I guess you mentioned DDM http://www.designdatamanager.com/
This is 3rd party system, therefore you can expect that it will have problems with specific Creo data relationships. I suggest you to carefully test the system before you buy it.
Welcome to getting into working in the modern world. I've spent many hundreds of hours bringing CAD data into Windchill from acquired companies who have been using managed network folders as you describe - including one project going on now. I highly recommend bringing EVERYTHING in - and then dealing with all issues as they occur. Have to manage a fairly significant culture change as well as the technology, procedures, etc.
The two overwhelming reasons to bring everything in up front are:
- if you rename / renumber anything in Windchill (which invariably is needed), then it's essential for anything affected to already be in Windchill
- you immediately eliminate the very common questions of where is the master / what is the latest
Start very simple. But, absolutely don't use the OTB Windchill configurations for lifecycle, etc. OTB, the "Basic" lifecycle is assigned which doesn't fit any real business.
Also, plan on using VWS publishing asap, with watermarking and requiring that all PDFs are created from Creo View. This guarantees that:
- the data is in Windchill
- it will regenerate w/o any human action
- the PDF represents what is actually in Windchill rather than what a CAD user manipulated prior to creating the PDF
- if watermarking is applied by state (recommended), it identifies dynamically when a drawing is not yet ready for use / ready for use
Thanks! That was exactly what I was looking for. Seems like you might be also able to send the PDFs to Ignite automatically when the drawings reach the correct state? Then there'd be no manual processes. Just an idea. We publish PDFs as the default drawing rep which makes PDF creation setting consistent since it's all done from the server and I don't remember having issues with objects being outside the drawing.
- How good are users at replacing formats? Any tricks to make make users update? I rolled out new formats but many old drawings don't get updated as users modify drawings. New drawings tend to be pretty consistent as I made some helpful templates that use them.
- Does the drawing compare work for PDF's or only for PLT files? We have PDF's as the default viewables.
1. We invested a lot of time and effort in creating very robust mapkeys for Creo and macros for SolidWorks for replacing formats - and require that ModelCheck / Design Checker be used to verify.
2. Unfortunately only PLT allows use of Creo View drawing compare - else we would publish to PDF.
I make a fairly good living remotely working with many (generally smaller) Windchill implementations on these types of things.
Unfortunately only PLT allows use of Creo View drawing compare - else we would publish to PDF.
Actually, Creo View 3.1 added support for PDF compare. I don't have any personal experience with it...
I'll have to look into Model Check but it hasn't been my favorite tool to try to setup/to have people use. Maykeys would be fine except they aren't 'smart' and able to determine if they're starting from a size B, C, or D and/or inches/mm. I have a feeling the macros/Design Checker from SolidWorks is much slicker for updating.