Creating release sets for imported data

Last update 2018-04-17

Applies to PDXpert PLM software release 12.0 and later.


The External Data Importer tool imports existing parts, documents and related design data into PDXpert. If you're not trying to reproduce the complete revision history, you'll likely release the imported items at their most recent revisions. This becomes the starting point for your release history within PDXpert.

If you've imported thousands of items, one change form cannot release them all. Therefore, the pending items must be broken into "release sets" that are processed on separate change forms.

The release sets must be created in an ordered sequence so that lower-level "child" items are released before or with their higher-level "parent" items. When you add a parent item to a change, all pending child items (BOM parts, approved sources, document references) are added automatically to the change. If the parent item requires many unreleased child items, too many items could be added to your change form. The change form's performance would then be unacceptable: initial validation takes quite a while, and it'll always be very slow to open.

To ensure that child items are released before or with their parent items, use one of these strategies:

  • Manually define one or more release sets for each item type, from lowest level component to top-level assembly. Start with documents, then partner parts, purchased home parts, design home parts, assemblies and finally finished goods.
  • Manually create a separate change form for each product, if the hierarchy of assemblies, BOM components, sources and references are relatively small.
  • Automatically calculate release sets that first collect all lower-level parts, and then move up all product hierarchies in parallel.

This application note addresses the last option.

Export the Release Sets data §

  1. If you prefer that release set items are assigned a specific part type, set that type as the Part Types collection default.

  2. On the Tools menu, select the System Rules... command. On the References Tabs tab, in the Parts section, note the current settings of the References accept parts and References accept documents options. If needed, mark both options so that parts will accept parts and documents on the References list.

  3. Install and run the Item Master data transformation.

    1. Download and save the data transformation: ExportReleaseSet-ItemMaster.txt

    2. Add the Data Transformation as Export Release Set - Item Master.

    3. The default option setting allows about 250 items per change form. The actual number of items depends on how the release sets are calculated, and may vary from the specified value.

      If you want to adjust the number of items released on a change, edit the SQL query's @MAXSIZE value in the XML tab; for example, DECLARE @MAXSIZE int = 400;. The best size is influenced by your system's performance. As product complexity (e.g., BOM levels, sources, references) increases, change form routing may become slow due to validation tests. Before committing to a larger value, test that a larger affected items list can be routed without a database timeout. We do not recommend assigning more than 500 items to a change form.

    4. Export the release sets' item master records:

  4. Install and run the List References data transformation.

    1. Download and save the data transformation: ExportReleaseSet-ListReferences.txt

    2. Add the Data Transformation as Export Release Set - List References.

    3. The default option setting allows about 250 items per change form. If you adjusted the quantity in the Export Release Set - Item Master transform (step 3.C., above), set the same value in this transform.

    4. Export the release sets' assigned reference items:

Import the Release Sets §

  1. Back up the database.
  2. Using the External Data Importer tool, import the ReleaseSet-ItemMaster.csvfile to create the ReleaseSet parts.
  3. Using the External Data Importer tool, import the ReleaseSet-ListReferences.csv file.
  4. Check one or more ReleaseSet parts to confirm that the expected items have been assigned to the References list.

After importing, we can use the ReleaseSet-ItemMaster.csv file to track which release sets we've processed. You may want to print this file to use in the next section.

Create and process a new change form for each release set §

The release sets are identified in strict numerical order (ReleaseSet-0001, ReleaseSet-0002, ...). Process the release sets in the correct order to ensure that each change forms' Affected list is less than the maximum limit.

For each ReleaseSet in proper numeric order:

  1. Back up the database. You definitely won't want to start over if there's a problem with the current release set.

  2. Create a change form for the current ReleaseSet part.

  3. Use the ReleaseSet-ItemMaster file to identify the release set to process. Search for the ReleaseSet part, and drag it onto its change form's Affected list. All its reference items are added to the Affected list.

  4. Sort the Affected list to find the ReleaseSet part. Delete the ReleaseSet part from the Affected list, leaving all the other parts on the change form.

  5. Save the change form.

    If the change form has many affected items, it may take a while for the system to validate all the items.

  6. Update the ReleaseSet-ItemMaster to show that current ReleaseSet part has been assigned to a change form.

  7. Remove the ReleaseSet part from the database (Item menu | Remove Object). This ensures that the part (a) won't be released on the change form and (b) can't be processed again accidentally.

  8. Route the change form to approve and release it.

For using the External Data Importer tool, see the PDXpert application help topics How to report, import & export > Import & update items >

  • Use the External Data Importer (on line)
  • Item Master import format (on line)
  • List References import format (on line)

This application note was relevant to the PDXpert software release that was current at time of publication. Product changes since that time may affect its utility. We'd be happy to assist you in assessing the applicability of this note to your situation.

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