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Why are the older EnergyPlus IDF update files not included in distribution?

asked 2015-05-12 11:08:24 -0600

updated 2015-07-11 17:13:41 -0600

Is there a reason why the files to convert older energyplus files to the latest version are not included with the EnergyPlus releases? Can this be corrected?

At one time (and according to the current documentation) the files to update and IDF from older versions of EnergyPlus were not included for space reasons in the install package. That's obviously not a concern with modern internet technology. So, does anyone know why the older IDF update files haven't been incorporated into the newer releases?

With the move over to hosting the EnergyPlus downloads on github and updates to the main DOE front page, it is increasingly hard to find those files. It took me forever to find where they were hiding on

I think that making it difficult for users to make those updates from older IDF files is going to keep users away from EnergyPlus and OpenStudio. Adding these files into the standard EnergyPlus installer would be a great idea.

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answered 2015-05-12 11:28:55 -0600

The README file that is packaged with the EnergyPlus installation that lists important changes and other new version information provides a link directly to the HelpDesk page that hosts the entire package of idf transition tools. Here is the snippet from the README:

Multiple Version Conversions

The install includes the IDFVersionUpdater program and the necessary programs to convert from the previous version (including .rvi and .mvi files) to the current version. For older versions, you will need to visit the helpdesk and download the multiple conversion set of programs. The HelpDesk downloads area: Converting Older Files will contain the necessary readmes and zip/tar files of programs to convert IDFs from V1.0 to the current version.

That said, I have taken your feedback and made a new issue on our GitHub repo to make sure this is more visible to users, so a change should be reflected in the next major release of EnergyPlus.


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The link in the readme (which I found after I had already found the files digging around the help site and posted this question) didn't seem to work right (I tried it after I had already downloaded the files). I didn't get a 404 but I couldn't download either. I had to go back to the main helpsite, go to the download directory and then look at the bottom of the download files to be able to find a link to the windows downloads that would actually download.

Ralph Muehleisen gravatar image Ralph Muehleisen  ( 2015-05-12 11:48:30 -0600 )edit

Oh, and is there a reason why the updaters from anything but the previous version are not included in the current release?

Including links in the readme to a place to download and install the required update files is helpful but why are they not included in the distribution in the first place?

Ralph Muehleisen gravatar image Ralph Muehleisen  ( 2015-05-12 11:56:00 -0600 )edit

Long ago, the decision was made to keep them separate due to size considerations (trying to keep the ever-growing installer as small as possible). It still seems like overkill to include everything back to v1.0 in every installer. But as Edwin said, we'll work on improving the access, especially given there has become a wide range of static idf sources out there that get further and further behind.

MJWitte gravatar image MJWitte  ( 2015-05-12 12:06:25 -0600 )edit

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Asked: 2015-05-12 11:08:24 -0600

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Last updated: May 12 '15