1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Revision tracking - again!

Discussion in 'Using Alibre Design' started by PaulProe, Nov 1, 2020.

  1. PaulProe

    PaulProe Senior Member

    The more features added into Alibre, the less I know how to use it! I am still trying to figure a way to track incremental changes in a part. And NOT HAVING A LOT OF SUCCESS!

    I don't think I need a full blown spreadsheet, data management system, but it would be nice to know that I moved a particular hole 1/4" and maybe the reason why.

    Is there a simple way to record this data in a common place, kind of like a change block on the old 2D pen/pencil drafting system?

    Lew, BigSeb and others have been helpful in suggesting all kinds of fancy tracking systems, but I don't need to create more work for myself, I don't need a system that complex. Mine is a simple world, or at least, it used to be.

    Any suggestions or ideas? there may be a system/feature inside Alibre that allows this and I am just unaware of it. Changing the part number with a revision tag (R1, R2, R3, etc) creates all kinds of problems on its own. Alibre, why can't we have a simple way to change numbers? Don't like redundant drawings but storage is cheap, the problem is all the work with Alibre to change a part number.

    Any ideas?

  2. JST

    JST Alibre Super User

    Well, IF we had project workspaces, AND had a "package" system that would collect all the data in one, no matter what it was.........

    Then you could put in a note sheet where you just out in the changes for each revision, and it would stay there. You generally have a reason to revise, so it is possible either to just put it in that document, or write a short description of what was done and why.

    In a controlled environment, these things are done by ECO, Engineering Change Order. Those have to describe what, where, when, why, and how, and of course form the entire data needed to do the work and document what was done, because they detail it.

    Getting into the habit of writing up what you are going to do before you do it is one way, so long as you keep the document. It also helps to decide what needs to be done, as sometimes a new revision simply does more things that you should have done the first time.
  3. NateLiqGrav

    NateLiqGrav Alibre Super User

    You could red line your model with notes.

    You can also right click on dimensions in the sketches and add text to them (similar to drawings).
    Last edited: Nov 1, 2020
  4. Lew_Merrick

    Lew_Merrick Guest

    Hi Paul -- I realize that this adds it's own set of "issues," but maintaning the Part or Assembly Model with a "Rev Level" included in it's name makes archiving them in order a lot simpler (though I have been arguing for such an ability within the context of the used-on Assembly since 2009). -- Lew
  5. DavidJ

    DavidJ Alibre Super User Staff Member

    You can also use the large 'version comment' field in General Properties to add a bit more information.
    IonSteve likes this.
  6. bigseb

    bigseb Alibre Super User

  7. Lew_Merrick

    Lew_Merrick Guest

    Hi David -- But maintaining the "Revision Field" does not help you identify File Revisions! -- Lew
    jfleming likes this.
  8. PaulProe

    PaulProe Senior Member

    What is Alibre's thinking on this. It keeps coming up and the silence is deafening
    jfleming likes this.
  9. HaroldL

    HaroldL Alibre Super User

    It seems to me that without some kind of PDM system that will automatically track revision, and maybe also version, you will need to adopt a manual system like Lew has. If Alibre can't or doesn't come up with something then perhaps a 3rd party system. And what will it cost?
  10. bigseb

    bigseb Alibre Super User

    Then simply add an 00, 01, 02, etc the end of your filename.
  11. Max

    Max Administrator Staff Member

    I hear it - It's a complex issue and we've evaluated several PDM solutions that are either a) too expensive to include in a version of AD or b) way overkill and too complex to setup and administer and usually c) both

    So we are left with doing something on our own, and it's bubbling to the top of the list. I think doing something here would be a good candidate for v24 or v25, so H1 to early H2 of 2021.
    cadtec likes this.
  12. Lew_Merrick

    Lew_Merrick Guest

    Hi Sebastian -- First of all, I use the (US) MIL-D-100 Project Identification identity system. My Files are "named" in the style "Project_ID Part (or Assy) Number -- Rev xx." The Project_ID is a 3 character identity based on the last 2 digits of the year (20 this year of 2020) followed by a (if you will) "sequence letter" (A for the first Project, B for the second Project, etc.) followed by a 5-digit integer that provides the individual Part or Assembly final Identity. This is followed by the formal definition of the Part or Assembly (say "Support & Guide Case Assy") that is followed by 2 spaces, 2 hyphens, 2 spaces and the "Revision Identity" ("Rev --," "Rev A," "Rev B," etc). That, coupled with the date of the "Archive File" gives me a pretty good basis for tracking Project Revisions. -- Lew
  13. JST

    JST Alibre Super User

    I would not overthink this for the moment. Don't try to duplicate a PDM program.

    What would be perfectly good is to

    1) have a settable "project directory" that ALL saves and fetches default to. Allow external browse save/fetch, but default back after each. Option this, as not everyone will want it.

    2) Have a "library" function. A special library directory. Parts from that directory (or subdirectories) would not be automatically saved back if used elsewhere. Editing/saving there would need a confirmation or password to gain edit/save access.

    3) Have the ability to "package" files that are not Alibre files in a "project save". That way datasheets and ECOs, etc can be transferred with the other files in a single piece.

    These features would make companies able to consider Alibre, since in general they will have a need for secure library parts. The model for these things would be PC board design programs, which normally have all these features plus #4 below.

    I don't think any f them would interfere with a later PDM facility, as PC board programs are compatible with most all the PDM programs I have seen.

    And, I believe they would assist in revision tracking as well, since the project directory can have revisions under it. All the revision history can be kept within the project.

    Longer term.......

    4) What would be really super in the long term is to have a name/title for files that is NOT the OS filename.... Searching in Alibre would display THAT name, so that human readable descriptions and file titles can be changed without breaking every constraint the part has.
    This is important because when doing an initial design, one may not have a part number or "corporate official description" yet, and may not even know what the parts will actually be. But later, the entire thing will have to be rebuilt because now, the filename is the entire descriptor that one sees.
  14. Max

    Max Administrator Staff Member

    Famous last words ;) But I hear you.
  15. bigseb

    bigseb Alibre Super User

    Problem sorted then :);)
  16. Lew_Merrick

    Lew_Merrick Guest

    Hi Sebastian -- Ah, but could I rename the "Revision Identity" (and create a New Model or Drawing) within the context of the "Used-On Assembly" it would be a whole lot simpler, faster, and easier. -- Lew
  17. bigseb

    bigseb Alibre Super User

    I think that Max and the team won't be able to fulfill everyone's file and revision handling needs so some flexibility will be required from us.
    TimoCAD and simonb65 like this.
  18. PaulProe

    PaulProe Senior Member

    To all
    If I go to the 'rename' route, using a suffix for revisions and adding a note to the file, what is the easiest way to deal with changing names and assemblies? I guess I could move the old file off to a 'changed' folder so when the assembly opens, I get the error message.

    Simpler way?
    jfleming likes this.
  19. Lew_Merrick

    Lew_Merrick Guest

    Hi Paul -- What I do is to create full archive file sets for Projects at each Revision Level. Thus, when I make changes to a Project I have a new Project Archive to relate. I use the 7zip program to store my Archives -- which allows me to (A) maintain my Project Directory structure and (B) pull out specific "levels" of (if you will) Older Versions of a Project when that is what is needed. -- Lew
  20. bigseb

    bigseb Alibre Super User

    You can leave them all in the same folder if you like. The revision suffix will keep them separated. Assembly files don't take up any space anyway.

Share This Page