Category Archives: Tech Tips

Support for Multi-Touch was introduced to SolidWorks in the 2010 release.  Most modern laptops now support Multi-Touch touchpads and/or monitors and the combination of these devices and SolidWorks make for a productive work environment. There are two types of touch gestures that SolidWorks supports.  They are Flicks (What are Flicks?) and Multi-Touch Gestures. Flicks are mostly seen with touchscreen computers (or tablets) whereas Multi-Touch gestures can apply to either the screen or touchpad.

 

Generally Flicks are single finger gestures.  SolidWorks supports all Windows Flick operations.  This includes drag up, drag down, scroll up, scroll down, and also back and forward. It also includes lesser known shortcuts like Undo, Delete, and Copy and Paste.  Flicks can be customized in Windows (Customizing Flicks).

 

Multi-Touch Gestures, as the name implies, require multiple finger input.  Multi-Touch actions are supported for operations like Zoom In, Zoom Out, Rotate, Pan, Roll, Zoom To Fit, and Right Click.

SolidWorks has options to control the interpretation of two finger pan and rotate gestures.  These can be found under Tools > Options > Touch.  These options allows the user to specify either rotate or pan gestures based on the how far their fingers are apart.

 

NOTE: Many of these settings are dependent on the hardware and driver being used.  If you find that Multi-Touch and Flick gestures are not working in Windows and SolidWorks, then either the hardware or driver being used do not support these operations.

 

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Our support group has seen an increase in cases related to Windows 7 and 8 with updates or manual installation of Microsoft Visual C++.  Although these issues typically do not report errors the components are not correctly installed and need to be repaired.  To fix this an  uninstall / re-installing all 3 of the Microsoft Visual C++ versions is recommended. With the 64-bit version of Windows there will be twice as many packages to repair.

To get started, go to the Windows Start menu -> Control Panel -> Programs -> Programs and Features and scroll down to the Microsoft Visual C++ packages. (The number of packages varies depending on the version of Windows that is installed).  Take note of which versions are installed (2003, 2008 and 2010 as well as 64 bit versions). See below:

With SolidWorks 2014,  all 3 release years are required and if the version is 64 bit,  the x64 version for each release year, 2005, 2008 and 2010, will also be required.

Download new versions from the links below or go to the SolidWorks DVD in the \prereqs\VCRedist, VCRedist9, VCRedist10

Microsoft Visual C++ 2005 Redistributable
(x86) http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?id=3387
(x64) http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?id=18471

Microsoft Visual C++ 2008 Redistributable
(x86) http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?id=29
(x64) http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?id=15336

Microsoft Visual C++ 2010 Redistributable
(x86) http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?id=5555
(x64) http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?id=14632

To complete the process uninstall all versions and KB updates and re-install the 3 or 6 versions of Microsoft Visual C++

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In a multi-user SolidWorks Electrical environment the question has come up before: “How do I limit who has access to modify certain Symbols, Reports, Title Blocks and other important settings in SolidWorks Electrical?”  The answer is Rights Management.  Rights Management in SolidWorks Electrical allows you to password protect the modification of some of the more critical parameters to a multi-user SolidWorks Electrical environment.  To enable Rights Management in SolidWorks Electrical select Tools > Interface Configuration, here you will see a “Rights Management” Tab.  Check the option for “Password required for configuration functions”.

You will then be prompted to create a password.  After a password is created, restart SolidWorks Electrical and Rights Management will be active, and much of the configuration of SolidWorks Electrical will require a password to modify.

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One of the first steps to making CAMWorks a productive tool is ensuring that you use the correct post processor.  When being sent a post processor from Digital Dimensions, Inc. it generally comes in a zipped format.  This is because the post processor is actually a combination of files.  In order to use the post processor sent to you, you must download and extract these files to whatever location you prefer.  It is important to note, all files sent to you must be extracted to the same folder!  It is important that the contents of the zip file are all together and not in different folders.  Below is an example of the contents of a typical post processor:

Selecting a post processor in CAMWorks is done when defining the machine being used.  When defining a machine you will see a “Post Processor” tab.  Here you can select the post processor that was downloaded and extracted by browsing.  You must select the .CTL file from the extracted files.  This is the post processor file.  After browsing to the post and selecting it, anything posted from CAMWorks will be done using that post processor.

 A more permanent method for doing this is to define the post processor with the machine in the CAMWorks Technology Database. This will set your post as the default post for a particular machine and eliminate having to always select a post processor. To do this, launch the Technology Database, select the type of machine you are trying to define (Mill, Turn, Mill/Turn), then select “Machine”.

 

On the general tab of the Machine Parameters dialog box you will find a dropdown where a post processor can be selected. Selecting the post processor in the Technology Database sets this as the default post whenever using that machine.  This will save you from having to repeatedly select a post processor.

 

 

NOTE: For your post processor to be available in this list the entire post processor fileset must be extracted to the default location for posts in CAMWorks.  This is typically: C:\CAMWorksData\CAMWorks20XXx64\Posts

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With the release of SolidWorks 2014 it is time to review what operating systems are going to be supported. Reviewing the System Requirements matrix on the SolidWorks site we can see that Windows Vista will not be supported for the SolidWorks 2014 release.

Microsoft ended mainstream support for Windows Vista on 4/10/2012 so it is no surprise that Windows 7 (32 and 64 bit) and Windows 8 (64 bit only) will be the required operating system for current versions of SolidWorks.

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