miniPDM SolidWorks Add-in is primarily designed to enhance SolidWorks properties filling capabilities. This add-in can help to make the components compliant with the requirements of the miniPDM Excel Add-in and create Bill of Materials that can be used by different actors in the workflow. It also provided extended properties trough a database.
Unique Identifier Generator
miniPDM SolidWorks Add-in can generate unique identifiers with the help of a database to keep track of which number has been already assigned. The importance of having a way to distinguish two components from each other is discussed in the article about Files Naming.
The number generator can generate 10-digits sequential numbers. In the future, it will be possible to call an external generator to customize this unique identifier to your needs.
Component Extended Properties
miniPDM can store component specific properties into a database so it can be used by both Excel and SolidWorks add-ins allowing more complex processing. For more information see the article about the Component Extended Properties.
To have consistency in the components properties, miniPDM can change automatically all the variables values, in the custom and configuration properties, to upper case. This allows to have clean and easy to read BOMs and exempts the user to follow complex naming rules. See the article about the SolidWorks Add-in Settings.
Thanks to Microsoft ClickOnce technology, each time a new version is published, the client will self-update. Like during the first installation, you will be asked to run a command as Administrator. See the article about SolidWorks Add-in Setup.
To open the add-in, click on miniPDM SolidWorks Add-in icon. A flyout menu will appear
To get a new Unique Identifier click on the first item, it will automatically copy the displayed value to your clipboard and indicate to the database that this Unique Identifier has been used. If a database has not been associated with the add-in or if there is a connection issue, the displayed Unique Identifier will be “N/A”.
It is strongly recommended to name the SolidWorks files after the Unique Identifier. See why in the article about the Files Naming.
Once you have the value in the clipboard, click on the Save SolidWorks flyout menu and either select Save or Save As.
Then press CTRL+V and it will directly paste the Unique Identifier as the File name. Don’t worry about the file type extension, it will be added according to what is selected in the Save as type dropdown menu.
To access the Component Extended Properties, click on the second item, it will open a new window with several tabs where the information stored in the database can be displayed and edited.