Known Issues with Ideate Sticky for Revit

Below are known Excel issues with Ideate Sticky for Revit. Excel features or conditions that are not supported by Ideate Sticky as well as any other known limitations. For tips on managing some of the Excel-related limitations, refer to the topic Editing in Excel.

Version Compatibility

Ideate Sticky updates should be implemented for everyone within a company at the same time in order to maintain visual fidelity. For example, if one person updates Ideate Sticky to take advantage of the new lineweight settings feature, but others working within the same project do not have this latest update of Ideate Sticky, then the result will be that the cell border lineweight may vary depending upon whomever last updated the Sticky. In this situation Ideate Sticky will retain the lineweight settings within the Revit project, but will only apply those lineweight setting rules when the version of Ideate Sticky that supports those settings is being used to update the Sticky. Related topics:  Adding to a Revit Deployment

Autodesk Docs/BIM360 Limitations

Starting with the Spring 2019 release, the location of Sticky source Excel files in Autodesk Docs/BIM 360 folders is supported, with some important limitations.

Updating to Autodesk Docs

May 2021 release of Ideate Sticky (versions 2019-2022) is able to seamlessly switch between older BIM360 and newer Autodesk docs paths. Please make sure to update your Sticky if you are seeing any issues with cloud paths.

In older releases the paths to Sticky source files stored in BIM 360 will break when the users update Desktop Connector to the new branded Autodesk Docs.

More details about the issue can be found in this blog post.

BIM 360 Team is not supported with Ideate Sticky.

NOTE: Autodesk Docs does NOT automatically update local files if the cloud versions change, and this cannot be turned on as it can in other services, e.g. Dropbox. 

Due to how local file caching works with the Autodesk Desktop Connector (as of version 12.1), the following needs to be taken into consideration:

TIP: Store the Excel files in their own folder to facilitate easy caching. Right-click the folder to download the latest versions:

For more info about various file states in BIM360, see here.

Sticky Schedule Issues


Unexpected Sticky Size Changes

A Sticky Schedule can change size unexpectedly when updated or Auto-Updated on a computer with a different Display scaling than the Display scaling value used on the PC that originally created the Sticky Schedule. This issue is most commonly manifested when using Remote Desktop applications or laptops with docking stations, as well as with external devices such as projectors where Display Scaling could be changed during a Windows session.

The solution is to update the Schedule Stickies again on a PC with a ‘standard’ scaling value and limiting which team members should update the stickies in the project. As an alternative, for any stickies that require frequent Auto-Update, consider using Image Stickies which do not have this issue.

See this blog post for more info.


Known Formula Issues

Custom Cell Format:

A spreadsheet using a custom format #/#### “SF” to display data will show a warning in Ideate Sticky 2019.0 and previous (May 2018 release and older). The issue is with the quotation marks. This issue is expected to be resolved in future versions, once Infragistics (the programming layer that reads the excel data in a format usable by Sticky) releases a fix. Alternate formulas could be used, depending on the specifics of the way data needs to be displayed. Please contact support and provide more details.

Database (“D” prefix functions)

Database functions are currently not supported by Sticky. Examples include DAVERAGE, DCOUNT, DCOUNTA, DGET, DMAX, DMIN, DPRODUCT, DSTDEV, DSTDEVP, DSUM, DVAR, DVARP


The “=CELL” formula is currently not supported. Using this formula will result in Sticky displaying “#Name?” in the affected cells.

Formulas containing both an ‘underscore’ and ‘parentheses’. 

At this time Ideate Sticky is unable to create a schedule type sticky from a worksheet containing both an “_” and “()” symbols.

=X_Y — works as expected
=X_Y(A1*A2) — Sticky Schedule cannot be created

- use the ‘Image Sticky’ type
- edit the formulas and macros to remove the underscore if possible


Images, Word Art and Charts

Support for Images

Support for images is available with versions 2015 and forward. Images that are also hyperlinks (such as those generated by the Navis Clash Report) are not currently supported.  To import a Clash Report image, first remove the hyperlink associated with the image.

Word Art, Shapes, Charts, and SmartArt are not supported and will be ignored on import. Use the Insert>Picture or Insert>Symbol option as possible workarounds.

Cropped, Grouped, Flipped and Rotated Images

In order for images to work as expected they should not be cropped, grouped, rotated, or flipped as these functions will be ignored by Ideate Sticky.

Worksharing and Images

When an image is placed inside the Revit project, it is always placed on the active workset.  This means that when a Sticky with images is created OR updated, the workset of the image will be the active workset.  If a Sticky-related image is located on a workset that is wholly owned (checked out) then that Sticky cannot be updated, even though the rest of the Sticky is editable. In these instances you will receive a Revit error about the owner of that workset. The solution will be to have that user relinquish the workset. Then, with another workset active, you should be able to update the Sticky with the images.  Please see Errors and Warning Messages for Ideate Sticky for Revit concerning Worksharing.

Line Style Support

Excel has (14) hard-wired line styles, two of which have no reasonable match with Revit:  Double, Slanted Dash Dot.  Refer to Mapping Excel Line Styles in Ideate Sticky for Revit for more information.

Text Formatting, Font Scaling and Font Width

Font Scaling

The size of the font mapping within Ideate Sticky is typically managed as described in the topic Font Size Mapping Chart in Ideate Sticky for Revit. These rules can be negatively impacted by a change to your screen resolution size within a Windows session. Examples can include docking a laptop into a large screen monitor or connecting to a projector. Such changes may skew the logic used to determine the proper font size. In these situations, the best practice would be to log out and then back into your computer to ensure the proper font scaling.

Font Width

Ideate Sticky will adopt the font width settings that are defined in the Revit Text Style that is assigned within the schedule settings.

In the example image below, the Revit schedule setting is using a Text Style called ¼ ARIAL BOLD .75 WIDTH, which has the font width overrride set to .7500.


The font sizes within Ideate Sticky are managed in the Excel file and controlled by Ideate Sticky, as described here. Besides some of the known exceptions for fonts (see below section) if a font in Excel is of regular width, such as Arial or even Arial Narrow, but appears to be significantly more narrow (or wider) once linked in with Ideate Sticky, then it is possible that your Revit Schedule Appearance settings are using a Text Style that has a Width Factor that is not set to 1.000. Revit allows only font, font size, and font styles of bold, italic, and color to be overridden, but not the font width.

When a Sticky Schedule is created, it will convert the Excel font size, bold, italic, color, and font styles as defined in the Excel file, but for the font width it will refer to the Revit Width Factor for the assigned schedule text.
If you do notice a significant difference between the font width in your Excel file and how it displays once linked into your Revit model via Ideate Sticky, go to the schedule appearance tab and review the Revit fonts that are assigned to that schedule. Verify if those fonts have a Width Factor other than 1.000. If they do, then you should create a new View Template for your Ideate Sticky’s and assign a text style that has a width factor of 1.000. When new Sticky’s are linked in, you can assign them that View Template.

Cell Patterns

The Revit Schedule tool does not support patterns and as such will be ignored. Consider using color fills instead.

Conditional Formatting

Conditional formatting is currently not supported. Color fills, text overrides, etc., that are a result of conditional formatting will be ignored. The underlying cell formatting, which can be seen when you place your cursor within the cell, will be utilized instead. Related topic: Work with Excel Pivot Tables in Ideate Sticky for Revit.

Font Effects

Font effects such as strikethrough, subscript, and superscript are not support by Revit's Schedule Header and therefore will be ignored.

Font Overrides

Font overrides are changes made in Excel to the contents of the cell (wholly or partially) as opposed to the cell level font settings. Examples of this include partial red or bold text. This kind of formatting is not supported by the Revit Schedule Header and therefore will be ignored.

Special Text Characters

Not all special text characters are supported. Special characters vary with each font used. Refer to Using Special Characters for Revit with Ideate Sticky for detailed information.

Line Spacing

Ideate Sticky strives for the greatest visual fidelity between the Excel Spreadsheet and the Revit Schedule as placed on a sheet. However as a condition of the way that Revit renders or displays the text, the line spacing between the top and bottom of the cell in Revit may vary slightly as a function of the font type, font size, and the length of the text within each cell.

Page Setup

Page Breaks or 'Splitting'

The Revit Application Programming Interface (API) does not support splitting a schedule header element, therefore, to break a Sticky into more than one page you will need to separate the information within Excel. Refer to Manage the Size of Sticky with Ideate Sticky for Revit for more information.

The use of Excel named regions is limited to a single array and is not supported by multiple ranges defined within a single name.


Headers and Footers

Header and Footer text and formatting within the Excel file will be ignored.

Revit Issues

Sticky Schedules Do Not Show With ‘Show Title’ Unchecked

Ideate Sticky schedules are native Revit elements, but we use the schedule title to display the Excel information. For any Sticky schedules that are not displaying properly, check the schedule properties. In the appearance tab, the "Show Title" should be turned on. In many cases, an applied schedule view template has unchecked these properties.

Note: The “Blank row before data” checkbox adds or removes one empty row between the column title and data rows.

Schedule properties tab in Ideate Sticky for Revit


 Excel Issues

In certain rare cases Ideate Sticky may not able to read the contents of an Excel sheet. The resulting error is similar to this one:

Unable to Open Excel file warning in Ideate Sticky for Revit


This error tends to be caused by unexpected conditions inside the Excel file, i.e.:

The best way to move forward in this situation is to use the native Excel tool to inspect and clean the file (File -> Info -> Check for Issues).
If you are still having trouble afterwards, feel free to contact Ideate Support for more help.

Note on ‘restricted’ Excel files:

While Excel allows for various ways of protecting your file or its parts, Ideate Sticky will in general let you create a sticky in Revit as long as there is at least a read-only access to this file. If your ability to execute formulas and macros is limited as well (i.e. by the automated ‘protection’ enabled for files downloaded from the internet), this could produce unexpected results in the displayed sticky if these macros or formulas are used to calculate the values to be displayed.

At this time the following features prevent the sticky to be created:

Encrypt the file

Restrict access

Both of these require a username and/or a password authentication to open the Excel file.


The following ‘protection’ options have also been tested and confirmed to work:

Sticky Image Issues

Deleted Sticky Still Displays

Sticky images represent image types as defined within Revit. For this reason, all instances of a Sticky image can be manually deleted within the Revit project while the type remains listed within Sticky. Use the Delete button within Sticky to delete both the type and the instance at the same time.

Image Scaling for PDFs

In versions 2018 and 2019, PDF Sticky images may be reduced in size when the DPI is set to 300 or higher. The workaround is to reduce the DPI or to manually re-size the image as needed.


- Revit 2019 only — Hitting the F1 key while hovering over the application button on the Ribbon will open the Help file with a DNS error. Pick any of the topics in the navigation bar to display the help contents. If you are still using this version, we strongly recommend that you update to one of the newer 2019 releases.


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