TopSolid 7 makes it even easier to configure your PDM server. Additionally, help is just a click away as we added a shortcut to the remote assistance command allowing you to obtain help from your reseller. Check it out by viewing this quick video.
Key engineering design functions have become increasingly computerized making digital security to a top priority for engineering organizations. While digital security has always been an important part of the TopSolid platform, TopSolid 7 includes a huge improvement to the security section of client-server use.
These improvements make managing permissions much easier so that you can control who has access to what data. These enhancements make it much easier for you to control information user by user, department by department and project folder by project folder.
This video demonstration shows you just how easy it now is to manage this important aspect of your PDM configuration.
I am often asked the question “How should I structure a project in TopSolid’PDM?”. And I often answer with something like…that depends. Why? To build a good structure for your process, you must first ask yourself a few questions. Before you can ask the questions however, you also should understand your end goal. And to understand the end goal, you need to understand the mission of managing data and how it will flow through your organization.
My goal in this blog post is to help you begin to understand your own work flow. Then take that workflow and turn into some basic structure within the TopSolid 7 platform.
The mission of data management
Why do you want to manage your data? It’s a very simple question…but wow the impact of the answer can be intense! Why? Managing data (or information) should be in the top 5 of items that have the largest impact on your business. If it is not, then you might be making a critical business mistake. The reason I say this is because if you do not manage information within your organization correctly, then you can run into problems like:
Misinformation being shared (internally or worse externally)
Wrong revisions being manufactured
Projects not starting on time
Projects starting too soon
The list can go on and on. Managing your data in a way the follows even a basic structure can ensure that some of these business-critical mistakes are lessoned or better eliminated altogether. Ask yourself this question:
What would it be worth to your organization if you could eliminate or even minimize the number of mistakes made during the flow of your manufacturing process?
I’ll bet that if you really sat down and thought about this question…the answer would shock you. And hopefully the answer will motivate you to begin down the path of structure.
Now if we circle back to the first question in this section… Why do you want to manage your data? The simple question after all will have a simple answer. You want to structure your data so that you can ensure it flows through your organization in a way that follows the most optimal path while ensuring all parties involved always have the most up-to-date information possible.
The end goal of structure
Now that you understand why it is important to manage data, it’s time to discuss the structure of data. In thinking structure, you want to think about what you need to manage and what the parent/child relationships of managing that item might look like.
For example, maybe you build vices. The overall vice will have a part (or item) number for the final assembly of the vice. Each of the components of the vice will in turn have their own part number. Each component of the vice would be a child to the main assembly of the vice (called a parent). Yet still some of the items of the vice are standard off-the-shelf items and might have their own part numbering structure as well. Continue reading Structure a Project in TopSolid PDM→
Multi-session mode is a new PDM feature within TopSolid 7. This feature allows you to work on multiple aspects of the same project simultaneously on your local server. Or, when working within a team environment, this feature allows you to collaborate on a project in real time.
Microsoft recently made a change that allows you to use local PDM mode like client-server mode of PDM, but locally on your machine. This video shows you how to convert to local PDM server mode, but please watch the video in its entirety as once you convert to local PDM mode, you cannot go back.
TopSolid 7 allows you schedule automatic backups to assure your data is not lost if something happens to your local computer. Finally, you can now run multiple instances of TopSolid on the same machine allowing you to work on different aspects of the same project, or different projects at the same time.
Here’s a quick, but robust new feature in TopSolid 7. You can now select multiple templates at once when creating engineering drawings. Multiple design documents are created with one simple mouse click. Watch a video demonstration to see how it works.
Robust search functionality is extremely valuable within the complex world of engineering design. In addition to the search functionality TopSolid has always had, TopSolid 7 includes three new powerful search functionalities.
First, the new quick search feature includes a part preview panel to help you to quickly find what you are looking for.
Secondly, TopSolid 7 now allows you to create and save searches to meet your precise needs. You can make your searches as specific as you need them to be. In fact, anything searchable in TopSolid 7 can become a saved search. Once you find what you are looking for, you can drag and drop it into a document or assembly. Any part, function, tool path strategy or other searchable attribute can become a saved search for quick reference allowing you to quickly and easily add past work to your current effort. In short, TopSolid’s saved search functionality allows you to create “libraries” that facilitate seamless reuse of past work.
Finally, TopSolid 7’s new searches manager allows an organization to create a list of company-wide standard searches. Again, any project data point from specific parts, a part from a specific manufacturer, functionality, tooling behavior, etc. can be become a saved search and utilized by your entire team or organization.
The ability to access and utilize robust engineering design data is just as important as the ability to create it. TopSolid 7 takes major leaps forward in improving data access and reusability.
One of TopSolid’s great advantages is that a given design change will recalculate and make adjustments to all of the affected parts within the design. However, sometimes you don’t want to do that right away. When working with large assemblies with lots of synchronized data, often you want changes to recalculate in other areas of your design only when you are ready.
TopSolid 7 includes a great new Product Data Management (PDM) feature called “freeze documents.” Through the contextual menu, this new feature freezes the update from being applied to synchronized documents. This new feature puts you in the driver’s seat allowing you to apply and recalculate changes when you want to, but not before.
This video demonstration shows exactly how this new feature works within a sample design assembly. Watch video demonstration.
TopSolid 7 makes it even easier to find things within your project manager. There is now a new search button that makes the search faster and more efficient. Additionally, we have simplified how to purge data out of the PDM with one click.
For instance, maybe you want to quickly purge select minor revisions, backups, deleted objects and other data no longer needed.
For maximum engineering design efficiency, you often need to be able to reuse information from either a current project or a previous project. Normally, you would manage this through the use of libraries. But, in some cases it is necessary to export a project package and then re-import the data as a distinct copy so that all revisions are maintained. Maintaining engineering project revisions during this process is clearly critical.
In this video, I will demonstrate making modifications to fixtures within a CNC project and validating/checking in those revisions to assure an error-free project. The video demonstration then walks through compiling the final assembly and exporting the project package.
Finally, I will show you how an important new improvement in TopSolid 7 allows all of the revisions to be maintained when the project is re-imported. Watch demo