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› ETRAGE ACI for Pro/INTRALINK

ETRAGE ACI for Pro/INTRALINK

 

What is it?

ETRAGE Automation COM Interface (ACI) for Pro/INTRALINK is a COM server that encapsulates PTC Pro/INTRALINK 3.x PDM system. As such, it bridges the gap between Pro/INTRALINK and any COM-compliant language.

Who is it for?

If you are an engineer or PDM administrator with programming skills and you want to...

  • automate Pro/INTRALINK but avoid intricacies of Pro/INTRALINK Toolkit API
  • build a rich (e.g. Web-based) interface "over" Pro/INTRALINK in something else then C
  • program Pro/INTRALINK in minimal lines of code

...then ETRAGE ACI for Pro/INTRALINK is the right tool for you.

Hello ACI for Pro/INTRALINK!

Following Visual Basic .NET program checks-out a part from Pro/INTRALINK:

    Dim server As New IntralinkServer.CServer
    server.Commonspace.Connect("username", "password")
   
Dim pi As IntralinkServer.ICommonspaceProductItem = _
        server.Commonspace.ProductItems.CollectOneByName("my_part.prt")

    Dim
wspi As IntralinkServer.IWorkspaceProductItem = _
        pi.CheckOut(server.LocalDatabases.Default.Workspaces.Default)
    MsgBox("Product item checked out to: " + wspi.PathForRead)

For more information, please see the Tutorial.

About COM

Component Object Model (along with related technologies: "Distributed COM" or DCOM, "Object Linking and Embedding" or OLE, and ActiveX) is Microsoft's object-oriented interoperability technology. COM is a binary standard, meaning it does not depend on the syntax of any particular language. In fact, any language that adheres to COM standard is automatically compatible with any other COM-compliant language.

About ACI's Utilization of COM

Technically, ACI is a COM server - it encapsulates Pro/INTRALINK objects, such as "Folder", "Product Item" or "Workspace Product Item", and exposes them as COM objects. They are "first-class citizen" COM objects that are automatically accessible from any COM-compatible language (such as VB or VB.NET).

 

ETRAGE Automation COM Interface for Pro/INTRALINK

 

When client language makes the call into COM object exposed by ACI, it gets translates into appropriate series of Pro/INTRALINK Toolkit calls, therefore shielding the client from any specifics of the Pro/INTRALINK Toolkit. This both insulates and simplifies the client program.

Language Support

ETRAGE ACI for Pro/INTRALINK strictly adheres to COM standard and as such is accessible from wide variety of languages. Technically, all interfaces exposed by ACI are "dual", meaning they support both fast "virtual table" access from compiled languages and flexible "dispatch" access typically used by OLE Automation compatible  interpreted scripting languages.

Languages that can access ACI include (but are not limited to):

  • .NET Languages (Visual Basic .NET, C#, managed C++ or C++/CLI)
  • "Classic" Visual Basic (version 6 and earlier)
  • Delphi
  • non-managed C++
  • Tcl, VBA and other scripting languages
  • Java, with appropriate bridge

Client-Server Programming

A special care was taken to make ACI suitable for server-side applications. Debug logs, temporary Pro/INTRALINK local databases/workspaces and other resources are strictly separated between concurrently-running ACI instances.

ACI was successfully used to develop ASP.NET Web applications.