Connection Settings

BIMcloud offers a very flexible method to set up and establish the connection between the different components. The identification of the BIMcloud component, and the address used to access it, are completely separated. This allows the users to use different addresses to connect to the same server and at the same time maintain the internal project links (even if it was added using a different address). 

It is possible to prepare the server for all possible connections in advance and set up the different addresses centrally. This ensures that ARCHICAD users will not have to worry about how to connect, because the Server Administrator has set up everything. If the connection was not configured in all details on the server in advance, then the users are also able to add alternative addresses and connect using a custom address.


Primary address: This is the unique identification of the server, set up by the person installing the BIMcloud.

Alternative addresses: Predefined alternative addresses defined on the server, which can be used to connect to this server as well.

Local addresses: Alternative address entered by the user in ARCHICAD.

Automatic address: Automatic addresses are generated automatically based on the active address.

Fallback: ARCHICAD is not able to communicate with the BIMcloud Server, so it uses the BIMcloud Manager as a bridge to connect.

Lookup order: Priority-based list of all available addresses. ARCHICAD picks the active address from this list

Active address: The address currently used by ARCHICAD to connect to the BIMcloud Manager.

Automatic/Manual address selection: The method ARCHICAD uses to pick the Active address.

Primary address

This is the unique identification of the server, set up by the person installing the BIMcloud. There is only one primary address for each BIMcloud component.

ARCHICAD uses this address to uniquely identify the server – even if it is communicating using a different address at the moment. This addresses is also used when placing references to the server (e.g. placing a hotlinked module from a Teamwork project).

When ARCHICAD opens a project which contains a reference to a BIMcloud not yet known by ARCHICAD, then ARCHICAD will use the primary address stored in the hotlink reference to find the server:

If the address is working, then ARCHICAD will download all the alternative addresses and pick the most suitable one based on priorities.

If the address is not working, then it will prompt the user to enter a currently working address to the new server. Once a working address is entered, ARCHICAD will download the list of alternative addresses based on the pre-defined priorities.

Set up the Primary address on the Settings panel of each BIMcloud component.

It is recommended not to change the Primary address of the BIMcloud. In case it must be changed, it is a good practice to add the old Primary address to the list of alternative addresses – even if it is not working any more. This ensures that ARCHICAD will be able to identify links placed by the old Primary address and keep the references alive in projects.

Alternative addresses

The list of alternative addresses is a ‘menu’ for ARCHICAD. It will go through this list in a certain order (see Lookup order) and connect to the server using the first functioning one.

Alternative addresses can be pre-set on the BIMcloud Manager for every server component. 

Automatic address

Automatic addresses are available for BIMcloud Servers. Automatic addresses are not absolute addresses, but rather relative addresses. They are able to dynamically create an address based on the currently used address of the BIMcloud Manager. An example:

ARCHICAD uses the http://server-computer:1228 address to connect to the server

The Automatic address is $protocol://$host:1229

ARCHICAD will automatically use http://server-computer:1229 to connect to the Server.

The user goes home and uses a different address to connect to the server through the internet:

ARCHICAD will automatically use to connect to the Server.

There are two automatic fields to generate automatic addresses:

‘$protocol’: the protocol part of the url; in the above example, this is ‘http’ and ‘https

‘$host’: the address part of the url without the protocol and the port. In the above example, this is: ‘server-computer’ and ‘


In case ARCHICAD is not able to directly communicate with a BIMcloud Server, yet the BIMcloud Manager is accessible, then it will use the BIMcloud Manager as a ‘bridge’ to the BIMcloud Server and send all traffic through it. (Keep in mind that this kind of communication can affect the overall performance of BIMcloud, depending on the locations of the different components.)

Fallback communication might be a good choice when accessing the BIMcloud from outside the office, because it requires the IT administrator to open only one port on the company firewall.

Lookup order

When ARCHICAD tries to connect to a BIMcloud, it will go through the addresses in a certain order. This order can be set on the BIMcloud Manager. Alternative addresses added locally from ARCHICAD will always be at the end of the lookup order.

Automatic / Manual address selection

It is possible to override the address selected automatically by ARCHICAD, and force it to use a specific address instead. Use ARCHICAD’s Network Diagnostic tool to override the automatically selected address. Keep in mind that manually selecting an address might force ARCHICAD into an offline state even if there is a different – currently working – alternative address available.

Connection Process

ARCHICAD goes through the following steps when it connects to a BIMcloud.

When Adding a New BIMcloud Server:

When the user adds a new server to the server list, ARCHICAD asks for an address, a username and a matching password.

ARCHICAD connects to the BIMcloud Manager using the entered address and:

Downloads its primary address and stores it as a unique identifier for this new server

Downloads the list of alternative addresses and the lookup order

Automatically selects the most suitable address based on the lookup order

When re-connecting to a currently offline server:

When ARCHICAD detects that the selected server is offline, the user will be able to start ARCHICAD’s Network Diagnostic tool and enter a new alternative address for the server. ARCHICAD will remember this alternative address in the future and use it in the lookup order when trying to connect to this server.

When connecting to an unknown server referenced from a hotlink module or a library:

Hotlink modules and Linked libraries contain the Primary address of their server in the reference. When ARCHICAD is about to check their status, it will use this Primary Address to identify the server.

If this server is already known by ARCHICAD (it is available on its server list), then it will go through the regular connection process and pick the most suitable address automatically.

If the server is not known yet, but the stored Primary Address is working, then it will automatically download the additional connection details and pick the most suitable address automatically.

If the server is not known yet and the link does not work either, then ARCHICAD will prompt the user to enter a working alternative address to the server. Once a working address is entered, it will download the additional connection details and pick the most suitable address automatically.

Best Practice

Setting up multiple alternative addresses on the BIMcloud ensures that:

ARCHICAD users will not have to worry about how the ARCHICAD connects to the BIMcloud; the IT administrator sets everything up

The connection will always be optimal

Direct connection between the components is always the most effective way of communication. Any extra routes or processing will only increase the transfer time:

http proxy servers: data is always tunneled through a common server and then forwarded to the relevant component

https security: data is always encoded and decoded

fallback communication: data is tunneled through BIMcloud Manager

The best practice for setting up addresses and the lookup order is to start with the most effective way of communication and then add the less effective ones:

1.Direct connection with an IP address:

2.Direct connection with a computer name: http://server-computer:1228

3.Connection with a fully qualified address:

4.Connection through a secure connection:

ARCHICAD will automatically select the following addresses from the above list depending on its location:

From the office it will pick either #1 or #2, because the computers are on the same LAN.

From a branch office it will pick either #1, #2 or #3, depending on how the two LANs are connected.

From a remote location with a simple internet connection it will always choose #4. It is the least effective method, but it automatically provides the highest level of security.


Use ARCHICAD’s built in Network Diagnostic tool to find and fix connection related errors.

The Network Diagnostic is accessible from all parts of the ARCHICAD interface at which you select and log in to a server, plus the Teamwork Palette, and the Work Environment Settings Network and Update page (if you have installed a Delta Cache Server with BIMcloud).

See the Network Diagnostic section in the Collaboration chapter of the ARCHICAD Reference Guide.