12 Replies Latest reply on Dec 8, 2015 5:01 PM by Tom Cote

    PDM Standard: what about unique file names and shared links?

    John Burrill

      Hi Everyone,
      I realize that there aren't a lot of PDM standard implementations out there, but I'm hoping some people with EPDM will be able to weigh in on these aspects o PDM.
      I've never really used EPDM but I have extensive experience with Workgroup PDM.  So I'm setting up a PDM Standard implementation and I've read through the getting started guide and the documentation's left me a little anxious about two things.

      First, there isn't any mention of the unique file name requirement.  WPDM has this requirement as do other document management systems, and I think I remember hearing that ePDM has it too, but someone please tell me whether that applies to the files in a Vault View on a client workstation, or does it apply to an entire vault, or do the names have to be unique for every file in the archive server?

      Second, the Getting Started PDF says that Shared File are only implemented in EPDM.  Does this mean that if I have a reference that's used in multiple projects that I have to have a copy of the file in each one or that I have to add EPDM projects to the SolidWorks file search  path?

      Finally, if I install my Vault View on my machine in a different folder from where my partner installs it on his, does that mean, potentially, he could open an assembly I've checked in and it won't be able to find its references?

      I'm trying to get out ahead of these questions, while my implementation is still in the planning stages, so I appreciate any insight you can provide.

      Thanks

        • Re: PDM Standard: what about unique file names and shared links?
          Ryan McVay

          It's my understanding that PDM Standard is Workgroups. I believe that PDM Standard now runs on SQL Server Express and has limited capabilities. All your metadata is in SQL not the separate text files.

          EPDM runs on full blown SQL. PDM Standard will NOT be able to connect to Enterprise PDM vault due to the limitations of the "free" version of SQL that runs PDM Standard.

           

          Unique file names is a vault setting in EPDM and I believe would be the same in PDM Standard. All documents are assigned a unique document id number when added to the vault. EPDM allows you to set what options you would like for Duplicate File Name Checks. If you want to reuse your data and to be able to search as well, then I would recommend that you "Do not allow duplicate file names in the file vault."

           

          Now when it comes to duplicate file names you need to be conscience that a MS Word document with a .doc extension is a different file name than the same file name with a .docx extension!

           

          You will need to install all vaults in the same location and they will need to be on a permanent/physical drive. Root level on C:\ is where most users put their vaults. This may cause problems for those people that have mixed hardware environments and use hybrid drives (partial SSD for OS and disc for data).

           

          Keep in mind when opening a SW assembly from EPDM, SW uses its internal file references... not EPDM. So, yes, you may have to repoint the location of files if you have mixed vault locations.

           

          When it comes to shared files I believe, and I can be wrong here, that you would NOT be able to share the file with other "folders." But that doesn't mean you can add the file to your assembly. A pack and go will still find the original file and include it. This just means that your "folder" will not contain a "reference" to the original file in your "folder"/project. That's not necessarily a bad thing. But if you want to see all the files of your project in on "folder" location then you will need to upgrade to Enterprise PDM which allows for "sharing" of files.

           

          I hope this helps.

          • Re: PDM Standard: what about unique file names and shared links?
            Jim Sculley

            John Burrill wrote:

             

            Hi Everyone,
            I realize that there aren't a lot of PDM standard implementations out there, but I'm hoping some people with EPDM will be able to weigh in on these aspects o PDM.
            I've never really used EPDM but I have extensive experience with Workgroup PDM.  So I'm setting up a PDM Standard implementation and I've read through the getting started guide and the documentation's left me a little anxious about two things.

            First, there isn't any mention of the unique file name requirement.  WPDM has this requirement as do other document management systems, and I think I remember hearing that ePDM has it too, but someone please tell me whether that applies to the files in a Vault View on a client workstation, or does it apply to an entire vault, or do the names have to be unique for every file in the archive server?

            Unique file names are not a requirement in EPDM.  It is an optional setting and it applies to all files in a single vault.

            Second, the Getting Started PDF says that Shared File are only implemented in EPDM.  Does this mean that if I have a reference that's used in multiple projects that I have to have a copy of the file in each one or that I have to add EPDM projects to the SolidWorks file search  path?

            There are no such things as projects in EPDM, just files and folders.  References work exactly as they do in plain vanilla SolidWorks except that EPDM will track any renaming and/or moving of files and update all the documents that reference the renamed/moved file.  You can freely move things around and rename them without having to worry about breaking a bunch of assemblies.  A SW assembly can reference files from anywhere in the vault.

             

            Shared files in EPDM are a way to have a file appear in multiple places, without having to copy them.  It is primarily used when you want to attach files to other files in a SW-like manner (e.g. attach a bunch of .slddrw files to a Excel document).

            Finally, if I install my Vault View on my machine in a different folder from where my partner installs it on his, does that mean, potentially, he could open an assembly I've checked in and it won't be able to find its references?

            Every vault has a root directory that is independent of the actual location of the files on your hard drive.  If I have a vault view at C:\_EPDM and you have yours at D:\SomeSubdirectory\_EPDM there won't be any problems.  As far as EPDM is concerned, _EPDM is the uppermost directory.  You don't even need to know that your vault is in D:\SomeSubdirectory.  EPDM will put a handy shortcut in your favorites that points to your vault:

             

              • Re: PDM Standard: what about unique file names and shared links?
                Tom Cote

                Hi John

                 

                I was writing up a reply when Jim's came in.  He did a great job of answering, so rather than use my words I'll just second what he wrote with one little difference.  I've ALWAYS been taught from my early days on EPDM (2007) that you should never put your EPDM view in different drive letters or different named sub-folders.  While EPDM will track the references and it should work just fine, it's not always perfect.  I had an EPDM customer where some computers had a "C" & a "D" drive and some computers had only a "C" drive.  When we started using the "D" drive on the computers that had them we would periodically encounter file ref issues.  The VAR suggested that we try just one drive letter and all at the driver letter level and then all the ref issues went away.  So I've stuck with that philosophy / rule ever since and I never have file ref issues.

                 

                Hope this helps!

                • Re: PDM Standard: what about unique file names and shared links?
                  Ryan McVay

                  Just because I'm a bit "boorish" I'll have to disagree with the Jim on folders...SQL has no concept of "folders" it's not file explorer. EPDM SQL tables only list 6 object types in epdm (none are assigned to folders) and has a Projects table which defines all the "folders" you see in EPDM.

                • Re: PDM Standard: what about unique file names and shared links?
                  Ryan McVay

                  Just keep in mind the limits:

                  • Limited SQL Express capabilities- 1GB RAM, 10GB vault (database only not archive data)- 1 CPU
                  • only 1 workflow- not sure how you would do an eco document vs part/drawing workflows
                  • two revision schemes (usually fine)
                  • No automation whatsoever- no email, no automated pdf creation, no automatic serial numbering, etc This is why you buy EPMD!