Easy and Effective Updating of the Federated Model in SMC

An important step in the Solibri Model Checker (SMC) coordination workflow is keeping the federated model up to date with the latest BIM files.  If a model contains multiple files, they can be easily updated as new versions of the files are created.  In SMC, this is done through the File Tree.  You can right click on any file you would like to update (or multi-click to select several files, then right click).

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From the menu that appears, select ‘Update Models.’  The list of selected files will appear.  From here, you can select the folder icon to the right of the file name that you would like to replace/update.  This will bring up a File Navigation window you can use to search for and select the new version.   There are also 3 options to choose how you would like files to be updated.

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Your options are:

Update: You will need to manually update the files as they are updated.  Do this by following the above instructions.

Automatic:  Updates will be implemented automatically.  For this function to work, the IFC file must be in the same folder and contain the same name as the previous version.  So, if you are updating mechanical.ifc, you will need to replace the original file with the new mechanical.ifc file, in its current folder.

Prompt:  You will be prompted within SMC to update a file when a new version is discovered.  As with Automatic updates, this requires that any updates will be put into the same folder, and replace the current file.

There are many scenarios where updating one file type should be done manually, but others should be automatically updated or prompt the user when an update is found.  Therefore, this update capability allows you to choose an option for each individual file, allowing that flexibility.

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Easy and Effective Updating of the Federated Model in SMC

Clearing Checking Results In Solibri Model Checker

Why this is Important:

There will be times when you may want to clear out all the results generated from a previous check and start with a fresh, unchecked model.  Perhaps you have modified a ruleset and you would like to repeat a check using the new version of the ruleset.  Or, maybe you have reached some key milestones and now you want to use the same model, but for a different purpose.  It’s also possible that you will want to run a final check, just to verify that all significant issues have been identified and addressed.

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How:

There are two quick ways to clear out the checked ruleset view.  The easiest way is to delete the already checked ruleset from the SMC model, then reload it again. This can be done whenever you like.

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Deleting the ruleset from the SMC model will erase all the checks/results that were associated with that ruleset.  A warning will appear advising you that your results will be lost.

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Reloading the ruleset brings the same checking logic back into SMC, but without the previous results that had been identified.   In the example below, the ruleset “BIM Validation – Architectural” has been removed from the model, and then re-added.  You can see that the issue severity icons have been cleared from that ruleset.

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Another option is to modify a ruleset in the Ruleset Manager.  This will clear all the current checking results.  If you switch to the Ruleset Manager, you will see a ruleset folder titled “Rulesets Open in SMC.”  Any rulesets currently loaded in the model will appear here.  If you select a ruleset from this folder, and from the workspace choose the “Open for Editing” icon, the ruleset will then appear in the workspace and is available for you to edit.

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Any changes to the ruleset in the workspace will result in the results being cleared from the Checked View.

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In this scenario, once you run the check (again), any slides created during your previous check will remain, as shown below.  This is perhaps the most important distinction between the two methods.  Removing the ruleset and adding it back will NOT retain the slides, while modifying the ruleset in the Ruleset Manager will retain the slides. So, if you want to make sure that you have all of the slides you created, please keep this in mind.

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Clearing Checking Results In Solibri Model Checker

Enhanced and Advanced Model Comparison, using the Checked Components View

The purpose of this article is to explain and explore how the Checked Components feature in Solibri Model Checker (SMC) significantly extends the benefits of a typical Model Comparison check.  Comparing models is a basic, yet important capability within SMC. It allows you to load two different versions of a BIM file, then compare them to identify where any differences have occurred.  The results clearly articulate the changes that have been made, both in the geometry (objects) and the associated properties (data). This is presented as components that have been added, removed, or modified.  By using the Checked Components view, you can also see which components remain unchanged, which verifies that all the components have been checked.

You can find more information about how to use the Model Comparison rule by reading several articles written on the topic at: https://solibri.wordpress.com/category/model-comparison-sol206/

If you would like additional information about the Checked Components view,  please follow the link below:

https://solibri.wordpress.com/tag/checked-components-view/

When running the model comparison rule in SMC, the results you would expect to see in the Checking Results window include:

Added: Components that have been added since the previous model was submitted (shown in the newest model)

Removed: Components removed from the previous model

Modified: Components that still remain in the newer model, but have changed, in any way, from their original form

What would not be seen in the Checking Results are all other components that were not added, removed, or modified.  For example, if there is an expectation that a space footprint would have changed in the new version of the model and that change is not showing up in the Checking Results, you can look at the Checked Components view to verify that the room was actually checked by the model comparison rule, and whether there was in fact a change to the space.

There may be several reasons that the example space change is not showing up in the results.  Perhaps the model comparison check is not checking geometry changes.  Or there may be an exemption that specifies not to check spaces.  Or, the space was checked and there was in fact no change to the space.  It is important to be able to determine which of these is the actual reason.

In the Checked Components window, the ‘Failed’ items from each model are listed by default.

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By selecting the dropdown next to ‘Show Failed’ other visualization options appear.  ‘Show All Checked’ lists the components that have been checked using the rule.  If all components in the model are listed, that means all components will have been run through the model comparison.  By selecting ‘Show All Checked,’ the 3D window will display the checked components.

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You can then navigate through the model to verify that the space or component in question is displayed.  If it is not, then it is not one of the components that were checked.  As mentioned before, this could be due to an exemption of this space in the rule parameters, and can be addressed by correcting the rule parameters to include such space changes.

If it is shown as checked, you can then return to the Checked Components window and select ‘Show Passed’ to verify that it did in fact ‘Pass’ the model comparison check, and therefore was unchanged.

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If it still appears in the 3D window while in the ‘Show Passed’ mode, the space was not changed between versions.

It is important to recognize that there are many different parameters that can affect the way a model is compared in SMC.  A user can limit their comparisons to specific types of components and their geometry, or broadly check an entire model for any changes of any kind.  Using the Checked Components view in conjunction with the Model Comparison rule provides greater insight into the details of the results, and should give you much greater confidence in the Quality of the model, as well.

Enhanced and Advanced Model Comparison, using the Checked Components View

Overview of New Features of SMC 9.7

Solibri announced Version 9.7 of the Solibri Model Checker (SMC) on August 31st. While this is considered a ‘point release’, there are quite a few enhancements and new capabilities. These capabilities are particularly relevant in the coordination workflow, but are also reflected in multiple layouts throughout the program. Many of the new features support the handling and reporting of issues that are identified via numerous checks. V9.7 adds a lot of capability, without necessarily adding complexity, which means YOU can begin benefitting from these new features, right away. This article will address the following new items:

  • Updated Issue Handling
  • A New View – Issues
  • A New View – Issue Sorter
  • Issue Details
  • Updated 3D View Options
  • SMC Relations
  • Federated Floors
  • Custom Relations
  • Company Extensions
  • Information Takeoff

Updated Issue Handling

The Communication Layout has been reorganized to accommodate the new issue handling enhancements, related to presentations, as described below:

A new view: Issues –A listing of titles of issues provides an easy reference for associating an issue to a particular slide within the presentation. The listing also provides additional relevant information, including status and the responsible party, if known.
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A new view: Issue Sorter – All issues in the selected presentations are now shown as thumbnails.  In SMC9.7, thumbnails of issues have been moved from the sidebar in the Presentation view to the new ‘Issue Sorter’ view beneath the 3D window.

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The size of the thumbnail pictures displayed in the Issue Sorter view can be changed on the Presentation Tab in SMC Settings.
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Issue Details dialog is now a view – In SMC9.7, the Issue Details popup window has been integrated into the UI as a fixed window. This will allow you to streamline the process of managing issues while increasing visibility into issue details. The result will be significant time-savings, and a smoother process.
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New UI/UX for responsibility values.  Responsible parties are now represented as ‘buttons’, allowing you to quickly assign issues to trades, entities, or individuals, as desired. You can easily add new options, as needed.
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Updated 3D View options.  The bottom of the 3D view in the Communication Tab has been enhanced to allow real time commenting by a user, as well as the ability to add, update, or remove saved viewpoints.
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SMC Relations

v9.7 introduces a new SMC defined relationship: Federated Floors. The relationship between components in different models is generated automatically, allowing for a fast, and extremely efficient way to visualize all components (from multiple IFC files) by the floors defined in architectural models.  The result is a very logical way to manage coordination by location, as you can filter all disciplines by floor, rather than in the entire building, if desired. All components of a specific floor will be joined together under a single ‘Federated Floor’ for easy reference, visualization, and coordination.
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SMC V9.7 also introduces a new view to see and modify Nearest Spaces and Federated Floor relations – Custom Relations. Nearest Space and Federated Floor of components can be changed using the custom relations view.  This allows you to establish a custom set of relations, or to move any misplaced components onto the correct Federated Floor.
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Custom relations are shown in the Info View -> Relations tab in normal font. Other relations (from IFC files) are shown in Italics
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Custom Relations pop up menu: While viewing the Relations tab, if you select Federated Floors or Nearest Space, you can right-click to open the Custom Relations View for editing.
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Federated floors can be used in ITO templates and in the rule template #231. The Federated Floors property can be used to separate rows of information in ITO, and can be used as a limiter to only designate components of a specific federated floor to be checked.uc_01_13uc_01_12

There is also a new hierarchy in the Model Tree View – Federated floors.  This allows for quick selection of Federated floors by selecting an icon from the model tree.
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Federated floors are also used in the floor list of the Navigation map (you can select a floor from the list in the top of the Navigation map – the list now only includes Federated floors)
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Company Extensions

V9.7 also introduces a new tool to create, save, export and open Company-specific extensions (Extension Manager) from the Rule Set Manager (RSM) view. This new capability makes it possible for more advanced SMC users to build and share company, location, or project-specific rulesets (or extensions).
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The result is a company-specific package that can be uploaded to the Solibri Solution Center, where it can be used as a custom company extension.  By doing so, all users in a company can start SMC as the same Role, using the same extension, and therefore operate with a consistent SMC environment of Rulesets, Classifications and Information Takeoffs.  All users will see the same content in SMC.
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Information Takeoff

V9.7 makes it possible to report all open Information Takeoff templates at one time.  This improvement is particularly useful for users who may have many different use cases for ITO, and therefore have run many different Takeoffs that are still open.  Before this enhancement, each Takeoff would need to be run individually, then reported one by one.
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ITOs indicate when a model has been changed after information has been taken off.  This enhancement adds an indicator to the takeoff window, signifying when a model change has made a previous takeoff out of date.
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Info View

Properties defined in type instances are shown in italics (properties defined in component instance level are shown in normal font). This is a helpful tool, as you will now know whether a property is defined by the Type of the component, or if it is unique to the individual component.
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If a value defined in the type instance differs from a value defined in the component instance, it is shown as a ‘strike through.’

A new property in the Identification tab: Type name – value of the type instance name (can be different than type of the component, if the component has a value in property psetXCommon: reference).  This more accurately reflects the full level of information available about the component, replacing the instance value ‘reference’ with the correct Type information.
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In conclusion, Solibri Model Checker 9.7 is a release with some impressive new features designed to streamline your workflow, as well as a lot of work behind the scenes and with the User Interface. With the changes to the Communication layout, issues identified in the model are now more efficiently managed to allow for quicker updating and review. New Company Extensions accomplish two major goals – first, allowing for better cohesion amongst teams, ensuring that everyone uses the same set of rules and requirements, and second, opening up SMC to broader audiences, as extensions can be company, project, regional or even national-specific. Finally, the Relations tool for combining (federating) floors from multiple models results in a much more efficient coordination workflow. V9.7 is loaded with enhancements and new capabilities, all intended to make your experience richer. Your investment in Solibri Model Checker continues to yield value and we look forward to your feedback, as well as your suggestions.

Overview of New Features of SMC 9.7

Isolating and Managing Issues Based on their Space in the Model

Solibri Model Checker (SMC) is designed to support a workflow that results in a model (single or federated) that is of the highest possible quality. You must find which co,ordination processes work best and incorporate them into your current workflow.   When considering the most effective and efficient way to identify, group and then manage issue results, one common method is to use issue proximity to a grid location as the main point of focus.

In SMC, you can go beyond the basic XYZ coordinate information and group results by the Space where they are occurring.  Since coordination sessions are usually very focused on specific areas (floors, quadrants or even individual rooms) of the structure, this capability aligns very smoothly with how your project team operates. This unique feature provides the flexibility to isolate any/all issues by their location inside the designed building spaces rather than just finding the approximate location relative to columns and/or grids, or their X/Y/Z coordinates. That is both tedious and time consuming.

*This article assumes a general knowledge of how to run checks for issues in SMC, and will begin with a check having already been run.  For more information about how to run a check in SMC, please follow this link to a related article on our WordPress site:

CHECKING LAYOUT TUTORIAL

Start by running a check in Solibri Model Checker.  Once the results have been generated, hide everything in the model in the 3D view.

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Then, select the Show/Hide Space option to show only the spaces.

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Right click while hovering your mouse over any space.  Select the ‘sectioning’ option, then choose “Section Box Around Space.”

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You will now see only the chosen space.   Move to the ‘Results’ window, and change filtering from ‘No Filtering’ to ‘Filter with Sections.’

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Now, as Checking Results are reviewed, only issues relating to, or within that space will be displayed.  You can quickly assess the situation in particular rooms (such as electrical or utility rooms, or laboratories) without having to review or sift through other less relevant results.   The issues for a specific space can be reviewed and then reported as a group, before other areas of the building are dealt with in broader coordination sessions.

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Isolating and Managing Issues Based on their Space in the Model

Current Location Tracking

There are times when even the most experienced operators get lost in models. And if not lost, there are certainly many times when it would be nice to know what space you are in, at that moment. It is quite easy to get disoriented as you pass through walls and make your way up and down stairways. There are also times when you are in the model and you want to create a slide or share a viewpoint, and it would be nice to have the location included.

In Solibri Model Checker (SMC), there are several tools and tips that can make your life easier. Some of them have been covered in previous articles, but one of particular value is SMC’s ability to identify the room or space you’re in at any given moment. To see this information, simply switch to the walk mode and begin navigating through the model.

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In the bottom right-hand corner of the 3-D window the room or space name will appear, and will change as you move from room to room. As long as you stay in the walk mode, this space location indicator will remain in the 3-D window in the Model, Checking, Coordination, and Information Takeoff layout. Also, the short name of the file that contains the space is displayed, as well as your current role.

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These pieces of information, in conjunction with other tools such as the 2D/plan layout (also displayed in the image above) will make model navigation in Solibri Model Checker easier and more enjoyable.

Current Location Tracking

Incorporating the Solibri Model Viewer into your Project Workflow – Great capabilities to streamline and no cost to the project team

Solibri Model Viewer (SMV) is an exceptionally powerful model review tool intended for users who do not have a license of the Solibri Model Checker (SMC).  While the interfaces are nearly identical, SMV is for those users who must review work in BIM files but do not necessarily need to be able to perform checks or generate content in the BIM.  For these users, SMV offers a robust review option that is intuitive and easy to use.  Also, SMV acts as a presentation tool for those users who may not be able to take their SMC licenses with them to a meeting, or to a location without internet access.

If you are already familiar with Solibri Model Checker, you should be very comfortable with the SMV environment. The interface will be familiar, however, some key functions of SMC are disabled in the free Viewer.  Functionality such as running a check, or creating a new presentation, or merging multiple models require a Solibri Model Checker license.  SMV is intended to be used as a review tool, not a tool for creating additional content.

We will begin with the interface. There are multiple tabs at the top of the screen: File, Model, Checking, Communication, and finally Information Takeoff. From the File tab the user chooses which model is desired to review by selecting Open Model.

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Once the file has been loaded in SMV, The user will automatically be taken to the Model tab. There are several viewing options on the Model tab, including the file tree, the info window, and the 3-D window which is present on all layouts.

Model Tree: the model tree can be expanded manually by selecting the + sign next to any model listed, or via hotkey.  The user can isolate components in the view and add, subtract, or set components to the selection basket by selecting those components in the Model Tree view and clicking the +, -, or = buttons at the top right of the Model Tree view. For example, the user can select a specific floor or type of component from the model tree and isolate those components in the 3D view by clicking the = button. The 3-D window will change to reflect only those selected components. Additional components can be added or subtracted from the 3-D view by selecting the plus or minus sign.

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3D Views: these are intended to assist the user in navigation. In the top right of the 3-D view there are several drop-down windows, beginning with the navigation mode. Navigation modes include pan, orbit, walk and game mode. Select the navigation mode from the drop-down and press your mouse key to begin navigating. In addition, there is a tools drop-down that includes such functionality as Info and Hide.  By default, the user starts in the info mode. This simply means that as components are selected in the 3-D window by the user, the information about those elements is displayed in the info window in the bottom left corner of the model layout. In contrast, switching to the Hide mode will allow the user to hide components in the 3-D window by selecting them.

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There is much more to know about the model tab, but this article serves as only an introductory tutorial for the most frequently used functions in SMV.

Select the Checking tab to move to the layout where ruleset checks that a user has performed in SMC can be reviewed or discussed. The checking tab consists of the 3-D window, the checking window, and checking results. The 3-D window is consistent in all layouts; so all functionalities from the model tab are still available from the checking tab.

To review checking results, select any ruleset from the Checking window and expand the results to see the full list of checks that have been run on the BIM. By selecting any rule within the checking window, the results of that check will automatically be displayed in the checking results window.  Then, select the result in the checking results window to automatically zoom to that location in the 3-D window.

Perhaps most importantly, any issues that have been rejected by the reviewer in Solibri Model Checker will have a red X next to them. To the right of these rejected checking results, there is a small icon if a slide has been created for the issue. User functionality in the checking layout is limited to review, so no new checks or modification can be created.  One final note: when reviewing results in the checking layout, a user can select a component in the 3-D window at any time and the info window will appear displaying all related information.

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Switching to the Communication layout, you will find a presentation window to the left of the 3-D window. Any presentations that have been created by the model reviewer in SMC are listed here.  These presentations may include screenshots of different perspectives of the BIM as section views or redlined images, as well as presentations generated from any checking results that were found and rejected. Select any presentation that you would like to review, and then choose any of the slides, or issues, that appear below. The 3-D window will change to reflect the slide that is selected, changing to a live version of that model condition. In other words, when a slide is selected and reflected in the 3-D window, the user can still freely navigate the 3-D window, as it is not simply a static slide but a live representation of the slide.

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Finally, there is the Information Takeoff layout. Again, functionality here is limited to review, so a user cannot create a new takeoff, but has the ability to look at any Information Takeoff definitions that have been created in SMC.  The Information Takeoff view is displayed at the bottom of the 3-D view. It contains columns of information about specified components. The user or reviewer in SMC creates takeoffs to reflect the information they find relevant. This may include details about specific component types such as spaces or walls, or be more generic and contain information about multiple component types.  In the top right of the Information Takeoff view there is a drop-down containing any takeoffs that have already been created. Select the drop down and choose any takeoff that you would like to view. When reviewing the information in the Information Takeoff View, the model in the 3-D window will be color-coded to reflect different rows of information. Select any row of information to isolate that row in the 3-D window.

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This introduction should provide a good starting point for anyone hoping to use Solibri Model Viewer.  As mentioned before, SMV is very similar to SMC in its layout and behavior, so if you would like to go deeper into the features of SMV/SMC, we encourage you to review the SMC tutorial available on our website through the following link: http://www.solibri.com/products/solibri-model-checker/tutorials/

The site contains a getting started tutorial for SMC, as well as a video tutorial for all layouts discussed in this article.

Incorporating the Solibri Model Viewer into your Project Workflow – Great capabilities to streamline and no cost to the project team