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Plugin Workflow in Revit for 3D Mode and Daylight
Plugin Workflow in Revit for 3D Mode and Daylight

BIM, Revit plugin, Video and Written Tutorial, Best Practice Modeling

Christopher Riddell avatar
Written by Christopher Riddell
Updated over a week ago

This tutorial will guide you through the basic Revit plugin workflow from setting up your Revit model to using the web platform for Daylight, Energy, Load, and Carbon analysis. It highlights the new features of our latest Revit plugin (v.4.0.0).

Revit plugin version 4.0.0 Updates!

  1. Compatibility with Revit 2024

  2. New Ribbon Menu

  3. New Category - Exterior Doors

  4. Visualize Rooms data for troubleshooting

  5. Review export report


  1. Installation:

    Download the latest version of the Revit Plugin. Locate the latest Revit Plugin from the cove.tool App Store. Select the appropriate version (year) for your Revit application and install.

  2. Create a new project in cove.tool

    Before starting the export process, create a project in cove.tool. If you have not started a project, then the Revit Plugin will not have a project location to reference for your geometry export. Start a project, complete the project information page, then click 'save and continue'. The next step will be the Geometry Page, this is where the new Revit Plugin will come in handy.

  3. Back in Revit, proceed to the plugin workflow

    In Revit, launch the cove.tool Revit Plugin which will be located on the Ribbon Tab.

    • Step 1:

      Sign in to your cove.tool account
      Select the Update Login button, use the same login credentials you use to log into cove.tool.

    • Step 2:

      Choose your project via the Select Project button.

      • This will open a window with your project list. Scroll to find your cove.tool project. Note that the list is in alphabetical order and can be searched by typing.

      • If you have a mixed-use project, select the Building Type option from the available options. These are listed based on the selected building types on the Project Information page.

      • Once you have selected a project, that selection will be the receiver of all the geometry information.
        If your project list does not have the project you are looking for, check that you have the project in your cove.tool account in a web browser, or that you have clicked save and continue and are now on a geometry page in your cove.tool project. More details on the mixed-use export can be found here.

    • Step 3:

      Create cove.tool Views
      Once you have connected your model to your cove.tool account and the project, it is time to generate the cove.tool 3D views. The cove.tool views will appear in your Project Browser, as 14 new 3D Views.

      • 12 of these 3D views consist of geometry categories which are Roofs*, Floors*, Exterior Walls*, Windows*, Interior Walls, Skylights, Shading Devices, Spandrels, Furniture, Below Grade Walls, Exterior Doors, and Outdoor Floors.

      • Additionally, the 3D - cove.tool x combined view displays geometry that is visible from the 12 geometry covetool 3D views to help visualize the entire building before the export.

      • The 3D - covetool x linked geometry view will detect models that are linked and display linked geometry that is relevant for the covetool export. These linked elements need to be unhidden in the respective cove.tool views before the export. Check out this article for more information.


        • *Required categories include Exterior Walls, Floors, Roofs, and Windows where geometry has to be visibly present. These are represented as "Envelope" elements. All other categories are optional and therefore the view can be exported empty.

        • Some 3D views might be empty and that may be because the plugin did not identify any elements with the associated property tag. Find more details on the expected properties of elements in this Article.

    • Optional Rooms export:

      • Create cove.tool Rooms

        This feature will automatically place rooms in all spaces of the model that are enclosed by room-bounding objects. This does not override rooms already placed in the model. All rooms placed in the model are exported with the "Export Rooms" and "Export All" functions. The room export is beneficial for all models importing into drawing.tool for geometry translation. More details on how to utilize the room import are provided here.

      • Visualize covetool rooms
        Instantly create 3D object representations of room geometry to easily visualize and identify any overlapping, unusually small, or irregularly shaped rooms. This step is essential for ensuring accuracy before importing into drawing.tool. Review this detailed guide for modeling tips on importing to drawing.tool.
        NOTE: ​Use this feature for troubleshooting purposes only. Keep in mind, this step generated generic mass objects that may be visible in other existing sheets and views depending on visibility parameters.

    • Update Views

      After creating all the new views, enter into each view and hide all geometry elements that do not belong to the thermal zone of the titled use-type. If you have geometry missing in the required views, then you will need to manage the visibility settings, to make geometry appear in the correct 3D View category. Once this step is complete for all the views, you are ready to begin your geometry export.

      Commands that will be useful during this spot-check step will be the Visibility and Graphics Setting, the Filter Tool, the Select-Similar - in View command, the Hide-In View command, and the Reveal Hidden Elements Tool.

    • Export Geometry

      After updating all the views, users can begin the export process.

      • Before you export, you can choose your preferred project origin to be the Internal Origin, Project Base Point or Revit Survey Point. We recommend using the Project Base point to locate your model, in case it needs to be later edited. The location of your project in relation to the origin point determines how your building is sited in the 3D Analysis page.

      • In the covetool Ribbon Menu under the "Export" Tab > select the Export All button to export your Revit geometry from the 12 covetool 3D views.
        Note: The "Export All" will not export geometry from the "3D - cove.tool linked geometry" and "3D -cove.tool combined" views which are solely meant for previewing and troubleshooting.

      • You could also choose to export geometry one view at a time using the "Export by View" option. Make sure that the corresponding 3D view is open and actively selected when exporting using individual categories options.
        NOTE: The Export by View function exports the Required/Envelope Categories (Building Height, Exterior walls, floors, roofs, and windows) plus the chosen category together.
        <Add image here>

      • Next, a height export pop-up will appear, with your building height which uses elevation markers to calculate the height of your building and does not require a 3D View. If the wrong building height is returned, check out this article for troubleshooting, you can also manually overwrite your building height here and select OK.

        After confirming the height, the export will display 3D views that are empty before export. Make the relevant changes to the views if needed.

  4. Refresh Geometry Page
    After the export process is successful, make sure to reload the cove.tool geometry page to find geometry areas exported.

    1. To check, the geometry categories would be auto-filled in the manual input page. Now proceed to the "3D analysis page" for analysis.tool features or drawing.tool to utilize loadmodeling.tool.

    2. If you still see an error that states, *Missing Required Areas*, return to Revit and make sure you have exported all the necessary categories. Note that the only required fields are Roofs, Floors, Exterior Walls, Windows, and Building Height which can be exported together using the "Export Envelope" option. The other categories will not be required to run the simulation and daylight model.

    3. Also if you have a mixed use export you should attempt to follow the export procedure as displayed in the left-displayed icons (for example, Mixed-use icons, display Office-type at top, Education in the middle, and Retail at the bottom of the stack, then complete your geometry exports in this order.)

  5. Get the results for full-floor daylight analysis
    Once all categories are complete, then go to the Daylight Page. Check out your sDA% scores and continue with the project.


Q: I see a 'Command Failure for External Command' message when creating cove.tool views?

A: This occurs when the Revit model is setup to auto assign a View Template to new 3D views. To disable this behavior go to the 3D View, select Edit Type and in the Properties panel uncheck the New Views are Dependent on Template. In some rare cases the View Template must also be assigned to None.

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