Migration from Windows to Enterprise PDM Part 2: Fix Those References

Part 1Part 2 – Part 3

Many companies have several projects stored in their Windows file system prior to an Enterprise Product Data Manager (EPDM) implementation. While it is ideal to leave older projects within the old filing system, it is sometimes important to integrate them into the new PDM system for future use. This is the second of a three part blog series entitled Migration from Windows to Enterprise PDM.

It is recommended that you implement in a test vault prior to executing on your production vault. Some instructions are intended for migrating large amounts of data at once. If you are only moving a few documents into the vault, it is still applicable but some steps may not be necessary.


When migrating from Windows, some files may be missing references, contain cyclic references, point to duplicate files, or point to locations outside of the vault. Don’t worry! They can be fixed!
Update References Wizard

A little known, but extremely useful, part of Enterprise PDM is the Update References Wizard. It will allow you to redirect, replace, add, or repair references. The tool can be accessed by selecting the parent file in Windows Explorer and selecting Tools > Update References. The sections below will explain how each tool works.

TIP: It is important to fix warnings BEFORE checking in for the first time. If you ignore the warnings and check it in, the Update References Wizard will NOT show them.

Redirecting References

This tool is useful when you have the warning File Not Found or if you just want to redirect a reference to another file of the same name.

  1. Choose the reference you wish to redirect and press Find Files.
Migration from Windows to Enterprise PDM

  1. In the Find Files dialog, select the folder to search for the file, select your search criteria, and press Next>.
Migration from Windows to Enterprise PDM
TIP: Select the root of the vault and Search sub-folders in the criteria to search all files.
  1. If there is only one option found, the Update column will automatically be checked. Sometimes, there are multiple files you could use. You must select it from the dropdown under Found In and check the Updatecheckbox. Press Finish when complete.
Migration from Windows to Enterprise PDM
  1. In the remaining pop-up press Update. It will close when it is finished.
TIP: If you have the File Not Found warning and cannot find a copy inside the vault, you must find the file and add it to the vault or remove the reference in SolidWorks to get rid of the warning.

Replacing References


If you wish to replace a reference with a different file name, you want to use Replace File. It can be located in or outside of the vault. It is recommended that you add the reference to the vault if you choose a file currently outside.
Migration from Windows to Enterprise PDM
Adding Referenced Files to the Vault
  1. If you have the warning Outside SolidWorks Enterprise PDM, you must either redirect the reference or add it to the vault. Select the erroneous reference and press Add files to Vault.
Migration from Windows to Enterprise PDM
  1. Select the folder you would like to add the file to and press Next>.
  2. Press Finish to complete the task.
Additional Tips

File Not Found

If this warning is appearing frequently, it is likely because you did not preserve the relative file structure when performing the migration. It is very important to preserve that structure until everything is checked in for the first time.
File Outside of Solidworks Enterprise PDM
If this warning is appearing frequently, it is likely due to the previous file structure still being available to the migration machine. Removing access to that directory will fix most of these issues.


Cyclic References

Sometimes with legacy data the Cyclic Reference error will appear. A Cyclic Reference occurs in assemblies when two or more components share external references in such a way that a rebuild of one component necessitates rebuild of another. The only way to resolve this error is to edit the file within SOLIDWORKS. It is not possible to check in these files until the issue is corrected.

Part 1 – Part 2 – Part 3

For more training and tutorials on the many 3D CAD Modeling solutions in the SolidWorks family of products and add-ons, register for an upcoming Event or look into our SOLIDWORKS training.

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