Tip No.1 - ProStructures Installation

When installing ProStructures a few things have to be taken into consideration. In this particular tip I'm going to explain what should be the proper installation in North-America when installing the software. This means having a few extra files installed on your system. Templates, Styles (Detail, Bolts, Flags, etc) and some files that customize the software in order to properly (or should I say "better") work in Imperial mode.

After the installation I am going to talk about how to configure ProStructures on a network installation.

This tip applies both to MicroStation and AutoCAD versions of the software. In this tip I will be using AutoCAD's installation dialog boxes. Under MicroStation you would get the same dialog boxes except the difference will be the content of some dialog boxes that will be targeting MicroStation instead of AutoCAD folders.

Note: If you are installing ProStructures on a new computer, it is important to have launched MicroStation (or AutoCAD) at least once before trying to install ProStructures. You also need to make sure you have Admin rights with the user login you are using under Windows in order to install.

When the installation is triggered from the installer downloaded from the Bentley Select server a few dialog boxes will appear for which one might think just selecting the default option is okay. We are going to take a look at these dialog boxes and notice some default options need to be changed.


Once the installation process is started the 1st dialog box that comes up is the following:

From here you will need to specify if you are using a 32bit or 64bit operating system.

When this is accepted the next dialog box is:

This is where the language to be used by the installer needs to be selected (this has nothing to do with the software's language...it's about the upcoming dialog boxes used during installation).

Then comes the EULA:

You can print this if you want to keep a printed copy, or you can always access this document once the software is installed under the EULA folder.

Select "I accept..." and click next.

From here it is important to make sure "Localization for USA and Canada..." is checked. This is telling the installer which language packs we want to have installed. It is the only one really needed, we could disable the German & English ones if desired. Once the selection is made, click Next.

This dialog box will show all languages selected in the previous window, but here you can only select one...this is the language you want to use as your default language. If you have selected more than one language in the previous window, make sure "Localization for USA and Canada..." is the one selected here, then press Next.

In this dialog box you will see all the AutoCAD versions (or MicroStation version) installed on your machine. You can select on which version you want ProStructures to be installed. It can be installed on all if desired. Select your version if needed (you might only have one option available) and press Next.

Here ProStructures will be located in its default folder...Program Files\Bentley\... (or Program Files (x86)\Bentley\... if installing on a 32Bit version of AutoCAD/MicroStation running on a 64Bit machine). Leave this as is for now. Later down this note I will explain how to move some of these installed folders into a network for better collaboration between users. Click Next.

You might get this dialog box if a previous version of ProStructures was installed previously and removed, but the folders were not manually deleted. Press Yes to proceed.

Here the installer is confirming the version of AutoCAD (or MicroStation) you have selected to install. Press Next.

By default ProStructures will install under the previous selected folder (C:\Program Files\Bentley\) adding to the paths "ProStrucutres", the version which in this example was SELECTseries 5 "V8i_S5" and the application it is installing to, in this case "AutoCAD 2012". Accept the default by pressing Next.

This will be the name of the icon you will use to start ProStructures from. It will be placed on your desktop. Accept default by pressing Next.

After a few seconds (might be a minute or two), the installation should be completed and this is the final dialog box you will see. Press Finish.



Network setup: 

Once the installation is finished, we can take a few folders and move them to a server so that all our users can share files. For this you will need to map a network drive on each computer that will be using ProStructures. In this example we will call that mapped drive "X:"

At the root of this mapped drive we will create a ProStructures folder and copy inside this folder 3 folders from our installation of ProStructures from our hard drive located at 

"C:\Program Files\Bentley\ProStructures\V8i_S5\AutoCAD 2012". <-- Remember it might be "Program Files (x86)" and "AutoCAD 2012" might be another version of AutoCAD or MicroStation.

From this folder, highlight & copy the folders shown below:

  • Data: all databases for extrusions
  • Localised: all the customization files for our North-American settings
  • Varia: all of ProStructures commands' templates  

Paste them inside the newly created folder "ProStructures" on the mapped drive X:


Now we simply need to modify one file in the ProStructures local installation in order to let the software know to go and look for these 3 folders in the network.

Inside the local installation on drive "C:\" browse to the "..\Prg\Config" folder and locate "pro_st3d.cfg". Open this file with Notepad.

At the bottom of this file are located the paths to ProStructures files. We need to make a few adjustments. The bold/red lines below are the lines we need to change. The green lines bellow each red line are the replacement lines. Keep in mind this applyes here according to the mapped drive we created and the folder in which we placed the local folder in.

DATAPATH=C:\Program Files\Bentley\ProStructures\V8i_S5\AutoCAD 2012\Data

TEMPPATH=C:\Program Files\Bentley\ProStructures\V8i_S5\AutoCAD 2012\Temp
TEMPLATEPATH=C:\Program Files\Bentley\ProStructures\V8i_S5\AutoCAD 2012\Varia

DETAILPATH=C:\Program Files\Bentley\ProStructures\V8i_S5\AutoCAD 2012\Detail
NCPATH=C:\Program Files\Bentley\ProStructures\V8i_S5\AutoCAD 2012\Nc
BLOCKCENTERPATH=C:\Program Files\Bentley\ProStructures\V8i_S5\AutoCAD 2012\Localised\English\UserBlocks

FACTORYSETTINGSPATH=C:\Program Files\Bentley\ProStructures\V8i_S5\AutoCAD 2013\FactorySettings
USERSHAPES=C:\Program Files\Bentley\ProStructures\V8i_S5\AutoCAD 2012\Data\UserShapes

ROOFWALLPANELS=C:\Program Files\Bentley\ProStructures\V8i_S5\AutoCAD 2012\Data\RoofWall
C:\Program Files\Bentley\ProStructures\V8i_S5\AutoCAD 2012\Data\CombiShapes

C:\Program Files\Bentley\ProStructures\V8i_S5\AutoCAD 2012\Data\WeldShapes

This operation (changing the "pro_st3d.cfg" file) needs to be performed on every computer that has ProStructures installed on and that we want to setup as a network sharing installation.

From this moment on, any user using this type of installation will be able to use templates, styles, shapes, etc, created by others, and any of those items the user creates are automatically shared with the team.

I hope this helps you to use the software in a more efficient manner.






  • Hello Tegel,

    Nice tutor here, but what happens if you lose your network connection? how to ensure that ProStructures in such case will look for local paths ?


  • Hello Tegel,

    Nice tutor here, but what happens if you lose your network connection? how to ensure that ProStructures in such case will look for local paths ?


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