Custom Asset library is not scalable for Architecture firms.

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  • Hi,


    About 6 months ago I inquired about Custom Asset library configuration and how it was not scalable. I was told that these issues would be fixed with the most recent update and when It was announced our firm was over the moon to be able to have a network folder structure easily shared across all of our 75+ Enscape users. The update came and it did not solve the issue. I also posted on these forums but did not hear back from support. I am going to break down the issue as detailed as possible in hopes I can get a response and an estimated time when an update will solve the issue.


    The ask:


    Network folder linking capabilities for firm wide asset management.


    The problem:


    Enscape only allows local Category creation. Enscape does not recognize network folder structures. Therefore every single Enscape user would need to create and move thousands of custom assets to dozens of categories locally for it to be organized and standardized across our firm. Only to have to do it again every time new assets are added or created.


    The solution:


    Allow Enscape Custom Asset management tool to recognize folders created on a network to allow all Enscape users to simply link to, and recognize, the folders created by one person. Remove the option of creating categories locally. If not, have a warning that if categories are created, they are local and not shared with a network link.


    Other software allows this feature and it makes scaling an absolute breeze. For example, Twinmotion also has a similar problem of linking to a network but at least you can copy and paste the folders and assets locally and have Twinmotion automatically pick up the folders named on the network.


    In order to keep Enscape as our go-to software, we really need to solve for this. We love it, it creates amazing renderings, but it fall short of being a scalable rendering solution for our firm.


    If this problem of mine has in fact been fixed, or I am doing something completely wrong, I will quickly remove this post.


    The attached image shows how my network folder structure (albeit a little unorganized) is not registered in Enscape, and vice versa. And since this custom asset link was used primarily for our vegetation I don't feel comfortable just dumping individual furniture assets into it without proper network folder recognition. Every Enscape user would then have to create their own subcategories and that is not an appropriate thing to ask of them in 2022.


    I am looking forward to your response.


    thank you

  • The problem:


    Enscape only allows local Category creation. Enscape does not recognize network folder structures. Therefore every single Enscape user would need to create and move thousands of custom assets to dozens of categories locally for it to be organized and standardized across our firm. Only to have to do it again every time new assets are added or created.

    I don't understand the problem to be honest.


    Some context: we currently have 1100 custom assets. I and another user sorted all the assets into categories. It took the both of us about an hour. After that , the categorization became visible for all users. No one has had to do extra work since then.


    When a user creates a new asset, their 'category' dropdown is populated based on the categories we already created, so it's easy for them to stick to our standard.


    The system seems to work very well for us.


    Are you saying that when you create categories and sort assets in them, this is not visible for other users using the same network folder as their asset library?

  • So I can create as many categories as I want on my machine, but those categories do not show up for anyone else. All created categories are local.


    So everyone would need to import the custom assets and add them to their own categories. There is no way to do this on the network. In an ideal situation I could create the entire folder (categories) structure on a network drive.



    VEGETATION

    CARS

    PEOPLE

    FURNITURE


    And then its as easy as linking to the same network folder and having those folders be recognized as categories in Enscape so its all done for them.


    Another major concern for us is when we copy and past these packs we get from Globe Plants, you cant edit the asset because it cant find the project file. The project files for each custom asset is buried in their folder structure so its a matter of completely dumping every single fil in one folder and that is not ideal either,


    In the images below you can see the following.


    Error_01 - The categories created do not show up on the network folder structure.

    Error_02 - Example of existing assets I copied and pasted into the folder

    Error_03 - All of the copied and pasted custom assets from Globe Plants to NOT appear in the Custom Asset Editor to be categorized

    Error_04 - Cant edit custom imported assets because it cant find the Project file. Which each Project file is located deep into the folder structure of Globe Plant assets.


    So just to reiterate. Category creation is local, and cannot be shared across a network. Assets have to be individually imported in order to be categorized and cannot read copy and pasted assets. Luckily, we can still use them but they all sit in the Uncategorized section.


    I know this is a lot of information so I hope it makes sense. Hoping someone from Enscape can hop on a call and share screen to walk me through it.

  • So just to reiterate. Category creation is local, and cannot be shared across a network. Assets have to be individually imported in order to be categorized and cannot read copy and pasted assets. Luckily, we can still use them but they all sit in the Uncategorized section.

    That's definitely not the case here. I can create categories fine and everyone across the network can see them. They do *not* have to be individually importer.


    I think the key here is "copy and pasted assets". Enscape keeps a ledger of the categories (with their names, icon, ...) in a central file in the asset library folder ("assetCategories.json"). There's also a file similar file in the asset projects folder (categories.json). If you copy the asset (or asset project) without the corresponding assetcategories.json file, Enscape will not recognize the category and therefor it will land under "uncategorized".


    I recommend doing the categorizing on your main master library so that the assetcategories.json and categories.json files are always up to date.

  • Sure no problem.


    I think the key is that you copy/paste libraries as a whole, and not parts of them. If you do move parts of a library and they are using a new category (each category gets a unique number), than the category will not be recognized by the main library.

  • Hi, Pieter.


    So I started over from scratch and I think its working well enough now! Thanks for your help. I do fear about individuals changing asset materials and saving them to affect other projects. Any tips on that?


    Thanks again

  • We have the same problem. There's a couple things you can do:


    1) don't give users access to the asset projects folder (or keep it in a location that the users do not know about)

    2) lobby enscape to allow for overwriting materials on custom assets on a per project basis (this is planned for enscape standard assets but unfortunately not for custom assets)

    3) what we do: you can only modify an asset if it was created by your project. The project name would then be in the asset description. All the other assets are not to be modified by anyone but the maintainer(s) of the library

  • You're welcome! I do hope that you will join our firm in lobbying for material overrides on custom assets (and custom materials in the material library, while we're at it).


    This goes back to the title of your topic: it would help make Enscape more scalable for large offices.