What is the BEST property in dRofus and parameter in Revit to link Rooms in the attribute configurations?

When linking a Room in Revit with a Room in dRofus there are several ways to create this unique key connection. I am wondering what is the BEST property in dRofus and parameter in Revit to serve as the Unique Key?

  • First off, I always encourage anyone interested in learning more about the Revit Addon and Revit Attribute Configurations to check out our wiki page here: Revit Attribute Configurations - dRofus Wiki - dRofus WIKI

    In all the years I have been using dRofus I prefer using the dRofus Room ID as my unique key to link to Revit Rooms. 


    Now, the main goal in defining the unique key in the Revit Attribute Configurations for Revit Rooms and dRofus Rooms is that it will always be unique in all phases of planning, design, and construction. In all the years I have been using dRofus I prefer using the dRofus Room ID as my unique key to link to Revit Rooms. I will explain other options first and end with why I like this option the most.

    The default configuration that ships with dRofus links the dRofus "Function Number" (defined based on settings in the way Rooms are Numbered based on Function structure) linked to the built-in Room property in Revit "Number".

    Why is Function Number just an acceptable unique key? We use Function Number at times to help all team members know something about the Room - the Function Number can help all users know what department a Room is related to. Think of it as a good set of clues or breadcrumbs to know more about the Room. If the Department a Room is linked to has a Function Number of 01, looking at a Function Number of 01.005 can inform the team member that the Room is part of the Department linked to Function Number 01.

    Why is Number in Revit an acceptable unique key? For one, the Number parameter is built into Revit and does not need to be created. This is a convenient option as shared and project parameters are not necessary. By allowing dRofus to manage this parameter in linking Rooms to Revit it will also ensure that the Room in Revit has a unique Room Number.

    Why is this combination not the best option? A Room in dRofus might move to a new Function (drag and dropped) from one Function to another, when this happens the Function Number changes. This will break the link in Revit since that Function Number is now new and in Revit, the Function Number will not have changed. The same is true in Revit, Room Numbers often changed by users in Revit when a new location of Room is necessary - moving a Room between floors might require a new Numbering system for those Rooms. Many design firms use Number differently and have already set a standard on how Room tags are Rooms to define Room Numbers.

    So - in short. Using Function Number linked to Number is an acceptable unique key, but not the best. I know several dRofus customers use this method. 

    What about using something that is always unique in Revit, like the GUID? Learn more about this auto-generated Revit Unique ID here: The Building Coder: Understanding the Use of the UniqueId ( and here Uniqueid DWF and IFC Guid

    If the Revit GUID is used as the unique key on the Revit side it can be mapped to anything in dRofus including 'additional Number' or a custom Room properties field. This could work, but there are a few limitations to consider when using Revit GUID. In Revit, there is no way of knowing the GUID being used to confirm a Room is linked. We can see this in the attribute configurations because of our access to the Revit API. If you leverage the dRofus Revit addon properties panel, selecting a Room will show you if it is linked or not. Using this method also relies on Revit to generate the unique ids needed to link dRofus to Revit. If a Room is copied in dRofus that was already linked to Revit using the GUID, it would also copy the Revit provided GUID and create an issue breaking the rules of unique id per Room. If two Rooms share the GUID in dRofus, neither will sync with Revit until it is resolved. These Revit generated GUIDs are unique per model, but can't be guaranteed to be unique across models. If you plan to link a dRofus project to multiple models it's important to consider this issue and monitor duplicates in dRofus.

    So - in short (again). Using Revit GUID linked to dRofus is a better option, but does rely on Revit to manage these 32 characters that represent a 16-byte unique id. I know of one dRofus customer that uses this method. 

    Every Room in dRofus per database automatically gets a dRofus Room ID. These integers are sequential and assigned now the Room is created in dRofus. If you are a dRofus web user, you have already seen these unique Room IDs - check out this post for more details dRofus Web changing the way you access data in the AEC Industry Here is the structure of the dRofus Web url in action. https://<server web address>/<database name>/01/#/Rooms/list/Room/<dRofus Room ID>/properties Further, if a Room moves in dRofus to a new Function, the dRofus Room ID does not change. The dRofus Room ID cannot be edited. It can be used for excel updates, so by importing it into Revit - a schedule can be exported from Revit to potentially use additional values to update dRofus without using the model to sync. If a Room in Revit is copied, the dRofus Room ID could also be copied breaking the link between Revit and dRofus - BUT this can be avoided if tracking is always active. See Tracking Revit Rooms Spaces and Areas to learn more about the value of using this feature.

    The final reason why I like using the dRofus Room ID as the unique key is to add transparency to all dRofus users on how Revit and dRofus Room can be linked. Creating a Revit shared parameter called dRofus Room ID (or Room ID or dRofus ID) and telling the whole team what it is used for helps to address issues that might come up if Rooms are created without dRofus as they would be missing this unique key. We have several customers who use this method and have even created colored floor plans using filters to color Rooms linked to dRofus. If a dRofus database is linked across multiple models with rooms, the dRofus Room ID is unique (and another reason to consider if the Revit GUID will remain unique across models), this will lead to less duplication and more reliable syncing. I have only seen issues using this method when there are Revit users creating Rooms, deleting Rooms, etc. without using dRofus. Keep your tracking feature turned on see Tracking Revit Rooms Spaces and Areas - dRofus Wiki - dRofus WIKI 

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