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Workgroup PDM to PDM Standard Migration

Question asked by Devin Wyatt on Apr 8, 2016
Latest reply on Dec 19, 2017 by Andrew Foss



As you all know, Workgroup PDM is being phased out over the next two releases. I've decided to get a jump on this and switch over now rather than waiting until this time 2 years from now. But I have some questions about general best practices for setting up a PDM system. Is there any such document laying out best practices for those of us starting with a blank slate? Some specific questions below that I'm trying to find answers to.


1. How should I structure my vaults? Should I just have one vault with a series of folders within for each project/product? Currently in our Workgroup PDM system we have projects for each different product, then sub-projects for versions of that project. Should I take a similar strategy here with folders? I'm assuming I shouldn't create a new vault for each product/project. What about things like the Toolbox and my Design Libraries? Should they be in their own vault? Or just their own folders in my main vault? We are a very small company, I am currently the only Solidworks user. At most we may have 3 of us that access the PDM system some day.


2. Even higher level than that, when I setup my archive server, should I set my root folder to a folder on my server's OS drive? Or a storage drive? Does it matter? I know Workgroup PDM always seemed to insist on having it in C:\VaultData. Should I follow a similar strategy here? Obviously I'll be setting up backups and all that as well. Is there any benefit to having multiple root folders? Should I put each vault in a different root folder? I see lots of instructions on how to do things, but next to none on why I would do things one way or another.


3. Currently I have a shared Toolbox (hosted on our server) and a shared Design Library (also on the server). These are not in our current workgroup PDM system. But I would like to move them into the new system. Will this require I open all of our assemblies to update the references to their new locations? Or can I automate this in some way? Again, we are a small company so manually opening everything wouldn't be the end of the world. It would be a bit of a pain but totally doable. I'm thinking maybe get the Toolbox/Design Libraries into the new system, then migrate each product one at a time manually and update references as we go. I also just updated to 2016 SW so I could use this opportunity to upgrade files to 2016 as well.


4. The big thing I'm struggling with right now is how to import a file with a particular revision and have it set the revision in PDM Standard correctly. For example I have a file with revision B-03. This was set by Workgroup PDM and is stored in a custom property. When I check this item into the new system, it gets 'no revision'. Then I move it through the workflow and it goes to A-01. How can I override this automatically so that it goes straight to B-03 on my first import? Since this is PDM Standard I can't have multiple workflows so I think I need to add a section to the default one for importing existing stuff. This would somehow sync the revisions rather than assigning a new one ... my VAR pointed me to here: 2016 SOLIDWORKS PDM Help - Synchronizing a Revision Variable to a Revision Number but from what I can tell that doesn't help me. All it does is synchronize the variable (custom property) with the revision number. I want to do the reverse of this ...


5. What are people planning on doing with their legacy data? I will only be migrating the latest versions across to the new system since I've been told it is a ton of work to do more than that. So how will people access their legacy stuff after 2018? Will I have to keep a copy of SW2018 installed forever so that I can access my old vault? Any suggestions for the best way to handle this? Should I setup a virtual machine with my SW vault in it? At least that way it's contained and easy enough to fire up whenever I need it.


Sorry for the long post. Just trying to get my head wrapped around all this before we get too far into it.