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 Post subject: Software File Management
PostPosted: Tue Dec 19, 2017 11:55 am 

Joined: Wed Jul 12, 2017 6:06 am
Posts: 9
How are the folks that do arc flash assessments managing the software files, specifically SKM files, when you do an update or addition to an existing model? We currently create a new scenario for any large updates or changes to the model. We are currently having discussions about making copies of files when we get an update and storing it with the new project # that is issued internally with the job. I am reluctant to try this approach because I can see how over time it could become difficult to find the most recent model, that's why I like having one model with new scenarios. We have some customers that we have made several updates since our initial assessment. Just curious what others do in this case. Thanks!

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 Post subject: Re: Software File Management
PostPosted: Fri Dec 22, 2017 1:00 pm 
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Joined: Tue Oct 26, 2010 9:08 am
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Location: North Carolina
In terms of version control, SKM sucks. Particularly since there is no "undo" and making changes even for "what ifs" permanently makes changes.

Best approach is one file per "customer" no matter what it is. Copy everything into a temporary copy and use that as a working copy whenever possible. Then save changes back using your existing document control system. There are tons of document control systems out there on the internet if you want a better revision control system. The big problem is dealing with individual engineers when you have more than one keeping track of the changes and that's where the document control (check out/check in) system becomes so beneficial and necessary.

There is also an inherent problem that if you have two different projects ongoing at the same time you will definitely have version control issues. Like it or not "drafts" (not finals) are a big problem since you can't easily subdivide anything in SKM. At best there is a way out of this but it requires some manual work on your part. Anything in a power system analysis can be converted into a Thevenin/Norton equivalent impedance and then modeled as a lumped parameter. So with a little work you can subdivide a larger model but this is not something I've seen commonly done.

MANY plants save everything in "project number" format. As mentioned this is a nightmare because it's impossible to tell what's current as layer upon layer of projects gets added. The best approach is to do it as an asset tree approach. Obviously with SKM this is really hard to do. As an engineering firm you can do it more on a customer-by-customer basis with a "main" (current) study) and then possible keeping drafts by project number which eventually get merged back.

Do NOT attempt to just use a shared drive. It will corrupt the database. And no matter how hard you try eventually someone is going to open the database on the shared drive even to "view" and corrupt it. Hence the reason for a document control system.

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 Post subject: Re: Software File Management
PostPosted: Thu Dec 28, 2017 2:03 pm 

Joined: Mon Dec 07, 2015 9:45 am
Posts: 6
We don't maintain a facility model based on a project for that facility, we maintain it based on that facility.

As such we have a working "As Is" model for the facility that gets updated as the facility updates. We then Archive older models in an "Archive" folder. We maintain archives of models as they were at the completion of a specific project, and we also maintain a few archives of the working model as we are updating it "just in case", but these will "roll" as we work on the model, and then we will delete them all when we have a final model at the completion of that project.

If work is being done on recommendations we do that as a scenario, unless the recommendations also involve more complex changes to the system at which point we will "branch" the main model to a recommendations model.

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