  7. #7
    Administrator Twiceroadsfool's Avatar
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    Pragmatic Praxis Deployment Tools (by Gordon Price) can do it. You just have to be a little crafty in how you write your definitions files.

    If your staff is willing to reinstall stuff EVERY TIME they go to use Revit, then sure, nothing will stop them but Firing Them (which i would do, seriously).

    But 90% will be deterred if PxTools rips off USER side apps, at daily logins.

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