mACT

  • mACT ARCHICAD Template FAQ

    Can I get a trial version of mACT?

    Unfortunately there is no trial version of mACT available, as we can not effectively protect the contained intellectual property once it is on your computer. Please refer to the extensive information available on this website, and if you still have any questions we are more than happy to answer any specific questions you might still have.

    How is mACT licensed?

    mACT is licensed per purchaser – please also refer to our EULA here.

    Is mACT a stand-alone or subscription license?

    mACT is not subscription-based. You purchase a once-off licence to use the mACT framework. Each major version (eg mACT 22 to mACT 23) requires a new, corresponding licence purchase.

    What is included with mACT?

    mACT includes everything shown in the feature list above as well as a detailed Getting Started Guide, outlining the underlying principles and how to best use mACT.

    What else do I need to adjust to start working with mACT?

    Nothing. mACT works out of the box. However you can use it also as a basis and customise mACT to your office style, i.e. add your custom title block, adapt favourites to use your office font. We can also do this for you. Please contact us here for a quote.

    Does mACT only work on macOS?

    mACT works on both Windows and macOS.

    What kind of support do I get?

    mACT is sold as is. However we listen and encourage feedback from our clients and release updates to mACT regularly.

    By the way, we are also an Apple-focused IT support provider based in Sydney, Australia enabling us to make all your systems work for you – please contact us if you are interested.

    What if I need support in adjusting mACT to my specific needs?

    We can assist you in customising mACT at hourly rates – for a proposal please contact us directly via email and include some details what you need done.

    mACT is based on the metric system. How do I change it to imperial?

    Please follow these steps to do so:

    1. Start ARCHICAD.
    2. Start a new file. (Opening the template directly will just result in a New Untitled file!)
    3. File > Open > and browse to your copy of mACT (mACT 23.tpl) and open it.
    4. Change working units under: ARCHICAD > Project Preferences > Working Units
    5. Change dimensioning preferences under: ARCHICAD > Project Preferences > Dimensions … (There are presets provided by Graphisoft.)
    6. Change calculation units under: ARCHICAD > Project Preferences > Calculation Units & Rules
    7. Once all is set, go File > Save so that all future projects started from the template will be using your new settings.

    Why call it framework?

    We have used many templates across various practices. As trained architects and experienced ARCHICAD users, we think that ‘template’ is not an adequate word to describe mACT as it implies a one fits all approach and solution. In our experience, this is an illusion: there are far too many different project types, usage scenarios and individual preferences at play.

    “Framework”, for us, best describes what mACT is all about – mACT will give you a solid skeleton to guide you through ARCHICAD without getting in the way as your business and projects grow. It also directly relates to the best practice workflows and modelling techniques explained in our Field Guides for ARCHICAD.

    Who created mACT?

    mACT represents the distillation of our combined 30+ years experience integrating practice and technology in some of Australia’s most successful architectural practices. To meet the team behind mACT please head over to macinteract.com.

    macinteract is a Sydney, Australia-based company providing Apple-based IT services to creative professionals. macinteract is comprised of real people. We are a group of architects and designers with extensive international professional experience using, ARCHICAD, Vectorworks and SketchUp, mainly on Apple macOS alongside several professional rendering and other creative software packages.

    Why do you offer mACT, the Objects and Field Guides?

    In our experience, ARCHICAD doesn’t just work ‘out of the box’. In fact, one major benefit of ARCHICAD over other BIM software is that it can accommodate your specific requirements if you set it up correctly. Additionally, Graphisoft develops ARCHICAD for users worldwide, thus local standards & differences in construction techniques require adjustments.

    As we have been teaching, using and adjusting ARCHICAD for a very long time, we are convinced other users will benefit from what we have developed over the years.

    What happens with the next ARCHICAD version?

    Graphisoft constantly improves ARCHICAD, with new features being released in a new version every year.

    The same applies to mACT, which constantly gets developed based on our users feedback and our own experiences – please have a look at our release notes for the latest improvements.

    Why does mACT cost what it costs?

    mACT is an investment into the productivity of your office and has been constantly developed and improved since 2006. In other words, its value exceeds its price by far.

    To give you some figures mACT’s price is only approx. 5% of the cost of an ARCHICAD license and is less than what you paid in tax for ARCHICAD.
    We reckon this is exceptional value.

    Can I get a refund after deciding that mACT or any of our other products is / are not the right fit?

    Refunds and exchanges are considered to the extent of Australian Consumer Law. Please note once you have downloaded mACT or any of our other products to your device and opened or used them, then change your mind, macinteract is not legally bound to issue a refund. If the extensive documentation provided on macinteract.com does not answer all of your questions, please get in touch before you commit to a purchase.

  • ARCHICAD BIM Server backup settings

    The ARCHICAD BIM Server has a very useful built-in backup function, if configured correctly. Find below some considerations regarding a proper backup strategy.

    1. On Mac OS X we find that people tend to choose Apple’s TimeMachine as their preferred backup option. Although this is a perfect solution for your regular desktop, this is problematic on a server level as it is not easy to control, e.g. the time it runs or what to include or exclude – we use the excellent Carbon Copy Cloner (CCC) instead;

    2. We typically adjust CCC to backup after hours, with a preflight script to stop and post flight script to start the ARCHICAD BIM Server;

    3. We also adjust the BIM Server backup settings to typically only do PLN backups, to ensure that in case of catastrophic failure, you at least have PLNs that you can use temporarily without a BIM Server (unless you have a few spare BIM Servers flying around)… note PLN backups are typically bigger in size than BIMSERVER backups;

    4. We also choose to run backups after hours (not all at once at 1600h – not sure how Graphisoft determined that that might be good time to have all TW projects backup at the same time…);

    5. Depending on your BIM Servers capacity and the number / size of your typical project files, carefully monitor that you do not run out of space (and risk corruption of the bimservers mongo database) – unfortunately there is no way to globally adjust the default backup settings easily, i.e. it is a manual process that requires regular checking to ensure that nobody has shared a few 4GB files with the default backup settings;

    6. Offsite backups are essential but depend on your willingness to rotate backup drives / tapes offsite (we do it daily) or your internet connection bandwidth for cloud based backups. Do think twice about cloud backups though, although convenient restoration / download times for several GB of BIM Server data might be prohibitive (we only do tapes and hard drives to avoid massive downtime);

    One last thing to keep in mind regarding the frequency of BIM Server backups:

    If your practice works in large teams and you need to restore or roll back a project file (e.g. if a single user gets detached), we find that hourly backups are not really that useful, as you typically loose as many man hours as there are team members if you reset the project for the whole team (rather than just forfeiting a single users work for the last couple of hours).