Index Status

Administrators open this window using Tools menu ➔ Index Status... The menu command is shown when the user's role has Manage as administrator marked.

The Index Status tool shows the status of indexed items (documents, parts, change forms) and file attachments.

There are two index functions, with different purposes:

  • A SQL Server database table index determines how fast a data table can be scanned to find a specific data record, and how fast it's linked to related records in other tables. These table indexes are used for item searches; making new items; opening existing records; running reports and transforms; and anything else that gets data from the SQL Server database.

  • The search engine index selects documents, parts and change forms for an Item Explorer search request. This index only affects what text can be found using the Item Explorer; it has no impact on how fast it can be found. This index has no performance effect on creating or viewing items; processing change forms; running reports; or using transforms.

Although both indexes are automatically managed, you can use the Reindex button to rebuild the database table indexes and then replace the search engine index.

Re-index during a quiet time. Rebuilding the database indexes requires noticeable system resources, and item search results are limited until re-indexing is finished.

A typical computer indexes about 2000 items per minute, but indexing can be much faster or slower depending on many factors.

Database table index§

  • Maintain system performance by re-indexing at least once a year.

  • The Batch Importer tool can fragment database table indexes, particularly when importing items that have custom attributes. Re-index after you finish a large import project.

  • If frequent re-indexing noticeably improves performance, consider scheduling a task to regularly de-fragment the table indexes. If you're comfortable using Transact-SQL, search the web for sql server reorganize rebuild fragmented index

Search engine index§

  • The search index is updated by the server computer's PDXpert Service. The index service selects a new group of records from the index queue every few seconds.

  • When you save a record, it's added to the service's indexing queue. If there's nothing else in the queue, then indexing starts on the next index cycle.

    • After making or changing a data record, the record and all of its direct relationships are re-indexed; the indexed results may not be instantly available.

    • After changing a collection member, every item using that member must be re-indexed. If you edit a frequently-used member (for example, an item lifecycle name or unit of measure), then most items in the database may need re-indexing.

  • Server hardware, storage connection bandwidth, SQL Server edition, and transaction load have a big effect on index speed.

  • Item indexing is first-in, first-out. If the queue is working on other records, these are completed before your items are started. If a group of items is added to the queue, some items become searchable before others. A search may return a few — but probably not all — items, and then more may appear in a new search, until all have been indexed.

  • If the same item is added to the queue several times, then the system indexes the item once, and deletes the duplicate entries.

  • An item's indexed terms may include information about related items. For example, a change form may mention a part number that it released, and the change form may appear in that part's search results.

  • Adding, changing or removing a type's custom attribute definition adds all related items to the queue. Unlike standard attributes, a custom attribute cannot be optimized and needs more time to index. Indexing speed is directly related to the number of custom attributes multiplied by the number of items with those attributes.

  • Database items are usually available before file attachments. File attachments are indexed using the server computer's Windows Search service, and runs at a lower priority than database indexing. File attachment indexing speed, completeness, and accuracy depend entirely on Windows Search capabilities. These capabilities may change based on Microsoft Windows updates, as well as third-party plug-ins ("iFilters") installed on the server computer. Results may be affected by file size, server resources, language and culture settings, and quality of installed iFilters.

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