Week #1 – The 7 Keys to Best Practices
1-3. In Depth: Keys 6 & 7

ArchiCAD Training (Best Practices Lesson 1-3)

This 16 minute segment is the third and final part of the 7 Keys to Best Practices for ArchiCAD.

It covers keys 6 and 7:

  • Model Well, Draw Less
  • Keep It Safe

Please add your comments below.


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ArchiCAD Training: In Depth: Keys 6 & 7

Let us know how you feel... (30 comments so far)

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  1. PamelaGoode
    10 years ago

    I viewed this video after 8 months of using ArchiCAD and I have to say I was reminded of things I should be doing on a regular basis.

  2. GarethUnderwood
    11 years ago

    I think this will be the first of many ‘thank you’ messages

    ….I hope you don’t tire of them.

    I am looking forward to working my way through the series.

    Thank you


  3. PengLee
    12 years ago

    Eric, very logical structure. So I look forward to following the best practice course for weeks 2 and onwards. Thanks Peng

  4. JohnWalker
    12 years ago

    It would have been nice to see some “real time” comparisons vs the ongoing head shot as it related to the discussion about advantages using solid element operations vs the trim roof option on cutting wall tops…

  5. Tyler Buffett
    13 years ago


  6. Marshall Rossiter
    13 years ago

    Eric…thanks again as I feel that I’m off to a good start by viewing your sample video’s today

  7. Cliff Gilmore
    13 years ago

    You should have done this years ago. – but better now than never.
    I’m glad you have decided to offer your expertise in this format.
    I think you might want to consider finding a way to use the background as a screen
    to display and reference what you are discussing.

    I hope this course brings you much success for the opportunities of successful use of Archicad you are offering to those who want to use the program to build their business skill set.

    Best regards and Happy New Year!!!

    • Eric
      13 years ago

      Cliff –
      Thanks for your good wishes and encouragement. In some ways I wish I had done this a long time ago, but I was too busy with the demands of running a business as an ArchiCAD reseller to really focus on developing a comprehensive training course. Now that I am able to devote the time to it, this seems quite natural and I love what I’m doing.

  8. Al Campbell
    13 years ago

    I can use three words to describe the first week’s presentation;
    Also, much of the advice given can be applied to several applications. This can be seen as enticement for users of other apps to migrate.

    • Eric
      13 years ago

      Al –
      I’m glad you found the presentation soothing – I hope you are able to apply some of the ideas in your work.

    13 years ago



    • Eric
      13 years ago

      Ruben –
      I only speak a little Spanish, but I understand that you would like subtitles in Spanish to help you understand the videos. I will consider adding these at a later date if there is enough interest. Thanks for your comment.

  10. Dimitrios Kargiotis
    13 years ago

    Great overview, I have been using ArchiCAD since V4 and I’m always looking for tips to help speedup and organize our practice. Thanks Eric

  11. paulo
    13 years ago

    Thank you.

  12. Albert Van Ee
    13 years ago

    Thank you so much for doing this best practices course. Just reviewing the seven step introduction will save me a lot of work. I did not know that I could set the placement of doors and windows, and know that if the window changed it would still originate from the same position.

    I also like the practice of saving a project by date. It would be helpful to see an example of this in practice.

    Overall very well done as usuall;
    Thanks Eric.

    • CatherineRoha
      12 years ago

      Every time I re-open a project I rename it and save it with today’s date (ProjectName – year-month-day — so they appear in chronological order in my file list). Sometimes I’ll use letters beyond that to indicate various alternative schemes, or DR for Design Review submission, BP for building permit sets, BP rev1, etc. It makes it easier to go back and find the right version, if ever needed!

  13. Robert Hill
    13 years ago

    Only now have I had time to view all parts of Week #1. I was pleased to find it a huge improvement over the sneak preview I saw in November. I liked the short modules, and the images were a great addition.

    At my age, memory can be a problem (mine, not the computer’s). It would be useful if I could make copies of the text outlines presented in the videos. They could trigger my memory of what I saw and heard in the videos. I could add them to the AMT documentation that I consult when I have questions or need a refresher.

    I found the viewer comments interesting and helpful; a welcome supplement to the video presentations. Thank you Bob and viewers.

  14. RJ Dial
    13 years ago

    I’ve never had luck saving older version projects (8.5, 10, 11) in newer versions of AC. Everything from library elements to attributes get wonky, and it is even more complicated if using Cadimage tools. Converters don’t quite convert Archived files too well. Is that others experience?

    • Eric
      13 years ago

      We’ll be covering this in the section on Library Management. There are some basic strategies that make this work fairly simply, although adding third party components (e.g. Cadimage Tools) can make it more complicated.

  15. RJ Dial
    13 years ago

    From Master Template to some online Consulting over an ArchiCad issue, Eric’s information has always been able to apply usability to the AC application. Looking forward to the course to take it even further down that path.

  16. Earl Applegate
    13 years ago

    The 7 keys concept is terrific. It reduces a very comprehensive, and complex, software program into logical (understandable) steps. I found the Week One / Part One video to be an excellent introduction, describing the 7 keys as a series of logical steps to using ArchiCad in a productive manner. It is a concise explanation of the 7 keys approach.

    The more detailed information provided in the Week One / Part Two video provides content in support of the first 5 keys. It is, also, a great overall presentation. The use of examples to supplement the lecture is very helpful; providing visual support, as well as demonstrating the use of steps to complete a particular task.

    The Week One / Part Three video is focused on Keys 5 & 6. The examples provided for modeling are excellent, and demonstrate the value of the ArchiCad program. Key #7 is well done, but one that we will not pay enough attention to until the actual crash.

    I particularly like the ability to replay the videos. Every time I re-do them I learn a bit more, and find things that did not actually register in previous sessions; this Sesame Street approach is, for me, helpful. I am looking forward to future lessons, as well as the question & answer sessions.

    Thanks, Earl

  17. Avatar photo
    Ewelll Davenport
    13 years ago

    I like the suggestion to save versions of a file with a date extension. I have been just adding A,B,C etc. and have found myself opening several of them to go back to a point in time that a date extension would have pinpointed.

    On saving, when I first went from the drafting table to cad (yes, some of us have been around that long) I learned to keep at least 2 backup copies. 1 on site and 1 off site. To do this I now copy the files I have worked on each day to a thumbdirve which I take home with me. I occasionally transfer those files to a computer at home. That computer has the same file structure, etc. as the office so gives me a complete back up.

    I am pleased with the first weeks instruction and look forward to what is coming.

    Thanks Eric


  18. Jamie Strong
    13 years ago

    Nice work, Eric. Although I have used Archicad for about 4 years, I am largely self taught and therefore have already picked up some handy tips from week 1. Looking forward to next week.

    I also use dropbox and find it to be very useful and stable.


  19. Marek Stoklosa
    13 years ago

    Flash drives are also good for storing a project. You basically have it on you all the time. I use it often. Also I can do some work at home so there are two hard copies of the project (office and home) plus a flash drive. Quite inexpensive and fun way to keep things safe.
    I look forward to the next session
    Pleasanton , California

  20. Takis Apostolides
    13 years ago

    Eric, the downloaded file crushes at 10:20

    • admin
      13 years ago

      Takis –
      I downloaded the file myself to check it out, and it works fine. Perhaps there was a problem with your original file transfer. I suggest you try downloading it again and let us know whether the second time works better.

      • Eric
        13 years ago

        Takis –
        I’m glad to hear (as you posted on another page of Week 1) that after re-downloading the files, that everything is working well.

  21. Avatar photo
    Chris Sinkinson
    13 years ago

    Having lost files in the past through disk failure I can underline what you are saying about file safety and backup. It is sickening to lose a days (or even a weeks) work, through not thinking of this inevitable situation – it will eventually happen to you!!!
    I have found that some of the on line companies are useful for saving default projects.
    The likes of Dropbox (www.dropbox.com) give you 2 GB of free storage, which is ample for the main default files and libraries to be kept safe.
    Makes it easier to get the files when you are out of the office as well.
    Plus it has an excellent facility which speeds up file tranfer between computers on the same office network
    Chris Sinkinson UK

    • admin
      13 years ago

      Chris –
      Thanks for your comments and the suggestion of Dropbox.