Showing results for 
Search instead for 
Did you mean: 
Showing results for 
Search instead for 
Did you mean: 

Community Tip - Need help navigating or using the PTC Community? Contact the community team. X

Working with AutoCAD (DWG) files


Working with AutoCAD (DWG) files

I'm new to Windchill, just having it installed. I'm already an Admin for Solidworks PDM (5 years), now a newly ordained Admin for Winchill - since the prior Admin has left the company. Awesome. 😉


Many questions:

1) Can Windchill maintain all file types like JPG, MS Office docs, DWG, etc? I'm assuming yes as these type of files have no relations between them. Is anything extra needed for the maintaining of these file types?

2) Are there "plugins" available to allow maintaining of native Solidworks parts & assemblies?

3) Does Windchill have a workflow module? Is that extra or built in?

4) What resources would you recommend? I'm guessing I can locate a local VAR and inquire about local admin training. Just also asking what other resources you would recommend?

5) Is there an annual users group conference type thing?


Thank you in advance.

23-Emerald II

Welcome to the nightmare of Windchill Administration!

1) Yes. Some of the Office and other CAD file formats have integration into Windchill so they can be managed almost as easily as Creo files.

2) Yes, they are called Work Group Managers (WGM) and are available for a price for the major other CAD systems, SolidWorks, NX, Catia and AutoCad, etc.

3) Workflows and lifecyles are built in but you may need to customize them to what your company needs them to do.

4) If you haven't dome so, I would recommend taking the System Admin and the Business Admin training classes. Many VARs offer them and they all use the same PTC material. Choose a VAR that is convenient to you or far away if you want to get away. Phoenix training in January is nice for those of us in snowy parts of the country.

5) PTC has a LiveWorx conference in May or June in Boston in 2020 at the Convention and Expo center in the Seaport district.


One further point on the first question.
If it's digital, you can add it as an attachment to the Content tab of a WTDocument, or if enabled a WTPart. 

Many companies don't use the WGM for AutoCAD but use the WTDocuments.  You put the PDF created from the source file in as Primary content and the AutoCAD drawing (or other source material) as an attachment. 

The process of showing the PDF as primary content and the source files (being other digital objects) attached as content is used by many companies I've seen.  I've shown it here on a WTDocument where I think this process works best, but if it is enabled content can be added to WTParts as well.



We've been trying to use the Windchill Workgroup Manager for AutoCAD files but there experience is not great.

  • Windchill Workgroup Manager seems overly complex for managing our AutoCAD files. This same complexity is needed for 3D CAD assemblies with many files and interrelations (Creo, Inventor, etc).
  • AutoCAD opens even slower than before (Workgroup Manager launches every time)
  • Workgroup Manager will not let you work in multiple CAD packages simultaneously. Can only have one open at a time of Creo, AutoCAD, Inventor, etc. Maybe I'm doing something wrong.
  • Publishing to PDF from DWG can be tricking and maybe best done manually - some related options/articles on Windchill publishing settings - CS36856CS40919, and CS32402.
  • The one advantage I've seen is linking Windchill parameters like Rev, Description, etc. into the body/title block of the AutoCAD drawing.

@JHall I may have to look closer at your suggestion for about using WTDocuments for AutoCAD files. This seems like it could be more obvious for users and solve some of our headaches. It also doesn't require having additional Workgroup Manager licensing. Thanks!!