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In line with some of the other Blog Posts - I decided that I would start to capture commonly requested information about working with SCS900 and Siteworks products and TBC combined. In this Blog I will post information that you will find helpful if you are looking for answers or tools to solve data type issues when working with SCS900 or Siteworks. If you have questions in this arena, please ask them in this Blog so that we can contain all related information in one place.

 

Hope that this is helpful

 

Alan

As you dig deeper and deeper into TBC and use it for more and more tasks in your daily workload, you start to ask "how do I do this or that" when the tools that are provided may not do what you specifically want. In this Blog I am going to start to capture Tips and Tricks relating to CAD Drawing and Editing that may be useful for you to know when you start to use TBC's CAD capabilities more.

 

If you have specific How To questions relating to CAD Editing please put them in this BLOG so we can keep all this type of information together in one place.

 

Thanks

 

Alan

I get a lot of Questions around creating and managing data for the GCS900, Earthworks and Siteworks / SCS900 systems. So much so that I feel that the creation of a Blog Post (that is easy to locate) that captures all of the issues that I hear about in one place for the benefit of all users out there. 

 

Please post Questions and Answers to commonly encountered data management issues here so we can create a really useful Blog for field system Managers and Users.

 

Thanks

 

Alan

Alan Sharp

Image Management in TBC

Posted by Alan Sharp Jul 29, 2019

I am often asked for more detail on the use of Digital Globe Satellite Imagery in TBC - here are some FAQs and Responses

 

Question 1

Is TBC directly connected to the Digital Globe Image Server when you turn on the background map function?

 

Answer 1

Yes - the Trimble ID login gets you to Connect Services and those services parse your project data and send on the request to the Digital Globe Image Server to retrieve the image set for your project / graphical display area. We do not make a copy of the Digital Globe Satellite Imagery so it is 100% up to date with the Digital Globe Images that are available.

 

Question 2

Is the Digital Globe Imagery the highest resolution imagery that is available from that service provider?

 

Answer 2

Yes - Google Earth is higher resolution in some areas because they supplement the Satellite Imagery with low elevation image data from terrestrial flight imagery. Digital Globe Imagery is all Satellite based imagery.

 

Question 3

What is the accuracy of the Digital Globe Imagery?

 

Answer 3

The Digital Globe Imagery is typically accurate to better than 10m with a >90% confidence in that accuracy. If you see errors greater than that it is likely that it is to do with the Coordinate System and Projection that you are using in your project and the "reprojection" of the Digital Globe Imagery that TBC is doing. Please share example projects where the errors are greater than these stated accuracies for us to take a look at.

 

Question 4

How old is the Digital Globe Imagery?

 

Answer 4

The Digital Globe Imagery is typically updated every 2 years on a rolling coverage basis. When compared with Google Earth imagery it can be both more current or older because the rolling update cycles of Digital Globe and Google are not the same.

 

Question 5

Why do Trimble use Digital Globe Imagery vs Google Earth or other Image Servers?

 

Answer 5

Digital Globe is a) Global and b) cheaper to offer as a service than other providers. While Google is higher quality image data it is significantly more expensive to license than Digital Globe. With the advent of Drone Flying being common for contractors, many projects have high accuracy high resolution data of their own available. We don't see the need to contract with a higher quality image provider because we would have to pass that cost on to you as consumers and  we feel that it is a "fill in" rather than a primary service. You also get the optional Street Maps within this background image function which allows you to map Haul Roads and Site Access Points accurately from existing infrastructure. Trimble Sketchup for example has recently licensed Nearmap for high resolution imagery, however that covers urban areas more than green field areas which may be good for Architects but less so for Civil Contractors. It is also not a Global Coverage service.

  • First you need a Trimble ID - if you don't have one go to this website and follow the steps to Sign Up for a Trimble ID (this will give you a Connect Services Login (uses your email address and password)

 

      Click Here For Link

 

  • Now that you have a Trimble ID - In TBC go to Support - Options - External Servces - Profiles and create a Trimble Connect Service Profile. Enter your rimble ID Username and Password and then tap "Test Settings" and if it passes, Tap "Sign In" and then "Set as Active". This will start the service each time you start TBC.
  • Now you need your Project to have some data in it (a Point or Line is a minimum) and it must also have a coordinate system - that can be a Site Calibration File imported (DC, CAL or CFG file) or can be set using a Coordinate System (Projection and Datum etc.)
  • Now you can tap the Background Map Service Toggle Button at the base of the graphics screen area -  to activate the Map Service.
  • Once active if you want to toggle between Satellite Image and Street Map you can go to Project Explorer and go to the top of the tree and find the Project Name and then look at its properties - In the Background Map section the Type can be "Trimble Mapview" (the Street Map) or Digital Globe Imagery (The Satellite Imagery). Here you can also set the Transparency of the Background Map.

 

Here is the result of showing the imagery behind a TIN Surface Model of the Trimble Building Facility in Colorado, USA.

 

 

Hope that this is useful information

 

Alan

I see a lot of traffic internally and through the Forum on this subject and have decided that a Blog Post where we can capture all "Working With AutoCAD and Civil 3D questions" in one place as a resource for you all to use. Please post questions here relating to anything regarding AutoCAD, Civil 3D, DWG, DXF, Trueview or related activities. We will use the Q&A as a resource to improve TBC going forwards and hopefully you will get answers to commonly asked questions and problems. 

 

My colleague Mike Carris is our resident Civil 3D Guru, he worked for several years as an Autodesk Trainer for Civil 3D so he knows the system better than most. He has a number of videos (K-APP) that are available on the Trimble Library that you may also want to review as a part of your quest to make Autodesk data more usable in TBC. The link here provides you with a Voucher to access some of these K-APPs for free on Trimble Library (this one covers CAD Data Objects and how to manage those in AutoCAD / Civil 3D i order to create those objects in TBC

 

Understanding CAD Data kApp Voucher Code

 

The Voucher will add the K-APP to your personal Trimble Library. Trimble Library can be accessed from the Support Menu Ribbon in TBC or at the following link

 

Trimble Library Link

 

You will need a Trimble ID to access the Trimble Library - you can get a Trimble ID at the following link if you don't already have one

 

Trimble ID Link

 

To kick this off, the first post, which I will complete next week (but am publishing now), posed some questions to Mike as a response to some user questions this week - Mike is going to provide a more detailed response to me shortly, however his initial responses are pretty handy to have today.

 

Let us know what you need to understand and we will collectively try to assist you

 

Alan

 

After another successful PUG Power Users Group Conference in April, I am pleased to provide those of you that could not make it to Colorado with the Training Exercises that we went through at the event. I will be uploading these over the next few days (there is a lot of video content here - so please be patient with me), and I will also post the example files and exercise handouts as well.

 

Looking forward To PUG 3.0 in October ...

 

Hope you find these useful

 

Alan

Trimble Business Center v5.10 Releases Today (May 31 2019)

 

 

The Trimble Business Center Version 5.10 releases to users today (May 31st 2019). The installation package will be available to all users by the end of the day. 

 

This release brings a host of new and improved capabilities that increase usability, productivity, capability, flexibilityand more in the following areas

 

  • Corridor Modeling including
    • New Improved Sideslope Instructions
      • Slope and Bench
      • Mine Slope, Bench and Haul Road
      • Variable Depth of Cut and Fill Side Slopes
      • Multi Element Sideslopes
      • Sloping Ditch Segments
      • Slope to Material Layer
      • Slope to Remote Surface
      • Model Subgrades with Side Slopes

New - Multi Element and Bench / Sideslope Capability

 

 

Mine Haul Road and Bench / Side Slope Computations

 

  • Improved Slope and Shareable Slope Tables (include vertical curves)
  • Copy and Paste Template Instructions
    • Inside a Template
    • Between Templates
    • Between Projects
    • You can now store your Master Templates or Master Template Elements in one project and copy them into you working Template
  • New Properties that constrain your model better
  • XLINES equivalent capability for model building
  • Improved Import of Station / Offset / Elevation and XSR / GEN Files (Cross Sections)
  • Improved CAD Cross Section Conversion
  • Snaps and Offset, Elevation and Slope Extraction in Template View
  • Accurate Measurements using Snaps in Template View 
  • Improved Earthwork Computations
  • Sideslope Modeling including
    • All of the above corridor features but linked to a linestring or alignment
    • Copy No Edit capability for rapid use of the same Template for multiple instances e.g. for Wall and Pier Footings, for Curb and Gutter Sections
    • Improved handling of steps, offsets, angular corners and cross slopes from angular alignments

 

New and Improved Sideslope Command Functionality

 

  • Plotting and Drafting
    • Dynaviews now support Grips and Snaps - easier placement and movement of the Dynaview on a sheet
    • Improved PDF output quality
    • New Smart Text capabilities
      • Alternate Units
      • Math Tools in the Smart Text (+ - / *)
      • Horizontal and Slope Lengths of Segments and Lines
      • Depth of Cover / Clearance Height Labeling and Querying

 

New - Smart Text Capability

 

  • Takeoff
    • New Custom Takeoff Reports - Fully Customizable Takeoff Reports
    • Includes screen shot of project
    • Easier to read and understand
    • More flexible content control

 

New - Custom Takeoff Report

 

  • Geospatial
    • Feature Code Library now embedded in Project Explorer
    • Attribute entry and Editing directly in Create Point command
    • MX9 Scanner Support Improvements
    • Crossing Geometry Report (Works without a Surface) (Clearances and Clashes between 3D Lines)
    • Update to UAS Master Software (that ships with TBC)

 

The New Crossing Geometry Function for Bust and Clash Analysis

 

New - Feature Code Library in Project Explorer

 

 

 

  • Import / Export
    • Support for Sketchup 2019
    • Improved IFC Import and Export (Reads more BIM Properties from IFC Objects)
      • Can now Georeference IFC Objects, Subset the Objects and Export IFC to Trimble Access
    • PDF Sheet Import and Automatic Placement and Vector Extract into Sheet View

 

Improved IFC Format Support and Trimble Access Interface

 

 

 

  • TML Macros
    • TML Status through Rockpile Solutions - Check availability, manage versioning, licenses capability
    • New TMLs from Rockpile Solutions
    • New TMLs from Trimble

 

TML Status Capability From Rockpile Solutions

 

We will be posting new Videos covering today's release webinar, product demos covering all of the new features and functions and also over the next week we will be releasing Video content of the detailed training materials covered at the recent PUG Conference.

 

A Very Happy Modeling Day!

 

Looking forward to hearing your feedback - I think you will like the new tools

 

Alan Sharp

Alan Sharp

Happy Memorial Day Weekend

Posted by Alan Sharp May 22, 2019

I am checking out for a long weekend - apologies but I will get answers to your questions early next week after the break.

 

Just wanted to thank all of those people out there that are serving or have served in the US Military protecting us all and keeping us out of harms way - we really appreciate all that you do / have done for us! 

 

Don't forget the following important Events in the TBC Calendar

 

  1. Next Week we have the TBC v5.1 release Overview Webinar on Friday 31st May at 10:00 am MST (See Events)
  2. October 2019 - the Next PUG Event is now 60% full, please get your reservations in soon to avoid disappointment

 

Will catch up next week

 

Alan

Alan Sharp

Working With The Forum

Posted by Alan Sharp May 16, 2019

All of the TBC Users out there that are using the forum as a reference, I am going to ask you to help me in my quest to give you better support and help on the product by using the forum to a greater degree going forwards.

 

As you may see when you are in the Forum, the forum captures a lot of useful data, here are some examples

 

  1. About where people are logging in from - this helps us determine the Global Reach of this tool and how well it is supporting you globally rather than just locally in the USA - it also helps us to understand how important TBC is for Contractors in different regions of the world and that helps us to focus our efforts on better solving those regions problems etc.
  2. What Questions, Blogs, Discussions etc are most interesting or useful to you. We have some categories that we track for example like Corridors, Data Prep, Takeoff, Field Data, Plotting and Drafting, Mass Haul etc that help us to track the importance of those subjects to you as users and from that we can gauge where our focus should be in product development
  3. Sentiment - when you say you like something, that gives it a sentiment scoring - the more likes an article or post gets the higher the sentiment value it gets - that helps us determine where to spend our time - we want to give you more of what you like and less of what you don't like etc.

 

So all of the above depends heavily on the following

 

  1. We know that a huge number of people use the forum daily, however a large number of you don't log in so while you "hit a page / blog / question etc" and view its content, we only know that you hit it, we don't know who, where from or any sentiment about what you thought, because you cannot interact with the forum if you don't log in -  so my request here is that you get a Trimble ID (go To Connect.Trimble.Com and select Get Started and that will walk you through the process of getting a Trimble ID - note you can use that Trimble ID in TBC to set up a Profile (Options - External Profiles - Connect and enter your email address and Password (your Trimble ID) and now you have access to the Background Map Service and the ability to use Trimble Connect as a Web Repository and tools like Save Remote File, Open Remote File etc. Now you have a Trimble ID - please log in to the forum to help me better track its use and to drive increased funding for this initiative in Trimble.
  2. While using the Forum, now that you are logged in, if you read a Question / Answer or a Post on a Blog, let us know if you a) Liked the Post and b) found it helpful - those are simple one click switches at the base of the post that you tap once to register a Like or a helpful - that helps to get the statistics better for me to gauge what you are finding useful or interesting etc. and that will help drive my / our behavior on your behalf.
  3. Please also post comments - even if short if you have any as those really help me to gauge how bi a problem something is and I can then try to create more materials or videos etc to better clarify the problem and solution etc.

 

I will also take this opportunity to thank all of those that are now hitting the forum daily - I can see that some of you make it a part of your daily routine now to look at what is going on. We have fixed so many small bugs and defects and improved so many workflows already because of your collective feedback, it has been awesome so far. I ran some quick numbers the other day that you may find interesting as a reference to this

 

  1. In the last 10 months (we started in July 2018) we have
    1. Posted 33 Blogs - that have multiple entries and have had an estimated 39000 views
    2. Posted 168 Documents - that have had an estimated 9300 Downloads
    3. Had 39 Discussions that have had an estimated 10500 Views
    4. Answered 483 Questions that have had an estimated 283000 Views
    5. We have posted many videos in Posts and Blogs etc, but in addition we have posted 5 extra videos as uploads that have had an estimated 2000 views
    6. We have posted 7 Events so far and we don't know specifically how many views, but we do know that we have filled 3 PUG Events and had a massive increase in Webinar Attendance as a result of the Forum

 

When you consider the Snowball effect of this overtime, the hit rate and interaction rate is increasing rapidly today, but even if we look at the above over a 10 month period, this has generated over 380000 separate interactions which is an average of 38000 / month or ~10000 per week which is awesome as a start and we know we are only scratching the surface here.

 

Thank you for your continued support and encouragement, I see huge value in this dialog between Trimble - SITECH - User that has been generating a lot of internal momentum - we really appreciate your energy, enthusiasm and passion for what we are trying to do here and with the product, and I personally greatly appreciate the industry friendship that this has created for me

 

Thanks

 

Alan Sharp

Alan Sharp

Customer Success Stories

Posted by Alan Sharp May 10, 2019

Attention all SITECHs out there ....

 

Every day I have discussions with SITECH staff about projects that we end up working together, where we are collectively solving customer project problems to get people up and running with models or takeoffs or reports or field data generation etc.

 

I would like to have you guys (or the end users that we are working with) to post Success Stories out here where we work together to solve real world problems. 

 

Please post your stories with Site Photos or videos, TBC Model Screen Grabs or Reports etc., A Project Summary (type of project, location, problem to be solved etc.) - you can be vague about end user company, specific project name or location if need's be to capture what we did to get the project going or make it more successful

 

I hope that through these we can really help our user base see what is possible with the product and with the backing of SITECH and Trimble personnel

 

Post away ... I will get the ball rolling here with a case study that I worked on for the UK team earlier this week to give you an example

 

Alan

Attention All TBC Construction Users Out There

 

On a daily basis I see great work being carried out using TBC by you all, covering a wide range of activities for Data Prep, Takeoff, Site Survey and As Builts etc. from Site Models to Corridors, to Retaining Walls to Building Footing Excavations and to Bridges and Structures etc. 

 

As a team we would like to see the work that you are doing showcased here, to allow us to better understand what you can / are achieving using the software in different aspects of your work. We are interested in your Project Models, Your Takeoffs, Your Reports and Outputs - anything that you are proud of we would like to see if you are prepared to share - especially cool or interesting workflows, corner cases or challenging projects (Size or scope etc.) 

 

Please post here short articles, pictures, example outputs with a description, and if you can / are prepared to share the projects, libraries, outputs all the better.

 

Where you can see improvements to the software that could game change your productivity, model quality or output quality please let us know (I am sure you will ....)

 

Show us what you are doing and what you are capable of !

 

Thanks

 

Alan

This Blog Post captures the TBC Version Numbers, Date of Release, Warranty Date and Build Number information as a reference resource.

 

Trimble Business Center

 

TBC VersionRelease DateWarranty DateBuild Number
5.00.0011/15/201811/1/20186878.39089
5.00.011/17/201911/1/20186893.26272
5.00.022/20/201911/1/20186956.26460
5.10.005/31/20195/1/20197088.19172
5.10.017/12/20195/1/20197117.27571
5.10.028/27/20195/1/20197178.26152

 

Notes:

  1. Major Releases will be 1.00.00 or 0.10.00 version changes.
  2. Patch Updates will be 0.00.01 version changes.
  3. Warranty Date will only be affected by Major Releases not for Patch Updates.
  4. Warranty Date and Release Date do not necessarily match for a Major Release.

 

Office Software Cleanup Utility

 

Cleanup VersionRelease Date
5.10.15/31/2019 with TBC v5.10

I am getting more and more questions relating to Trimble Access, and Roading especially so I am starting this Blog to try and capture the issues and responses and other useful tools to assist all you Contractors using Access out there.

 

I am not the expert on Trimble Access, it has been a while since I really used the product, however through discussions with the Geospatial team and being provided answers to some questions internally I will try to add some value here for you also. If you have input on any subject raised, please feel free to add detail to this Blog post.

 

Starting this am, I was asked a question about the support for Bentley MX GENIO Files in Trimble Access - the customer was provided a large GENIO file that imported fine into TBC yet would not open in Access. I have currently recommended that he take the GENIO File through TBC and use the Export Option under Corridor called Trimble Access Road Strings to re-export it to a new GENIO File for use on Access. 

 

The reason it may be failing could be that it is too large to open on the device the customer is using. Failing that it could be that the GENIO file has some issue that Access doesn't like, so washing the file through TBC may resolve the issue. Failing that I guess I will be looking at the file tomorrow to see whats up ....

 

The Geospatial Team provided the enclosed Manuals as a reference - I am posting them here as they may also be helpful to others out there - I have not read these yet so I cannot comment further at this point.

 

Hope that this helps - I have an action to work through the RXL Export process, but this is not used by the CEC Products so it is not my highest priority right now, but I hope to get to that for you next week and I will make some comments on that at that time.

 

Alan

If you import iModels from Bentley and create "Component Mesh" objects, or import IFC data and create "BIM Objects" in TBC, and you need to create Points from e.g. the Corners of the solid objects, you can do this using Create From Cad command and select the CAD Points Option (this is the only one that works and I have asked development to change the text to CAD Points / Solid Objects because it is not at all obvious that this would be the option to select (but it is in the Help System!) 

 

Anyhow -I found this out this morning and I thought I would share

 

Alan

Installation and Operational Problems with TBC

The following list are things that you can always try to resolve problems with TBC Installation or Operation. Below that you will find some typical support cases that have been raised and any remedies that are known to have worked in similar cases. 

 

Please note that on the Forum I am committed to helping you with technical issues relating to use of the software. While I can try to help you with specific problems relating to failed installations or specific PC configuration issues or network license installations, I am really not the right person to assist you. All such issues should be raised with your SITECH Dealer and have them work with Trimble Support to resolve the issue. SOme of these can take significant time to resolve because they are often unique to your computer, network, IT policies etc. and the state of update of your computer etc.

 

Solutions to Common PC Problems Checklist

  • Run the TBC Cleanup Utility to scrub prior versions of the application from your computer. This helps to eliminate duplications of tools from different versions being present and also clean and scrubs the registry to give you a completely clean start. The cleanup Utility can be found at the following link

   

Click here for the Cleanup Utility Link

 

  • De-install and Reinstall Trimble Business Center – use Control Panel – Add / Remove Programs to remove TBC and components installed with TBC including
    1. Trimble Business Center
    2. Business Center - HCE
    3. Trimble SCS Data Manager
    4. Trimble Office Synchronizer
    5. Trimble Feature Definition Manager
    6. Trimble Coordinate System Manager
    7. Trimble Data tdupload
  • Update your Windows OS using Windows Update – install all drivers and updates possible. As the software becomes more and more sophisticated, the need to have all of the latest Windows Drivers and Updates becomes more important. Like any product we use third party tools in the solution, and some more than others are sensitive to latest Windows Tools. Note in some companies, including Trimble here, the corporate IT may suppress Windows Update so that you only get a subset of Windows Updates. Run the Full Windows Update Tool yourself to go out on the web to check for all updates. I just did this personally and was shocked at what I had missed over the past year or so since getting a new PC.
  • Update your Graphics Driver(s). If you are having Graphics Issues of any kind, then updating the Graphics Drivers is also important.
  • De-install the Intel Graphics Driver and leave e.g. your Nvidia Driver only. I personally do not do this, however some people swear by this to improve graphics performance or to solve graphics problems. TBC should just use the best available, but I guess some combinations behave differently to others.
  • Update your computer’s BIOS (manufacturers website / support)
  • Check with your computer supplier e.g. Dell for system Drivers and Updates for your PC Model
  • Update your Windows to Windows 10 – if you are running an older OS, while not prohibitive in most cases, upgrading to Windows 10 will help you a lot. Also running 64 Bit OS will also help you significantly. Continuing to run an Old OS will cause more and more problems as time moves on.
  • Run the .Net Framework Update from the Install Folder on the Installation Package for TBC. We have found that Windows 10 for example installs .Net Framework by default now, and manages it’s updates through Windows Update, and therefore blocks the Installer in some cases from installing the .Net Framework Package. You can typically ignore the error during installation and continue to install the software and it will typically operate fine when the install is completed.
  • Download the installation again as there may be some corruption in the downloaded files. We appreciate that the full installation package is large and takes time to download, especially on slow connections. However, we also know that slow connections are often the cause of file corruption. So if the installation did not work, sometimes downloading it again fixes the problems. TBC v5 can be downloaded from the following link

 

Click Here for the TBC v5 Download Location on Trimble.com

 

  • We have also had a number of support cases where installations failed because people were installing off a Network Drive or Peripheral Device (Backup Drive or USB Stick etc.). We recommend making a copy of the installation package on your local PC and running the installation from there to minimize the likelihood of this type of issue from occurring.

 

Important

If the notes in any of the following Problem Cases do resolve your issues, can you please send me a notification that this was the case, so that we can strengthen this support note in our system for others with the same issue. Often we suggest to people that this may be a solution and we can only assume that it worked because we don’t hear from them again. It is always good for us to hear back that you are up and running and problem got resolved. We can then also close out the support case on our systems.

 

Thanks

 

Alan Sharp (alan_sharp@trimble.com)