The following workflow is a solution to a question posed to me during one of my sessions at Autodesk University last week. I thought this tip would make a good blog post. Note that this shows a great mix of both Item and Doc Centric functionality.
In typical workflows within Vault Manufacturing, an Item has a primary associated file that is usually a CAD file. This is visible with a glyph in the Vault Explorer side as noted in the image below. For review, you can right click and select Go To Item (or CTRL+click) and jump to the associated Item.
Over in the Item Master, on the General tab of the Item’s ‘card’, you’ll see all information about that Item, including the associated files. In the image below, the Item has only one file – an AutoCAD file – and this is the Primary associated file.
During the evolution of a design, files like this .dwg may be converted to Inventor files (ie: Mechanical Desktop .dwg to Inventor .ipt) and the Items can be updated to reflect the new CAD file as an associated file. First steps include checking the updated CAD file. In the image below, I placed it adjacent to the old file.The Item may be in a Released state, and if it is, be sure to right click and change state to Work in progress for the next few steps:
The next step is to promote this to an Item. Right click and select Assign Item…
The next few steps are critical. Initially the Item number preview will be something other than what you’re expecting – either the word ‘Default’ or a sequential number, etc. Check the option at the bottom of the wizard window to ‘Auto-select first duplicate.
This realigns the new CAD file being promoted to Item with the existing Item. Simply put, you should see the ‘Replace With’ column filled in with the existing Item number.
Next go to the Item and select Edit, we have some more work to do on the file associations…
Note that in the example below, the Inventor part is included in the list along with the .dwg. Only one file can be the Primary File Link, and the visual clue is the blue key glyph. A right click on the .dwg shows that it can be changed from Primary to Secondary.
Just as we switched the .dwg to Secondary, we can make the .ipt the Primary attached file. Now the Item’s primary associated file is the new Inventor part.
One final step is to remove the access to old files that are attached to the Items. This is achieved through Lifecycle state settings on the individual files. Note that this step can be done at anytime in the process. This means the .dwg will still be linked to the Item for record, but through lifecycle state security settings the majority of users will not see this file.
To prove this point, logging in as an end user and viewing the Item shows only the Inventor .ipt as an associated file to the Item. See my previous posts and workflows on setting security on the Obsolete lifecycle state on files.