In this click saver I want to show how anyone can take advantage of the Autodesk 360 storage. If you are familiar with Dropbox then you might need to rethink if you want to continue using it moving forward. For those that are not familiar with Dropbox it is a free cloud storage service that gives you 2gig of space to share between different computers, mobile devices, and share folders with different people. With Autodesk 360 you get that entire set of features plus more, and a bonus of 3gig of space and it is free to everyone. That’s right; you do not need to own an Autodesk product to take advantage of the free storage, family and friends can take advantage of this to share who knows what amongst themselves. Now if you are on subscription with Autodesk then your storage jumps to 25gig, how great is that.
First thing you need to do is get an account setup: http://www.autodesk.com/360, it will take about 30 seconds to get one built. Now if you are on subscription how you do bump your 3gig of storage to 25gig of storage? Start up an Autodesk product and notice at the top right you will have a drop-down to sign-in to your account. By doing it this way it will establish the serial number on your Autodesk product that is on subscription to your Autodesk 360 account, it is that easy. For you that are in charge of your Subscription Center Site you can see who is attached by looking at the “View/Edit Users”.
So the storage is great but how is this better than the likes of Dropbox. First let’s talk about what you can do online and then I will show you a trick that you can do locally. Online you can build as many folders as you would like along with sub-folders to sort and manage your content to your liking. Now if you would like to share a folder with someone all you have to do is hoover over the folder and pick on the “actions” icon. There you will see the “share” action, pick on “share” and a dialogue box will open requesting who you would like to share it with.
This is where you can add the email address(s) along with a short note. You will also see who else you are sharing the folder with. This is where you can control what type of rights they have to the content in that folder. Your options are; Download Only, Download and Update, and Full Access, if you hoover each one it will show you what each one will do. You can also delete someone so they no longer have access to the content.
Once you get into a folder at the top right you will see the “upload” button to start uploading whatever files that you want access to 24/7. Now if you upload a DWG or a DWF there are basic viewing tools to look at the content and create some notes and redlines if you are offsite. If the DWG or DWF has multiple sheets in it you can open each one and turn off/on layers.
If you want more drawing or editing tools then pick on the “actions” icon and choose “edit online in AutoCAD WS”. This will look like a small version of AutoCAD with most of your favorite tools for drawing, editing, annotating, including layer tools.
Now if you have a smart phone or a tablet download either AutoCAD WS or Design Review Mobile and now you have full access to Autodesk 360 content. So when you are offsite with either 3G/4G or WiFi access you can access your content to redline and review with clients.
One last trick which is an undocumented feature but is a great trick to be aware of, on your workstation or laptop that you use your Autodesk 360 account you have a local folder to your online content. Open “windows explorer” and navigate to this folder structure: C:\Users\”username”\AppData\Local\Autodesk\Autodesk Sync\Cloud\”login name of Autodesk 360 account”. From here you can build new folders and add/modify content and it will upload within minutes to your online account. I like to right-click on the “favorites” at the top-left and “add current location to favorites”, you can rename it by right-clicking, I called mine Autodesk 360 folder. This way I don’t have to remember how to get there next time.
I found that the only time that this folder gets built is if you start up a AutoCAD 2013 “platform” product and login using the “sign-in” feature at the top right. Using any other Autodesk product or no product at all will not get this folder created or at least they didn’t want to tell me. With that said, everything doesn’t go down the drain, it just means that we have to use it like it was originally meant for. Start up your web browser, login into your account, make folders and use the upload button to store/share your content…
I hope this helps everyone on how they can take advantage of Autodesk 360 today. Next month we will look at the Autodesk BIM 360 tools, see you in class, Jarod.