Find us on Google+ Inventor Tales

Monday, May 25, 2015

Preparing Your Autodesk Inventor Project File for Inventor 2016

In an earlier post, I discussed installing your new suite of Autodesk software.  But then comes configuration.  There are things that have to get setup and configured.

After installation, on of the next things I like to do is migrate my Inventor project file to make sure it's set up for the new software release, in this case Inventor 2016.

Every installation is a little different, so first, I'm going to discuss a few things that are unique to my installation.  You may not encounter all these, so you might change a few steps based on your own installation.

It all revolves around one thing.  I have to run multiple versions of Inventor, as far back as version 2012.  That means maintaining previous versions of  template files and the Design Data folders.

In order to accommodate this, I need to use a project file for each version of Inventor I run, that allows me to point each version of Inventor to its own template and design data folders.



That means copying and pasting of template and design data directories in Windows explorer.  I also copy my custom material and appearance libraries to this directory.

And by the way, it's a good idea to make a backup copy of these files.  You'll have options to try a few things if you want, and recover from any mistakes.  "One and done" is what we aim for in a migration, but reality has a way of getting in the way of the best laid plans.



Once the design data and templates are copied, it's time to copy my project file.   I'm renaming it to Arduinna 2016.ipj so I know which version of Inventor it belongs to.



All of this goes pretty quickly.  It's just the standard Windows copying and pasting.

Once that is done, it's time to tell Inventor 2016 to start using the project.

Inside of Inventor, choose Projects on the Get Started tab.



Once the dialog box opens, browse out to the directory the copied the project file. Select it and select open.  The project will read into Inventor, and be set as the active project.



Now it's time to point the project to the locations it needs to use.

I like to set my locations with in the project, which means I start out in the "Folder Options" section of the project.

So in my case, I point the Design Data, and Template folder locations to the directories holding the files that are going to be used in Inventor 2016.



In addition to that, I want to add my Material and Appearance Libraries to the project as well.  So that means right clicking on each library, and adding the ones I want.



Once this is done, setting up the project is done.

But before we can start firing up our new project, you'll have to migrate the templates and design data for your new project.
Fortunately, the process hasn't changed from previous releases, so you can reference my posts here from last year.

Here's my post for migrating Design Data, and here's my post for  migrating templates.

And there you have the steps to migrate a project.  Don't forget that depending on your setup, you may not follow the exact same steps.  The key is making sure the steps are done for your configuration.

Don't be afraid to run a couple of tests (that backup can come in handy for that!), and make sure you cover your bases!




Monday, May 18, 2015

Autodesk Inventor 2016 - The "What's New" Trailers

For the last week and a half, I've been working full time on a customer site.  And while it's good to be busy, it's a bit tough on the blogging schedule.

But with the help of the KETIV Technologies team, I have been able to lend my voice to a few what's new videos for Inventor 2016.  

They're what I'd call "previews", but they do give you an idea of what some of the new capabilities are!

I've included them below!  And I'm still planning on creating more posts! Just give me a little time! 

But take a look at these videos for a tour of what's new in the latest release of Inventor! 

Part Modeling Enhancements 

If there's anything that gets used a lot, it's part modeling features. Take a look at some of the new ones here! 

;

T-Splines Enhancements

If you need to create organic shapes, this is the tool to take a look at! Notice how you can create symmetrical shapes with just a few mouse clicks1

;

Sheet Metal Enhancements

Tools like automatic thickness detection, zero bend radii, and multi-body support are now in the tool box for Inventor 2016 sheet metal! 

;

Presentation File Enhancements

These enhancements have been much requested!  There's a lot of improvements, from the interface, to View Representations, a lot of wishes have been answered. 

;

Home Screen Enhancements 

First introduced in Inventor 2015, The home screen has had more features added to it.  I'm a fan of the filters for recent files, but there are more enhancements than just that. 

;

Electromechanical Improvements

Better communication between Inventor and AutoCAD Electrical is the name of the game.  Here's where you can see a bit of them working together. 

;

DWG Underlay

Do you need to reuse your AutoCAD drawings in Inventor?  Do you want to maintain a link between the two?  You've come to the right place!  Check this out! 

;

Documentation Enhancements

Inventor drawings received quite a shot in the arm this release!  View creation is new and streamlined, text creation has been enhanced, and transparent parts are just cool. 

;

Assembly Feature Enhancements

Do you want to replace more than one part at a time?  Do you need to tweak your install for better performance? Or maybe you just want to zoom in to your interferences, or have a more options for component patterns.

Take a look here! 

;

Additive Manufacturing Enhancements

"Enhancement" is probably an understatement here, entire sets of tools have been added that didn't exist in previous versions of Inventor.  Everything from splitting large parts to fit in a small machines, to having envelopes for different machines available.

;

So there you go!  Your epic tour of the new features in Autodesk Inventor 2016.  

Time to start Inventing! 

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Installing Your Brand New 2016 Autodesk Suite

Work has been picking up again, which is good!  Being busy beats not being busy for sure!

But this weekend, I did find time to install my 2016 Suite, in this case, Factory Design Suite Ultimate.  I had the foresight to record the steps too! . 

But like so many things, the preparation can't be overlooked.   To make your steps go as smoothly as possible, make sure you've done the following before getting started. 

  1. Make sure you have Local Admin rights!  You won't get far without them! 
  2. Turn off your Antivirus.  I don't see too many AVs stop an install now, but I have seen cases where the antivirus will slow the install as it checks the install files. 
  3. Turn of User Account Control.  I've seen it cause issues, and I hate that thing on any Windows OS I've used. 
  4. If you're running a network licensed version, make sure you have your new license files.  Nothing is more frustrating than getting the install  finished, and realizing you haven't updated your licenses yet! 
  5. On that same vein, if your using Autodesk Vault, have you updated it yet?  Consider upgrading your server first!  You can't use your 2016 products with a 2015 Vault.  A little planning goes a long way.  Check out my post here for info on that! 
  6. Give yourself time! These installs take a while.  That's a fact.  You don't do it "in a few minutes".  I've had to leave my laptop at the office because it was only 50% done at 5:30PM.  Don't make that mistake, give yourself a few hours to get it done properly. 
  7. And if there's any doubt, as your admins, your cad manager, or check the Autodesk Inventor discussion groups!  A little clarification goes a long way! 
So you've done your planning, and now you're ready to install.  Go ahead and click on your Setup.exe and let the installation initialize. 

Soon you'll see the intro screen with the Deployments, Create Deployments, and Install buttons.  I'm going to just install my Factory Design Suite directly, so I'm just going to choose Install


The next page you'll see is the End User License Agreement (EULA), you have to accept it, or else your journey ends here.  Click yes, and click the Next key. 



Now, to choose a if you're using a Network, or Standalone license.  A Standalone (node locked) licenced machine hosts it's own license. This is often found on laptops that are aren't always connected to a network. 

Network licenses check out their licenses from a central server, like a book from a library.  

I won't go into the details of each, but it is important to know which one your installing right now . If your not sure, check with your CAD Manager, or your friendly neighborhood reseller.  

You'll also enter your serial number and product key here.  If you don't know what they are, there are instructions on how to locate them here.  Once you have everything you want, you guessed it, hit Next


There's one more screen before the big time! It's time to choose which products to install, assuming you want to pick and choose. 


There's several things you can do with this screen.  As indicated by the arrows...

  1. Click the arrow to expand the screen and choose options for a given products, such as configurations, settings, and to download and install additional updates.
  2. The arrows will display additional information.  For example, content center libraries are available to download now. 
  3. Finally, change in the install directory if you'd like to install somewhere other than default.  Such as a drive different than C:
Once you've set all these options, you can choose Install.  At last! 



This is the part that can take a while.  Give yourself a couple of hours for the install, more if you're going to remove old products.  It takes time, so be prepared. 

After waiting it out, you'll be rewarded with the sweet sight of success!   


Now, you're ready to migrate styles, and get your new suite ready to use! 

:

Friday, May 08, 2015

A Post for KETIV - Walking Through History at the Planes of Fame Airshow.


For those of you who know me, even if it's only via the Internet, it's no secret that I like vintage aircraft.  I find the stories about them fascinating, and the people who designed, built, flew,and maintained them fascinating too.

The Grumman F7F Tigercat in front.  Two Vought Corsairs in the background.

Last week, my bosses at KETIV Technologies asked me to write a blog post on the Planes of Fame airshow, and I found myself struggling with quite the case of writer's block.  So much to say, and how to say it.

Fortunately, I was able to put thoughts to virtual paper, and come up with something, and now it's been shared to the KETIV website.

So rather than repost it here, go ahead and follow the link to the KETIV blog here.

I hope you enjoy the article, and here's a couple of bonus pictures for passing through my blog on the way there! :) 

A Douglass C-47.  A loyal, dependable, workhorse of an airplane.

A Lockheed P-38 Lightning, of World War 2 fame, taxiing between two
North American P-51 Mustangs after a flight.

Later on, a F-22 Raptor flew.  State of the art today, here it is taxiing back
between the same two Mustangs.