CAMWorks 2017 Installation and Licensing Guide

CAMWorks 2017 Installation and Licensing Guide 

This document has detailed instructions on how to install, register and administer all products available on the CAMWorks DVD.

Before loading any software, you should always login with full administrative permissions, turn User Account Control Settings down to Never Notify, and disable your anti-virus and anti-spyware programs.

The installation process has a Java component.  Please have your system updated to current system updates.

If you have any technical issues with CAMWorks, please contact us through our support website at, call us at 1-877-266-4469 (U.S.A.) or 1-866-587-6803 (Canada), or email, whichever of the following ways you find most convenient.

This document is only to be distributed and used by Hawk Ridge Systems customers.  Any other use is prohibited.

©2016 Hawk Ridge Systems 


System Requirements

Installation Procedure

Installing from the DVD

Installing from Downloaded Files Online

Activating Standalone and Network Licenses

Installing the License Manager for Built-in Software Encryption

Requesting and Activating Your Built-in CAMWorks License

Activating Your Standalone License

Activating Your Network License

Using a Hardware Dongle

System Requirements

Supported Microsoft Windows® Operating Systems:




2017x64 (64-bit)

 Vista 64-bit **



Windows 7 32-bit ***


Windows 7 64-bit ***


Windows 8 64-bit


Windows 10 64-bit


**Ultimate, Business and Enterprise editions

***Professional, Ultimate and Enterprise editions

Note: CAMWorks 2017 does not support the Windows XP operating system. From CAMWorks 2015 version onwards, only 64-bit version of the CAMWorks Application will be supported. A 32-bit version of CAMWorks 2017 will not be available.

  • Be sure you are on the latest version of your operating system. You will want to check for, and install any Windows updates before installing SolidWorks.
  • Windows 7 Professional, Windows 8, and Windows 10 versions are all supported platforms. Vista and 7 Home Editions are not supported.  SolidWorks 2017 will not install on a Windows XP or Vista machine.


  • Platform: Intel® and AMD® processors (Note: Intel® Pentium® 3, AMD Athlon™ and Athlon XP CPU's are not supported.)
  • RAM Minimum: 4GB; Recommended: 8GB or more
  • DVD drive (to install from the CAMWorks DVD’s)
  • Video card: A certified OpenGL workstation graphics card and driver (See the SolidWorks website for more information.)

Installation Procedure

We recommend you completely disable all anti-virus programs running on your computer. Also, we recommend logging in to your system as a user with full administrative rights.

When you install CAMWorks, the application files and data files will be installed in two locations:

  • The application files can be installed in any folder (e.g., \Program Files\CAMWorks2017).
  • The data files can be installed in a different user-defined folder (e.g., \CAMWorksData\CAMWorks2017). If you are running Windows 7, Windows 8, or Windows 10, these data files, which require write-permissions, must be installed in a folder other than Program Files.

Installing from the DVD

The steps to install the CAMWorks software are listed below.

  1. Verify that you have the hardware and software required to run CAMWorks.
  2. Make sure you have a supported version of the solid modeler installed (see earlier section for supported versions). If you purchased CAMWorks Solids 2017, install the software from the CAMWorks Solids DVD before continuing with the CAMWorks installation.
  3. Make sure Microsoft Access 2007 or Access 2010 is installed. Access must be installed before installing CAMWorks.  Because CAMWorks uses Access, the Setup program searches for Access before completing the installation.  The Runtime version can be installed from the CAMWorks DVD.
  4. Insert the CAMWorks disc in the DVD drive. If the screen does not display automatically, you can also start the program from Windows Explorer by opening the DVD folder and double-clicking cwsetup.exe.
  5. The Setup screen indicates the solid modeler that is currently installed.
  6. Select the required programs to install:
  • CAMWorks: The Setup screen indicates which CAMWorks version you can install based on the solid modeler version.
  • Feed and Speed: Select this program if the status indicates it is not installed. Use of the feed/speed data is optional; however, CAMWorks uses non-feed/speed data from the library so you need to install this software.
  • Software License Manager (FlexLM): If you are using the standard software licensing method for CAMWorks and the status indicates the Software License Manager is not installed, select this program.
  • Hardware License Driver: If you are using the alternate hardware licensing method (a dongle), do not install the Software License Manager. Instead, select the Sentinel Driver. Without this driver, CAMWorks cannot read the dongle and will start in demonstration mode when running CAMWorks in SolidWorks.  Note that this driver is not required for the built-in software license.

7. Click Install Required Programs and follow the directions on the screen. If prompted to reboot, wait to reboot until all programs have been installed.

8. Close the Setup program and reboot.

9. Start the Setup program again, select the optional programs you want to install and click Install Optional Programs.

Installing from Downloaded Files Online

Step 1 – Download the CAMWorks executables from the website. You should Download Microsoft Access 2007 or 2010 first, then download CAMWorks. Note that the Seeds and Speeds Library and The Universal Post Generator are automatically downloaded with CAMWorks, but they are available as separate downloads should you need them.

  1. Open the website
  2. Login using your username and password. If you do not have an account yet then click on Login and then Register.
  3. After successfully logging in, hover over Support then select Customer Area.
  4. Click on Miscellaneous Downloads.
  5. Click on the link to download Microsoft Access 2007 Runtime SP2, Or Microsoft Access 2010. Note: Access 2007 is incompatible with Microsoft Office 2010 and later. If you have Office 2010 installed, use Access 2010. There are two links to download 2010. Both must be used. The “Access 2010” link must be downloaded first, then its service pack, “Microsoft Access 2010 SP1”.
  6. Go back to the main downloads area.  Click on the link for CAMWorks Downloads.
  7. Click on the link for CAMWorks 2017.
  8. This page contains the following files related to CAMWorks 
      • 64-bit installer of CAMWorks in .zip format
      • What's New document in PDF format (This is a list of new features and functionalities for CAMWorks 2017.)
      • Release Notes 64-bit installer
      • Resolved Issues list
  9. Based on your system, download the 64-bit .zip containing the executables for CAMWorks 2017.
  10. The .zip file can be downloaded directly on the hard drive of the system on which you intend to run CAMWorks or it can be downloaded on a network drive.
  11. Click on the link for CAMWorks License Manager to download the executable to license CAMWorks.
  12. Click on the link for Feeds and Speeds to download the library if needed. Note: The Feeds and Speeds Library will be downloaded with CAMWorks automatically.
  13. Click on the link to Download the Universal Post Generator(UPG)  if needed. Note: The UPG will be downloaded with CAMWorks automatically.

Step 2 – Unzip the downloaded file.

Unzip the downloaded file.  The unzipped folder will contain the following –

  • The 64-bit installer for CAMWorks
  • The LicenseManager folder containing the installer (CWLicenseManager.exe) for the CAMWorks License Manager utility
  • The CWXConnect folder containing the installation files for CAMWorks (X) Connect utility
  • The CAMWorksView folder containing the installation files for CAMWorksView utility
  • A configuration settings file (.ini file)

Step 3 – Run the installer.

From the unzipped folder, run the CAMWorks2017 installer (.exe).  Follow the simple instructions given in the Installation Wizard to complete the install.

Installation by Network Access:

If you have downloaded the zipped folder containing the CAMWorks executables on to a network drive, you can remote access the network drive from the system intended to run CAMWorks.  Unzip the downloaded folder and run the CAMWorks2017 installer (.exe) in order to install the CAMWorks application.  As the installer is accessed over a network, only the CAMWorks application will be installed on the system.  The CAMWorks License Manager, CAMWorks (X) Connect and CAMWorksView utilities will not be installed automatically.  To install these utilities, you need to run the respective installers present in the folders of the unzipped folder.

For example, run the CWLicenseManager.exe present in the LicenseManager folder within the unzipped folder in order to install the CAMWorks License Manager.

Once the CAMWorks application and the license manager utility are installed, you can proceed to activate the CAMWorks license based on your license type.

Activating Standalone and Network Licenses

Your CAMWorks license defines the modules and versions that you are authorized to run.  A standalone license authorizes use of CAMWorks on a specific computer.  CAMWorks provides two options for standalone licensing: software encryption or a hardware dongle (key).  Each of these methods is designed to protect you and Geometric Technologies from unauthorized use of CAMWorks.

  • Built-in software encryption technology is the default licensing method for CAMWorks. After you install the CWFlexLM License Manager, you must submit the request for a CAMWorks license.  You will receive a license file to enable your software.
  • Optionally, a dongle can be used for licensing CAMWorks. This hardware device is connected to the parallel printer port or USB connector on the computer.

Installing the License Manager for Built-in Software Encryption

If you are using the software license and you are installing CAMWorks for the first time, you need to install the CWFlexLM License Manager and submit a request for a license file. Note that the License Manager only needs to be installed separately if the license is intended for a server with a network license. If you are installing a standalone license, then the License Manager will automatically be installed along with CAMWorks.

  • You must be logged in as administrator with full privileges when setting up or making changes in the license manager.
  • The license request file must be created directly on the computer where the license will reside. If the license request file is created when running the license manager via remote communications software such as pcAnywhere (Symantic Corp.) and submitted to Geometric Technologies, an invalid license will be generated.
  • If you are requesting the license for the server, it has to be done directly on the server computer.
  • Do not install the license manager or the license file in the CAMWorks program folder.

Requesting and Activating Your Built-in CAMWorks License

  1. From the Windows desktop on the computer where the license will reside, select Start on the taskbar, then select Programs > CAMWorks License Manager > CWFlexLM License Manager.
  2. Click the License Setup
  3. For the license method, make sure FlexLM Software is selected.
  4. Click the Request License…
  5. Complete the form. An asterisk (*) indicates a required field.
  6. Email the request to with the text file attached.
  7. Click Close to exit the request form. You can also close the License Manager. CAMWorks will run in demonstration mode in SolidWorks until you receive the license file and activate the license.

Activating Your Standalone License

  1. When you receive the license from Geometric Technologies, save the file to a folder on your computer. The license file must be on the same computer as CAMWorks.  We recommend you put the license file in the same folder as the license manager.
  2. Start the license manager and click the License Setup
  3. Make sure Select node locked (Standalone) license file is selected, then click the Browse… button to the right.
  4. Browse to the folder where you copied the license file, select the file and click Open.
  5. Click the Status tab and verify that the information has been updated as follows:
  • Authorization status = Succeeded
  • License File Used = path to the file and the filename
  1. Click the Authorized Modules This tab lists the modules you are licensed to run and the version.  The “Expiration” field indicates if the license has an expiration date or is permanent.
  2. Click Close to exit the license manager.

Activating Your Network License

  1. When you receive the license file, copy the file to a folder on the server. The license file must be on the computer that is running the CAMWorks License Service.  The folder where the license file is copied can be read-only.
  2. Start the license manager and click the Server Settings
  3. For the license file path, browse to the folder where you copied the license file, select the file and click Open.
  4. Set the log file path. The log file MUST be on the server that is running the CAMWorks License Service.  The log file folder does not have to be the same as the license file folder.  The log file folder and the log file must have read/write permissions.
  5. Click the Install CAMWorks License Service This installs the CAMWorks License Service.
  6. Click the Start The status message at the bottom of the dialog box indicates the CAMWorks License Service is running.

Verify the License

Before setting up the license on the client computers, you should make sure the floating license has been installed and activated successfully on the server.  You can do this by setting up the server to also be a client.

  1. Start the license manager, if it is not running.
  2. Click the License Setup tab and verify that FlexLM is selected for the license method.
  3. In the Configure FlexLM license section, make sure the set server host name and port number of floating license option is selected.
  4. Type the server host name.

IMPORTANT! This field requires the host name of the server.  Since you are setting up the server computer as a client, the host name of the client is the same as the server host name, so you can type the host name that displays at the top of the dialog box.  You will need the host name of the server when you set up other client computers.

  1. Click the Authorized Modules
  • If Yes displays in the Available column for modules, click OK to close the license manager. You are now ready to set up the client computers to run CAMWorks.
  • If the Authorized Modules tab is blank, the server may have a software and/or hardware firewall that you need to configure to allow the clients to see the server.

Configure Firewall on Server (if necessary)

If a firewall is running on the server, the firewall may need to be configured to allow the clients to see the CAMWorks License Service.  The following directions are for the Windows 7 Firewall.  If you are using different software and/or hardware firewalls, refer to the product documentation for directions.

  1. Open the Windows Control Panel.
  2. Open Windows Firewall.
  3. Click Allow a program or feature through Windows Firewall
  4. Locate the CAMWorks License Manger folder, select exe and click Open.
  5. Click OK and make sure the program is checked in the Exceptions
  6. Click Add Program again and add exe (follow steps 6 and 7).
  7. Close the Windows Firewall and the Control Panel.
  8. Restart the computer.

Installing the License on Clients

After the CAMWorks License Service is installed and running on the server, you can install the CWFlexLM License Manager on the computers in the network that will be running CAMWorks.  For client computers, the installation of the FlexLM License Manager and activation of a license can be performed remotely.

  1. On each computer that will be running CAMWorks, start the CAMWorks Setup program on the CAMWorks DVD. Check the box next to Software License Manager and click the Install Required Programs
  2. Follow the directions on each screen. When prompted to choose the license location, use the default path or select a different folder.
  3. When the installation is complete, click Finish.
  4. Select Start on the taskbar and then select Programs > CAMWorks License Manager > CWFlexLM License Manager.
  5. Click the License Setup
  6. For the license method, make sure FlexLM Software is selected.
  7. Make sure Set Server Host name and Port number of floating license server is selected.
  8. Type the server host name and optionally enter the port number. IMPORTANT! The server host name must be the host name of the server, not the host name of the client that is shown in the section at the top of the dialog box.
  9. Click Apply.
  10. Click the Authorized Modules The licensed modules are listed and the license type is “floating”.
  11. Click OK to close the license manager. No additional information and actions are required for enabling a client.

Running CAMWorks on Clients

  1. Start CAMWorks and open a part file or a new part document.
  2. Click Help on the SolidWorks/CAMWorks Solids menu bar, select CAMWorks 20xx Help, then select License Info. The CAMWorks License Info dialog box displays.
  • In the Available column, the number indicates how many licenses are available for each module. When 0 displays, there are no available licenses.
  • The Module section lists the modules. A check mark indicates the module has been assigned to this client.  To access the functions of an available module, check the box next to the available module.
  • The Refresh Licenses button can be used to update the availability of modules when other clients release modules.
  • In the Start Up column, you can specify which modules you want to run on this client when CAMWorks starts if a license is available. If a license is not available for one of the checked modules when CAMWorks starts, this message displays: “One or more floating licenses that were requested are not available.”

Using a Hardware Dongle

Optionally, CAMWorks can use a hardware dongle (also referred to as a key or security block) for licensing and protection against unauthorized use.  The dongle is programmed for the modules and version you are licensed to run.  A dongle is a small hardware device that fits on the parallel port or the USB connector of the computer.

IMPORTANT! The hardware dongle is essentially your license and you may want to insure it against loss.  If the dongle is lost or stolen, you will be required to purchase a new license.

Installing the Dongle

If you have a 25-pin dongle for a parallel port, attach the 25-pin male connector on the dongle to the 25-pin female connector on the computer.  This is the printer port.  The dongle must remain on the computer at all times while CAMWorks is in operation.  CAMWorks looks for and reads the configuration on the dongle during start-up and periodically while it is running.  If you have a USB key, plug the key into the USB connector on the computer.  Note that when the hardware dongle is used, you do not need to install the CWFlexLM License Manager software.

The following steps are how you would set up a dongle.  


  1. Plug the dongle into the computer. 
  2. Next, you will need to open the Key Manager in Start > All Programs > CAMWorks(version) > Key Manager. Click on Update and choose to update.  It will notify you if the security block is detected or not.  
  3. If it does not recognize it, you will need to install the sentinel driver from theCAMWorks website so that it can recognize the block.  (Downloading the sentinel driver from a different source could result in the dongle not working properly.)  Once you have done this, try updating again.  It should recognize the block.
  4. After your block/dongle has been recognized, you will need to navigate to Start > All Programs > CAMWorks License Manager and open CWFlexLM License Manager
  5. In here, you will want to go to the License Setup tab and change the license method from FlexLM Software to Hardware Dongle. Once you do that, select Apply
  6. Open SolidWorks now and it should recognize the dongle.

Start SolidWorks or CAMWorks Solids

The CAMWorks logo displays to indicate CAMWorks is started.  The Technology Database (TechDB) is loaded automatically.  This TechDB is compatible with the CAMWorks version you just installed.  If you have customized data in a previous version of the database, you can import the data into the new TechDB.

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