Document Sharing - Absolute vs relative file paths

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I've recently brought on a new staff member who works remotely, and we share files over the cloud which has worked perfectly except for one thing - the absolute file path system CA uses.  Coming from Acad, we had the option of referenced files to be either absolute (c:\localhd\user\cloudfolder\filefolder\file.plan) or relative (..\cloudfolder\filefolder\file.plan).


From what I can find, CA seems to be strictly absolute, which is unhelpful for sharing because each time a new user opens a layout, they have to re-connect any referenced plans if it had been opened previously by the other user(s).   When i used acad, we always referenced files using relative paths, which made it great for file sharing because everything downstream of the user-specific filesystem would be identical on the two machines, and therefore no constant re-pathing.  


For you power users out there, Is there a secret way to make relative paths happen using Chief?


Thank you!



I should mention that we are not working from the cloud strictly speaking (i.e. opening a cloud-based file using our internet browser).  Instead the cloud service automatically updates the local files on each of our hard drives, keeping them in sync, which allows for us to work from our hard drive.  When the file is saved, the cloud service automatically syncs and updates the other user.

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Sounds like you're using OneDrive (oh my god worst sync program ever) or something similar. My recommendation is to map your shared drive to the same letter, so you always have the same path between different computers, if this is possible in your setup. This is easy to do in SharePoint, plus you wouldn't have to deal with OneDrive! For other cloud solutions, I'm sure there are similar capabilities.

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Hi Javatom -

The name doesn't change, but the path does because the cloud folders reside on each of our respective hard drives and is kept in sync by the cloud:


computer 1:





unless every referenced file is in the same folder (which for us is not practical since we reference many files into multiple layouts), Chief does not resolve the file location because of the differences in the root directories (prior to "cloudfolder" in the example above...

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Hi Joseph -

Ha - just abandoned onedrive a month ago as it was every bit as terrible as the reviewers said (particularly as a mac user), but it was cheap so I gave it a try.  I went to Box, which has been much more stable, easy to use, and has great (and easy to implement) folder permissions.


In any case, from what I can tell, most cloud service sync programs work the same (map a folder to the local hd and keep in sync as that folder is changed), which unless the two hard drives were the same letter and name, would still pose a problem.  


Is that not the case?

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Re read your post and Lew's addition:


I've been a mac user for a very long time, but do remember drive mapping on windows.  I'll see if I can get it to work on mac...


I'll post back here shortly to let you know how it worked out

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We've been using "backup entire file" to zip. Not ideal but easier than replacing stuff.

Just got a MyCloud hoping that makes things easier but haven't had time to get it up and running so don't know.

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Hi Joe -

We don't work from the cloud, only sync to the cloud (i.e. there is a copy of each file on each users hard drive), which avoids the multiple open file problem (we can both work on the same local copy of the file at the same time without file corruption, but do have the issue of the the last one to save their file will over-write the other's work), but since these are basically synced local drives the file structure is different in each machine and creates the file path problem I have referenced.

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Hi Mark -

Physical network drive (like your MyCloud) synced to the cloud (box or dropbox) and accessed by each user over the internet might be a good answer to the problem if the mapping can be made identical for each machine... thanks for the idea

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