Every year Autodesk releases a new version of Revit, with new features, performance updates, and more. We can’t upgrade our existing installation, so how do you efficiently install Revit on your computer? And if you manage multiple workstations, how do you deploy Revit silently?
Autodesk has changed the installer a couple of times over the past years. In the recent version, Revit 2022 and 2023 we can create a custom install, where we can preconfigure the Revit installation. It also allows us to include additional products, if they are included in your license, like AutoCAD and Navisworks for example.
In this article, we are going to take a look at how to create a custom install. And how you can install or deploy Revit on multiple computers easily.
Creating a Custom Revit Install
Before the 2022 versions of Autodesk, our only installation options were direct install methods. These installation methods would install the software with the default settings. Custom install packages allow us to preconfigure installation properties, like installation location, license type, and product-specific features. You will also need to create a custom package when you want to deploy Revit on multiple computers.
To create a custom installation package, open your Autodesk Account, and navigate to Products and Services > Custom Install. Click on Create new in the top right corner to create a new custom install.
The first step is to select the products that you want to install (1). This can be only one product, or multiple if you have the license for it:
We can customize each product on the right side. You can select a specific version or install the latest (recommended) (2). Under Customizations (3) you can set the content path, for example, the default location for your templates.
Make sure that you also check out the optional components under Customizations. Uncheck everything you don’t need. If you expand Extensions, you can add Add-ins to your installations, like the Roombook or Issues Addin.
Revit Install Settings
When you have added and configured all the products that you want to install, click on Next. This will take you to the install settings of your package. Give your package a meaningful name. You will now need to choose between Install and Deploy.
- Install – Choose Install when you want to manually install Revit on your device.
- Deploy – If you want to deploy the installation on multiple computers, choose this option.
For both options, expand the Advanced Options and make sure that you enable Use symbolic links. Most Autodesk products are built on the Autodesk core components. When you install multiple products you can use symbolic links so the core components are only installed once. This will reduce the installation size.
The install settings are really important when you plan to deploy Revit with a deployment tool like SCCM or PDQ Deploy. The new installer can give a lot of issues when rolling out on your network. One of the important parts to solve this is to use the FQDN for the server or network share. So for the deployment image path use for example:
# If you store the file on a server \\lb-srv-file01.lazybim.local\path\to\files # Or if you use DFS or a network share \\lazybim.local\path\to\files
Click on Download to download the installer that will create the deployment or installation file for you.
Silent Install Revit with a Deployment tool
At work, we have more than 10 Revit workstations. Installing the new Revit version on each of them manually takes a lot of time. So we use a deployment tool, PDQ Deploy, to install Revit automatically on all workstations. The deployment of Revit is always a bit of a struggle. Installation may fail without reason or just hangs and runs into a timeout.
One of the main problems with the Revit installation is an “open file” security warning of the ProcessManager.exe. The installer tries to open this file from your network path, which can result in a security warning.
To prevent this error we need to make sure that you path where your installation files are located is added to the Trusted Sites zone. The best option is to create a Group Policy and set the following policy:
Create a new policy and make sure that the file server is assigned in the intranet zone list:
User Configuration -> Policies -> Administrative Templates -> Windows Components -> Internet Explorer -> Internet Control Panel -> Security Page
Edit the Site to Zone Assignment List and add your file server to it. Set the value to 1 (Intranet sites)
Next, open the Intranet Zone settings and Enable the policy
Show security warning for potentially unsafe files. Set the policies to Enable to prevent the security warning.
If you don’t use Group Policies, then you will need to add the path in the internet options control panel:
- Open the Control Panel (open Start and type control panel)
- Open Internet Options
- Click the Security Tab
- Select Local Intranet
- Click on Sites
- Click Advanced
- Add the path of your file server where the installation files are located.
In the installation folder of Revit, you will find a bat file, install.bat. Inside this file, you will find the install and uninstall commands that you will need to create a package for your deployment tool. In the bat file, you will notice that some lines start with the word
Rem is used to commenting out lines. So lines that start with rem won’t do anything. This way you can easily change the install method from basic UI to silently, for example.
chcp 65001 rem ========== Install the deployment with basic UI ========== rem "\\lazybim.local\repository\2023_suite\image\Installer.exe" -i deploy --offline_mode --ui_mode basic -o "\\lazybim.local\repository\2023_suite\image\Collection.xml" --installer_version "18.104.22.168" rem ========== Install the deployment silently ========== "\\lazybim.local\repository\2023_suite\image\Installer.exe" -i deploy --offline_mode -q -o "\\lazybim.local\repository\2023_suite\image\Collection.xml" --installer_version "22.214.171.124"
I recommend first trying the deployment with the basic UI. This way any error will show up, allowing you to solve the potential issues. If the deployment was successful, then you can change the deployment to silently. To do this, simply remove rem from the command line to enable the command (and add rem before the command line to disable it)
Revit installations are big and time-consuming, so I really recommend using a deployment tool for this. It only takes you one time to sort it out, but it will save you a lot of time for the installation. The custom install packages are a great way to preconfigure the Revit install, making sure that everybody has the same add-ins and content settings.
I hope you found this article useful, if you have any questions then just drop a comment below.