How to Install Revit Viewer on a Non-Revit User System for Free

Typically, Design Review is a perfectly good way to review Revit models in the DWF 3D format, but keeping the DWF 3D file up to date in a rapidly changing project can be too much of an added workload.

By default, installing any Revit product will also install the Revit Viewer. Revit in Viewer Mode does not pull a license or require activation on a machine that does not have a full seat installed.

There are instances in which some project teams require just the Revit Viewer installed on a team member’s system. In these situations, Revit View is used only for browsing and accessing the information in the model, not making changes.

Install Revit 2013 Trial to Install Revit Viewer

The thumb drive installation does not show a way to install as a 30-day trial, often leaving BIM managers stymied. The thumb drive installation does not provide the option for a 30-Day trial for one reason: If the serial numbers are standalone, then the user might pull a license and end up out of compliance and trigger an audit from Autodesk.

We have found through our BIM consulting and BIM execution plan processes, downloading the Revit 2013 trial helps us avoid the misstep. The install configuration has the option to install it as a trial with zeros for the serial numbers, preventing the risk of pulling a standalone license or stealing a network seat.

After installing Revit 2013, delete the Revit startup icon on the desktop. While clicking the <ctl> key, drag and drop the Revit Viewer 2013 icon from the Start>Autodesk>Revit 2013 and drop it into the desktop.

A regular start up of Revit 2013 looks like this: “C:\Program Files\Autodesk\Revit 2013\Program\Revit.exe”

Starting in the viewer mode looks similar, but with a minor change at the end: “C:\Program Files\Autodesk\Revit 2013\Program\Revit.exe” /viewer.

Even after the 30-day trial times out, the Viewer will remain operable for the user.

Note: this technique applies to Revit 2014 and Revit 2015. You can install Revit Viewer 2014 and Revit Viewer 2015 in this fashion.

Installing Revit View 2014 and 2015 can be a headache without taking the necessary precautions. Installed the right way, it’s clean and simple. With our BIM consulting process, we can determine if this is something that would be beneficial to your projects.


A good word to describe David is “mentor.” Whether he’s doing project management, troubleshooting, or training, he personalizes his communications for each person to ensure they will be successful. Customers like the way he provides the details they need to understand both the techniques and the underlying concepts.