How to Edit P&ID Project Settings when it is opened?

This is the most common popup that a P&ID administrator seen all the time. Why couldn't I edit a project properties when the project is currently opened?

There are a couple of good reasons.

  1. You might added a new property to a tank and if someone doesn't know about that property yet, the software will saved the tank to the database with the new property emptied.
  2. You might changed the tag format and if the software doesn't know about the changes, the tag assigned will be wrong
  3. You might added a new class, style......

But really, how often does that happens? Usually what I really need are

  1. Add a new symbol
  2. Update an existing symbol
  3. Change the symbol style definition (such as layer)
  4. Add a new annotation
  5. Update existing annotation

So as you can see, these doesn't affect the database at all and it should be safe to edit the project even somebody has the project opened. So how can we edit the project? 

Recommended Way

You can actually open projSymbolStyle in AutoCAD and use BEDIT to edit the block directly. So you can "Update existing symbol" and "Update existing annotation". Then users will only need to type SYNCHSTYLES to update the drawings.

Non Recommended Way

This is not recommended and it goes against everything Autod*sk warned you about how your project will get corrupted and how the world would end. So don't keep reading..

I guess you're still here. So let's break it down what is actually happening behind the scene. When someone opens a project, PLCK files will be created on the project directory if it doesn't exist. And as long as the project is opened, these files will be locked (Read more about file locking here). So all you need to do is unlock these files and you should be able to edit the project.

So I assumed everyone's project is on a shared network drive. You'll need to 

  1. Remote desktop to the server
  2. Go to Computer Management (Right Click My Computer -> Manage)
  3. Go to System Tools -> Shared Folders -> Open Files
  4. See those PLCK files? Right click and select Close Open File. Now go back to P&ID and edit the project

Anyway, what's the worst thing that can happen?

photo credit: Zach Klein via photopin cc

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