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 […]

SOLIDWORKS PDM 101: Setting Document Revisions

In a previous article, we discussed the inner workings of PDM versions. In a nutshell, versions are the way PDM tracks the changes to individual files. Every time we make an official change to a file, a new version is created and added to the file’s history. The good news is that the system handles versions for us automatically. If you want to know more about versions and how they work, check out our last PDM 101 here. People often ask if file versions and file revisions are the same thing. In some other systems, the term is interchangeable. That means whenever a change is completed by the user the […]

SOLIDWORKS: PDM Products Simplified

Occasionally, I will talk with a customer that is new to Solidworks Products or has been newly or temporarily assigned in an administration or project role for the company’s vault. This information is for you folks… you know who you are . 🙂 The SOLIDWORKS PDM products can be a bit confusing to short timers. The names are similar and there is not an easy way through normal communication to differentiate or identify what product you use. First, Solidworks PDM products are client server multi-user applications that helps companies control, share and make document management more efficient and effective. All Solidworks PDM Products have a vault with secure user based access […]

SOLIDWORKS: Help!!! I Have Cyclic PDM References

I have seen, on more than one occasion, an assembly that has multiple cyclic references in an assembly. Now, I totally understand that when you’re under a deadline, it may save time initially to just copy a part to use for another assembly as opposed to searching your vault, especially if you have a large data set that can take a considerable amount of time, also assuming the description is incorrect, etc. However, as previously noted, while you may be saving time initially, the implications to having duplicate parts can be astronomic, several versions down the road, especially if the assembly is to be used in multiple other upper level […]

SOLIDWORKS PDM 101: What is a Document Version?

One of the fundamental parts of any PDM system is its ability to track the history of documents. How it tracks that history can vary from system to system. With SOLIDWORKS PDM, it does this through document versions. So, that begs the question, “What is a Version in the SOLIDWORKS PDM vault?” The short answer is that a version is a “snap shot in time” of a particular document. Versions are created in PDM as we make changes to the files in the system. By default, all the files in PDM are locked down and read-only (vaulted). In order to make a change, we have to take ownership of that […]

SOLIDWORKS: Understanding PDM Workflows

New to Solidworks PDM or considering it as a solution at your company?  Maybe you have used Solidworks PDM for years but workflows are still a bit of a mystery?  I hope to provide you some workflow basics that will take some of the mystery out of how they are configured and their benefit potential. This is not a replacement for Solidworks PDM Administration Training or a comprehensive functional description.  As always, Inflow Consultants are available to assist you in any Solidworks PDM activities that you find beyond your current capability. Definitions Here are some simple terms that will help you to understand the concepts presented. Work Product A work product […]

SOLIDWORKS: PDM 101 – File Types and Duplicate File Control

An often overlooked area of SOLIDWORKS PDM is the File Type options found in the admin tool. These options allow you to control how duplicate files are handled in your vault. You can disallow all duplicates or only include certain file types. There are a couple other settings, but those are only required if you use items or if your drawing previews need troubleshooting. The main reason for opening file types is to configure duplicate file rules. Before we dive into what you can do with files types, let’s talk about what is under the File Types node. The list that you see in the image below will be different […]

SOLIDWORKS PDM 101: Content Search – Explore Inside Your Files

Content search is a feature that has been available in SOLIDWORKS PDM for many years. It was on a brief hiatus when Windows Server dropped support for the key feature that made content search possible. Well, its back with Windows Server 2012 and SOLIDWORKS PDM Professional! If you are new to content search, this feature allows your PDM users to search within the text of files stored in the system. For example, if you search for the phrase “Critical Change”, all files with that text anywhere in the document will be returned. This can be very useful if you have a lot of files that do not have metadata to […]

Self Upgrading SOLIDWORKS PDM

If you choose to self upgrade your SOLIDWORKS PDM Products there are a few things that are commonly missed and some fundamentals that should be considered for healthy system and minimal downtime.  Also don’t forget to check the SOLIDWORKS PDM System Requirements! 1) SOLIDWORKS PDM Products are highly configurable to suite many types of business and company practices. This can make upgrading SOLIDWORKS PDM to a new version of software less than intuitive. 2) Each Version can introduce new challenges or practices. Make sure your Installation guide and reference material is up to date. The Whats New guide for PDM Standard and PDM Pro can help you understand new features or developments […]

SOLIDWORKS 2017 What’s New: SOLIDWORKS PDM Professional Database Replication – #SW2017

SOLIDWORKS PDM Professional 2017 now supports database replication which can be useful in high latency or high usage environments. This is only available in PDM Professional (and not PDM Standard) and requires Microsoft SQL Enterprise Edition 2012 or higher. The way it works is by setting up secondary SQL server(s) that can assist a primary server with “read” type database requests which in turn reduces the load on the primary server. The primary server will still handle any read/write operations such as check ins/outs, workflow transitions, and datacard updates. The secondary servers will handle operations such as folder browsing, contains, where used, UI responsiveness, search, BOM, data card viewing, RMB […]