Automate Some of Those Painstaking Tasks in EPDM with Dispatch!

File management is always an ordeal. You’re tracking hundreds of different files, managing metadata, and updating status or workflow states. Even with a robust and powerful tool like Enterprise PDM though, some of these tasks can still be time consuming. What happens when you need to rename a few dozen files? How about updating their data card information? This is largely still a manual process.

However, it doesn’t have to be. There is an add-in for EPDM called Dispatch that can save you a lot of time in these simple, repetitive tasks. Dispatch allows you to write small scripts that embed as a right-click option for a file to complete a specified task. An example of such at task might be renaming your SolidWorks files.

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In this case, we are renaming our SolidWorks files to the serial number we assigned on their data card. The logic in creating the Dispatch script itself is straightforward; you are simply stacking pre-created commands that exist in the add-in.

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Since we’re not renaming to the same thing each time, we need to make our command a little more dynamic. We do this by creating Dispatch variables, which can store inputted information, or simply read a variable off the data card. We’ll tell it to use that variable value as part of the naming scheme.

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When it all comes together, a few mouse clicks go a LONG way.

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In the example above, I made the logic a little bit more generic so that it works for all file types. I also added a dialogue box reminding the user to refresh the listing to see the changes. These are as simple as adding an “OK MessageBox” command.

Dispatch can do a lot for you, and save you quite a bit of time. In addition, it is less prone to error than a manual process, where a slip of the finger and lead to an incorrect serial number.

A note: Dispatch must be selected from the list of add-ins to install when creating a vault, otherwise it will not appear in the Admin Tool. To add the Dispatch add-in after the fact to an existing vault, please refer to SolidWorks Knowedge Base Solution S-017771.