SOLIDWORKS 2017 Standalone Install

2017 Standalone Install


This guide is written for SOLIDWORKS 2017.  If you are using an earlier version of SOLIDWORKS, please download our earlier installation documents to correctly load and administer your version of SOLIDWORKS.

Before loading any software, you should always log in with full administrative permissions and disable your anti-virus, anti-spyware programs as well as User Account Control.  Be sure your operating system has been updated with Windows Updates recently to avoid any compatibility issues with the installer.

A SOLIDWORKS seat can be used to activate one machine. If you wish to use your activation on another system, you must first deactivate the PC that is currently active. Please see the SOLIDWORKS End User License Agreement if you have any questions regarding this policy.

This is not a troubleshooting guide.  If you have any technical issues with SOLIDWORKS please contact Hawk Ridge Systems technical support.

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

©2016 Hawk Ridge Systems




SOLIDWORKS Basic package comes with all part, assembly, and drawing capabilities.  Including Mold Tools, Weldments, Sheet Metal, FeatureWorks, and SOLIDWORKS Utilities. SOLIDWORKS Explorer and eDrawings are also included.

SOLIDWORKS Professional package gives you all the items inside of SOLIDWORKS Basic plus these items: 

  • eDrawings Professional
  • ScanTo3D
  • SOLIDWORKS Design Checker
  • SOLIDWORKS Toolbox
  • SOLIDWORKS Task Scheduler
  • PhotoView 360
  • TolAnalyst 

SOLIDWORKS Premium package gives you all the items inside of SOLIDWORKS Professional plus these items:

  • Basic SOLIDWORKS Simulation
  • CircuitWorks
  • SOLIDWORKS Routing
  • Assembly Costing

During the installation of the software, you will be asked for your SOLIDWORKS serial number.  The product will automatically load all premium and professional software without requiring any additional serial numbers to be entered. 


Users installing Professional or Premium who would like to utilize SOLIDWORKS PDM Standard should also see our document on SOLIDWORKS PDM Standard Installation.

Before Installation

Hawk Ridge Systems highly recommends taking a moment before installing SOLIDWORKS and checking that you are ready to load your new software.  Follow these steps to have a better experience while running SOLIDWORKS:

  • Check hardware compatibility.

Login to, click the Login link at the top of the page and login to the customer portal. In the self service area, there are links to check video card compatibility as well as minimum system requirements.

You can also see Hawk Ridge Systems’ recommended hardware by logging into and reviewing our hardware recommendations. You can see brand name makes and models we suggest for best performance.  We also have a more comprehensive hardware guide that discusses all types of considerations for your system

  • Check Operating System Compatibility.

You can find the latest version of compatible operating systems for this version of SOLIDWORKS under the system requirements page of after you login.
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 10, Windows 7 Professional & Windows 7 Ultimate are all supported platforms. Windows 8.1, Vista Business, Vista Ultimate, Vista Enterprise, Vista Home Edition, Vista Home Edition Professional, Windows 7 Starter & Windows 7 Home Premium are not supported. SOLIDWORKS 2017 will not install on a Windows XP or earlier machine.

  • Confirm community’s working version.

SOLIDWORKS is not backwards compatible, meaning older versions cannot open files from newer versions. Be sure workmates, customers or vendors are all on the same version (i.e. SOLIDWORKS 2016 or SOLIDWORKS 2017) you are loading.  There is a limited exception to this starting with 2013.  Files created using SOLIDWORKS 2013 and above can be opened with the previous version with limited functionality.  (Please see the What’s New document included with your software for the details.)


  • Back-up your data.

Ask a system administrator or existing user to see if there are any shared libraries, such as Toolbox or a data management vault. Toolbox libraries and PDM vault information should all be saved to back-up locations.  Then you can migrate the original libraries and vault to the newer version.
If you have a shared location containing existing SOLIDWORKS files, it is recommended that you make backup copies of these files. Any templates or design libraries should also be saved to a backup folder.


  • Uninstall previous version of SOLIDWORKS.

It is recommended that after you have saved out all shared data, you should fully uninstall any previous versions of SOLIDWORKS from your machine. After fully uninstalling SOLIDWORKS and its add-ins, you should install the new software.



License Deactivation 

SOLIDWORKS standalone products may be installed on your business and home machines, but only one install of the software may be activated at any given time. If you are installing a license that is active on another PC, you will need to first deactivate the license from the active machine by following the instructions in this section. If the standalone license you are installing is new, you can skip the License Transfer section.


The activation license is based on the computer hard drive and motherboard.  If you are upgrading your SOLIDWORKS software or moving to a new computer, you will need to transfer your license back, do the upgrade and then reactivate the license on the new hardware configuration.  Do this also if reformatting your hard drive or operating system.


If you do not have internet access, see the e-mail transfer section of this document.

Online Transfer

  • Go to Start, All Programs, SOLIDWORKS 2017, SOLIDWORKS 2017 SP X.X.
  • After SOLIDWORKS starts, go to the Help pull-down and choose Transfer License.
  • If you have more Products than SOLIDWORKS activated (Simulation), you will need to choose the product to deactivate. Note: If you have Simulation Professional or Premium or Flow Simulation you will need to deactivate these first, then deactivate SOLIDWORKS.
  • If you have internet access at this computer, choose to activate “Automatically over the Internet”.
  • You will now connect to the SOLIDWORKS Activation site to return the license.
  • You will be informed that the license has been transferred back to SOLIDWORKS.
  • Press the Finish button to complete. You can now go to the basic installation section of this document.


Note: SOLIDWORKS will not run on this machine until it is re-activated.


E-mail Transfer

  • Go to Start, All Programs, SOLIDWORKS 2017, SOLIDWORKS 2017 SP X.X .
  • After SOLIDWORKS starts, go to the Help pull-down and choose Transfer License.
  • If you have more Products than SOLIDWORKS activated (Simulation), you will need to choose the product to deactivate.


Note: If you have Simulation Professional or Premium or Flow Simulation, you will need to deactivate these first, then deactivate SOLIDWORKS.

  • If you do not have internet access at this computer, choose to activate Manually via e-mail.
  • Click the Next button to continue.
  • On the next page, press the Save button to create an activation request file.


Warning! Once you’ve saved this file, your activation is no longer valid.  Do not exit out of the activation window until you have completed the process and read in the response e-mail from SOLIDWORKS or you will not be able to run SOLIDWORKS.


  • Browse to a location on your computer to store this .TXT file and press the Save button.  Copy this text file on to a disk or removable storage device and move it to a machine with internet access.
  • Send this file as an attachment to an e-mail and send it to
  • SOLIDWORKS will send a return e-mail with a different text file attached.  Save this text file to a disk or removable storage space and move it to the machine awaiting activation.
  • In the activation wizard, press the Open button on the e-mail activation page.
  • Browse to the response file and press the Open button.
  • The next page will show you that your transfer is complete.
  • Press the Finish button to complete.


SOLIDWORKS will not run on this machine until it is re-activated.

Basic Installation

If you are installing 2017 and have a previous version of SOLIDWORKS already loaded, it is highly recommended that you uninstall your existing software before upgrading, as many file locations have changed.  See our Removal Guide for more information on this process.

  • Make sure you are logged in as the administrator.
  • Disable all anti-virus and anti-spyware tools. (See Disabling Anti-Virus section if unsure how to disable these tools.)
  • Insert DVD into your computer. If you don’t have the DVD, you can download the program from the customer portal at For more information see our Download and Update document.
  • The installer should start automatically. If it does not, explore to the DVD drive and double-click on the SOLIDWORKS Icon, or right-click and choose autoplay.  If you are using a download, double-click setup.exe within the unzipped sldim folder if it does not run after unzipping. 
  • The first page will welcome you to SOLIDWORKS and ask which type of installation you would like to perform. For a standalone install, pick the option Individual (on this computer).  Press the Next button to continue.
  • The next page will ask for your 16 or 24 digit serial number. If you have this information in a document, you can copy and paste this information into the first cell and it will fill out correctly.  If you are loading other products with separate serial numbers, press the corresponding checkboxes and enter these numbers as well.


Note that SOLIDWORKS Workgroup PDM and PDM Standard are included with SOLIDWORKS Professional and SOLIDWORKS Premium.  A Workgroup PDM serial number only needs to be entered if this item was purchased separately with Standard SOLIDWORKS.


Also, Basic Simulation and SOLIDWORKS Motion are included with SOLIDWORKS Premium and these items only need to be entered if you have purchased these separately.


If you purchased Simulation Professional or Simulation Premium, you will want to enter your serial number for SOLIDWORKS Simulation to ensure the full version is loaded. 


  • Click the Next button to continue. You may be informed that there is a newer version of SOLIDWORKS available for download.  We recommend you choose to continue installing with your original service pack and upgrade later.  Press the Next button to continue.
  • The installer will check to see that it is up to date, and confirm the products you are entitled to load.
  • If you are not online, it will warn that you cannot automatically select products to install. Pressing Cancel will continue with the load, but you must manually select all your add-ins during the installation instead of being given a list based on your serial number.
  • The system will detect any previous installations of SOLIDWORKS.


If an existing SOLIDWORKS installation is detected, you have the option of installing a new installation or upgrading an existing install.  We recommend loading as a new installation.


If you have an existing SOLIDWORKS installation, you should save any Libraries, templates, vault, and shared toolbox locations.  If you no longer wish to use the older version of SOLIDWORKS; uninstall the older version and then continue your installation. 

  • Click the Next button to continue.
  • With the serial number you provided, the version of SOLIDWORKS and its add-ins will appear in a list. If you would like to edit what products will be loaded, you can press the CHANGE button to customize your installation.
  • If you choose to add or remove items from this installation, you can do this with the checkboxes in front of each item. Press the Back to Summary button to return to the revised summary.          
  • If you wish to edit your Download Options, Install Locations or Toolbox Options, you can press the Plus symbol (+) in front of the desired item. Press the CHANGE button on any of these summary items to customize them.



If the download method is left at the default setting of “maximize speed”, this uses as much bandwidth as possible and will slow down the internet for others on your network.  Press the CHANGE button for Download Options and uncheck the Speed up downloads by using more network bandwidth box and then press Back to Summary to continue.


You can have the new background downloader detect and download new service pack updates in the background.  If you do not wish to utilize this new functionality uncheck the Background Downloader options.

Hole Wizard/Toolbox Options:

If you have an existing Toolbox library, you should update this if you plan on using assemblies created in previous versions of SOLIDWORKS in SOLIDWORKS 2017.  If you choose to update, make sure all users are going to use 2017; you cannot mix toolbox information from older versions.  (If you are unsure of what to do here please see the “Concurrent Installations” section of our Comprehensive Toolbox document.)

  • You will also be shown the required file size and available disk space at the bottom of this page. If there are any items selected earlier that require downloads, the size of these will be listed too.
  • Click the Install (or Download and Install) button to continue.                 
  • If any installation files need to download to load your summary options, these will be downloaded from the internet automatically.
  • Now SOLIDWORKS will install.
  • After SOLIDWORKS is installed, the other programs such as eDrawings, DraftSight, SOLIDWORKS Explorer and depending on your package of SOLIDWORKS any Data Management or Simulation items chosen during the product selection on the summary page module will also install.
  • Now that SOLIDWORKS and its Add-Ins have all been loaded, you have the options to automatically check for service pack updates periodically. You also have the option to open the What’s New PDF or log on to the web and comment on the installation interface.
  • You can choose to join the Customer Experience Program if you wish. This will periodically send fault and usage information via e-mail to SOLIDWORKS to help improve the product. 
  • Press the Finish button to complete the installation.
  • Now the software is loaded on the system, you will need to activate your license before you begin using the product. Please see our Product Activation document if you are unsure on how to do this.


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  • how do I deactivate my solidworks from my old computer to put on the new one? what if the old computer is inoperable? Also checking compatibility this computer has a NVIDA Geforce MX150 graphics card and I can't check on the support page for compatability?

  • Hello Doug,

    Our guide for transferring (deactivating) SolidWorks licenses can be found through the link below.

    If the computer is inoperable please contact our technical support agents for further assistance.

    In regards to video card compatibility, the NVIDIA GeForce video card family is not supported by SolidWorks. For supported video cards and drivers please see the link below.


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