Troubleshooting Guide – Recovering lost Teamwork projects

by GRAPHISOFT and Marton Kiss · updated: 07.11.2012

This article describes possibilities of recovering a Teamwork project in case the BIM server has been corrupted or stopped working. There are several strategies to recover a project, and picking the best strategy will help you recover the most of your lost data. Here are the different routes you can take:

Server side strategies

  • 1. – The TeamworkServerBackupTool can create a “full backup” of your BIM Server. With this tool, you can recover projects, libraries and user databases as well. We recommend using the TeamworkServerBackupTool for creating backups, as it provides the best security
  • 2. – If your BIM server is damaged beyond repair, and you need to re-install it, you might have the option to preserve the Project database when uninstalling the BIM server, and when re-installing the BIM server, you have the option to import that project database. There might be situations when the BIM server is damaged in a way when this option is not offered when uninstalling the BIM Server.
  • 3. – If you can not import the pervious project database when re-installing the BIM server, you can still use the old project database/backup files to recover the projects. You can use the same technique for recovering files from e.g. a tape backup. Read more about this

When should I choose the server side option?

  • If you have server backups which can be used
  • The projects haven’t changed much compared to the state in your backup
  • There is no client side version of the project – all users have left the project

Client side strategy

  • If your whole server database is lost, you can still recover projects from the client machines, as all the clients who have joined to a Teamwork project have a copy of the project on their local machine.

When should I recover the project on the client side?

  • The BIM Server/BIM Server data is not available
  • On the client(s) a more up to date version of the projects are present
  • There is at least one user who is in joined state in the project

Server side data recovery

alt text

1. Recover using TeamworkServerBackup tool

To recover the projects on the server side please see this article: BIM Server Backup Scripting Tools

2. Fix the BIM Server by reinstalling the not working module

In case reinstalling only a module of the BIM Server it’s projects will be remain, so those can be used after reinstalling the module.

{i} This function is only available if there is a module left on the computer, and is not available if you are using a standalone module. For standalone modules use the backup tool (1.) to export the database for further usage or use the existing automatic backups (3.) to restore the projects – this can be useful if the Server cannot be started.

3. Restore project database on a different server

In case the server itself is not available but the project database is, you can recover the projects.

Create dummy projects on the new server

First create as many projects as you would like to recover on the new server, the fastest way is to use the template projects from here:

  • Download the ones you need (for each module version a different template should be used)
  • Import them on the new BIM Server: Open BIM Server Manager, Projects, Create, Import from file
  • Give them real names for the projects (the name cannot be changed later so it is worth it to use the final names)

import.png

Change the project databases

Prior doing anything stop the server and wait until it completely stops.

  • Locate the new project database, see below the default paths:
    on Mac: /Applications/Graphisoft/BIM Server/Projects/old project-<IDs>/project.db
    on Windows: c:/Program Files/Graphisoft/BIM Server/Projects/old project-<IDs>/project.db
  • Replace these with the project databases (one-by-one) from the backup/from the old server

After all of the projects are recovered start your server and you can join the projects.

/!\ Make sure that the new server has the same modules as the old one.

4. Restore an automatic project backup on a different server

This way can be helpful in case recovering the project database is not possible.

Create dummy projects on the new server

  • On the new BIM server, create a dummy new project – for example share an empty project and leave it. (Teamwork/Project/Leave Teamwork Project)
  • In the BIM server manager, create a manual backup for the dummy project. (Select the project/Settings/Backup/Create)

createbackup.PNG

Change the project backups

For this to work, the BIM Server must be must stopped and when the copy is completed, restarted. Otherwise, it will not recognize “new” and possibly overwritten backup files.

  • Find one of the old project’s  most recent .backup file and overwrite the dummy project’s .backup file with it.
    • – locate on the old server, the backup file you would recover:
    on Mac: /Applications/Graphisoft/BIM Server/Projects/old project-<IDs>/Backups/2011.01.18 10-17 Project Version - oldproject.backup
    on Windows: c:/Program Files/Graphisoft/BIM Server/Projects/old project-<IDs>/Backups/2011.01.18 10-17 Project Version - oldproject.backup
    • – overwrite the dummy project’s backup:
    on Mac /Applications/Graphisoft/BIM Server/Projects/dummy-<IDs>/Backups/2011.01.18 10-17 Project Version - for restore.backup
    on Windows: c:/Program Files//Graphisoft/BIM Server/Projects/dummy-<IDs>/Backups/2011.01.18 10-17 Project Version - for restore.backup
  • In the BIM server manager, use the “roll back” feature to restore the backup of the dummy file

rollback.PNG


Client side project recovery

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{i} What is client side data

  • After you joined a TeamWork project ArchiCAD will create a local cache of the TeamWork data, so only the deltas will travel through the network and all your changes will be saved here even if you work in offline mode. This local copy will remain until you leave the project, or remove the local data using Local Data Manager. (TeamWork menu/Project/Local Data Manager) Here you can check when you last used the project and the physical paths to where the data is stored.

LocalDataManager.PNG

General workflow – there is no running Server

alt text 1. Find the most up to date version of the project

  • After the server becomes unavailable, some users will have not sent changes. It is worth it to find the most up to date client and use that for data recovery. The other users also should consider saving their data, to make it possible to copy-paste their unsent changes to the project once it is shared.

2. Open the TW project on the client

  • Open ArchiCAD on the client which you chose in the previous step and open the project.

Open.PNG

  • This will be possible from your local cache even if the server is offline – there will be a message stating you are working in offline mode.

Note: To see all projects that you have a local copy of, select the “All available BIM Servers” option in the “Choose BIM Server” drop-down menu

Offline.PNG

3. Save a pln

  • From the project, save a pln (file save as). You can continue to work in that file in solo mode, or you can create a new TeamWork project.

saveas.PNG

4. Share the project again

  • After the server is running again, or has been re-installed, the pln can be shared again: Open the pln and share it: Teamwork menu/Project/Share
    • {i} If only the project has troubles, but the rest of the server is fine, many just delete the problematic project from the server. In this way, they can re-use the same name when they share again.

share.PNG

5. Join the newly created TW project and continue to work

  • Join the project with the other team members, everyone can copy paste their unsent changes and continue the project.

The Server is running again, but the project is missing

alt text 1. The server runs but the project is missing

  • In case the server runs, but does not have the project you would recover – eg: the server was re-installed, or a new computer was set as BIM Server there will be an error message: Project not found on the server.

NotFound.PNG

  • Click on Continue Anyway to open the local copy of the project.<!> Clicking on Close & Delete Local Project Data will permanently delete the project from your hard drive.

2. Not only the project but the user is missing

  • In case you have a new BIM Server where not only the project but the user is missing ArchiCAD will give an Authentication Failed error message.

Authentication.PNG

  • Click on Cancel to bypass the authentication. In the next dialog you can choose Continue Offline option.

Warning.PNG

Recovery possibilities if the local data is deleted

1. Where can I find my local data – local cache

  • On Mac: /Users/<username>/Library/Application Support/Graphisoft/TW Data/AC-<version>
  • On Windows Xp: C:\Documents and Settings\<username>\Graphisoft\TW Data\AC-<version>
  • On Windows Vista/7: C:\Users\<username>\Graphisoft\TW Data\AC-<version>

2. I’ve already left the project/deleted the local TW data alt text

  • If you have backup system like – Time Machine, Windows backup etc – it might be possible to recover the deleted folder even the success is not guaranteed. In case the backup was created when the project was used it is possible that the local database’s files are not consistent – were not created at the same moment. But it is worth it to give it a try. (If this fails on one client, try it on an other.)
    • Locate the project’s local cache: TW Data/AC-<version>/<servername>-<projectname>-<user> (In Local Data Manager you can check the projects folder)
    • Restore the folder
    • Launch ArchiCAD an open the project

Save library data

1. Built in libraries

The built in libraries are parts of the installed ArchiCAD package so after re-sharing the file these will be automatically uploaded to the server as BIM Server libraries.

2. Custom libraries

If the custom libraries are intact on your network it is best to upload those using the Manage BIM Server Libraries menu item. If that place has also been corrupted you can use the local data. That local copy has all the library parts which were in the BIM Server library.

  • Locate the local copy of the library – the path can be checked in Local Data Manager (The libraries can be also found under the TWData folder)
  • Move that folder to the place where you store your BIM library sources, rename it to the original name
  • Upload the folder to the BIM Server using ArchiCAD (File menu/Libraries and Objects/Manage BIM Server Libraries)

LocalLib.PNG

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