I am working to implement Civil 3D in a county engineering department. We work with mostly rural road projects (this year the longest is 7 miles), some miscelaneous projects involving county garages, parks, etc. As a recent hire coming from a private firm fed by development, I see the workflows and projects as much less complex than what I'm used to though larger in actual physical size. 90% of what they do is: topo an existing road for a surface, design a new road in the same location, make plans for bidding, let it out, give models to contractors for equipment, and inspect. Very little with respect to hard utilities.
There are 2 or 3 project managers and 2 or 3 drafters under them. All of their working machines have Land Desktop Companion 2009 (their current work horse), and some machines have Civil 3D 2009. We have subscriptions for all current Civil 3D software.
Which version should I start with given the following constraints:
- Our IT won't support Windows 7 (64 bit) as they haven't been authorized for those upgrades by elected officials. They would install it, but our department would be on our own to fix bugs with respect to software and driver incompatibility. I'm not sure if we're willing or able to fly solo on that front - but maybe we could be talked into it.
- Our current machines run Windows XP (32 bit) (not sure we have the "switch" to give us 4 MB of RAM)
- We think we'd like to use the new 2011 survey database features to manage points, but we can live without that if it means crashing every 30 minutes.
- Licenses: We have a subscription for whatever we want, but as you all know, that's just part of the answer.
Most of what I read seems to strongly recomend that 2011 be run with Windows 7 for the additional RAM, but can we establish procedures that will allow us to work in Windows XP (32 Bit)? Is 2011 worth the hastle? If not, should we upgrade to 2010 or just leave everything at 2009 until we get the necessary upgrades to meet the recomended system requirements - maybe in years?
Given our limited use, maybe 2011 won't be that great of an improvement over 2009. I can't tell if most people are using 2011 or not.
Any thoughts would be appreciated.