An AutoCAD-to-cloud connection for better collaboration and design reviews


FileCloud is a hyper-secure content collaboration platform that provides industry-leading file sharing, compliance, data governance, data leak protection, data retention, and digital rights management capabilities.

The Challenge: Clunky CAD collaboration with external stakeholders

AutoCAD designers use workarounds to share their models with external stakeholders. Those collaborators need to review designs but often don’t have CAD software. One solution is to convert designs into PDFs, a 2D format that strips the file of its full value. The texture from 3D views is missing. The reviewer can’t manipulate the design to see it from different angles. The data that supports the model becomes static or hidden. Stakeholders exchange feedback and revisions via emailed files, rather than in the model.

This type of fragmented collaboration hurts productivity. Estimates show workers lose 9%-20% of their time toggling between applications. Not to mention the added chance for emails to get lost or lost in translation. FileCloud sought a way to bridge the collaboration gap and make AutoCAD files work for external stakeholders.

The Solution: AutoCAD-to-cloud connection delivers designs to reviewers in real time

FileCloud used Autodesk APIs to build an AutoCAD-to-cloud connection that delivers designs to reviewers in real time. From FileCloud’s directory, a reviewer can click an AutoCAD file. Autodesk’s Data Management API will fetch it from the software and deliver it to the cloud. The Model Derivative API translates the file into a lighter format, while the Forge Viewer displays the 3D view.

Collaboration happens live. Reviewers can add metadata, classifying a file as confidential, for instance. They can provide feedback, control versions, or create new workflows. Is it ready for final approval? They can send it from the file sharing system, rather than attaching a PDF via email. The result? A seamless review process in one application.   

Business Outcomes: Better collaboration and better feedback with real-time reviews

  • Real-time review process improves collaboration
  • Access to 3D views generates higher quality feedback and better design outcomes
  • A single environment for reviews reduces the chance for error and miscommunication 

“Autodesk customers create these rich documents that they need to share with others. They also need to protect their intellectual property. Autodesk’s cloud-based APIs combine into a simple solution that allows us to call up files live. It’s a win-win. Reviewers get the best possible view, and designers protect their IP, using FileCloud’s hyper-secure content platform." - Ray Downes, CEO, FileCloud


APIs and Services

Data Management API
Data Management API
Model Derivative API
Model Derivative API

Autodesk Products


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