Backup your work!

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There is nothing more frustrating than doing a significant amount of work only to have the computer crash and lose everything.  Now, the old adage of "Save Early, Save Often" still applies but there are a few settings in SOLIDWORKS that can make sure that you don’t lose all of that work if something unexpected does happen.  In SOLIDWORKS, go to Tools, Options, System Options from the pull down menu and select Backup/Recover.  Auto-Recover saves information about the active document to prevent loss of data when the system terminates unexpectedly (for example, power outage or abnormal termination).  You can set it to save at time intervals or when you make a change.  You should also check the backup settings.

Backup stores a backup of the original document before any changes are saved to the file.  It is one

version before the last saved version of the document.  Backup files are named Backup of <document_name>.  Multiple backups of a document, are named with the most recent version in Backup (1), the next most recent in Backup (2), etc.  Keep the number of backup copies to 1 or 2, so that you don’t fill up the hard drive.  Examine the backup directories occasionally to make sure your backup copies do not use up too much space.

Also, if changes to an active document are saved in error, opening the backup file brings the document back to the point before the changes were made. 

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If the software crashes or the computer turns off unexpectedly, when you reopen SOLIDWORKS, a Document Recovery tab appears in the Task Pane showing a list of files available to recover.  Simply double click on the file that you want to recover or the click the Open All button to recover the files.  You will notice that the document recovery is only good for recovering information from the last session on an abnormal exit.

Phil Whitaker