For those of you who haven’t heard about “SOLIDWORKS Pack and Go”, today you will make a new friend. For those of you who use it regularly, this post may show a few extra tricks that you may find useful. Since SOLIDWORKS uses file references to store the model information, you must send all referenced part, assembly and drawing files for another user to open them. But what happens if your referenced files are scattered across folders?
Enter Pack and Go. This great tool automatically finds all of the referenced documents and saves them to a folder or a zip file. Hence it is only useful for files that references other files. Here are the 3 methods for activating the tool:
- Open the upper level file in SOLIDWORKS and go to File > Pack and Go.
- Or In Windows Explorer (or Task Pane Explorer), right-click the file, select SOLIDWORKS > Pack and Go
- OR In SolidWorks Explorer, select the file and click the Pack and Go icon (two assembly icons)
- Selecting “Include drawings” will also grab all drawing files associated with all selected assemblies and parts
- Choose “Include simulation results” and/or “Include decals, appearances and scenes” if required
- All referenced documents are listed in a Nested View (similar to the Design Tree), but you have the option to change to a Flat View
- The check boxes beside the files can be deselected to exclude specific files
- Option to save all files to a folder or automatically compress into a zip file
- Ability to add a prefix or suffix to saved out files (shown under “Save To Name” column)
- “Flatten to single folder” will throw all files in the main directory that you are saving to. Unselecting this option will recreate your current folder structure within the new folder.
The “Select/Replace” button provides control over what to save and how to save it. You have the option to Check, Uncheck or Replace Text With. Here are some examples of what you can do with the Search Criteria
- “Name” – remove specific filenames from being included using “Uncheck” (ie remove all “sphere” parts in my example)
- “In Folder” – if your toolbox files are stored in the standard “SolidWorks Data” folder, search this and uncheck so you don’t need to send these files every time
- “Save to Name” – use “Replace text with” to modify the job # in the all of the files
- “Save to Folder” – use “Replace text with” to modify the folder names that it will be saved to
- “Type” – uncheck all assembly and drawing files so only the part files are saved
- “Date Modified” – include only items modified on a specific date to avoid large file transfer files