By Dennis Collin
Remember these? Floppy disks are what we used to save our work onto before network drives and remote cloud storage.
Fortunately in the modern era saving data is more centralised, either on a local file server or a secure data store in the Cloud. However, saving work is still a user-controlled task which can be an issue when learning a new product. New Revit users can be caught out in saving after migrating from AutoCAD due to the absence of an autosave function. Revit reminds you to save periodically, but doesn’t save unless you tell it to. However, if you don’t save and Revit crashes, hours of work can be lost!
After an unfortunate incident many years ago, I always tend to save my work every twenty minutes or so. It’s just a question of remembering the Save shortcut. (Ctrl+S) and applying that function whenever I leave my desk. Remember it is generally advised to take a 5-10 minutes break every hour of intensive screen work, so before visiting the kitchen area for a cuppa, save your work!
The Revit Autosave (R Autosave) add-in helps to address the lack of an autosave function by providing a near AutoCAD style level of functionality. It provides users a time interval to autosave, as well as folder location. Should Revit end unexpectedly a warning will appear upon resuming Revit, rather like the AutoCAD drawing recovery manager, offering the chance to resume work from the last autosave point. If Revit exits normally without the user saving, there is a chance of locating the last autosave file (AS$) renaming that file to an RVT extension and carry on from that point.
Installing the Add-in is very simple. It appears as a button on the add-ins tab, but clicking on it will fire up the normal Revit options screen. However, there is an extra option towards the bottom of the screen where autosave options can be set.
The default Autosave interval is 5 minutes, which I personally think is too frequent. For AutoCAD I set the save interval for 20 minutes and I would recommend a similar interval for Revit. Of course, this should really be a safety net for accidents and any user should always take responsibility for saving their work.
At the time of writing this post R Autosave is only available up to the 2019 of Revit, but I would imagine that a 2020 version should be available soon. For any add-on support the developer can be contacted via the App store.
The page where the app can be downloaded is located here: