The Windows operating system, SOLIDWORKS software, graphics cards/drivers and all other hardware are constantly evolving. Also, the workstation comes to its end of life at some point. The purpose of use may also change slightly. For example, you might need to design more complex SOLIDWORKS models, run Simulation analyses or perform Visualize renderings, in which case more power is also required from the workstation. Due to these above-mentioned factors, SOLIDWORKS workstation should also be updated to a newer model from time to time.
Follow the instructions below when you are changing workstation.
However, before changing the workstation, always remember to make sure that the new workstation meets SOLIDWORKS software system and hardware requirements.
Note! These instructions do not apply if your workstation is broken and you have to change the workstation. If the workstation breaks down, please contact PLM Group technical support.
1. Reviewing File Locations settings and moving files away from workstation's hard drive
The general recommendation is not to store any files on the workstation's hard drive, at least when files have not been backed up. However, sometimes, SOLIDWORKS parts, assemblies or drawings have been saved on the hard drive by accident, in which case it is important to copy these files. Especially when SOLIDWORKS PDM is in use, files that have been changed may have remained in PDM's "Checked out" state and modified files only exist on user's hard drive. These files should definitely be checked in so that the modified files are also transferred to PDM and become visible to other users.
Also check SOLIDWORKS' File Locations settings to see if the SOLIDWORKS document template folder locations are pointing to hard drive folders. If the locations are pointing to hard drive and you have customized these templates, copy the templates before leaving the old workstation. The most commonly used templates are part, assembly and drawing templates (Document Templates) and drawing sheet format templates (Sheet Formats), but you might be using also e.g. Bill of materials templates, sheet metal bending tables, weldments library profiles and other templates whose location is defined in "Show Folders for :" drop-down menu.
2. Saving SOLIDWORKS settings
You may have changed software settings, e.g. the settings in Tools > Options > "System Options" tab. These settings can be saved easily: CHECK THIS INSTRUCTION!
However, when saving the settings, the "File Locations" settings mentioned in step 1 must be taken into account. If you have document templates stored in workstation's hard disk, it is handy to copy templates to the new workstation's hard disk in the same folder location, so that the settings saved and used later on the new workstation refer to the templates located in the correct folders. Please note that copying templates from hard drive is only needed if you have customized those templates. It is not mandatory to copy any templates if you have not changed them at all.
IMPORTANT! Remember that saved settings do not include document properties in SOLIDWORKS files. For example, dimension and mass units and their precision settings, dimensioning standards, etc. are based on the part, assembly and drawing templates used. If changes have been made to these document templates, these templates should be transferred when switching to new workstation (see step 1).
3. Deactivate licenses
When using SOLIDWORKS Standalone license (the third digit of the license serial number is zero), the license activation is stored in the workstation's hard disk. The license must be deactivated before moving to a new workstation.
Deactivate the license according to THIS INSTRUCTION.
When deactivating licenses, remember to deactivate the activations of all SOLIDWORKS products on the workstation by selecting "Select All".
If there are SOLIDWORKS add-ins installed on the workstation, their license might also need to deactivated. For example, if you are using CUSTOMTOOLS software with Standalone license, its license should be deactivated according to THIS INSTRUCTION before deactivating SOLIDWORKS license.
4. Installing SOLIDWORKS
SOLIDWORKS software with all products can be installed by following THIS INSTRUCTION.
5. Restoring SOLIDWORKS settings
Saving SOLIDWORKS settings was instructed in step 2.
These settings saved as *.sldreg file can be restored by following THIS SAME INSTRUCTION that was already linked in step 2.
5. Managing document templates and file locations
In step 1, it was instructed to review SOLIDWORKS File Locations settings to see the folder locations of the SOLIDWORKS templates. If no modified document templates were pointing to any hard drive folder location, but the templates were retrieved from the server location, OneDrive or other cloud service folder, or for example from SOLIDWORKS PDM, then document templates do not need to be copied.
If the templates were on the hard drive of he old workstation, then you should move the templates to a location that is easy to back up. If there is no PDM system in use, then the templates can be moved to Microsoft OneDrive directory, for example. File Locations settings should still be reviewed and any missing/changed folder locations should be added/modified.
File Locations can also be easily added and edited using the "Find/Replace" option by pressing "Edit All" button. There you can make corrections, for example correct the folder's version number ("2022" -> "2023"), if for some reason the settings point to an older major version installation folder.
Your new workstation is now ready for using SOLIDWORKS.
However, please note that quite often SOLIDWORKS is not the only product to be used and you might also need to install other SOLIDWORKS products, such as PDM, Visualize, Composer or other third-party software (like CUSTOMTOOLS). You can always contact PLM Group technical support if you are unsure which software you should install on a new workstation.