Kenesto is looking to act as the Google Drive, Box, and Dropbox of the CAD world, Mike Payne, chief executive officer, told us. While cloud-storage solutions like Dropbox are seeing an explosion in popularity. But the typical cloud storage solutions aren’t ideal for CAD file management, Payne said.
Those who use CAD need a solution customized to handle continually updated CAD files and their multiple users, he said. The company’s Kenesto Drive stores CAD information and files online, which various, approved users can access.
The offering rivals other services like Autodesk’s A360 software, which allows design, engineering, and project teams to work collaboratively via a cloud-based centralized platform, and Onshape, a CAD system that exists entirely in the cloud and can also be accessed by multiple users.
Kenesto updated its drive this month to include features found on a company’s shared local area network (LAN) drive. These include capabilities Payne dubbed “work-safety features,” such as a feature that locks an in-use document so another same-time user can’t change it.
Engineering and design companies find several advantages when it comes to housing CAD files online, though the method also has its downside. Chief among the advantages: storage. Like popular offerings such as Dropbox, cloud CAD providers offer a great deal of capacity and as well as low-cost upgrades for even more.
Other advantages include the capability to access data over any Internet connection, including from mobile devices.
But cloud storage does carry some drawbacks. Engineers could lose access to their own data, should engineering companies choose not to renew or the provider go out of business. Should that happen, the engineering company could lose access to important legacy information and even to data currently in the works.
Of course with online storage comes online security concerns, though companies that offer cloud storage take great measures to secure information.
The Kenesto update makes cloud storage ever-more desirable to engineering firms that wish to have collaborative CAD file available but that want to ensure only the latest version is in use and that changes can’t be made to it by unauthorized users.
Overall, look for in-the-cloud CAD and CAD storage options to become more readily available in the same way services like Flickr and Google Drive have become widely available and popular in recent years.