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David Aynardi

Data fields lose link to record format

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We have a number of symbols which include data fields linked to record formats. This gives us a fill-in-the-blanks capability for symbols such as section indicators. Our symbols are maintained in a symbol library file and referenced into the individual drawings using the Resource Browser. Referencing instead of copying the symbols into individual drawings ensures that every drawing has the same version of the symbols and enables central administration of the project-wide information in the symbols (the fill-in blanks are sheet-specific).

Usually this works perfectly but occasionally the data fields in symbols in individual drawings lose their link to the record format. The correct data remains in the format, but does not appear in the symbol. Updating the Workgroup Reference link to the symbol library does not help.

By trial and error we have learned that the links between symbols and record formats can be restored by using the resource browser of the file where the problem is occurring. First we "Break Reference" for the effected symbol. Then we click "edit symbol" to enter the symbol, click anywhere in the symbols graphic then exit the symbol without making any changes. (Entering the symbol definition seems to be necessary to convince VW that something has changed, otherwise the next step has no effect)

Next we use the browser to access the symbol library file, locate the original copy of the symbol, and re-establish the reference. When VW asks if we want to replace the symbol definition in the target file with the newly referenced symbol we click "yes". The link to the record formats is restored and the missing data appears again in the record fields of all of the instances of the symbol already placed in the drawing.

The link between symbols and record data breaks at random, but one pattern we see is that any edit to the original, even if the edit has nothing whatsoever to do with the data fields, often induces this problem.

What is going on? Is there a fix?

We have had this problem for years, with several version of VW, including 2008, running on several different networks and running on Windows and on Macs. Some of our computers run VW service pack 2 others run service pack 3. No difference.

Attached are two files.

Basic Resouces_WAU.vwx is a resource library including several symbol definitions.

Dets_WAU.vwx is a drawing file which uses symbols referenced from the resource library.

The titleblock of this drawing is a good example of the problem discussed in this post. Any change to the original symbol in "Basic Resoucres_WAU.vwx" even if it has nothing whatsoever to do with the data fields, will disrupt the titleblock in "Dets_WAU.vwx". The damage can be repaired as described above, with no loss of the data in the record formats.

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This problem may be related to the way VW handles ObjectID# and the dependencies.

Edit of the Object results in a new ObjectID# even if the record data ( which has it's own ObjectInstanceID# ) is not fiddled with.

The Drawing File keeps track of all the Objects and the dependencies via the ObjectID database.

A Break in the linkage will result if the ObjectID# is changed or deleted.

Updating the Symbol after edit will reassign the new ObjectID# to the existing Symbols ( as long as the names are the same )

and the dependencies will be restored.

Each RecordInstance has a unique ID# which is linked to the Symbols via ID#.

The question is... what is breaking the Symbol's dependent linkages during the workflow ?

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