Saving To Network Issues (files corrupting and backup files writing at 0kb)

Hi - this is my first time posting, so apologies if it’s in the wrong place or repeating something asked before (although I can’t find any topics on this specific issue).

I am trying to find out if the below is a known issue and if there is a fix.

We are a team of 4 designers working within a corporate financial company. All on SU 2023 Pro and Windows. Our drawings are saved to a network (nothing locally stored generally speaking) and any one of us might be working between the same drawing files at different time.

Files are generally around 60 - 150mb. Occasionally could be as large as 300+mb.

We generally run pretty good habits around keeping drawings well organised, as clean and lightweight as possible but are working on large building projects so files can become relatively complex.

Recently we have been experiencing files that will not re-open “Failed to open document” after being closed. Drawings work fine in the morning, are saved and closed then will not re-open. Backup files (.skb) are writing at 0kb - so can not be recovered.

My guess is that this is some issue with how the files are saving to the network (getting corrupted in the process) rather than a specific user/software issue - but can’t be sure. It does not seem to be related to specific files or specific users - problem is quite general and seemingly random.

If anyone is able to offer any insight - it would be much appreciated.


It is generally recommended that you never work/save directly to a network drive/flash drive/cloud etc as any fluctuation in the data transfer while saving can leave you with a corrupt file.
Many people go their whole career without seeing an issue, but others see it regularly.

It is best to work on files locally and then copy them back to the network after saving.

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thank you - that’s pretty much what my gut feel was - but great to have someone else confirm it. Cheers…

You could use your Trimble Connect storage if you need a network location for files so multiple users can access them. Or at least look at how it works for opening and saving files and then emulate that process.

When you open a file that is saved to Trimble Connect, the file is first downloaded to your computer and placed in a temporary folder. As you work on the file, saves are made to that temporary folder. It’s not until you Publish or Publish as… that the file gets published back to the cloud storage. Publishing is the equivalent of copying the file from your internal drive to the cloud or network drive. Basically it does what @Box has recommended.

Thanks - we are looking at moving everything over to an “icloud” location. My understanding is that that does something similar - keeps local versions of the files and then uploads the file (also provides a version history which is recoverable) rather than try to save the working file direct to the network location.

Really appreciate the quick responses and help!


It may be possible to set up iCloud to work that way but check that carefully.

FWIW, since you are using SketchUp Pro you already have unlimited cloud storage with Trimble Connect. You might consider utilizing it. In addition to the storage there’s project management tools and if you need to show the client what’s going on with their project you can send them a link to the file so they can open it with the online viewer. The client doesn’t actually get the SketchUp file just the link to view it.

Thanks - i’ll look into it…

Working in the cloud involves a bit of discipline and other routines than normal client-based workflow.
It wouldn’t need the backup for instance and if you save regularly, autosave could be turned of as well.
Both functions can cause a lot of (conflicting) traffic when working from a networklocation directly.
With iCloud, it’s important to realize that download speed is often not the same as the upload speed, which could be problematic when filesizes tend to grow.

Like any other cloudservice (Dropbox, Google Drive, iCloud, etc) Trimble connect works with local cache, too, but is designed to work with larger (Bim) models and has ways to check out files or folders when working on them, so others couldn’t accidentally open a version that is not finished working on by another collegue, yet.

Besides that, it would be easier to split up a model in different ‘aspect’ models where you have the building for instance and load that as a ‘visual reference’ to do the interior of room(s), play with different options etc.

Thanks again for the helpful comments. We organise our models in that way - splitting them into parts to save file size and reduce risk of losing work should one file be corrupted etc. I’ll take all of this on board - good to know there are solutions to my issue.

If you contact your SketchUp reseller, they will put you in touch with someone who can give your some advice and help with the setup for this in an enterprise environment.