Autodesk Forge on AWS

Partner Solution Deployment Guide


July 2023
Autodesk, Inc.
AWS Integration & Automation team

Refer to the GitHub repository to view source files, report bugs, submit feature ideas, and post feedback about this Partner Solution. To comment on the documentation, refer to Feedback.

This Partner Solution was created by Autodesk, Inc. in collaboration with Amazon Web Services (AWS). Partner Solutions are automated reference deployments that help people deploy popular technologies on AWS according to AWS best practices. If you’re unfamiliar with AWS Partner Solutions, refer to the AWS Partner Solution General Information Guide.


This guide covers the information you need to deploy the Autodesk Forge Partner Solution in the AWS Cloud.

This Quick Start is for IT infrastructure architects, administrators, and DevOps professionals who are planning to implement or extend their Autodesk Forge workloads on the AWS Cloud.

Autodesk Forge on AWS

The Autodesk cloud developer platform—Forge—offers customizable building blocks in the form of web service APIs, tools, and services. With Forge, Autodesk teams, third-party developers, and customers can design and build workflows—across industries. For example, developers use Forge to overlay Internet of Things (IoT) data on top of 3D building information models, to later perform data analysis and create visual reports.

The Forge platform offers connected data and cross-platform integration in a cloud-based environment. Customers can use Forge to integrate the functionality of Autodesk and partner software as a service (SaaS) products into new workflows. They can also create or extend their own web or mobile apps using Forge service components, APIs, and tools.

3D/2D Computer-Aided Design (CAD) data requires fast computing for a seamless user experience and high availability. AWS offers a broad set of global compute, storage, database, analytics, application, and deployment services that help organizations move faster, lower IT costs, and scale applications

Costs and licenses

There is no cost to use this Partner Solution, but you will be billed for any AWS services or resources that this Partner Solution deploys. For more information, refer to the AWS Partner Solution General Information Guide.

Autodesk Forge Costs and Licenses

For information about Autodesk Forge pricing, see Pricing on the Autodesk Forge website. Get started for free. Pay for only what you need. Registering for Forge includes 100 free cloud credits that you can apply to any combination of APIs you need. Autodesk provides Forge API usage equivalent to the number of cloud credits you specify. All cloud credits purchased for or applicable to Forge are nontransferable and redeemable for Forge APIs only. No other Autodesk cloud credits may be used for Forge APIs.


Deploying this Partner Solution with default parameters builds the following Autodesk Forge environment in the AWS Cloud.

Figure 1. Partner Solution architecture for Autodesk Forge on AWS

As shown in Figure 1, this Partner Solution sets up the following:

  • A highly available architecture that spans two Availability Zones.*

  • A virtual private cloud (VPC) configured across two Availability Zones. In each Availability Zone, this Quick Start provisions one public subnet and one private subnet. This creates a logically isolated networking environment that you can connect to your on-premises data centers or use as a standalone environment.*

  • An internet gateway to allow access to the internet. The bastion hosts use this gateway to send and receive traffic.*

  • Managed network address translation (NAT) gateways deployed into the public subnets and configured with an Elastic IP address for outbound internet connectivity. These instances provide internet access for all Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2) instances launched within the private network.*

  • In the public subnets, a Linux bastion host in an Auto Scaling group to allow inbound Secure Shell (SSH) access to EC2 instances in public and private subnets.*

  • In the private subnets, Autodesk Forge application server instances across both Availability Zones, to ensure high availability.

  • Auto Scaling enabled for the Autodesk Forge cluster, to automatically add or remove servers based on their use. Auto Scaling provides additional servers during peak hours and lowers costs by removing servers during off hours. This functionality is tightly integrated with the Application Load Balancer, and automatically adds and removes instances from the load balancer. The default installation sets up low and high CPUbased thresholds for scaling the instance capacity up or down. You can modify these thresholds during launch and after deployment.

  • The Elastic Load Balancing service, which provides HTTP and HTTPS load balancing across the Autodesk Forge instances. This Quick Start uses an Application Load Balancer, which is configured to use either HTTP or HTTPS.

  • An AWS Identity and Access Management (IAM) role with fine-grained permissions for access to AWS services necessary for the deployment process.

  • Appropriate security groups for each instance or function to restrict access to only necessary protocols and ports. For example, access to HTTP(S) server ports on Amazon EC2 web servers is limited to the Application Load Balancer.

  • Optionally, Amazon Route 53 as your public Domain Name System (DNS) for resolving your Forge site’s domain name. When you choose to deploy the application with a Amazon Web Services - Autodesk Forge on the AWS Cloud custom domain and Security Sockets Layer (SSL) certificate, a new RecordSet in your pre-existing Route 53 Hosted Zone will be created.

  • AWS Systems Manager (SSM) parameters in the AWS Systems Manager Parameter Store to securely store the Forge client ID and secret.

* The template that deploys this Partner Solution into an existing VPC skips the components marked by asterisks and prompts you for your existing VPC configuration.

Deployment options

This Partner Solution provides the following deployment options:

This Partner Solution provides separate templates for these options. It also lets you configure Classless Inter-Domain Routing (CIDR) blocks, instance types, and Autodesk Forge settings.

Predeployment steps

Obtain Autodesk Developer Credentials

This Quick Start requires Autodesk developer credentials.

  1. If you don’t have a Forge Autodesk account, sign up for an account on the Forge Developer Portal.

  2. In the Forge Developer Portal, choose Create App. For your new app, you can use http://localhost:3000/api/forge/callback/oauth as Callback URL.

  3. Take note of the Client ID and Client Secret. You will need to input these, when you launch the Quick Start.

Deployment steps

  1. Sign in to your AWS account, and launch this Partner Solution, as described under Deployment options. The AWS CloudFormation console opens with a prepopulated template.

  2. Choose the correct AWS Region, and then choose Next.

  3. On the Create stack page, keep the default setting for the template URL, and then choose Next.

  4. On the Specify stack details page, change the stack name if needed. Review the parameters for the template. Provide values for the parameters that require input. For all other parameters, review the default settings and customize them as necessary. When you finish reviewing and customizing the parameters, choose Next.

    Unless you’re customizing the Partner Solution templates or are instructed otherwise in this guide’s Predeployment section, don’t change the default settings for the following parameters: QSS3BucketName, QSS3BucketRegion, and QSS3KeyPrefix. Changing the values of these parameters will modify code references that point to the Amazon Simple Storage Service (Amazon S3) bucket name and key prefix. For more information, refer to the AWS Partner Solutions Contributor’s Guide.
  5. On the Configure stack options page, you can specify tags (key-value pairs) for resources in your stack and set advanced options. When you finish, choose Next.

  6. On the Review page, review and confirm the template settings. Under Capabilities, select all of the check boxes to acknowledge that the template creates AWS Identity and Access Management (IAM) resources that might require the ability to automatically expand macros.

  7. Choose Create stack. The stack takes about 15 minutes to deploy.

  8. Monitor the stack’s status, and when the status is CREATE_COMPLETE, the Autodesk Forge deployment is ready.

  9. To view the created resources, choose the Outputs tab.

Postdeployment steps

Test the Deployment

When the AWS CloudFormation template has successfully created the stack, all server nodes will be running with the Autodesk Forge application installed in your AWS account. To access the application, in your preferred browser, go to the Forge application URL listed in the Outputs tab. You’ll see a default page that has one sample bucket created for you.

Figure 2. Stack output showing the Forge application URL
Figure 3. Start page for the Forge application

To test this application:

  1. Create Autodesk buckets for your projects. On the Start page, choose New bucket, specify a bucket name, and then choose Go ahead, and create the bucket.

Figure 4. Creating a bucket in the Forge application
  1. Upload your CAD files to the recently created Autodesk Forge bucket. For a list of supported CAD formats, see Supported Translation Formats in the Autodesk Forge Developer’s Guide. You can download a sample model of a Reciprocating Saw after logging in with your Autodesk account to access the Getting Started Guide. Right-click your newly created bucket, choose Upload file, and then upload the Reciprocating Saw file that you downloaded. It may take a minute or so for the file to show up in your bucket depending on your internet connection. You won’t be able to view the downloaded file initially, until it is translated. For more information about the pricing of the Autodesk Forge Translation service, see Pricing on the Autodesk Forge website.

Figure 5. Uploading the model file
  1. Choose the uploaded object on the left pane, and choose Start translation. This may take a while, depending on the size of your model. For the reciprocating saw model, wait about 2 minutes.

Figure 6. Starting the model translation
  1. Load the translated CAD file in the Autodesk Forge Viewer

Figure 7. CAD file loaded in viewer


For troubleshooting common Partner Solution issues, refer to the AWS Partner Solution General Information Guide and Troubleshooting CloudFormation.

Autodesk Forge documentation

Customer responsibility

After you deploy a Partner Solution, confirm that your resources and services are updated and configured—including any required patches—to meet your security and other needs. For more information, refer to the Shared Responsibility Model.


To submit feature ideas and report bugs, use the Issues section of the GitHub repository for this Partner Solution. To submit code, refer to the Partner Solution Contributor’s Guide. To submit feedback on this deployment guide, use the following GitHub links:


This document is provided for informational purposes only. It represents current AWS product offerings and practices as of the date of issue of this document, which are subject to change without notice. Customers are responsible for making their own independent assessment of the information in this document and any use of AWS products or services, each of which is provided "as is" without warranty of any kind, whether expressed or implied. This document does not create any warranties, representations, contractual commitments, conditions, or assurances from AWS, its affiliates, suppliers, or licensors. The responsibilities and liabilities of AWS to its customers are controlled by AWS agreements, and this document is not part of, nor does it modify, any agreement between AWS and its customers.

The software included with this paper is licensed under the Apache License, version 2.0 (the "License"). You may not use this file except in compliance with the License. A copy of the License is located at or in the accompanying "license" file. This code is distributed on an "as is" basis, without warranties or conditions of any kind, either expressed or implied. Refer to the License for specific language governing permissions and limitations.