SOLIDWORKS PDM 2017: 5 New Features You’ll Want to Use

Are you looking to upgrade to SOLIDWORKS PDM 2017? Wondering what new features it has? Well, look no further. We’re going to cover what I think are the top 5 new features that were added to SOLIDWORKS PDM* for the 2017 release. Here we go:

  1. Latest Version Overwrite
  1. Have you ever released a drawing with a typo and don’t want to rollback the file? Perhaps you just want to update a small typo or missing dimension on a drawing without creating a new version. Or maybe you create many iterations of a file before final release and the 17 versions you created are irrelevant and are just taking up space. Is there a way to avoid this? Now there is a new feature in SOLIDWORKS PDM called Latest Version Overwrite which does just that. You can quickly update a file without creating a new version of the file.


  1. You can even use the overwrite feature during a transition in a workflow if you are trying to eliminate superfluous versions during a transition.

  1. PDF Task Add-in
  1. We’ve all used the PDF task add-in to create PDFs of drawings or neutral files of our parts. What if you want to create a 3D PDF for SOLIDWORKS MBD or create a PDF of a Word document? Or create a PDF of your DXF or DWG file? In 2017, you can. With SOLIDWORKS PDM Professional 2017, a new task add-in that includes 3D PDF generation based on your templates from SOLIDWORKS MBD,


  1. an Office2PDF add-in that creates PDFs from your Word, Excel and PowerPoint documents,


  1. and an add-in that connects to DraftSight Professional to create a PDF of DXF and DWG files.

  1. Rollback with References
  1. If you’ve used the rollback feature before, you might have wished you could rollback a top-level assembly and all its children together rather than each file individually. With the powerful Rollback with References capability in 2017, you can now rollback your entire assembly in one fell swoop.

  1. Client Service-Pack Compatibility
  1. If you or your IT department needs to update PDM between service packs and have a lot of users including document control, manufacturing, and other groups, then updating clients can be a large undertaking. With SOLIDWORKS PDM 2017, you will only need to upgrade the server to the latest service pack of the major release rather than the server and the clients all together. That means if you install SOLIDWORKS PDM 2017 SP3 and need to upgrade to SP4, the clients can remain on SP3 and only the server needs to be upgraded to SP4. This allows you to take full advantage of new features and bug fixes in newer service packs with minimal interruption to day-to-day operations. This will not apply to major version upgrades so if you’re looking to upgrade to SOLIDWORKS PDM 2018 from 2017, the clients will need to be upgraded as well.


  1. Database Replication
  1. My favorite new feature in SOLIDWORKS PDM Professional 2017 is definitely support for SQL Database Replication.


  1. What does this mean? Faster PDM performance. So how does it work? If your company has licenses of SQL Enterprise, you will be able to replicate your database server or load-balance SQL server. This means if you have users in remote locations with high-latency like China, Europe, or somewhere else, you will be able to replicate a read-only copy of the database to those locations so that actions like browsing the vault, searching, viewing data cards, and other actions that don’t change the database can be significantly improved.


  1. This also has implications for single-site installations of SOLIDWORKS PDM because the replication feature of SQL Enterprise can be used to put all read-only actions, like browsing and searching on one server and write-operations, on another server. Because those functions are dedicated to different servers, both check-in performance as well as browsing can be improved.

*All functionality mentioned is included in both SOLIDWORKS PDM Standard and Professional unless otherwise specified.

March is data management month at Hawk Ridge Systems. Join Jordan and the rest of our team to learn about new and improved data management software and services from Hawk Ridge Systems and SOLIDWORKS in our 3D Solutions Spotlight Webinars including Sync or Swim: Synchronizing Your Files with SOLIDWORKS PDM and Custom Properties, Take Your SOLIDWORKS PDM Experience to the Next Level, and more! Find the full list of upcoming 3D Solutions Spotlight Webinars here.

Hawk Ridge Systems
Hawk Ridge Systems is your official provider for SOLIDWORKS, CAMWorks, HP 3D Printers, Markforged 3D Printers, and Artec 3D Scanners in the United States and Canada. From concept to production, our team of experts will work with you to offer the best SOLIDWORKS training, SOLIDWORKS support, and experience available to meet your organization's needs.
Hawk Ridge Systems
Hawk Ridge Systems