10 Replies Latest reply on Mar 24, 2016 6:55 PM by Charley Leonard

    searching subfolders

    Charley Leonard

      Has anyone discovered/invented an easy way to get components in subfolders to be automatically found when opening an assembly that references them? My situation is migrating from using PDM WORKGROUP, to SOLIDWORKS PDM STANDARD, having a sophisticated folder system for library components, mirroring the project structure we had built in the WORKGROUP vault. The process of building this folder structure in the new SOLIDWORKS PDM STANDARD vault was relatively painless as it turned out, but opening assemblies in the new vault for the first time and using the search tool to find each component not in the same folder as the assembly, is prohibitively cumbersome.

        • Re: searching subfolders
          Prasad Bhonsule

          Hi Charley, add the vault root path under Referenced Components in Solidworks File Locations:

           

           

          That way, when opening assemblies, SolidWorks will search that folder path, and all subfolders for referenced components.

           

           

          Note: If you have multiple paths in that list, move the vault to the top of the list, as Solidworks searches the paths in order.

           

          Hope this helps.

           

          Kind regards,

           

          Prasad Bhonsule

          • Re: searching subfolders
            Jeff Sweeney

            I can think of a couple of solutions.

             

            1) You could continue with Prasad Bhonsule's idea of also adding all the sub folders to the list of referenced components. If the list is long, I'd look into writing the folders directly into the registry [HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\SolidWorks\Solidworks 2016\ExtReferences\Document Folders] because adding them one at a time would be painful. ...if you go this route you will notice a performance hit when opening files, so over time you may want to start removing paths from the list. (You could build the list pretty quickly with a little batch program)

             

            2) In PDM Standard, you can use the "Update References" tool. It is a swell tool for updating/fixing broken references. It has a search function built in so it can find the files rather than you manually navigating to them.

             

            3) If you aren't too far down this path, 3DVision's ExportWorkgroup tool https://www.3dvision.com/images//pdf/ExportWorkgroup_DataSheet.pdf  can export the current versions of your Workgroup files and keep your references from breaking. You would have to "start over" but if you have a ton of broken references...

              • Re: searching subfolders
                Charley Saint

                It's also helpful to do a get latest on the vault since SolidWorks won't use it's search routines unless you have a local copy of the file. Then you can check out all your assemblies and start working your way through them. There are some custom solutions out there, but nothing that's a magic bullet. Easiest thing I can think of would be to get the path of every folder in the vault via SQL, form that into a reg file for SW search paths, load that on one PC and run the File Version Upgrade Utility on all Assemblies to check them out and save them with "hopefully" fixed references. Then use the script I threw in this post to see if it missed anything.

                • Re: searching subfolders
                  Charley Leonard

                  Loving the "Update References" tool, but I can't get it to consistently remember the fixed references. I seem to continue to have to manually browse to some references each time I open a given assembly, even if I did so and saved it. Am I missing a step?

                    • Re: searching subfolders
                      Jeff Sweeney

                      You're noticing that some references are being updated and others are not?

                       

                      Though I have not been able to prove it, the tool seems to work better if the assembly file(s) are checked out before I start the update references tool. See if you notice any difference.

                        • Re: searching subfolders
                          Charley Leonard

                          I've developed that theory too, and I haven't proven it either, but I do seem to be having to find fewer of them after doing it that way. But there are a few that just keep being stubborn.

                          • Re: searching subfolders
                            Charley Leonard

                            Ok it turns out I wasn't really checking everything out. Some subassemblies of this large assembly contained the "stubborn" files that kept needing to be found. Once I really checked everything out, that seemed to have done the trick. In the midst of all that, I also started opening it "resolved" instead of "large assembly mode" and also running the "Update References" tool on all assemblies in the project, not just the top assembly. Not sure if those affected the outcome or not, but they certainly couldn't hurt. Thanks all.