Linking your revision table to Enterprise

December 15th, 2008


I love simple elegant solutions. Especially when they help solve a problem that many people have – linking revision tables to your Enterprise PDM system.

<sarcasm>Imagine that you work for one of those companies that still puts a revision table on your drawings. If was good enough for engineers back in the 1930’s then it is good enough for you too right!?</sarcasm> (Where did this soapbox come from?)

Here is a cool little trick:

  1. Write a little SolidWorks addin that before a save [FileSaveAsNotify2] will read the last row of the revision table and write the needed fields into that file’s custom properties.
  2. Connect those custom file properties to your datacard.

From a coding prospective, there is hardly any error handling required! Here is why:

  • You don’t have to worry about ensuring the document is checked out, the user wouldn’t be hitting save otherwise
  • You don’t even have to make a connection to the Enterprise object; you are simply writing information into the file’s properties -let Enterprise add the file property information into the database for you
    • You don’t even have to handle cases if a user is not logged into the vault

Short. Sweet. Simple.

Jeff Sweeney

CSWE Engineering Data Specialist 3DVision Technologies

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4 Responses to “Linking your revision table to Enterprise”

  1. Brian Slick says:

    Hey, you could at least give me a little credit for the inspiration! ;)

    Also, the code would be a bit more flexible if it located columns by identifier rather than simple position. Column 2 on A and B size formats was actually column 3 on C and D formats (the larger sheets have a ‘zone’ column that is column 1). So identifying the column by either the column header or the custom property it is linked to would be useful.

    And who are these crazy people that don’t have revision tables on their prints?

  2. Jeff Sweeney says:

    Sorry, yes…you did give me the inspiration for the idea. :)

  3. Mike Adam says:

    I have a question regarding that.
    How can I list from PDM Enterprise all the Revision history with their transition comments inside the Revision table in the drawing file ?

    if anyone got solution for that please email me
    pdmwe@yahoo.com

  4. Jeff Sweeney says:

    Hey Mike…you’re not alone with that request. Going from Enterprise to the drawing is harder.

    I believe you’ll need to create a routine that will connect to the Enterprise API and the SW API. The routine would read the revision information from the database, connect to the revision table and add the record accordingly.

    One thing you’ll need to consider is what will trigger this routine. I suppose it may have to run every time you save the file, else you would have to assume your users wouldn’t run it and your drawing’s revision table would be out-of-date….though it would be easier code if you could trust your users to run the program manually.

    If you are interested in having 3DVision quote this, you can leave a comment here.

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