Solidworks PDM Card input Formulas: Capabilities and Limitations

This topic will be most useful to those with some experience working with Solidworks PDM administration. I intend to clarify questions about an aspect of Cards and PDM capability that often arises during new implementations and PDM configuration. Cards provide a large part of Solidworks PDM’s capability. They are often both familiar and confusing to those looking to build a vault that best fits with their internal operations. The are familiar in that they appear to be a form that contains data which are common in all aspects of our business and personal lives. The full capability however is not easily discerned as the mechanics are very specific to PDM […]

Automatic PDM Standard SQL Backups

It has been over a year since the release of SOLIDWORKS PDM Standard. Nearly everyone agrees PDM Standard is a huge step forward from Workgroup -though we did become a bit spoiled because making backups in Workgroup is much more straight forward than PDM Standard backups. It frightens me how many locations I visit where PDM is not properly being backed up. Most people seem to do a pretty good job ensuring their files are being backed up (any good file backup tool will do the trick), but many completely forget there is also a database component to PDM as well. PDM Standard’s database runs on SQL Express. The problem […]

SOLIDWORKS PDM Administrators…are you looking for more training?

SOLIDWORKS PDM Administrators…are you looking for more training? Since the SOLIDWORKS PDM product was introduced 10+ years ago, InFlow team members have trained hundreds of administrators. Recently, some of our administrators have asked for more. They are looking for classes to get a bit more out of the system, especially covering advanced topics or topics not covered in any training class. Earlier this year, we released 2 new classes and conducted those new classes for the first time in October. The first class launched was the SOLIDWORKS PDM Advanced Administrator class covering the following items in a 2 day class: Advanced Data Card Techniques Advanced Search Card Techniques Advanced Workflow […]

SOLIDWORKS PDM Hyperlink Query

We have seen many instances where a SOLIDWORKS PDM administrator would like to provide hyperlinks to files inside the vault.  The hyperlinks would be used to quickly open files inside the vault from 3rd party applications like an ERP system. Problem: you need to use a special syntax link for your hyperlink, otherwise the file you need will not automatically cache into the explorer folder on your PDM client.  In other words, you cannot use “C:\Vault Name\Folder Name\filename.sldprt” as your link.  If the file is not already cached, the user will get a “file not found” error.  The following syntax is required in a URL link: conisio://<vaultname>/<action>?projectid=<ProjectID>&documentid=<DocumentID>&objecttype=1 Where: <vaultname> is […]

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 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: 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 […]

What’s new in Solidworks 2017? Rollbacks now include their references!

What’s new in Solidworks PDM 2017? Rollback a file with references! Rollbacks, what are they all about? Rolling back a file in PDM is often a last resort for returning a file to a previous state or version (and I’d like to add that I always recommend against using it, as most the time you can check a file out, get a previous version, then overwrite the current version with the older version) Now, with all that said, one of the biggest pains can be rolling back individual files because their references can become all sorts of jumbled, and you’ll have version mismatches here and there, and it becomes a […]

SOLIDWORKS PDM Standard – Missing SQL Management Studio Tools?

  I recently did an installation of SOLIDWORKS PDM Standard and I know I selected the option for SQL Management Tools. Once the installation completed, I couldn't find the SQL Management Studio Tools in the Applications list anywhere. (Head scratching & self-doubt set in).   Not to worry, I checked the Installation Guide and found a great section: "Installing the SQL Server Express Management Studio" I followed along and the installation progressed right up until it failed, figures! Turns out (in this case) .net 3.5 was NOT already installed, thus the failure. Once I installed the Windows Component of .net 3.5 from the Control Panel, I was able to resume […]

Solidworks Enterprise PDM Permissions, Revisited.

In Enterprise PDM 2015, additional permissions were made available.  Settings Permissions tends to be one of the more confusing tasks for a PDM Administrator due to the different types of permissions that can overlap and intersect with each other.  The new permissions are: Move Folder Delete Folder Add or Rename folder Move File In Prior versions it was required to have both the ability to Add a Folder or File to the Destination and Delete it from the source to perform a move. In order to perform one of these operations on a file or folder, the user will need a combination of both folder and state permissions in both source and […]