Windchill Workspace Interaction with a CAD Application

CAD Workspace Interaction with Windchill

CREO interacts with Windchill PDMLink and Project-Link in the same manner. CREO needs to access files on your workstation and uses the local cache to interact with Windchill solutions. Each user below has a client machine with a  CREO or any supported CAD application installed. The CAD application is connected to the Windchill workspace or Work Group Manager. The green circles represent the server side workspace and the pink circles represent the client side workspace (local cache). All the changes and modification are made in the local cache using the CAD application when a model is checked out.

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Workspace Definitions

Local Workspace (Local Cache)

The local workspace (cache) resides on the client's machine that has a certain folder structure including workspaces and register server directories. Each down loaded CAD Document primary content is contained in this area with a Windchill encrypted name. The CAD Application uses the local cache area to modify all CAD data.
Workspace Location
The local cache is located based on the environment variable named PTC_WF_ROOT. This environment variable normally is set in the start batch file for starting the CAD application.
Corrupted Workspaces
When the workspace is not functioning correctly or corrupted, a user will delete the local cache top level directory. Before deleting local workspaces, a user needs to perform a check-in or upload operation to all modified CAD files.
Workspace Corruption Preventions
It is recommend not the have more than one user logged in to Windchill using the same local cache when using Creo. A workspace can corrupt when more than one user uses the same local cache. Never log into a Creo session using a Windchill Administrator user account.

Server Side Workspace

The server side workspace is an area on the Windchill server that is allocated to a specific user with a specific workspace. This area allows the user to back-up the CAD Document objects to the server.
Other users can not view or use any new CAD Documents that are in a sever side workspace but search results can return object’s attributes from a serve side workspace.

All workspaces contain a server side workspace and a local workspace.


Up-Load Operation Up Load is when a user moves the CAD object from the client's local workspace to the server side workspace. This allows the user not to lose their work when there is a workspace corruption and up loading backs up the objects to the server without performing a check-in. Check-In Operation Check-In is when a user moves the CAD object from the server side workspace to the common space or server side common area. This allows others to share, view and use the CAD object that are logged in the Windchill system. The Check-In function also performs a upload operation if the CAD Document is not in the server side workspace.


Down Load Operation The download function allows users to add a CAD object to their workspace cache located on the client machine. The CAD objects are not checked-out to the workspace when a download or “Add to Workspace” is performed. A user cannot modify a CAD object when downloaded, but the user can assemble downloaded CAD object to a checked-out CAD assembly. A user cannot upload a CAD object unless it is checked-out and modified. Check Out Operation The Check-Out functions does two things. It performs a down-load operation if the CAD document is not in the target workspace and locks the CAD Document preventing other users modifying the CAD Document. A checked-out CAD Document can be modified, up-loaded or checked-in.The CAD Document will iterate for each check-in. For example, A.1, A.2, A.3...
Note: Usually, Released CAD Document cannot be checked-out. A user must perform a Revise operation to set the CAD Document to an "IN WORK" state.