RAM SS V14.06.00 Release Notes

Release Date: October 22, 2013

This document contains important information regarding changes to the RAM Structural System. It is important that all users are aware of these changes. Please distribute these release notes and make them available to all users of the RAM Structural System.


The Tutorial Manual has not been updated but is still valid. The appearance of some parts of the program in this version may differ from that shown in the Tutorial.

Important Notices

Version 14.06 automatically converts databases created in previous versions to the new database format. Note that a backup file is created automatically when a database is converted; the name of the database is the same, with “Orig” and the version number appended to the name. The file has an extension of “.zip” and is located in the same directory as the original database.

The previous steel tables and load combination templates supplied with the program will be replaced with new tables and templates of the same name. If you have customized any Master or Design tables or load combination templates supplied with the program without changing the file names, those file names should be renamed from the original RAM table names prior to installation to prevent your changes from being lost.

Installation Instructions

This version can be found on the Bentley SELECT Services Downloads and Updates web page at:
Select “Search Downloads” and log in using your User Name and Password. Perform a Search by searching for the “RAM Products”, and select the latest version of the RAM Structural System.

New Features and Enhancements

For details on these new features and enhancements, refer to the manual .pdf files available from the Help menu in each module or from the Manuals folder on your hard drive.

64 bit Version

A 64 bit version of the program is now available. This allows for very large models, and provides a significant increase in the speed of analysis of large models.

Either a 32 bit or a 64 bit version may be installed. Note that with the program’s ability to launch RAM Concept it is necessary to install the 64 bit version if the 64 bit version of RAM Concept is installed in order to use the interoperability features between the two programs.

Due to the greater precision given by the 64 bit processing, there may be minor differences in the results given by the two versions, especially in meshing and analysis. The analysis and design differences are not expected to be significant.

Trust Licensing

The licensing for the program has been modified to conform to Bentley licensing procedures. Previously Strict Licensing was employed whereby if all of the licenses that a company had were in use the program would not allow another engineer to run the program until someone exited. Now the program will allow the engineer to proceed and will log the over-use. This log will then be helpful in determining the actual demand that a company has for licenses. See Appendix A of this document for more detailed information on Trust Licensing.

Tables Saved with Database

The Master and Design Steel Tables are now saved with the database. This makes it more convenient when transferring a database from one machine to another when the database uses custom tables; it isn’t necessary to explicitly copy the tables to that machine, they are transferred as part of the database.

Launch RAM Connection directly from RAM Structural System
RAM Connection can now be launched directly from the RAM Structural System, with the necessary geometry, size and loads transferred to RAM Connection. This requires that RAM Connection V8.1 or later is installed.

ISM / Structural Synchronizer

The ability to create, import and export ISM repositories has been significantly enhanced. These capabilities provide interoperability with ISM-enabled programs such as STAAD, AECOsym, ProStructures, Tekla©, and Autodesk Revit©.

Global Coordinate Offsets

A model offset can be specified, allowing the model in the RAM Structural System to have coordinates locate at or near (0.00, 0.00) while the ISM model coordinates are real-world coordinates.


An option to include or exclude the concrete reinforcement in the export from the RAM Structural System has been implemented. For some workflows where rebar is not required, excluding rebar can reduce file size and improve performance.

Table Mapping

For new models created from a repository, the user can now preset the desired Master and Design steel tables to use, and the Master table can be mapped to a specific standards organization such as AISC or CISC.

Import Metal Decks

In prior versions only concrete decks were imported into the RAM Structural System. Metal decks are now imported, too. Where no mapping is specified, a default ISM deck type is used.

Column Splice Locations

An option to position the column splices a user-specified distance above the story datum has been added.

Columns, Hangers and Cantilevers

Improvements were made in the identification of Columns vs Hangers, and of cantilevers.

Other Material Beam and Column Sections

"Other" material beams and columns are now exported with rectangular parametric sections.

Multi-story Column Fixity

When a continuous column is imported from ISM, the end fixity is set as Fixed for all three degrees of freedom at the intermediate stories where the column is segmented.  In prior versions the fixity was often set as Pinned.

Slabs with a Concurrent Edge

In prior versions, two slabs in ISM that shared a common edge were imported with two overlapping slab edges. The common edges are now removed leaving the outer boundary only, as required in the RAM Structural System.

Canada S16-09

The requirements of Canadian Standard S16-09 Limit States Design of Steel Structures have been implemented. The option to design per either S16-01 or S16-09 is now available.

Australia AS 3600-09

The requirements of Australia Standard AS 3600-09 Concrete Structures have been implemented for the design of beams and columns (but not shearwalls). The option to design per either AS 3600-01 or AS 3600-09 is now available.

BS 8110-1:1997 Amendments

The Amendments to BS 8110 have now been implemented. The changes in the program are primarily associated with Amendment 3 and the use of 500 Grade reinforcement and the change in m in Amendment 2 when using 460 Grade reinforcement. The amendments were partially implemented previously; with the completion of the implementation the design results may be slightly different than in the previous version.

BS 5950-1:2000 Transverse Reinforcement

The Transverse Reinforcement requirements of BS 5950-1:200 were previously implemented but previously the Gravity Beam Design report listed the required reinforcement for the beam based on a reinforcement of fy = 460 N/mm2. With the increased use of reinforcement with fy = 500 N/mm2, the transverse reinforcement checks performed in that report now uses reinforcement fy = 500 N/mm2.

Note that for the Transverse Reinforcement Check report the user can specify any value of fy; use the Defaults Utility to specify the desired default value.

Eurocode EN 1994-1-1:2004 Transverse Reinforcement

The Transverse Reinforcement requirements of Eurocode EN 1994-1-1:2004 (and EN 1992-1-1:2004) have been implemented. The Gravity Beam Design report lists the required reinforcement for the beam with various configurations of sheeting fyp, thickness and continuity, allowing the engineer to determine which configuration is most suitable. The Transverse Reinforcement Check report lists all of the beams for which the specified sheeting fyp and thickness, and reinforcement fyk and reinforcement area are insufficient, for conditions of sheeting continuous or discontinuous (if applicable), and the area of reinforcement that would be required to satisfy the transverse reinforcement requirements.

Modeler Enhancements

Deck and Load Labels

In addition to displaying labels for Surface loads and Decks, labels are now displayed for Line and Point loads. In the Layout – Loads commands (Surface, Line, Point, and Snow) and the Layout – Slab – Deck Assign command there is now an option to Show Labels. Also, on the Miscellaneous tab of the Options – Set Show Options command the Loads option now includes options to “Show Point Load Property Labels” and “Show Line Load Property Labels”.

Deck and Load Show Same

Each of the Layout – Loads commands now includes a Show Same button. When the Show Same command is invoked a list of the loads appears. When one of the loads in the list is selected all of the loads in the layout that have been assigned that load property are highlighted

The Layout – Slab – Deck Assign command now has similar functionality; when a deck property is selected from the list, all of the deck polygons that have been assigned that property are highlighted.

The dialog box initially only lists the labels but can be expanded using the More>> button to list the load and deck properties, too. And then minimized again using the Less>> button. The dialog box can be resized if necessary by clicking and dragging the lower right corner of the dialog box.

Zoom and pan commands are available when these commands are being used, and different layout types can be selected without closing and re-invoking these commands. This makes it very easy to see what loads have been assigned to each of the layout types.

Deck and Surface Load Change Priority

A Change Priority command has been implemented for Decks and Surface Loads that allows the user to change the order that Deck polygons and Surface Load polygons are considered by the program. When this command is selected, all of the polygons that have been created in that layout are listed, in order from top to bottom. The polygons can be moved up or down in the list. For example, a surface load polygon that has been completely covered by another polygon can be moved to the top where it can be deleted; previously all of the polygons on top of that polygon would have had to be deleted first in order to delete that one.

Slab and Opening Edge Change

The slab and opening edge distances can now be changed by selecting a new Overhang value and then selecting an existing overhang. This can be done in either Single or Fence mode, allow the change to be made for a single Edge or for multiple Edges. Previously a change required the user to replace the old edge by laying down a new edge over the top of the old one; now it can be changed merely by clicking on it or fencing it.

Slab and Opening Edge Move

Slab edges and Opening edges can now be moved by selecting one end and dragging it to its new location. This is convenient when an edge has been laid down incorrectly or when the edges or openings need to be moved. Previously this would require that the edge be deleted from its old location and modeled in its new location.

Brace Point Modeling

In addition to the previous ability to assign an individual brace point at some specified distance along an individual beam, a beam flange brace point can now be modeled at a distance specified as a function of % of span and assigned to a set of beams using a fence command. Also multiple brace points can be generated by specifying the Brace Spacing, Number of Equal Spaces per Brace, or Equal Spacing per Brace, Not to Exceed a specified distance, either on a single beam or on a set of beams using a fence command. These brace points are used in the determination of the unbraced length in the design of the beams.

Allowing Point Loads with CDL greater than DL

Previously the program did not allow the user to specify a value of Construction Dead Load (CDL) that was greater than the Dead Load (DL). This is due to the fact that dead loads that occur during the pre-composite (construction) stage become part of the total dead load on the beam, so the program required the CDL to be a portion of the DL. This has been changed for Point Loads, for which CDL values can now be specified that are greater than DL (although a warning is given by the program). The purpose of this change is to provide a way to assign CDL to a transfer girder. The program makes the assumption that transfer girders are acting in their composite state before the transfer column loads are applied. This is generally – but not always – the  case, so the program does not apply any CDL load from the transfer column in the precomposite design of the transfer girder, it applies it all as DL on the post-composite section. In some cases the actual construction sequence is such that a floor (or floors) above the transfer girder is erected and concrete placed prior to the transfer girder reaching its composite strength; in that case a Point load can now be applied to the transfer girder that only includes the CDL that should be applied from the transfer column but is ignored by the program (that is, the program will assume there is no CDL from the column, but it will use the CDL from the assigned Point load).

Add Brace - Special command 

Using the Add Brace – Special command, braces can now be added that frame into Stub Cantilevers.

RAM Steel Beam

Assign Size

An Assign Size command has been implemented allowing the user to assign sizes to beams without the necessity of going back to the Modeler or of performing a View/Update Update Database on each individual beam. The assignment can be made in either Single or Fence mode, and can be made on Steel beams, Steel Joists, SMARTBEAMS, and Westok Cellular Beams.

Cambering Beams with Cantilevers

An option has been added to the Camber Criteria to allow the user to specify that beams with cantilevers are not to be cambered.

Frame Beams

Steel Joist Design report

When steel joists with nonuniform loads are selected, the report now lists the Maximum Allowable Total Uniform Load at any location. Previously that information was missing from the report.

RAM Frame

Ritz Vectors

For the calculation for structural periods and modes the program now has the option to perform the calculations using Ritz Vectors, in addition to the option to use Eigen Vectors available previously. This methodology is an approximate method that produces results that are the same or nearly the same as the Eigen analysis. It will more reliably converge on the solution even when the Eigen analysis may not, and will more reliably capture the lateral structural modes whereas the Eigen analysis sometimes calculates and reports irrelevant vertical modes due to vertical vibration of slabs (although those are real modes, they are not relevant to the structural analysis and the attempt to calculate such modes may inhibit the successful wind or lateral analysis of the structure). The method of Ritz vectors also has the advantage of being generally faster.

Beam-to-Wall Constraint

An option has been added to include a Rigid Link in the wall elements at the locations where fixed-end beams frame into walls. The rigid link appears to provide better results; without the rigid link the node at the beam-wall intersection tends to rotate excessively in the analysis. It is recommended that this option be selected for models with beams (that are fixed at the ends) frame into walls.

Drift Control Points and Lambda Critical Control Points

Previously the number of control points allowed for the Process – Results – Drift – At Control Points command was limited to four sets of coordinate points. This has been increased to ten points. The Process – Results – BS 5950 Lambda Critical – At Control Points command has likewise been expanded to permit ten points.


The AISC 360 Direct Analysis Validation report has been enhanced to always calculate and show B2 (the ratio of 2nd order drift to 1st order drift), even if B2 was not specified to be applied to the design moments. This is useful information when evaluating the need to use the Direct Analysis Method and in determining the need to include Notional Loads with all load combinations or with the gravity-only combinations.

Tension-only Analysis

When the model includes tension-only members a special set of analyses is performed. See the RAM Frame Manual. The analysis has been enhanced to eliminate the instability warnings that sometimes occurred during analysis previously, especially when the analysis was combined with a P-delta analysis. For the gravity load cases tension-only braces are not included in the analysis since it is unlikely that gravity loads would induce tension in the braces. However, this lack of brace members in the gravity load case analyses sometimes resulted in instabilities in the analysis, especially when analyzed in conjunction with the P-delta analysis. Now for the gravity load cases this special tension-only analysis does not include the P-delta analysis. This is a reasonable implementation since in virtually all cases the P-delta moments due to lateral sway caused by gravity loads is extremely small (gravity loads themselves rarely induce significant lateral sway, especially in a braced frame). Note that the gravity load P-delta moments due to lateral sway caused by seismic and wind loads is still included. As explained in the Manual, the suitability of the assumptions made for tension-only braces must be determined by the engineer for any given model.

Reactions in Load Combination Mode

Reactions can now be shown onscreen in Load Combination mode, which means that the reactions are shown for the selected Load Combination.

Seismic Provisions

Some enhancements have been made to the Steel Seismic Provisions module.

SidePlate Criteria

If a model had SidePlate connection assignments, the SidePlate criteria is now included on the Criteria, Mass and Exposure Data report.

RAM Concrete

Coupling Beams

Shear strength of shear wall coupling beam sections in tension according to ACI code previously assumed Vc to be zero, which was the simpler of two possible methods. This has been enhanced to use section, 318-11 (and same section in earlier codes) in such cases.

Hyperstatic Load Cases

The balanced (hyperstatic) forces load cases have been added to the IBC 2012 Concrete load combination templates. This is useful when importing data from RAM Concept for the design of the columns; the balanced forces due to the post-tensioning are included in the column design.

SJI Virtual Joist Girder Tables

Virtual Joist Girder tables provided by SJI are now included. These tables contain Joist Girder information as equivalent I-sections, and can be used to size Joist Girders. They do not need to be used to select Joist Girders, the program’s current steel joist design capabilities are sufficient for that; however, there may be some advantages using these tables. They should not be used to size standard Steel Joists, they were not created for that purpose. An advantage of using these tables is that the weight of the Joist Girder can be determined and the Takeoff report will include the weight of those Joist Girders. Also, one of these sizes can be assigned to a Frame beam allowing RAM Frame to analyze it as a moment frame utilizing a steel joist (not suitable in high seismic regions).

Caution should be taken when using these tables, and it is important to understand the limitations and assumptions associated with them. Contact SJI for more information. See Appendix B of this document for recommendations on using these tables.

ASTM A1085 HSS Shapes

New steel design tables are now included that include the HSS shapes conforming to ASTM A1085. HSS shapes conforming to this new specification have a much tighter tolerance, allowing the nominal dimensions to be used in calculating the section properties (under ASTM A500 for example, the section properties are calculated using a 0.93 reduction factor to account for the large dimensional tolerance). Thus these shapes have more favorable section properties. Furthermore these shapes have a higher yield strength, Fy = 50 ksi, so when specified the user should assign a value of Fy = 50 ksi in the Modeler. To use these shapes, select ramaiscwithA1085.tab as the Master table, ramaiscwithA1085.bms for the Beam Design table (if they are going to be used for beams), and the ramaiscwithA1085.col or ramaisc2withA1085.col for the Column Design table (if they are going to used for columns). It is important to verify availability before specifying these shapes. Contact the Steel Tube Institute for more information. Also see the AISC website:

Jumbo HSS Shapes

New square and rectangular HSS shapes are available in Jumbo sizes. See the AISC website:

These sizes have been added to the RAMAISC tables. Note that the section properties for these shapes are based on the 0.93 thickness reduction required for HSS’s conforming to ASTM A500, to maintain consistency with the other HSS sizes in the table. However, Atlas Tube, the supplier of these shapes indicates that these Jumbo shapes conform to a more stringent standard that does not require the 0.93 reduction factor to be applied. Thus the tables supplied by the program are conservative, and can be edited by the user if it is desired to use the full section properties. Contact Atlas Tube for more information regarding section properties and availability:

Arcelor Tables

ArcelorMittal produces jumbo I and L shapes for the US market. These shapes are now included in the AISC database of available shapes. These jumbo sizes have been added to the RAMAISC tables.

Hyper Beams

A steel Master table and a steel Beam Design table have been created that include Hyper Beams, wide-flange sizes produced by Nippon Steel. These sizes can be accessed by selecting the ramaiscplushyperbeam tables in the Criteria – Master Steel Table and Criteria – Design Steel Tables commands. When these tables are used the program will select standard AISC wide-flange sizes for smaller beams and Hyper Beam sizes for large beams. Other than the addition of the Hyper Beam sizes these tables are the same as the corresponding RAMAISC tables.

Note: A related article describing the V14.06 enhancements and features can be found here.


Note About the RAM – Revit Link

The direct RAM-Revit link is not compatible with the 64bit version of the RAM Structural System. That link will no longer be supported or updated. Instead, clients are urged to use the ISM capabilities built into the program which provides a better workflow and better change management. Model data can be exported to and imported from Revit, Tekla and Bentley AECOsim through the interoperability capabilities of ISM. In the RAM Manager see the File – ISM commands (Create ISM Repository, New From ISM Repository, Update ISM Repository, and Update From ISM Repository).

Error Corrections

Some program errors have been identified in V14.05.x and corrected for Version 14.06. Corrections made to graphics, reports, Modeler functions, program crashes, etc that were considered minor are not listed here. The noteworthy error corrections are listed here in order to notify you that they have been corrected or to assist you in determining the impact of those errors on previous designs. These errors were generally obscure and uncommon, affecting only a very small percentage of models, or had no impact on the results. The errors, when they occurred, were generally quite obvious. However, if there is any question, it may be advisable to reanalyze previous models to determine the impact, if any. In each case the error only occurred for the precise conditions indicated. Those errors that may have resulted in un-conservative designs are shown with an asterisk. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause.


FLAT BARS IN RAMUK_CF TABLES: When using the ramuk_cf.tab table, flat bar shapes were not recognized.
Effect: Hanging columns using flat bar sizes from that table would not design.


BEAM AND WALL GENERATION: The "Equal Spacing Per Beam (or Wall), Not to Exceed" option of the Layout – Beams – Add Generation command and Layout – Walls – Add Generation command would sometimes use one too few beams, resulting in spacing that was too wide.
Effect: Not enough beams to satisfy the design request.

MOVE BEAM WITH CANTILEVER: If a beam with a cantilever was moved with the Move command the support points of the beam were calculated incorrectly.
Effect: Beams with cantilevers were not moved correctly, with the support points being incorrectly located. The beam had to be corrected or deleted and remodeled. The model would not analyze when this occurred.

Framing Tables

IBC WALL LIVE LOAD REDUCTION*: For the reduction of Live Loads on walls for IBC, the program used the KLL factor as for columns. However, this was generally unconservative. The program now uses the KLL factor as for beams, which is conservative.
Effect: Slightly unconservative Live Loads on walls when the Live Load was reducible.

CANTILEVER TIP LOADING*: If the cantilever part of a beam was outside the building perimeter (the tip extends beyond the perimeter framing such that no beams frame into the tip) but was inside the slab edge loop then any point load on cantilever tip was incorrectly distributed back to the support or the beam on the edge, rather than being placed on the cantilever tip.
Effect: This situation although very rare when happened may have caused incorrect point load distribution on the framing.

Steel Beam

WESTOK INFILLS*: Previously optimized beams with infills due to framing showed incorrect infill locations when a new user-assigned opening and pitch size were investigated in the View/Update dialog box.
Effect: Although the design of previously optimized beams with infills due to framing were correct, subsequent investigations of the beam with newly assigned opening and pitch resulted in a design that continued to retain the infill from the original design.
Note: Beam sizes and designs need to be cleared and re-optimized in order to eliminate the erroneous infills.

WEB OPENING STIFFENER WELD: AISC Specifications do not have a requirement for maximum fillet weld size for plates oriented like a stiffener. The program erroneously gave an error message when the fillet size exceeded the maximum fillet size as for when the weld is along the plate edge.
Effect: Incorrect (unnecessary) error message.
HOLLOWCORE PRECAST ****: If Hollowcore Precast *** was specified on one side of the beam and oriented parallel to the beam, and noncomposite deck was specified on the other side of the beam, the program designed the beam compositely (it should not when Hollowcore deck is parallel to the beam).
Effect: Beam incorrectly designed as composite.

RAM Frame – Analysis

CANTILEVER BEAMS WITH RIGID OFFSET LINKS*: Rigid offset links for beams with cantilevers were not applied to the analytical model correctly.
Effect: Incorrect beam member forces (no effects from the offset).

SLOPED BEAM NEXT TO A MESHED DIAPHRAGM*: The program generated an incorrect finite element model for a sloped beam if the beam was located next to a meshed diaphragm. This error only occurred if the beam was sloped and it was next to a meshed diaphragm.
Effect: The generated analytical model for the beam was not correct.

DUPLICATE LOADS FROM OFFSET BEAMS: If the right end of a Frame beam was offset from a column then the program was duplicating the applied load from the Frame beam on that column.
Effect: The column loads were overconservative in such situations.

AUSTRALIAN WIND LOAD CASE: Loads and Applied Forces report showed an incorrect wind speed value.
Effect: This was a report error only. The program used the correct wind speeds to calculate wind pressures and wind loads.

RESPONSE SPECTRA LOAD CASE: If a response spectra load case was defined with response spectra data read in from an external file, the program created corrupted data for the response spectra load case if the file name was more than 9 characters.
Effect: Invalid load case created.

ANALYSIS RESULTS DIAGRAM FOR BEAM WITH SIDEPLATE: The Analysis Results Diagram window plotted incorrect force diagrams at the end of SidePlate beam if the results were selected to be drawn at member face.
Effect: Only a display issue in Analysis Results Diagram window.

GRAVITY LOAD WARNING MESSAGE: The program did not give a warning message if gravity loads were found on a diaphragm with no Frame members. These loads are used in P-delta and in the determination of Notional Loads. The expected behavior is that the user be given a warning message for the diaphragm and that the user then Combine the gravity loads to another level so that they are not ignored, but the warning message was not given.
Effect: No warning message given for this condition. No error occurred if there were Frame members at every level/diaphragm, only if there was a level/diaphragm without Frame members.

RAM Frame – Steel Standard Provisions

AISC Cm*: An incorrect value of Cm may have been used in the calculation of B2 in column designs in multi-story models in which the B2 factor was used (instead of the P-delta analysis).
Effect: Although all other design checks were correct, column designs per the AISC 360 code specifications used an incorrect Cm when B1 and B2 analysis was performed.

AISC 360 Cb*: An incorrect value of Cb may have been used in the design of columns if the option to use the B2 Factor (instead of the P-delta analysis) was selected.
Effect: An incorrect Cb factor of 1.0 was used for some column design checks when the B2 Factor option was selected.

RAM Frame – Steel Seismic Provisions

AISC 341 JOINT CODE CHECKS: Except for RBS, the gravity shear contribution to the expected beam moment, Muv, at a joint for all other connection types also included the seismic shear when it should not have been added. The effect of the net gravity shear contribution to Muv at an interior joint with two framing beams was incorrectly accounted for for all connections except SidePlate connections.
Effect: For all connection types except RBS, the AISC 341 joint code check applied a conservative Muv component to the expected beam moment Mpr. For all internal joints with two framing beams, all connections except SidePlate did not correctly apply the net gravity shear but rather added the individual shear effects in the computation of Muv. Connections that may have otherwise passed design checks may have failed the SCWB, Panel Zone Shear or Required Connection Strength checks.

RAM Concrete – Column

COLUMN DESIGN*: For BS 8110 and CP 65, for slender columns bent about one axis and where slenderness ratio is greater than 20 or ratio of large dimension to small dimension of column is greater than 3, the value if My used in design was incorrectly taken as zero.
Effect: Incorrect design moment My used in the design for the codes and conditions indicated.

RAM Concrete – Shear Wall

COUPLING BEAMS: Coupling beams that occurred around openings spanning two floors may have failed to design.
Effect: No design.

ACV IN ACI CHAPTER 21: Acv in Sections and of ACI 318-11 was calculated using 0.8Lw rather than Lw.
Effect: Each respective limit was flagged at a more conservative level than is necessary.

ISM / Structural Synchronizer

Several corrections were made to the interface/interoperability with ISM, including the following:

RAM DataAccess

RAM DataAccess is an API that provides third-party software with the ability to access the data in a RAM Structural System model. RAM DataAccess errors reported here only impact those programs written by third parties that use the functions indicated. They do not affect the RAM Structural System.

Appendix A – Trust Licensing

Licensing Improvements

In this release of the RAM Structural System, a number of enhancements have been made relating to the way SELECT licensing works. The major change is the adoption of Trust Licensing – the same licensing used by all other Bentley products. Trust licensing ensures uninterrupted access to run your Bentley software, regardless of the availability of licenses. To help you avoid project disruptions, SELECTserver enables Trust Licensing, which eliminates time wasted waiting to run software when licenses are not immediately accessible. As a result, you have the freedom and flexibility to use the software you need, when and where you need it, with license usage insight to make informed decisions about your organization’s license needs. In previous versions of the RAM Structural System, an IEG licensing service was used to check out a license when the application started up and check it back in when the program exited. This was called Strict Licensing. This prevented users from being able to run the software if the number of concurrent users had reached the number of licenses owned. Problems sometimes occurred when the licenses were correctly released when the program terminated.The RAM Structural System now uses the Trust Licensing approach that is a major benefit of your SELECT subscription agreement with Bentley.

Trust licensing allows any member of your engineering team to run the RAM Structural System at any time and eliminates the need to have an uninterrupted connection to SELECTserver and consequently this provides greater flexibility and greater reliability in operation. Instead of requiring the connection to SELECTserver, RAM Structural System simply records usage of the application and allows you to access reports to see how licenses are being used in your team. License usage is aggregated and reported back to SELECTserver on a regular basis, at least once every thirty days.

You can review your team’s usage of the RAM Structural System via an easy to use web based interface to a range of reports. These reports are available at http://selectserver.bentley.com and let you see who used what software and when. This information will be valuable to you in ensuring that you are getting best value from your software. The designated account contact for your organization will have permission to login to this server and to review these reports. This SELECTserver web portal also includes tools for managing licenses including managing check-outs, forcing check-ins of licenses, if required, and controlling access to applications.

If your recorded usage shows a peak usage that is greater than the number of licenses that you own, your Bentley account manager will contact you to discuss the usage. They will review with you whether your current license portfolio matches your license needs and can recommend a range of options to true-up to ensure you have the licenses you need. Peak usage is the maximum number of licenses that are used within any 1-hour period.

If you would like more information on SELECTserver , you can visit:

For more information on the benefits of trust licensing and the true-up process, you can visit:

For full technical details on SELECTserver licensing, start with the Introduction section of the following user manual:

Trust Licensing Best Practices

Trust Licensing FAQ

Which versions of the RAM Structural System use Trust Licensing?

All RAM Structural System products with a version number of v14.06 or later use Trust Licensing.

Can I use IEG licensed and Trust Licensed versions of the RAM Structural System on the same network?

Yes, you can mix and match Trust and IEG licensed versions of the RAM Structural System on the same network. Note that IEG licensed versions will effectively be checking out the product license for the entire run time of the product or if offline it will continue to run until checked back in. To check out a license for offline use with Trust licensing, refer to the License Management Instruction at:

If I use more licenses than I own, will I automatically get a bill from Bentley?

If your license usage reports show that your peak usage is consistently higher than the number of license that you own, your Bentley Account Manager will contact you and discuss options with you. These options may include adding more licenses, changing the mix of licenses that you own, short term leasing of licenses or changing how you use licenses. You can read more details in the Bentley True-up Process Guide.

Do I need an internet connection to use Trust Licensing?

For day to day use, a continuous internet connection is not required. You need an internet connection only when initially activating your license and at least once every month in order to record usage on the SELECTserver. It is also possible to manually submit usage logs if your security requirements mean that an internet connection is not possible.

Do multiple sessions of RAM Structural System on one machine record multiple uses?

You will be able to run multiple instances of an application on the same machine by using it virtually. This will record multiple usages.

Our SELECT licensing agreement mentions peak usage within an interval. What is that interval and how is peak usage calculated?

An interval for a SELECT subscription is 1 hour on the clock e.g. from 11am to 12 noon. SELECTserver counts the number of licenses used from the license pool during each interval. The daily peak usage is the highest number of licenses used during any 1 hour interval of that day. See:

Do I need to check out licenses to use RAM Structural System?

There is no need to check out a license to your machine unless you are going to be working offline for 30 days or more. In fact, checking out a license will record the license as being in continuous use so this could potentially increase the calculation of your firm’s peak license usage.

Is the license usage logging secure and private?

Trust licensing uses the same usage logging mechanism you are using now with non-trust licensing. It transmits usage data using standard internet protocols and obscures user and machine names using a SHA-1 hash so that they cannot be read outside your company.

Where can I get training on how to understand and monitor license usage?

SELECT subscribers are able to access SELECT server training via the Bentley LEARN server.

Appendix B: Using SJI Virtual Joist Girder Tables in the RAM Structural System

Bentley does not warrant the suitability or accuracy of the Virtual Joist Girder tables. The data was provided by SJI, and formatted to conform to the table format requirements of the RAM Structural System. The engineer should understand the purpose of the tables, the assumptions made in creating the tables and the limitations of the use of the tables, and should verify the results to his/her satisfaction. Refer to the documentation on the Virtual Joist Girders produced by SJI, currently available on their website at www.steeljoist.org. Technical questions on the Virtual Joist Girder tables or the designs produced should be directed to SJI.

It is the engineer’s responsibility to use these tables properly; no warnings are given by the program if they are assigned to the wrong type of members, or to members with unsuitable properties, or with the wrong Criteria selections. It may not be apparent from the designs produced that there was an error in these selections.

To use the Virtual Joist Girder tables in the RAM Structural System, the following is recommended:

In RAM Manager

Select the RAMAISCwithVJG.TAB as the Master Table.
Select RAMVJG.BMS as the Alternate Beam Design Table.

In RAM Modeler

Model the joist girder as a Noncomposite Steel beam, with Fy=50ksi. Do not model it as a Steel Joist (that will use the program’s Joist Girder selection routines, not the special Virtual Joist Girder table). Note that if the beam is assigned to be a Composite beam the resulting design will be unconservatively incorrect.

Using the Layout – Beam – Steel Table command, assign the girder to Use Alternate Steel Table. Only girders or Frame beams should be assigned to use this table.

For best results assign a maximum depth restriction, otherwise the sizes selected may be excessively deep (the table has joists with depths ranging from 20” to 120”). Setting a Maximum Span/Depth Ratio in RAM Steel Beam may also be helpful, although that Criteria option affects all beams, not just the Virtual Joist Girders. SJI recommends that the depth be no greater than 1/12 of the span and no less than 1/24 of the span (span/depth ratios between 12 and 24, with the most economical between 12 and 18).

SJI recommends that for Gravity members the member be designed assuming an unbraced length of zero. This can be approximated by assigning very close brace points to the girder (if the distance between brace points is less than the value of Lp calculated for the size, the design is the same as if unbraced length is zero).

In RAM Steel Beam

The table is only valid for AISC 360, no other design codes should be specified.

Virtual Joist Girder sizes will be included in the Takeoff, but it should be noted that the weight listed for these sizes does not include the weight of the web members and miscellaneous materials. These add approximately an additional 15% to the total weight.

Note: These Virtual Joist Girders will be displayed as Steel Beams, they will not be displayed as Steel Joists.