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The MicroStation Connect Edition Update 7 SDK (Software Development Kit) is not available on the
Software Downloads page, does this now require BDN membership? I hope not!

  • Hi Alan,

    to be precise, MicroStation SDK CONNECT Edition Update 7 is available at Fulfillment Center, but from some reason you don't see it (have no proper access rights).

    I remember it has been discussed several times, e.g. in this dicussion. Unfortunately I don't remember any exact and clear information from Bentley under what mode / restrictions / requirements the SDK is available. I guess you will have to create Ticket or ask directly some Bentley representative. But because Bentley changed the accessibility without any notification, maybe even other people from Bentley don't know the answer :-(

    With regards,


  • Your assumption is correct, a BDN membership is required in order to get the SDK products listed for download.
    To learn more about BDN membership and directly contact us with questions about membership please follow this link.

    Best regards,


  • Hi Artur,

    Unknown said:
    our assumption is correct, a BDN membership is required in order to get the SDK products listed for download.

    As usually, a change is applied and nobody in Bentley cares to make any official announcement, regardless it has influence to many users ... easy way to make them sad or angry.

    I will probably discuss this issue in BDN group later, but I am quite disappointed by this decision and limitation. Based on my experience it's just another way how to kill MicroStation future efficiently :-(

    History of software is full of example when OS / application / platform won not because of its quality or used sales strategy, but because of number of available applications and extensions, so it much better suited different needs and requirements in countries and industries.

    Example: Try to find (and hire) somebody with MicroStation development knowledge ... zero, no chance, because it's impossible to download SDK "using on click" and to play in school or work. Compare it with other solutions and competitors ... not a big problem. Maybe these guys are not top professional developers, but they typically started to develop something in-house or as seminar work (or just for joy), so they know industry, they know the product and have some knowledge how it can be extended. Why they exist? Because SDKs and documentations (sometimes full, sometimes limited part) can be downloaded with one click or just for providing e-mail during the registration. And for such small scale development no SLA or any other legal agreement is required.

    When you ask teams from countries succesfull in some sport how it's possible that they win world championships or Olympics games repeatedly? The answer always will be "we start with children to motivate them, train them and we select the best ones from many candidates". In my opinion Bentley actively blocks "development children" to even touch MicroStation (and other product development), so they will try and learn and use another sweet (product, technology, platform).

    I would understand this policy in a case Bentley plan to remove developers and to provide "Bentley only" solutions. But I am sure it's not sustainable strategy in today world, where companies through opening their solutions in fact delegating part of development and customization cost to users and people who like to do it.



  • Jan, Thanks for this link from my other thread. I have always said that Bentley have not really bothered about getting MicroStation into schools and colleges and that the opposition have been really good at this. This is the main reason why when you think of 3D modelling in construction in the UK you think Revit. This is the reason why our Company now uses Revit and not the Bentley alternative. 

  • Alan (Jan, and Stuart),

    Both Leonard and Artur's responses are correct for how to access and download Bentley SDKs.  If you currently are a Bentley SELECT or BDN Commercial user and having issues seeing or downloading Bentley SDKs, please use the BDN Contact Us form; providing a description of the problem and your contact and site IDs if available to help speed things along.

    We certainly do care and want to improve user experience and provide proper responses with respect to Jan and Stuart's related comments.  We (BDN) will see if we can provide additional (official) clarification on Bentley SDK software download policy and requirements to help meet and improve our user experience and expectations aspects.

    Thank you,

  • I agree with Jan and Stuart,

    This certainly is disappointing. For some of us BDN membership is not an option. 

    Fortunately most of what I need to develop for clients can be done in VBA, and possibly using the .NET libraries in CONNECT. However, I do have the occasional MDL or Native Code application to develop, upgrade, or maintain for clients where I do need the SDK. The limited amount I need to do this does not justify the cost of a BDN membership.

    On one hand I can see where you want to add value to a BDN membership by restricting access to the development tools to members only, but I think this is a very short-sighted move. It limits innovation and expansion of the Bentley products in the user base by limiting access to the development tools. 

    Rod Wing
    Senior Systems Analyst

  • I use to be a big advocate for all things Bentley (and MicroStation) but over the last couple of years I have given up shouting that MicroStation is the best product. To be honest as work I am wasting my time as I can see that in the next couple of years we would have migrated to the opposition. What with having to register users (even casual users) for CONNECTION client (with the threat that we will have licences deactivated), the demise of a free viewer, and a MicroStation program that still doesn't work as well as previous versions, then things are not looking good to continue. I feel that at the moment Bentley is more bothered about the ££££'s than it's customers.