The amount of design related data artifacts that are available to engineers are growing at an exponential rate. You may find that searching for an artifact such as a project plan, a design specification, a problem report, or a part to reuse has become a daily challenge. The ability to configure search criteria and search results is essential to having an efficient and effective search tool. By reducing the amount of time spent searching, you can spend more quality time on your designs.
This technique will demonstrate how, using Windchill PDMLink, you can configure the search criteria and the search results to your specific tasks and preferences. This technique will assume that Retrievalware is installed and configured for use with Windchill PDMLink.
I will begin by selecting Search in the top right of the Windchill PDMLink home page. This will display the search page. From this page, I can use keywords and criteria to search for everything in Windchill PDMLink (see Figure 1).
When I select the Search button in the lower right corner, the search results will be displayed in a table (see Figure 2).
Selecting the preferences link at the top of the page can configure both the search criteria and results. Selecting on the Preferences link will display the Edit User Preferences screen, with the Search tab displayed (see Figure 3).
Configuring search criteria. Letís look at the preferences that will affect the search criteria. There are six preferences for configuring the search criteria:
1. Search Mode can be changed to different search methods. The methods available are Boolean (default), concept (similar meaning), and pattern (similar spelling).
2. Concept Expansion Level can be changed to configure the extent to which the search criteria is expanded to related topics. The default is set to simple variations. This can be changed to exact matches only, most strongly related, strongly related, and weakly related concepts.
3. Library Preferences can be used to select the libraries or collections for the full text search engine to search against.
4. Save Last Search can be used to control if the last search will be saved in the Saved Searches dropdown. The default is set to save the last search.
5. Indexable Global Searches can be used to change whether or not to use the full text search engine in the keyword field.
6. Global Search Types can be used to select the object types that will be searched against. The system default is to search for all object types.
Configuring search results. There are three preferences for configuring search results.
1. Sort Preferences can be used to set a multiple level sort preference per object type. Each object type can have a sort preference.
2. Table Results Paging can be used to set the number of results per page that will be displayed. The default is set for 15 results per page.
3. Thumbnail Display in Search Results can be used to control the display of thumbnail (if available) within the search results table. The default is not to display the thumbnails. The search results will load more quickly if the thumbnails are not displayed.
For this technique, I will change the three preferences for the search results. I will change the sort preference for parts to sort first on last updated. I will change the table results paging from 15 per page to five per page. I will also turn the thumbnail display on within the search results. Select cancel on the Edit Preferences screen to return to the search page.
Now letís do a search with the new preferences enabled. I will enter bolt for the name field and select the Search button.
The search results can be seen in Figure 4. You can compare this with the results in Figure 2 to see how searches can be configured for each user.
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