Friday, April 04, 2008

Batch mode Pro/Engineer

Have any of you tried to start Pro/Engineer in batch mode? I found the following suggestion in Pro/Toolkit documentation tkuse.pdf:

"To ensure that the Pro/ENGINEER main Graphics Window and Message Window are not displayed, you should use either the command-line option -g:no_graphics (or the configuration file option “graphics NO_GRAPHICS”) to turn off the Pro/ENGINEER graphics."

So to start Pro/Engineer in batch mode with no graphics try the following with Pro/Engineer Wildfire 3.0. To execute this simply open a command prompt using Windows Start->Run-> Enter "cmd", press OK, enter the following into the command prompt and enter enter.

"C:\Program Files\proeWildfire 3.0\bin\proe.exe" -g:no_graphics

To verify if Pro/Engineer started with no GUI simply open Task Manager and look for xtop.exe, which is Pro/Engineer's executable. But since no processing is happening, xtop.exe will quit after a few seconds.

Why is this important?
Well if you wanted to perform the same operations on numerous files (part or assembly), then theoretically you could execute Pro/Engineer without GUI from the directory where you have a Pro/Toolkit application installed with a protk.dat registry file and Pro/Engineer will load that Pro/Toolkit application. The application can then perform its functions without needing user interaction. For an example see this link where they use this method but instead of a Pro/Toolkit application they use the "trail" files to script the batch processing. Something similar can be duplicated with a Pro/Toolkit application.

Why do I mention this?
As a developer of Pro/Toolkit applications it is very important for me to able to test my program thoroughly with as much automation as possible. By using the batch mode without GUI provided with Pro/Engineer I can create a workspace that tests my application using numerous combinations of input and output without user interaction.

I plan to write on topics related to integrated test frameworks for Pro/Toolkit applications and batch mode could become an important part of that. Keep following my blog for similar posts.


  1. Excuse me , how open file.step or file.iges from cmd Win7 in Creo Elements Pro 5 ?

    (this did not work C:\Windows\System32>"C:\Program Files\PTC\Creo Elements\Pro5.0\bin\proe.exe" c:\qqq.iges)

  2. Sorry bloger, I am afraid I don't have an answer for you. It may help you to find out what command line arguments proe.exe accepts, since without that, you are at Pro/E's mercy.

  3. Hi, is it possible to launch multiple batch concurrently on a single PC using only one license? The purpose is to quicken up the overall runtime.