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Understanding Differences between PDM Clients

Before installing the client software, you must determine what clients are needed depending on your PDM environment.

This table summarizes the clients for SOLIDWORKS PDM Standard:
Standard Client type Description
CAD Editor Supports working with SOLIDWORKS, DWG/DXF format, Microsoft Word, and Microsoft Excel files. All file formats, that Office plug-in handles, behave in the same way in SOLIDWORKS PDM Standard except Preview.
Contributor Supports working with SOLIDWORKS, DWG/DXF format, Microsoft Word, and Microsoft Excel files.
Viewer Allows read-only access to file vaults. User can transition files through a workflow, but user cannot add or modify (check out, check in, update values) files.
This table summarizes the clients for SOLIDWORKS PDM Professional:
Professional Client type Description
CAD Editor & Web Supports working with all file types, including enhanced management and previewing of CAD formats such as SOLIDWORKS. CAD add-ins allow users to access SOLIDWORKS PDM Professional from within the CAD application. Remote users can search vaults and perform basic functions over the Internet using the Web and Web2 clients.
Contributor & Web Supports working with all file types, including CAD files. However, the CAD add-ins are not supported on this client type. Remote users can search vaults and perform basic functions over the Internet using the Web and Web2 clients.
Viewer Allows read-only access to file vaults. User can transition files through a workflow, user cannot add or modify (check out, check in, update values) files or use CAD add-ins.


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