Solidworks PDM Local View Basics and Troubleshooting

There are some Unique aspects to Solidworks PDM in respect to other common software applications.  One of those unique aspects is the “Local View”.  This is written especially for those of you that are either new users of Solidworks PDM or responsible for installations or administration.

What Is a Solidworks PDM Local View?

Your Solidworks PDM Local View is an application mechanic that is rather unique compared to most applications. After the Solidworks PDM application is installed there is an additional utility called a “view setup” that must be run for the user to access files in a vault.

Since vaults are singularly controlled entities, each vault will require its own separate local view. This is to ensure managed control of files in a secure location, yet still allow for multiple vault silos to be available to different processes, products or workgroups at your company due to different ownership or needs.

A local view appears to be a windows shortcut with an PDM icon, sometimes affectionately called a “blueberry”.

This icon is actually more than a shortcut, as it is a secured folder structure that functions as a workspace or cache for the user when they check out and make changes to files. This local view allows controlled changes to be made to a file locally while still storing all versions of the file on a secure server. To Summarize, a local view has the following characteristics:

  • A unique access point to a specific vault
  • An icon that allows user login and launching of the Solidworks PDM File explorer view.
  • A secured and controlled Workspace or Cache on a user’s machine to work with files locally.

How do I create a Local View?

A locally view is created, after installing Solidworks PDM Professional or Standard and after creation of one or more Vaults. The user requires a local view for each vault they need to work with and local views may be added through the view setup feature on your Solidworks PDM folder under the list of installed windows programs.

Detailed and specific instructions for stepping through this feature are available on help.solidworks.com and in your Solidworks PDM Installation guide by default located in C:\program files\Solidworks PDM\Lang\GB.

Typical Issues and Resolutions

The most common issues with a local view are

  • Vault is grayed out on Local view Setup

The PDM vault name appears in gray colour in ‘View Setup’ dialog when the local view already exists.

Open Windows Registry and check if private vault view is presented for current user:

HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\SolidWorks\Applications\PDMWorks Enterprise\Vaults\VAULTNAME

Take a look on ‘ShellRoot’ key – it contains path to private vault view.

If ‘ShellRoot’ is absent here, then it means SHARED view was created.

Open Windows Registry and check if shared vault view is presented on this PC:

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\SolidWorks\Applications\PDMWorks Enterprise\Databases\VAULTNAME

Take a look on ‘ShellRoot’ key – it contains path to shared vault view.

  • Adding local view errors with a grayed out message stating, “Attached; Missing information” for when trying to re-create a local file vault view.

The message normally means that there is some view information left in the registry and that this information probably did not get deleted fully when the view was removed for some reason.

 

When a view is fully removed the following keys should not exist:

HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\SolidWorks\Applications\PDMWorks Enterprise\Vaults\[VAULTNAME]

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\SolidWorks\Applications\PDMWorks Enterprise\Databases\[VAULTNAME]

and also on a 64-bit OS:

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Wow6432Node\SolidWorks\Applications\PDMWorks Enterprise\Databases\[VAULTNAME]

Note that you may also need to check for those keys under HKCU

If these keys still exist after a view is gone then delete them manually by opening the registry, Start >> run (type regedit) >> locate the above keys in the appropriate sections of the registry and delete them

  • What causes the warning, “The view was created by ‘[system\user]’. Only ‘[system\user]’ or an administrator can remove it” when deleting (removing) a local vault view?

If being logged in as the user or an administrator still will not let you remove the file vault view – there might be some information incorrect or missing from the local view “desktop.ini” information file, preventing the removal. To successfully delete the file vault view, try either of the following options:

The view desktop.ini file may be missing or have incorrect “AttachedBy” information. Do as follows to correct it and allow the removal of the local view:

Step 1. Open a command prompt as an Administrator (START, type cmd, right-click cmd.exe and select “Run as administrator”).

Step 2. Step into the (hidden) local view root folder (cd c:\nameofview).

Step 3. Change the attributes on the desktop.ini file to allow updating by typing:

attrib –s –h –r desktop.ini

Step 4. Edit the desktop.ini, i.e. type:

notepad desktop.ini

Step 5. Add or update the “AttachedBy” entry and enter your currently logged in windows profile, i.e: AttachedBy=LPT-TOR\tiveroth (see screenshot)

– Note, to verify the exact name to use here, type the following command in the command prompt by typing:

WHOAMI

Step 6. Save and close the file.

Step 7. Restore the attributes by typing:

attrib +s +h +r desktop.ini

Step 8. Close the command prompt and you should now be able to remove the view without a warning.

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