Generating Items

You can create items from files. Use this approach when files, typically assemblies and parts, already exist to create item structure automatically.

For example, a development team might design the product first, then create items to bundle the design files and supporting documents.

The alternative approach is to create items first and then link to files later. From Item Explorer, you can create empty items and link to files.

To generate items from a file:

  1. Right-click a file and select Generate Item.
    By default, you can only generate items for CAD files. SOLIDWORKS PDM administrators can configure the file types available for item generation.
  2. From the Generate Item dialog box:
    1. If you have files with references (such as assemblies with parts), select what Version of references to use: Referenced version or Latest version.
    2. Optionally click Generate for configurations to hide or show configurations in the list.

      You can create items for configurations or for files independent of configuration.

    3. To create a new item for a file, select Create if it is not already selected.

      If the Create check box is not already selected, an item already exists for that file. To link to an existing item, select Existing and type an Item ID.

      The Create, Existing, and Auto Update columns optionally have two check boxes for files with references (such as assemblies with parts):
      • The left check box affects only the parent file.
      • The right check box affects the parent and its references, making it easy to select or clear all check boxes at once. You can then change the selections for individual files. If all check boxes are not in the same state, the right check box displays .
      To enable or disable this feature, right-click in the file list box and select Show Parent Node Checkboxes.
    4. Select Auto Update to create an auto-update link, or clear Auto Update to create a static link.

      Auto-update links cause the system to automatically create a new item version when a new version of the file is created. Use an auto-update link when you want an item to always link to the latest version of a file. An item can have only one auto-update link at a time.

    5. Under Item ID, optionally type a different item ID, such as one generated by your ERP system.

      The item ID must be unique.

    6. To view the items in Item Explorer after you generate them, select Open Generated Items.
    7. Specify the Destination Folder for the generated items.

      The default is the item root folder. Click Browse (...) to select a different folder or to create a new folder.

    Click Help to display SOLIDWORKS PDM Professional Item Explorer Help for additional information about the Generate Item dialog box and items in general.
  3. Click OK.

    After item generation, each item contains a link to the file used to generate it. For assemblies, items are created for each subassembly or part. Drawings are statically linked to the associated part or assembly item.

  4. From Item Explorer, check in new items.

    Other users cannot see the items until you check them in.