Building a Forge Web Viewer


Web-based “BIM” solutions are the last big trend, and Autodesk
is among the most advanced player in this area with their API
offering called Forge.

Autodesk Forge is a
product from Autodesk that don’t come with a user interface.
Instead, it is designed to be used through other software, and
especially web-based solutions. Autodesk Forge is also the
technology behind most of the web-based product of Autodesk,
like BIM 360 Team,
Docs or the
A360 Online File

The community around these products is growing, and new
resources and samples are published on an almost daily basis.

Among them, Augusto
recently wrote a
comprehensive tutorial
to build a small web viewer using
Autodesk Forge and ASP.NET. Being more of a .NET programmer, I
took on this opportunity to learn more about this new product
and build my own web-based Forge viewer.

I start by creating an ASP.NET Core MVC Web Application with
. ASP.NET Core being a web framework developed by
Microsoft, you can use your C# skills to “easily” build web

I follow the detailed explanations from Augusto Gonzales to
send my model to the Autodesk server for conversion, get an
GUID back and use it to display my model in the Forge viewer.
The explication on the blog are straightforward, and I won’t
delve into it. I just had to made some few changes since I am
using a different version of the ASP.NET Core framework.

Using technologies from Microsoft, it is easy to publish my
application on Azure, the Microsoft cloud hosting solution.

I called the end-result Termite, and it is available here.

The Termite Web Viewer

By default, you see a model of my neighborhood from
my last post
, but you can also upload your own files. A
word of caution, uploading and translating a large model can
take quite some time, do not close the windows until your model
is displayed on the screen.

I also add some features to the viewer. You can lock the
rotation of the view by clicking on the lock icon. I also put
in place a very basic section tool. To use the section, click
on “Add a section” and select a face in the model to create
your section.

Viewer Extensions

These features are…

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