SolidWorks: File Renaming

SolidWorks files link to one another. A SolidWorks assembly file references each part within it. The same goes for a SolidWorks drawing file, which references all assemblies and parts used within the drawing. If a SolidWorks part file is renamed improperly, the reference, or relation, with the assembly and/or drawing file is broken. This means that the part will now not show up, and will have to be suppressed when the assembly or drawing is opened until the relation is re-established. Renaming SolidWorks models efficiently without losing all relations used to be a problem. On a large-scale assembly, with many part files, this task would be tedious if multiple files would need to be renamed. Recently, I needed to find an effective file rename system, as a customer requested the names of all models to be changed. A Pack-and-Go would only be efficient if the files required addition to either a prefix or suffix to each file, or there is a constant in each file name such as a change in job number. In that case, a simple find and replace all Pack-and-Go would be quick. There is also an option to rename files during the Pack-and-Go but that will take up lots of time to save and there are now multiple locations unless the old files are deleted out.

Pack-and-Go Renaming

Pack-and-Go Renaming

Using PDM with all SolidWorks models increased company efficiency in almost all areas of our engineering and CAD design teams and is also beneficial when renaming. With PDM if all the files you wish to Rename are checked in, single-click the file that needs to be changed and press the “F2” command key on your keyboard and change the name. Work down the list of files you wish to rename; then, go check out all the files and open the main assembly. All files have been renamed with all relations still intact. The part properties do not auto update so each file will need its part properties updated to the new name.

File Explorer Renaming

File Explorer Renaming

To save a few steps I change the name of each part while it is open using the same “F2” command key on the assembly or part name in the feature tree.

Feature Tree Renaming

Feature Tree Renaming

An important advantage of changing the part name in the vault rather than using a Pack-and-Go is the access to version history within the vault. With version history, you can load a previous version of the file. This is known as a “rollback”. If by chance you change a name incorrectly or have an issue with the references in the assembly being broken, the version history can be rolled back to the version with the old name to revert any problems that may have arisen.

Thanks for tuning into our blog, please let me know if you have any questions or concerns with this saving method. I know it has saved me lots of time and I hope it can do the same for you. Have you signed up for our weekly e-mails? This is a good way to stay up to date with our weekly blog postings.

 
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Brenden DeVries

Engineering Co-op at Perception Engineering

 
Brenden DeVries