Two links – in my discussion this morning with our DM ICE guy (Data Management Implementation Certified Expert) in the office, he told me about two very good white papers on Vault. I’ve looked them over, and they can really assist you in your implementation of the program.
The first is Advanced Configuration Guide for Autodesk Data Management Server. As the title implies, it’s an Advanced Configuration Guide, so it may be over your head if you’re just diving into this pool. It does offer some very good information, though.
The second is link tells you all about installing SQL Express – very important if you’re concerned with the “limitations” (or perceived limitations) of MSDE that ships with Civil 3D. You can find it here.
OK, I’ve got two more links – I like to give and give, so enjoy….
Please note that most (if not all) of these links reference Autodesk Inventor. Vault was designed to work with Inventor, and was recently adopted to work with Civil 3D. Rest assured, however, that most of the same principles still apply here – and, as it says in the Best Practices for Implementing Autodesk Vault, this is a very intricate program to attempt to implement, so it would be better for you if you contact someone (your reseller, or a consultant) who is qualified to help with this process.