SOLIDWORKS PDM Vault Clone Procedures

Article by Jeff Gherardi on Feb 12, 2015

This guide explains how to create an exact duplicate environment of the SOLIDWORKS PDM system for testing or server relocation purposes.

Note: Please consult GoEngineer before performing any steps below, and should you require assistance, a qualified SOLIDWORKS PDM Implementation Specialists can scope and perform these tasks as a service for you. 

These instructions will direct you to update database tables and/or registry keys on your server. If you are not comfortable with these actions, do not proceed.


Below is a high-level outline of the steps necessary to complete a vault clone/vault duplication. Each area is broken down in further detail in the body of this document.

  • Install SOLIDWORKS PDM on New Server(s), and create a new, empty vault
  • Copy out values from new vault to Notepad
  • Backup the existing Database and Archives
  • Restore backups to the new vault\
  • Modify vault database to reflect new server/vault name(s)
  • Load in the new license file (if necessary)



  1. Ensure SQL, SOLIDWORKS PDM Archive Server, and SOLIDWORKS PDM Database Server, and
    SOLIDWORKS PDM Client are installed on your destination server(s).

    Note: SOLIDWORKS PDM Archive Server and Database Server should be installed at a newer
    than or equal version of SOLIDWORKS PDM that is currently deployed.

    Note: It is not necessary to maintain the same system architecture – i.e., if SQL and your
    SOLIDWORKS PDM archive server are currently installed on the same machine, you may choose
    to install SQL on a separate server from SOLIDWORKS PDM Archive or vice versa.

Create New Vault

Creating a new vault simplifies the restore procedure. This will create a vault database to restore, the
appropriate entries in the ConisioMasterDb, the appropriate registry keys, and archive root folder on
the archive server.

  1. On your newly installed Archive Server, create a new Vault, choosing any vault name as appropriate. Your new vault name does not need to match the existing vault name.
  2. When prompted to select a vault configuration to install, you may select ‘Empty’ as this new vault will be completely overwritten anyway.
  3. Open SQL Management Studio and copy the three values below into Notepad:
    1. Table: SystemInfo; Value: VaultID
    2. Table: SystemInfo; Value: OrderData
    3. Table: tmpSTore; Value: TimeStamp
    4. Note: Failure to do this step will result in an inability to log-in to the vault


  1. Database: Log in to SQL Server Management Studio on your existing server and perform a FULL Database backup of your SOLIDWORKS PDM Vault database.

    Note: It is not necessary to take a copy of the ConisioMasterDb.

  2. Archives**: Log on to the SOLIDWORKS PDM Archive server
    1. Stop the SOLIDWORKS Enterprise PDM Archive Server Service
    2. Copy (and overwrite) the Vault Archive Folder and paste it to the Archive Root Folder for your newly created vault.

      Note: If you don’t know where your Archive Root Folder is located, check the following registry key for the folder name

      HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\SolidWorks\Applications\PDMWorks Enterprise\ArchiveServer\Computers\<local>\Archives

    3. Restart the SOLIDWORKS Enterprise PDM Archive Server Service

      ** You may choose to skip this step if you don’t need physical files in your new environment. This is typical for very large vaults where hard drive space is an issue already. Copying just the database is sufficient to create a duplicate environment with folder structure, groups, permissions, etc., without having the physical files present. You will still see all metadata, just be unable to open, checkout, or preview files. If you do not restore the Archive Folders, you should delete any Add-ins from the SOLIDWORKS PDM Vault Administration Tool.

Database Restore

  1. Log in to SQL Server Management Studio on your new SQL server
  2. Expand Databases and right-click on your new vault database
  3. Select Tasks > Restore > Database, and browse to your Full Backup of the original database
  4. On the Options tab, select OVERWRITE checkbox
    1. Also, on the Options Tab, adjust the ‘Restore As’ file paths so that the name of the MDF and LDF files matches the name of the database you are restoring to.
  5. Click OK to Restore

Note: If the database is already in use, it may be necessary to kill all existing connections to that database. Run the following script, and retry the Database Restore procedures above.

USE master

DECLARE @kill varchar(8000) = ''
SELECT @kill=@kill+'kill '+ convert(varchar(5),spid)
          FROM master..sysprocesses
WHERE dbid=db_id('database name') --your database name goes here
              EXEC (@kill)

Database Upgrade (if necessary)

If the environment you are restoring to is a newer version than the existing system you backed up from, it is necessary to run the database upgrade utility.

  1. Browse to the installation files on the new server (typically C:\SWDist\pdmwenterprise\)
  2. In the \Upgrade\ folder, run Upgrade.exe and step through the Wizard to upgrade the database

Modify Database Values

Database table values will need to be updated to reflect the new Server Name(s) and/or Vault Name

  1. Log in to SQL Server Management Studio
  2. Expand your newly created vault database, and expand Tables
  3. Right-click ArchiveServers and select Edit Rows
    1. Modify ArchiveServerName to reflect your new archive server
    2. Modify VaultName to reflect your new vault name
    3. If existing vault was replicated, and the new vault is not, delete all rows except Row 1
  4. If existing vault was replicated, and the new vault is not, start a new query and execute the following on your restored database

    DELETE FROM ArchiveServerStored

  5. Right-click SystemInfo and select Edit Rows
    1. Update VaultName to reflect the new vault name
    2. Update ArchiveServerName to reflect the new archive server name
    3. Update VaultID with the value we copied to Notepad
    4. Update OrderData with the value we copied to Notepad
  6. Right-click tmpStore and select Edit Rows
    1. Update TimeStamp with the value we copied to Notepad
  7. Expand Projects, Expand Triggers
    1. Right-click on OnUpdateProjectTrigger and DISABLE
    2. Right-Click Projects and Edit Rows
      1. Update Row 1 with your new Vault Name
    3. Right-click on OnUpdateProjectTrigger and ENABLE

License File

  1. Log in to the SOLIDWORKS PDM Administration tool and expand your vault name
  2. Double-click ‘Licenses’ and browse to your new license file.

Congratulations, you have now successfully created a duplicate of your existing vault environment. If you have any custom add-ins, you may require further updates depending on those customizations.

About Jeff Gherardi

Jeff Gherardi oversees engineering services and technical support at GoEngineer and has a passion for technology. He holds certifications for many Dassault Systèmes products including SOLIDWORKS PDM, the 3DEXPERIENCE Platform, and EXALEAD OnePart.

View all posts by Jeff Gherardi


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