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How do I update and refresh symbols and non-symbols uploaded to DSM?

Design System Manager (DSM) stores symbols and non-symbols differently, so you will need to update them differently as well. Symbols are stored as linked components—they remained linked to the layer or layers you used to create and upload the components. Any components you upload as non-symbols are not linked to the layer or layers you used to create them.

How do I update non-symbols in DSM?

When uploading non-symbol components, DSM treats them as layers that are explicitly unlinked. Therefore, you cannot update non-symbol components that you have uploaded to your DSM library. Instead, you can make the changes you want for a non-symbol, and then upload it to DSM as a new component.

How do I update symbols and nested symbols in DSM?

When uploading symbols to your library, DSM stores a single instance of each symbol and maintains the relationships between symbols. If you make changes to a nested symbol and upload it to DSM, the parent symbol in DSM will then contain the updated version of the nested symbol. Currently, however, the DSM thumbnail of the parent symbol will not reflect the changes you made to the nested symbol.

To help make that relationship between nested symbols and parent symbols clearer, here’s an example: If you upload a parent symbol that contains a square icon as a nested symbol, and you later change the square icon symbol to a round icon and upload your changes, the DSM thumbnail for the parent symbol will still display a nested square icon. When inserting the parent symbol to your Sketch file, however, it will contain the changes to the nested symbol (now a round icon). To update the thumbnail of the parent symbol with the change, you can re-upload the parent symbol to DSM.

Can I replace a symbol in DSM by uploading a new symbol with the same name?

To ensure that you can control the names of the symbol components in your library without breaking the links between symbols, DSM identifies each symbol based on its unique Sketch ID rather than the name you assign it. Therefore, you cannot replace or update a previously uploaded symbol component by uploading a new symbol with the same name. To update a symbol component in your library, insert it in your Sketch file, make the changes you want, and then re-upload the symbol to DSM.


Getting Started: Design System Manager (DSM) (
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