I am working with a CAD assembly (a collection of mechanical parts put together) in Solidworks, and an Excel spreadsheet, which describes its components. I want to transition the Excel spreadsheet to a database, so that I can investigate how many different kind of screws I have, and what is the cost of a sub-part of the whole assembly.

My requirements are:

  • There will be a small number of users (perhaps only me)
  • There will be around 1000 different parts to compose the assembly
  • There will most-likely be less than 50 different tables
  • I would like a user-friendly graphical interface
  • I would like to be able to make requests (preferably with SQL, which I know a tiny bit) to pull the numbers I described above, e.g. "all parts that are screws", "sum of price of all parts in a sub-assembly"

I have used Microsoft Access in the past (10 years ago), and thought about using it. Do you think this would still be a good solution today? What else would you recommend? I have also a little experience with MySQL in the PHP context.

If it runs on Windows it would be more straightforward, but I also have Linux machines available. I had a look at SOLIDWORKS PDM, but this looked like an overkill. In terms of price tag, I would say maximum around 1000 GBP for a perpetual license or 50 GBP if it's a monthly subscription.

  • Thanks for the update! I've integrated that with your question body. As for the database part, SQLite would meet that well I guess (especially when it's just one user). But I know no specifically crafted Windows or Linux application for the GUI. I usually write up something simple in PHP ;) – Izzy Jun 14 at 19:40
  • 1
    Thank you Izzy, I'll have a look at SQLite. It might be an opportunity to get up-to-date with my PHP skills :D – Omnistic Jun 15 at 9:45

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