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SOLIDWORKS Standalone Slow to Launch and Lingers on Splash Screen at “Initializing VBA Engine” Message and Disabled Add-In

Esther Park

Some users have experienced an issue, where a Standalone SOLIDWORKS product, is very slow to launch or slow to start up. This article discusses symptoms, cause and solution for this issue. 

Symptoms

Usually SOLIDWORKS will start up very quickly. In customers experiencing this issue, the SOLIDWORKS splash screen will load, but it will hang at the “initializing VBA engine” message, as well as an add-in. The loading add-in is usually disabled in the Tools>Options>Add-ins, but during the launch process SOLIDWORKS will still try to open.  SOLIDWORKS can take unusually long to open, sometimes even minutes.

Cause

This issue is caused by network license’s older server information lingering on a system. For instance, if a system previously used a network license for SOLIDWORKS, then the old server information can still exist on the users system. Thus, SOLIDWORKS will try to access license information from the server, before using the correct standalone product.   

Solution

The solution to this issue is to open the client SolidNetwork License Manager, found in the Windows Start Button>All Programs>SOLIDWORKS 20XX>SOLIDWORKS Tools, and remove the listed servers in the Server List.

If there are no servers listed in the Server List, then proceed to the steps below. Going into the registry editor and editing any registry keys must be done with extreme care and only the listed keys should be modified, nothing else.

  1. Close all applications, including SOLIDWORKS.
  2. Search for regedit in the Start Menu’s search bar
  3. Start the exe
  4. Browse to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\FLEXlm License Manager
  5. Right click on the SW_D_LICENSE_FILE name and select Rename
  6. Rename the SW_D_LICENSE_FILE  to SW_D_LICENSE_FILE - OLD
  7. Press OK.
  8. Repeat steps 4 to 7 for the following key:

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Wow6432Node\FLEXlm License Manager

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    Frank Pace

    Also helps if stuck in another location. For my issue, it helped a customer when it was stuck on Verifying License "Splash Screen"