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Friday, September 9, 2011

WhiteFeet Revit Utilities - A Veritable Cornucopia of Tools

The WhiteFeet Revit Utilities toolset is composed of a collection of small, generally independent, programs that have each been created to address a specific need.  Typically, a project would encounter a problem, or envision an opportunity, that suggested a customization.  A tool was developed to address this need, but in a way that was slightly more general, so that it could be used in other ways and on other projects.




Sheet Manager

Sheet Manager links to an Excel file or (less commonly) an Access database. Based on this data, it creates or updates sheets in Revit as a bulk editing process. The tool can also be used to export data, renumber sheets, and place views on sheets.

It is also useful for maintaining “dummy” sheet lists of consultant drawings, whose only purpose is to populate the sheet schedule.

Revit-Database Link

A relatively complex and highly developed program that can be the basis of a wide range of workflows. It can connect to either an Access or a SQL Server database and synchronize data in both directions.

The primary use is in situations where it is not desirable to keep certain kinds of data in the Revit model. There are a number of reasons for doing this:

  • Data may originate from a client or consultant, and may need to be delivered back to them in a database format.
  • Certain data processes can take advantage of the tools in the database.
  • There is too much data to conveniently store in Revit.
  • Some of the data manipulation will be done by non-Revit users.
  • The data will be used separately from the Revit model in the future.

Whatever the motivation, the data may be unique to either Revit or the database, or may be duplicated in both locations. In the later case it is essential that the data be kept synchronized.

Element Tools

The Element Tools are a collection of utility functions that are available from the WhiteFeet Utilities menu in Revit. They are grouped together for convenience and because they are somewhat similar in the way that they act on elements.

The Element Tools command, on the WhiteFeet Menu, opens the Main Menu which is used to access the individual commands. 

Create Areas and Rooms

Placing Unplaced Areas

The purpose of this command is to take unplaced areas and place them in an area plan, bounded by area boundary lines, and sized according to their required area.

Placing Unplaced Rooms
This command is similar to the Place Unplaced Areas command. It works with unplaced rooms and places them in a floor plan, bounded by walls, and sized according to their required area.

Creating Rooms from Areas

This command lists the unplaced areas (including those that are placed but not bounded) and/or placed areas depending on the selections settings.  When some areas are selected and the "Create Rooms" command started, a new room is created for each area.

Create Room Data Sheet Views and Sheets

Create Views from Rooms

Lists all rooms with an option to include rooms that already have a view of the same name. Views are created, replacing any that already exist, showing only the associated room.

Creating Tagged Views from Un-tagged Views

This command is used with Revit-based room data sheets, where a copy of the initial view is made and the special room tag is placed in the center of the room.

Exporting Images from Views

This utility creates a set of images from a selection of views.

Creating Sheets from Views

For use with Revit-based room data sheets, this command makes the sheet files that correspond to the views.

Existing Element Utilities

Managing Attachment Links

This command simply looks for all dwg/dxf/dgn/skp/sat attachments. It
is useful for debugging problems with worksets and other issues regarding
the display of the attached files.

If the project has been saved, the results are written to a text file in the same location as the project file.

There is also an option to select one or more of the items in the list and then use the Select in Revit command to have them pre-selected in Revit when the Element Tools dialog boxes are closed.  This can be used to find further data about the attachments, change their workset or other properties, or delete them


Parameter Tools

The Parameter Tools are a collection of utility functions that are available from the WhiteFeet Utilities menu in Revit. They are group together for convenience and because they are somewhat similar in the way that they act on elements.


Value Manipulation


The Value Manipulation tools are used to process one or more parameter values and store the result in another parameter.


String Operations



The String Operations derive values from both text and non-text sources, concatenate them and assign the result to a target text parameter.



Math Calculation

The Math Calculation tools are used to process one or more parameter values and store the result in another parameter.


Element Relationships



The Element Relationships tools are used to associate different kinds of families that have some kind of geometric relationship to one another.




Parent-Child Relationships



The first step is to identify which of the children belong to which parent.



Roll Up Values to Parent

The second step is to “roll up” (sum) the values from each group of children to their respective parent.


External Data



The External Data tools are used to read and write parameter values to and from Excel.



Write Category to Excel

The Write Category To Excel command provides a quick way to dump a lot of data out to Excel where it is not necessary to be selective about the record or fields included.

Write Definitions To Excel


The Write Definitions To Excel command exports information about the parameters in a project. It is
intended for use with managing templates and other standards.


Schedule Key Manager

The Schedule Key Manager is used to import and export data between Excel and a Revit key schedule. It is used to manage the key data in Excel where it would be inconvenient to do so in Revit.


Family Tools



The Family Tools are a collection of utility functions that are available from the WhiteFeet Utilities menu in Revit. They are grouped together for convenience and because they are somewhat similar in the way that they act on elements.

Exporting Data

These commands are used to export data about Revit families to Excel. The primary intention of this is to assist in maintaining standards.

Listing Families to Excel

The List Families to Excel command is used to create a quick list of the families in a project.

Exporting Family Details to Excel

The Exporting Family Details to Excel command is used to list a lot of detail about a single family, or a small number of families. (It produces a lot of output so should be used cautiously with larger numbers of families.)

Managing Parameters

These commands are used to read data from Excel or a text file in order to control parameter values. They have been used to create a large multi-story building form as well as design an array of shading elements.

Assigning Cell ID Values

When working with a grid of families (typically, but not necessarily, cells in a curtain wall) it is necessary to assign each cell an identifier to use as a key when assigning the parameter values. This can be done manually but it is tedious so the Assign Cell ID Values tool is used to automate the process.

Reading Parameter Values From Excel

The Read Parameters – Excel command transfers values from an Excel worksheet into corresponding parameters in Excel.

Reading Parameter Values From a Text File

The Read Parameters – Text command is similar to the previous Read Parameters – Excel command transfers except that it uses a tab-delimited text file.

A free trial is available. Licenses are $100/seat.

More information is available in the documentation, downloadable here.

The WhiteFeet homepage is here.

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