Calling all Inventor users! Have you ever opened an Inventor assembly or drawing which fails since it is unable to find the associated files. If this has happened to you then we recommend you adopt an Inventor Project File System, this provides stability and simplicity while making files more accessible and easily transferable to a data management system, such as Vault.

Relationships exist between various files you create, for example part files are linked to both their assemblies and drawings. In order to retain these links, a thorough understanding of the Inventor Project files format is needed.

Example of how to create a simple Inventor Project File (*.ipj) –

  • Decide a workspace for all your Inventor project files (e.g. My Documents, Desktop folder etc) and create a new folder within it. Name this folder InventorTest.
  • Within this folder create four sub-folders titled Parts, Sub Assemblies, Content Centre, DWG.
  • Open inventor and select Projects this brings up the Projects Dialogue Box and select New.
  • Select New Single User Project -> Next.
  • In the Project Name field type InventorTest and browse to the folder (of the same name) you just created.
  • Select Next and then Finish.
  • In the Project Dialogue Box, select your project (InventorTest) a tick mark appears to the left of the project indicating it is active.
  • Expand Folder Options and right click select the Content Centre Files.
  • Browse and select the Content Centre folder you created within the  InventorTest folder.
  • Save the project and select Done.

Now if go to open a new part file you will see that the project destination is set to InventorTest and if you save the part it will automatically open the InventorTest workspace folder you created giving you the option of saving to either the Parts, Sub Assemblies, Content Centre or DWG folders. Also since you linked the Inventor Content Centre to your folder any part you insert for Content Centre into an assembly will be duplicated to the Content Centre folder in your project.

If you are looking to go into more detail regarding data management we would recommend looking at the Autodesk Vault, which is an engineering data management system that offers file security, version control, and multi-user support. By using Autodesk Vault, you have a copy of the necessary project data in your workspace. All previous versions are maintained in a vault repository, which can be either on your own computer or on a shared server. Autodesk Vault manages a collaborative work environment by tracking file versions. Other users can get the latest version of data, modify it, and check the changes back into the vault.

If you would like more detail on Inventor Project Management or Autodesk Vault, don’t hesitate to contact Symetri HERE