"We are losing work on a monthly if not a weekly basis. Some files aren
01-07-2009, 05:30 PM
Hi Dan, I suffered the same in the past. It was horrible. We used PDMLink 8.0. We had a lot of problems and we contracted servces from 3 different VARs. No one knows how to make this work. There are serveral sources of problems. One of them is the server. If it is not powerful enough then a service gots killed, but the rest of the windchill do not takes this into account, so it continues working and the work is lost, or corrrupted.
If this was not bad enouhg, I asked PTC to make a downgrade and to use the licenses I bought (not cheap) with a intralink 3.4, because we are a small office too. The answer was no, this is impossible, you have bought PDMLink (well if it does not work, is not our problem, is yours) and you have to continue or not (as you want) using it.
If I had budget enough I would have changed to CATIA yet.
In Referance to your origonal question of how to export files out of windchill, I aked PTC directly how to export the database and was told there is no way to export.
We are looking at moving away from Intralink 8.0 to a third party software and I have put together a plan to migrate data on a as needed basis. Whenever we start a new project I we will open the files and save them out to the local drive, then into whatever new software we choose. It is a slow process, but PTC doesn't give us much choice. I have found that saving the assembly drawing as a zip file to the local drive takes all the supporting documents with it and saves some steps.
That is our current plan as well.
Sorry for ringing in on this 5 months later. I've just now seen/read this entire thread with great interest.
Dan10, I too am the Designer/Draftsman at our company and I am also the Pro/E / PDMLink administrator. We have between 6-8 users on a daily basis. All in all, a nearly identical situation to how you are set up.
I appreciate you not wanting to turn this into a PDMlink bashing session. As your original question has basically been answered, I just have a few thoughts/questions.
First, you stated that you have dealt with PTC directly and they sent a salesman to do the training. I'm not trying to call you a liar or anything like that, but PTC officially changed the policy sometime around 2001-2002 that small companies are the sole domain of the VAR's. How is it that you are not being supported by a VAR?
Again, not to bash you or anything like that, but your problems with Windchill are not the fault of the software. You simply did not have the software installed/implemented correctly. Let me explain.
When my company set about purchasing Windchill/PDMLink, myself and a fellow employee went to a week long PTC training class (taught by the VAR employee who would later do our install/implemention) called "Business Administration". This class basically taught me how to be the administrator, as well as how to use the software.
Next, the instructor of the above mentioned class came to our company for an intensive, 3 week long install/implementation. The first week or so was for the install. Then, over the course of the next 2 weeks, the entire Engineering department would meet with this guy, 2-3 times a day. We would, as a group, make decisions about how we wanted the software to behave/perform. As you may or may not know, EVERYTHING in Windchill is customizable.
At the end of the implementation, we did a small amount of testing, and we were off and running. That was June 2007. We have been using the system ever since, without a single problem.
Again, I don't want to sound negative towards you or your company, but to me, it sounds like you never had a valid install and/or implementation. Second, it doesn't sound like you had enough training.
I don't really have any suggestions for you other than to contact me directly if you want the name and phone # of our VAR. As this post is 5 months old, I'm guessing it is probably too late and that you've already made your decisions.
If I can help at all, just shoot me an email or respond to this thread.
gggg... I agree with you that we have not had enough training. I guess our VAR doesn't have enough training to be of much help either. Yes, PTC sent someone directly from the company to train us and set up our computers. I have logged many calls with him since then.He"trained" us for 4 or 5 hours on what windchillis capable of doing and how it will benefit the company. He also set up our computers but he didn't set up windchill. I believe you when you said windchill has not been set up correctly.
hopper213 "I don't understand why you look in other peoples workspaces. Is this how they manage what people are doing? Every part should be opened from commonspace. Maybe the search function isn't looking where it should, or isn't filtered correctly for all users."
We are not intentionaly looking it other peoples workspaces. PTC says that "administrators and product managers automatically see parts in everybodies workspaces when they do a search." If you have a part checked out into your workspace and I do a search on that part I will see two parts show up in my search. One is checked out and the other is checked in. If I open either of those parts and then remove them from my workspace it will remove it from their workspace as well. PTC says "that is the way it is supposed to work". They told me that before I open an assembly I should "search each part to see if they have been checked by another user"
Dan10, again, I'm not doubting what you say. If you've been told something, I believe you. But that is just wrong. Windchill/PDMLink certainly does not work that way. With all do respect, you're install/implementation is completely hosed.
If you haven't yet fixed this or moved on with a different solution, I totally suggest that you dump your current VAR and contact a new one that is qualified to come to your facility, re-install/configure the software, and provide adequate training. Again, if you want the contact info from my VAR, just ask.
There is a new PDM available called CheckOut 5.1 that doesall the main functionsneeded to manage Pro/E and/or Solidworks data. It is very inexpensive and I know it does at least these things;
1. Itallows people to check-out a drawing and flag it as checked out.
2. It allows drawings to belocked during a submit for approvalprocess so they can't beaccidently changed.
3. It provides secured release data that can't be changed.
4. Has ability to check for latest version of parts used in assemblies being checked out.
5. Includes ECN functionality to see what changes were done on drawings.
6. Very little administration needed, up and running in hours.
It does more but I think these are the minimum needed.
PDMLink does all that and many, many times more if it is simply installed and configured correctly. Don't spend any more money on software. You already own the Cadillac of PDM software. Spend the money on a qualified VAR to install/configure the software and training.
ggggggggg, I understand your enthusiasm in regard to PDMLink. The only thing is not everyone has the luxury of dedicating 3 weeks to installing software and then dedicating many hours each day for training. Money is money, whether it is spent on new "easy to use" software or weeks of training. And I would bet the weeks of training is going to cost more because you have the cost of the class and the lost time of your employees.
Yes, PDMLink is a very nice product for the company that has the resources to spend on it (training and implimentation). I just think there are a lot of other companies that don't have that kind of time and money to spend on data management, and don't need anymore than the few things I listed above.
Looking forward to your reply.