Let’s collaborate: Sharing and Comparing Drawings in AutoCAD 2021: Webcast Q&A

December 8, 2020 Renu Muthoo

Thanks to those of you who attended my webcast about how to Share views and Compare drawings in AutoCAD. For those of you who could not attend the webcast, you can view the recording here. 

The following are some of the questions that were asked during the webcast and I hope that the answers will explain the features a little further.

Question: Does the person opening the shared view in the Autodesk Viewer need to create an Autodesk account?

Answer: You can only view the shared views in the Autodesk Viewer without being signed in. To markup, comment, and share the views back with the designer, you are required to be signed into you Autodesk account. To have a sign in username and password, you are first required to create an Autodesk account. Creating an account is very simple and can be done through the Autodesk Viewer itself. When you open a file to view in the Autodesk Viewer, click on Sign up for free, and enter your name, email, and password in the Create account dialog box.

Figure: Creating an Autodesk account

Question: If you continue to make edits to the drawing, do they show in the shared version also?

Answer: The shared view is just a visual representation of the drawing view in the AutoCAD software and does not update the view in real time. The designer has to create a new share link of the modified drawing views and then share it with the client or stakeholder.

Question: Does a person need to have AutoCAD to view the share view?

Answer: To view a shared view, a person does not need to have the AutoCAD software. To view all they need is a web enabled device because the Autodesk Viewer is an online viewing application.

Question: Do we have the option to save the file locally or is it only on the cloud?­

Answer: The shared views are available only on the cloud and cannot be saved locally.

Question:  For how long are the shared views available to be viewed?

Answer: By default, the shared views are available for 30 days but the owner (designer) can extend it through the Shared Views palette in the AutoCAD software. In the Shared Views palette, click on the ellipses button and select Extend in the drop-down list. It extends the view on the cloud for another 30 days.

Figure: Extending the Shared view

Question: Is the Shared view available in AutoCAD LT?

Answer: Yes, the Share View command is available in AutoCAD LT as well.

Question: Do we need to have both the drawings for comparison in the same folder?

Answer: No, you can have the two drawings for comparison in different folders. Once you have one drawing open, it becomes the current drawing and the drawing that you need to compare it with is to be selected in the Select a drawing to compare dialog box. You can navigate to the required folder (where you have saved the other drawing) and select it there.

Thanks again for attending the WebCast. I tried a give you a quick overview of the two collaboration tools in my webcast session, however, due to time restrictions I certainly could not go into the details. As mentioned, all the information was pulled from our AutoCAD 2021 Advanced learning guide available for you on Amazon as well as on our ASCENT eStore.

About the Author

Renu Muthoo

Learning Content Developer<br><br>Renu has worked with Autodesk products for the past 20 years with a main focus on design visualization software. Renu holds a bachelor’s degree in Computer Engineering and started her career as an Instructional Designer/Author where she co-authored a number of Autodesk 3ds Max and AutoCAD books, some of which were translated into other languages for a wide audience reach. In her next role as a Technical Specialist at a 3D visualization company, Renu used 3ds Max in real-world scenarios on a daily basis. There, she developed customized 3D web planner solutions to create specialized 3D models with photorealistic texturing and lighting to produce high quality renderings.

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