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Inventor & Vault Best Practices?

Inventor & Vault Best Practices?

Inventor & Vault Best Practices?

How many Inventor users here also use Vault?
I've worked with Inventor for a few years now, and until recently, Vault has been the occasional thing to do at the end of a project. Now, the current project has a lot of people working on interconnected assemblies, so we have all started to use Vault much more extensively. That said, none of us got any formal instruction on exactly how to use Vault. The one guy who implemented it years ago is now gone, the team that's left has varying degrees of comfort/complaint about the system, but none of us have an easy time of it, and waste between 1/2 hour to multiple hours every day managing the "check-in" status of files. Files that can't be checked out, files that don't update when they should, files that can't be renamed/moved/deleted, files that revert rather than update. Oh, and the constant stream of nagging dialog boxes.

You may ask why we aren't getting support from management and IT? Yes there is some support but it is at a very inexpert level. Let's please shelve that question for now - this isn't about crying on people's shoulders.

In my research I have found few fleshed-out examples of what to do, or resources on Best Practices with Vault.
Examples such as this:
...lack any mention of managing PARTS and ASSEMBLIES with Vault. A dozen pages but only a footnote about Inventor (and AutoCAD).

From the Inventor perspective, I find this:
Fine, but it's not very informative about what you SEE when you actually click the buttons or what you are expected to do.

I have also visited Cracking the Vault. All I can say about that is I'm glad I'm not an IT administrator. It has no words for designers/users.

Most of the Autodesk demo videos have trivial assemblies. Show me a demo with an assembly nested 10 sub-assemblies deep, with a total of 10,000 parts, half of which are iParts! Now click the Vault browser icon!


Is there, somewhere, a guide for a CAD designer to refer to, about using Inventor and properly managing files in Vault?


RE: Inventor & Vault Best Practices?

Frankly the damn thing just handles iParts/iAssemblies very poorly and there is very little you can do to work around it.

I find it's good to generate the entire list of children and check them all in at once (from the factory .iam scope).
Checking in a drawing which USES a single child will only check in the factory and that specific child. It will not check in any other children that may have changed.
Making a change to the factory, and it will only ask you to check-out some of the children even if they are all effected. Best to manually check them all out, regenerate, and check them all back in. Then instruct all coworkers to grab them ALL from the vault to their local client.
There are instances where I've hit infinite loops of the damn thing asking to check-out iParts that have not been edited.

I've sent tomes of bug reports on these issues to Autodesk since version 2007. They don't care.

In summary: you kind of just deal with it. And try to communicate what's going on to your coworkers best you can.

RE: Inventor & Vault Best Practices?



...There are instances where I've hit infinite loops of the damn thing asking to check-out iParts that have not been edited...

Precisely the kind of thing I want to stop. Yesterday I was unable to check in a high-level assembly - over 1000 parts, and there's a guy in Toronto waiting to work on it. All because a few iParts refused to check in - or something - the error message says "there was a problem" without explaining what the problem was. I spent 1/2 hour screwing around with it before I just had to leave the office because I was already late for another appointment. Why don't they realize that endless cycles like this will be ended by people giving up?

My coworkers and I feel like blind people trying to describe an elephant by feel.


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