The Global ARCHICAD Community

Stay informed. Get help. Share your knowledge.

Discussions about managing ARCHICAD in architectural practices (Project Setup, Templates, Attributes, Migration, Compatibility with Previous Versions, Preferences/Work Environment, User/Project/Application Administration/Management etc.)

Moderators: Karl Ottenstein, LaszloNagy, ejrolon, Barry Kelly, gkmethy

is it necessary to have separate .pla, pln and .bpn files? I understand the .pla contains the library but often is it the same size as the .pln file, the .bpn is often also a similar size. that means for each version I have three files taking up three times the space. This also adds confusion since I am often transferring files to staff members so each time I have to crate a .pla, .pln., .then the .bpn. this is very tedious and takes up a lot of space on the server. also files are slow to open.

Is there a way to just work on .pla files? (I suppose .bpn are necessary).

Thank you,
*.pln is a normal ARCHICAD file and is typically all you need to transfer, project specific libraries can be embedded within this file and you would link to other libraries, eg ARCHICAD library etc

*.pla is an archive file, which archives the project and all linked library parts into s single file. I save as pla at project milestones and when significant design changes occur that we may need to go back to.

*.bpn is a backup file, a new version of this is created every time you save and is a copy of the last saved file

All your users would typically need is the *.pln file.

sboydturner wrote:All your users would typically need is the *.pln file.

That is true only if you all have the same libraries and any custom objects are same in the Embedded Library (which means they are included in the PLN file).
If this is not the case, and you send them the PLN file, they may have missing library parts.
Saving and sending a PLA ensures that all library parts are also included in the file so nothing will be missing from it.
By the way, a PLA gets created only if you save one :) It is not created automatically by ARCHICAD.
luisarch wrote:Thank you for clarifying Lazlo,
I generally manually create a .pla which takes a bit of time .

Why would you do this? And I'm not even sure HOW you would do it reliably. Your library manager allows you to embed the used library parts with one click, and creating a .PLA file is also very quick. If this all is taking more than, say, one minute total, you probably are not doing it correctly.
Richard Morrison wrote:Why would you do this?

This is the real question.

Why would anyone agree (or even worse — put that in contract as deliverables) to send out any *.pln, or *.pla files?

Your *.pln and *.pla files contain your personal project settings (ARCHICAD template), proprietary library parts (that might not allow redistribution) and your own custom work that you are rightfully proud of and should consider as your valuable investment in your own business (GDL).

There are numerous other ways to share your ARCHICAD drawings or model, but, I think, you should never share your *.pln and more importantly — *.pla files.