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License renewal time + PDMLink 9.1 or Intralink 9.1


License renewal time + PDMLink 9.1 or Intralink 9.1


Just as many of you have deal with, I'm currently going through the process of evaluating our options regarding our annual maintenance contract renewal. A big part of that for me is evaluating which path to take for migrating off of Intralink 3.4 to some flavor of Windchill product. The sticking point for me right now is whether to go with Intralink 9.1 or PDMLink 9.1. I’ve seen demonstrations of the Windchill product family and am always impressed (if I could walk in on Monday morning and have it all implemented and everyone using all the facets – how nice that would be). But the reality of it keeps coming back: Of the features that you get with PDMLink vs Intralink 9.1, how many would we really benefit from? How many would users (especially outside engineering) really adopt? Part of that is simply the cultural or process change that would be required. But I digress.

Where we currently are:

PLM: Intralink 3.4 M030 on Windows Server 2000, using revision and release level assignments but not using any of the change management functionality (still a paper based system) or any formal configuration management functions within Intralink. Not using any form of PTC visualization tool (Productview). We have our own “home grown” pdf based system linked to our ERP system for drawing distribution. Our headquarters (engineering, manufacturing, mgt, etc.) are here in the US, with two overseas locations – one engineering (using Pro/E WF2 and Intralink) and manufacturing, one just manufacturing. There are currently no plans to actually “link” these locations to a common engineering data repository.

CAD: Pro/E Wildfire 3 M210 on Windows XP Pro 32 bit & 64 bit (used in all 6 product engineering groups, manufacturing engineering, our CNC shop and data is accessed for programmable CMMs utilizing 3<sup>rd</sup> party CMM software)

Total of 37 seats (1 to 1 cad to PLM) with approximately 50 users.

My questions:

PTC’s documentation shows change management and configuration management functions are “complete” in PDMLink and “limited” in Intralink 9.1. Can anyone point me to a document or explain what the limitations are with Intralink 9.1? I’d like to eventually get some form of electronic change management implemented.

Has anyone out there done the same evaluation, gone with Intralink 9.1 and later wished they had gone to PDMLink (or actually been required to later migrate to PDMLink)?

How many of you have gone with PDMLink and are sitting on and paying for features you simple don’t use and feel you could have gone with Intralink 9.1?

Is PDMLink vastly superior for linking global locations? Is the implementation of ProjectLink really necessary to realize the full benefits of a global system?

Like many of us CAD admins, I’m considering the economy more than ever before, I’m trying to minimize our expenses right now and maintenance dollars going forward. Going with Intralink 9.1 licensing is essentially “free”, restructuring to PDMLink would list price at nearly $150k in just licensing changes (although, we’re being offered a substantial discount). Intralink 9.1 would appear to continue giving us what we are using, but I don’t want to have to go to management later to tell them we have to move from Intralink 9.1 to PDMLink 9.x and incur license conversion and migration expenses then. (by the way, can anyone chime in on how “seamless” migrating data from an Intralink 9.1 system to PDMLink 9.x system might be – it’s the same engine under the hood, isn’t it?)

Many thanks.

Erik Gifford

(also posted to WIndchill group)

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