I’ve never really liked the term “Best Practice”. To start with, it’s subjective and more times than not it isn’t based on broader research or evidence by those throwing the term around.. The term is also occasionally used by some to shut down communication or ideas and suggestions by others to prevent opposing viewpoints. “Sorry, that’s not a best practice.”

None the less, the following is a list of some of the “Best Practices” I use when administering an Autodesk Fabrication Database configuration. That’s not to say you’re doing anything wrong if you don’t follow them or do something differently. They are however, a list of my personal best practices given the problems I’ve encountered, my experiences with the software and the goals and objectives I’m trying to achieve.

Use what works for you, skip what doesn’t. If you have some of your own “Best Practices”, I’d love to hear them. Feel free to drop me a note using one of the Email links on the site.

Best Practices for Autodesk Fabrication Database Administration


  1. Don’t use Double Quotes ( ” )…Ever.
  2. Don’t use BMP files for ITM Images
  3. Don’t leave proxy items in your fabrication database.
  4. Make sure ALL of your ITM content has a Database ID assigned to it.
  5. Don’t Store Estimating Tables in Your CADmep Drawing
  6. Don’t PURGE or COMPACT Your Database When In Use
  7. Don’t work in a Live Sync’d Database
  8. Only ONE concurrent Database Administrator at a time
  9. Use the Same Version of software to Admin your Database
  10. Don’t use Ancillaries with Breakpoints inside an Ancillary Kit
  11. Don’t use Commas (,) in Database Entry Names, ITM File Names, Don’t Use Them Anywhere
  12. Compress your Database Files
  13. Use “Match by Name only” in Database Settings