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Addendum - Improvements to Onshape - August 16th, 2017 - Versioned Drawing Metadata

philip_thomasphilip_thomas Member, Moderator, Onshape Employees, Developers Posts: 1,381
edited August 2017 in New in Onshape


Also new in this latest update is an architectural change designed to improve your ability to implement a release management workflow using Onshape. This work lays the foundation for new capabilities that you will see in future releases. We are making this feature available now so that you can take advantage of this new workflow and you can read a more detailed explanation below to explain our thinking and direction.  

TL;DR - Versioned Drawings can update to reflect changes to metadata.

Throughout your training and experience with Onshape, you learnt the meaning of the word “immutable”! We searched long and hard for a different one, but this word best embodied the concept that versioned data could never change. It's been that way since the start of time - or at least the public launch of Onshape in December 2015.

  Since then, we have been bowled over by the adoption of Onshape across broad spectrums of industry and sobered by the reliance companies have placed upon us. We try very hard to listen to feedback and make improvements to Onshape that better our customers’ Engineering processes. One of the pressing needs that became apparent was the desire to use Onshape as the master record for release management. We are working hard on this and even though our work is far from done, we are turning on a capability that allows, for the first time, versioned drawings to update with changes to metadata. Immutable no more! But as we learnt from Uncle Ben in Spiderman - “With great power comes great responsibility” (more on this later).

As a quick refresher, your Company admin can create/edit any Document properties.

Here the admin has created 2 new properties that are available in Part Studios, Assemblies and Drawings (‘Approved By’ and ‘Approved Date’).

These Properties (as before) can be inserted into drawing fields in the current Workspace.

Having created our Drawing, we are now ready to submit it for review. One way to do this is by creating a version - in this case , we have named the version ‘Release Candidate’.

We can also go ahead and set the Drawing ‘State’ to ‘Pending’ (here in the Version, as ‘State’ can never be anything other than ‘In Progress’ in a Workspace).

Following a review, an authorized user can (as before) go into the version properties and update these fields (as well as in this example, change the name of the version).

The change as of this latest update, is that Drawings will now automatically update to reflect changes to metadata.

(Note - no other changes to Drawings can be made)

This significant architectural change opens up new workflows for our users. It is the foundation of upcoming capabilities and our work is far from done. That said, we wanted to release this first milestone rather than wait for additional supporting capabilities.

NOTE: There are important considerations to be aware of. This does mean, for instance, that Drawings set to ‘Released’ can still be changed (“With great power ….”). Consensus said that Engineering process would prevent accidental changes. Please try out this new capability and let us know what you think.

Philip Thomas - Onshape


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    3dit_software3dit_software Member Posts: 5 PRO
    Excellent detail to the drawing release process. Thanks. 
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    CAD_Hero_1337CAD_Hero_1337 Member Posts: 12 PRO
    So just to clarify... I can make a drawing of a version now then make changes to the metadata, make a new version and then update the drawing with the latest versions metadata?  This allows me to make a drawing and be able to update it more easily without having to dimension everything? This is great. I am going to have to play with this.
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    philip_thomasphilip_thomas Member, Moderator, Onshape Employees, Developers Posts: 1,381
    edited August 2017
    @david_harris347 Yes and No! :)

    As of this release;
    • A drawing may reference any; part, Part Studio, assembly, Assembly Studio for any workspace or version. 
    • A drawing may change this reference at any time (Workspace -> Version, Version -> Workspace)
    • A drawing may reference the metadata of any part, Part Studio, assembly, Assembly Studio for any workspace or version.
    • The metadata of any version of a part, Part Studio, assembly, Assembly Studio may be changed at any time
    • If the metadata pointed to by a drawing (versioned or not) changes, the drawing will update (Note - this is the major change)
    • As before, you cannot change anything else on a versioned drawing (you cannot go back and add for instance dimensions to a versioned drawing).
    I hope this helps and please feel free to ask any question.

    Philip Thomas - Onshape
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    francois_bouletfrancois_boulet Member Posts: 65 EDU
    Excuse me to pop in.
    I understand that the drawings represent actively what is referenced.
    What I do not understand is how to have a view on a drawing that represents a workspace in a part studio and another view representing another worspace of the same part studio.
    Is it possible ?
    La simplicité est la sophistication suprême.
    Léonard de Vinci
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    philip_thomasphilip_thomas Member, Moderator, Onshape Employees, Developers Posts: 1,381
    @francois_boulet - taxiiing for takeoff right now so this will be brief. 
    You may insert a drawing view of any part or assembly, either in this document or any other document (to which you have ‘link’ rights). You may link either the workspace or any version. 
    All of this is managed from the insert view dialog. 
    Pick the document, then part/assy then (optionally) the version.  
    If you still need help, post again and I or someone else will make you a gif. 
    I hope this helps :)
    Philip Thomas - Onshape
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    MBartlett21MBartlett21 Member, OS Professional, Developers Posts: 2,034 EDU
    When you go to the insert view dialogue a second time, there will be a cube with an arrow over it in the top left corner of the dialogue.
    If you click this, it will take you to another dialogue which you can use to insert more parts like @philip_thomas said above.
    mb - draftsman - also FS author: View FeatureScripts
    IR for AS/NZS 1100
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    francois_bouletfrancois_boulet Member Posts: 65 EDU
    Got it
    Thanks !
    La simplicité est la sophistication suprême.
    Léonard de Vinci
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