Relativity Desktop Client

The Relativity Desktop Client (RDC) provides the functionality for importing document load, image, and production files, as well as for exporting production sets, saved searches, and folders. You can also use this utility to import and export object data.

Note: After documents are imported using Relativity Desktop Client, you can automate creating a dtSearch index or run a search terms report with those documents using Automated Workflows. To learn more, visit Automated Workflows.

Watch the following Relativity Desktop Client (RDC) Overview video.

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RDC menu bar

The RDC menu bar appears above the workspace folder structure. It includes the following menu options:


  • Open—switches between different workspaces.
  • Exit—closes the RDC.
  • Refresh—updates the folder browser.

Tools - Import:

  • Image File—imports images from a page-level load file.
  • Document Load File—imports native files, document metadata, and extracted text from a document-level load file.
  • Production Load File—imports productions from a page-level load file.

Tools - Export:

  • Production Set—exports production sets.
  • Saved Search—exports from saved searches.
  • Folder—exports from a specific folders.
  • Folder and Subfolders—exports from a specific folder and its subfolders.


  • Settings—changes the default value for Force Folder Preview and enter a WebService URL.
  • Check Connectivity—assists with troubleshooting network and system configuration errors that occurred while importing and exporting.


  • About—displays the version of the RDC.
  • Help—opens the Relativity Desktop Client documentation in your internet browser.

Workspace folder options

The RDC provides right-click options on folders, which you can use to build the workspace folder structure, or to import or export directly to and from a folder.

Folder right-click menu

When you right-click on a workspace or folder, the following menu options display:

  • New Folder—create subfolders. In the Add New Folder pop-up, enter a folder name, and then click OK. The maximum length for the folder name is 255 characters. Since the folder name is a system field, once you create it, you can not edit it. The new folder is added to the workspace through the RDC.
  • Import—import an image file, document load file, or production file into a specific folder. Highlight the folder, point to Import, and select a file type. If you have metadata, natives and images to load, run the load file import first, then the image file import. See Importing through the RDC.
  • Export—export a specific folder, or a folder and its subfolders. See Exporting with the RDC.

    Export options in Folder right-click menu

Starting the RDC

To open the RDC:

  1. Double-click on the shortcut installed on your desktop. The Settings dialog box appears when you open the application for first time.

The WebService URL in RDC Settings

  1. Select or enter settings for the following options:
    • Force Folder Preview Default—options to enable or disable this feature. When enabled, the RDC checks the first 1000 records of the load file after you click Import. It then displays the number of folders soon to be created. You can use this information to ensure that the load process is behaving as expected. If a large number of folders are listed, you can stop the load file, and verify that the Folder Info field is set correctly. By default, this feature is Enabled. See Importing through the RDC.
    • WebService URL—enter the URL provided by your system admin. This URL is used to establish a connection between the RDC and your server. If the URL path is entered incorrectly, you are unable to connect the RDC to your database.

      The WebService URL has the format http or https://<MyServiceName>/RelativityWebAPI/. When you display a Relativity page, you see the web service name listed in the address bar on the browser. For example, if the address bar displayed, then your web service URL would be RelativityWebAPI/. In addition, you can confirm this URL with your system admin.

  2. Click OK. These settings are stored in your machine registry and they are retained when you upgrade the RDC.

Logging on to the RDC

Enter your Username and click Continue. Next, enter your Password and click Login. These are the same credentials you use to log in to Relativity. If the server certificate is untrusted, you can allow using untrusted certificate or close the RDC. Additionally, if you have difficulty displaying the login dialog, verify that Relativity is a trusted site in your browser.

Note: Users log in to the Relativity Desktop Client (RDC) with the same provider method as they have with Relativity. The RDC supports most Relativity authentication providers, such as password, Integrated Authentication, and OpenID Connect, by displaying the Relativity login page within the RDC as a dialog window. The only provider that doesn't work with the RDC is SAML because the Relativity’s IdP-initiated SAML doesn't display the Relativity login page directly.

login dialogs for RDC

After you log in, the RDC displays a list of workspaces where you have access rights. Use the filter bar to narrow the list.

Note: By default, Relativity uses a wildcard to filter workspaces in the RDC. For example, enter ELA to find workspaces named ELAN and Relativity.

Highlight your workspace and click OK to open it in the RDC. The folder structure of your workspace displays. A new workspace contains only a root folder, while an existing workspace may contain subfolders that you can display by clicking the plus sign.

Example of folder in RDC

Note: In Relativity Desktop Client, Document is selected by default as the type of object for data import or export. You can also select other object types, including Relativity Dynamic Objects. For more information, see Importing data into a Relativity Dynamic Object.

RDC OAuth2 client

The RDC uses the OAuth 2.0 authorization framework for verifying your login credentials. The OAuth 2 client offers increased security, because it uses an access token that is valid for only three days. After the token expires, you must log in to the RDC again. Any jobs currently in progress fail when the token expires.

For general information about using OAuth2 in Relativity, see OAuth2 clients.

RDC transfer modes

RDC supports the following data transfer modes:

  • Direct—uses the file share client. Direct mode provides the fastest transfer speed. Note the following details:
    • Direct mode uses the windows Active Directory account and has direct access to write to the file repository or the BCPPath. This bypasses the need to go through the web server in order to ingest the data, saving a significant amount of time.
    • There are two direct modes to be aware of:
      • Direct Mode for native files—requires read/write access on the workspace file repository, so that native/image import/export is direct to the share.
      • Direct Mode for file metadata—requires Read/Write access on the BCPPath for metadata. Document metadata passes through the BCPPath, not native files.
  • Aspera—uses the Aspera client and requires Aspera credentials. This mode is supported only in RelativityOne environments and is not available in Relativity Server installations.
  • Web—uses the HTTP client. Because of the limitations of the HTTP protocol and varying network bandwidth, it is the slowest. Note the following details:
    • When you do not have read/write permissions to the BCPPath, Relativity must authenticate via the web server.
    • When you do not have read/write permissions to the workspace file repository, Relativity must authenticate via the web server.
    • When loading through web mode, you can see a drastic performance reduction compared to Aspera mode and an even greater reduction compared to direct mode. Web mode is the slowest method of all, it does, however, work without direct access to the BCPPath.

When you select a Relativity workspace, the RDC queries the workspace and performs tests to determine the optimal transfer mode. You can see the details of the tests under Options > Check Connectivity:

Connectivity Tests window

The RDC then automatically selects the optimal available mode for the transfer job.

Note: You can select more than one mode for the transfer job based on your configuration. The fastest mode will be displayed first.

optimal mode in RDC window

Note: The mode initially selected based on the tests for the workspace may not be used in the actual transfer, for example due to a connection problem. If a problem occurs, RDC falls back to a different mode or displays an error.

The transfer mode also displays on the RDC progress window.

You can also force the RDC to use a specific mode. For more information, see Configuring the RDC.

Transfer Mode Statuses

The following statuses may display during the transfer:

  • Pending—displays when transfer mode is not yet determined.
  • Disabled—displays when File Repository Preference is set to not copy files.

Aspera support for import and export types

The following table breaks down which import types that support the Aspera transfer mode (TAPI). A indicates that the type has Aspera support.

Type TAPI import
Document metadata
Extracted text

Aspera, Web, or Direct mode is used for exports.

Direct mode

Direct mode provides faster performance, but it requires a connection to the network hosting the data, as well as specific Windows group permissions. Direct mode has direct access to write to the file repository, which bypasses the need to go through the web server in order to ingest the data, saving a significant amount of time.

Direct mode can only be used on the Utility Server. For more information, see Utility Server.

Aspera mode

Aspera file transfer mode allows you to quickly upload documents to RelativityOne.

If available, Aspera mode will be used by default to import and export documents.

Note: The option to change the default repository path when importing through the RDC is unavailable when Aspera mode is enabled.

Beginning in, note the following special considerations about Aspera mode:

  • RelativityOne workspaces that contain file shares in a friendly, Relative, or FQDN format can effectively export via the RDC in Aspera mode because the FileStorageSearch API has been updated to account for each file path format.
  • When you add a new fileshare to a workspace resource pool, Relativity sets it as the default fileshare, while previous file shares remain to support the use of Aspera credentials in the RDC during export.

Port considerations

Windows does not support multiple active connections on the same UDP port. Therefore, the business firewall must allow a range of UDP ports to reach the Aspera server. Incoming client connections automatically increment to use the next available port in the range. Open these ports on any machine that stages any data to RelativityOne. This includes ports on your network, as well as local machine firewalls. You must make the following business firewall changes to ensure concurrent transfers can occur:

  • Allow outbound connections to the server on the TCP port 33001.
  • Allow outbound connections to the server on the UDP ports 33001 - 33050.

    Note: You must make sure that both TCP and UDP ports are open on the client machine.

The RDC installer handles opening the required ports for the Windows firewall on the end-user's machine. However, if you use any third-party firewalls, you must manually open the ports referenced above. Improperly configured ports and/or a lack of UDP port ranges result in transfer failures. For more information, contact Relativity Support.