Working from home with Descartes and ContextCapture Editor


Bentley Descartes for MicroStation

Bentley Descartes

ContextCapture Editor



In these challenging times when COVID-19 is imposing significant disruptions to day-to-day activities and affecting normal business flow of our much-valued users and employees, we at Bentley are mindfully committed to ensuring smooth transition of work from office to remote location or home. Our innovative software and services are all geared for working from home or remote locations and do not impose the need to be in an office set-up.

To ensure smooth transition of work and effectiveness of your daily workflows with Bentley software, we have assembled information that you can refer to while working remotely or from home. We are working hard to deliver high levels of customer service, and welcome feedback, questions, and ideas on how we can serve you better in a remote work environment.


You may decide to install the software on your home computer. If you do this, once signed in via the CONNECTION Client using your normal work email login, you will have the same licenses available as you do in the office. 

Machine Requirements

What can we do to ensure our users’ workflows are uninterrupted?

There are several options to work remotely. You may decide to install the software on your home computer. Please click here to see these minimum machine requirements for MicroStation.


Intel® or AMD® processor 1.0 GHz or greater. MicroStation is not supported on a CPU that does not support SSE2.


4 GB minimum, 16 GB recommended. More memory almost always improves performance, particularly when
working with larger models.

Hard Disk

10 GB minimum, 10-25 GB depending on additional installations such as Companion Features and Companion


See the graphics card manufacturer for latest information on DirectX drivers. 512 MB of video RAM or higher
is recommended. If insufficient video RAM or no graphics card supported by DirectX can be found, MicroStation
attempts to use software emulation. For optimal performance, graphics display color depth should be set to
24-bit or higher. When using a color depth setting of 16-bit, some inconsistencies will be noted. For more
information on recommended workstation profiles for MicroStation, see MicroStation System Requirements
and Hardware Recommendations.

Screen Resolution

1024 x 768 or higher


Internet Connectivity

Internet Access

Internet access is required for downloading, installing, and licensing the software (unless the machine concerned has a checked-out license). As the MicroStation installer is almost 8 GB, installation may take a significant time over low bandwidth connections. Ensure the connection used has sufficient data allowance if it is not an unlimited data package. Many CONNECT Edition products are installed from a small installer file that pulls the rest of the installation files from our servers. If you encounter problems with this installation route, please refer to the DOWNLOADING SOFTWARE section below for links to full software downloads or guidance on the use of Deployment Images to take home.

Internet Proxy Settings

MicroStation will try to obtain your Internet Proxy Settings from Internet Explorer browser. If it is not feasible, you can fill the details manually as described in this page located here.

Connecting to Your Organization’s Network via VPN

Virtual Private Network enables organizations to provide secure connection to their network over the internet so their employees can connect remotely or from public places. Click here to follow these instructions to connect to Windows VPN. If your organization uses a different VPN software, contact your IT administrator to guide you with the steps.

Features that require Internet Connectivity

The following features of MicroStation may not work properly in the absence of internet connectivity.



Remotely Accessing Office Computer

If you work on a heavy-duty desktop machine that is difficult to carry or if your organization does not allow employees to move computers out of the office premises, Remote Desktop Connection offers a great way to log into that machine from your personal computer. You will require your computer name or IP address. Click here to follow the instructions on this page.



When you’re working remotely, you are still part of a team and therefore sharing of project data is crucial. This is where the Configuration system shines. No matter where you are, you can be sure to be using the correct CAD standard with server-based Configurations. If your system has already been configured to use server-based resources virtualization and remote desktop access results in a similar experience to working in the office, there may be some graphic latency, but the system will be identical.

Attempting to connect to a configuration on office-based shares via VPN may be possible, depending on your IT systems, but is likely to be subject to significant latency, especially with many more VPN users than usual. Working with a local copy of the network configuration may be more appropriate.

Common Network Storage

One of the simplest and effective ways of work sharing is by storing the project data in a common network location and pointing every user’s configuration to that location by setting MicroStation’s _USTN_CONFIGURATION configuration variable. In addition, we recommend mapping a drive letter to organization’s network server path. For example, in ConfigurationSetup.cfg, the variable should be set as follows:


To point to your WorkSpaces and WorkSets (if in another location) use the WorkSpacesSetup.cfg file and uncomment and set:



Storing Your Project data on ProjectWise Share or OneDrive

Store your project data on ProjectWise Share or Microsoft OneDrive, which allows high levels of control. Easily manage and transfer without the need for additional software.

Collaborating on Projects with ProjectWise

The beauty of working with ProjectWise is that work sharing is built-in and the concept of being tied to a location is foreign. In a Client-Server architecture the client can be anywhere. By storing standards and work files on a server you can ensure proper access for anyone. By establishing a digital environment for all project information, you can give access to people regardless of location and device type. However, ensuring the correct access is the key to success. So, setting up ProjectWise Explorer locally is key.

The way to install ProjectWise Explorer can be found here.



Descartes for MicroStation CONNECT Edition is bundled in the installation programs of most MicroStation-based applications. Here is a list of MicroStation-based applications that are known to bundle the Descartes for MicroStation Companion product. And, here is a guide on how to install Descartes for MicroStation CONNECT Edition. If you require additional information, please contact our Technical Support team.







At home set your default printer to PDF to avoid sending prints via a VPN to an unattended printer.