Projects are used to organize files and to maintain links between files. Using the Project wizard, you define a project for each design project so that you have access to design files and libraries and can maintain file references. After you create a project, you use the Project Editor to set options such as the number of file versions to keep when you save files.
A typical project might consist of parts and assemblies unique to the project, standard components that are unique to your company, and off-the-shelf components such as fasteners, fittings, or electrical components.
A project file is a text file with an .ipj extension. The file specifies the paths to the files in the project. To assure that links between files work properly, add the locations for all files to the project file before working on model files.
The project shortcut is located in the projects folder; the project file (.ipj) location is specified in the Project Wizard when the project is created.
When setting up your file structure, specify a projects folder to ensure that the shortcuts are added as you create new projects. If you create projects, and then change the location of projects folder, you must add shortcuts for the existing projects.
You can have as many projects as needed to manage your work.
Your design data is spread out over many files. Although each part, assembly, drawing, or presentation is stored in its own file, each of those files may reference one or more components and other assemblies.
Projects maintain cross-file reference dependency information, and make it possible to move, archive, and restructure the set of files that define a project.
To edit a project file, you can select the project in the File Projects dialog box and use the editing commands to add, remove, or change the file locations.
When you create a project, you select the project type, which automatically designates either a shared location called a workgroup or a personal editing location called a workspace. In design teams that share files, the workgroup usually contains a folder structure with the data files. Many projects also specify one or more libraries, locations where files you reference but don't edit, are stored. Depending on the project type, a project file can contain the following sections:
Specifies the location where you create, edit, and save files for vault, semi-isolated workspace, and single-user projects. In semi-isolated mode, a master project defines the shared location (workgroup) but does not contain a workspace.
Local search paths
Specifies locations for design experimentation. Do not use a local search path for design data.
Workgroup search paths
Shows the shared network locations where Autodesk Inventor LT searches for referenced files for shared and semi-isolated master projects. Files cannot be edited until they are checked out. Only one designer can check out and edit a file at a time.
Shows the locations for standard parts, Mechanical Desktop components, iParts, or other named libraries. You can create libraries for any parts and assemblies that you reuse or share with other designers, but do not intend to edit.
Included path files
Specifies the path and name of another project file. In a semi-isolated workspace project, the semi-isolated master project is the included file. The included project file specifies the location of workgroup files or libraries on a network. Only one project file can be included.
The file locations in a project file work as search paths for Autodesk Inventor LT. When you open a file, Autodesk Inventor LT searches the paths specified in the active project file to find the file and any referenced files. The sections in the file set the search order. Within each section the paths are searched in the order in which they appear.
Set up a folder structure for your project before you create it and start a design. Base a project plan on the existing and future files associated with the project. Some guidelines for the folder structure are:
Create a project before you start your design work so that the file referencing information is stored appropriately and reduces the possibility of file resolution problems.
Activates Autodesk Inventor LT projects. Use the Project Editor wizard to create new project files. A project defines the locations of all files associated with a project, including where design data is stored, where you edit files, how many versions of the file are retained when you save a file, and the multi-user mode. Project file information is used to locate referenced files.
The list of projects in the top pane of the Project Editor includes all projects that have a shortcut in the project folder. Three projects are installed with the Autodesk Inventor LT software: Default, samples, and tutorial_files. You cannot delete the Default project.
Selects the project for editing and displays its paths and options in the bottom pane of the Project Editor. Selecting a project does not automatically activate it.
Selects and activates the project.
Displays options on the context menu for the selected project.
Rename: Opens the Name field where you can edit the project name.
Browse: Displays the Choose Project File dialog box so you can search for a project not listed. When you open a project that is not in the list, a shortcut is automatically created in the Projects folder.
New: Opens the Project Wizard so that you can define a new project.
Delete: Deletes the selected project.
The lower pane shows file locations, options, and settings that specify where files are stored, how many versions of the files to retain when you save, and the multi-user mode. Double-click any path category to display its contents. To edit, right-click a category, and then select a menu option.
Specifies the path to another project to include in the selected project. The search paths in the included file are included in the current file. The multi-user setting of the included file overrides the setting in the current file.
Shows the personal workspace specified when the project was created. Each project should have only one workspace where you edit and save files. Only Semi-isolated Workspace and Single User projects specify a workspace.
Local Search Paths
Specifies additional file locations on the local computer or the network. Use for design experimentation only, not design data.
Workgroup Search Path
Shows the master workgroup for shared network locations where Autodesk Inventor LT searches for nonlibrary files. The workgroup is specified when the project is created. Each project should have only one workgroup where design team members check files out to edit in a personal workspace, then check changed files back in. Only Semi-isolated Master and Shared projects specify a workgroup.
Shows paths to locations of files that are referenced and used, but not modified as part of the project. Projects can have one or more libraries.
Shows global defaults for the selected project that were set when the project was created. The option settings in a project determine its file management functionality. Right-click an option to edit.
Multi User: Sets the project mode for the active project to Vault, Semi-Isolated, Shared, or Off. Activates the appropriate file check out warning system, and controls the file attributes of the workgroup for the project. The project mode reverts to Off if you do not define a workgroup path. The multi-user option is set by the selected a project type when you create a new project. Select one of the following options:
Use Relative Paths: All projects are set to True when the project is created. Referenced files are relative to the location of the project file, which is located at the root level (".\").
Old Versions to Keep on Save: Sets the number of versions to store in the OldVersions\ folder for each file saved. The first time a file is saved in a project, an OldVersions\ folder for that file is created. When the file is saved, the prior version is moved automatically to its OldVersions\ folder. After the number of old versions reaches the maximum, the oldest version is deleted when a newer version is moved into the folder. Click the variable, and then change it to the maximum number of file versions to keep in all of the OldVersions\ folders in the project.
Name: Shows the name of the project. Right-click Name, and then select Edit to change the name. The name updates in the Select Project pane, but does not update the folder name.
Shortcut: Shows the name of the shortcut to the active project. Stores shortcuts in the projects folder. The project name is taken from the name of the target project file, not the name of the shortcut. Right-click the name of the shortcut, and then click Edit. Enter a new name. You can select Delete to delete the shortcut. The shortcut is deleted from the projects folder, but the project is not deleted.
Location: Shows the path to the project folder where the active project is stored.
Displays a context menu with options that are appropriate for the selected file path type.
Add Path: If a section is selected, adds a new path to the end of the section. If a path is selected, adds a new path after the selected path. You change the default name and path.
Add Paths from File: Opens the Choose Project File dialog box so that you can select another project file. The paths from the file you select are added to the selected project file.
Add Paths from Directory Opens the Browse for Folder dialog box so that you can select a folder. The path for the single folder you select is added to the paths in the selected file location category.
Paste Path: Pastes a path from the Clipboard into the selected section.
Delete Section Paths: Deletes all existing paths from the selected section.
The commands initiate a global action on the entire project.
Opens the Project wizard to create a new project. The selected project paths become the default settings for the new project.
Opens the Browse Project File dialog box to search for a project.
Saves the current edits to the selected project.
Closes the Project Editor. If the project is not saved, a message asks you to confirm.