I as a tech hate, and I repeat hate telling a customer that they should uninstall and reinstall to try and solve a problem. To me that is just poor troubleshooting. I say that this is much like taking you car to a mechanic and him saying that I think that you have a bad head gasket. Well the fact is that I either do or don’t have a bad head gasket, but I refuse to tear it down and just “throw parts” at the problem. I would say that it is time to take a hard look at the mechanic.
That leads into the next question. Have I ever told a customer to uninstall and reinstall SOLIDWORKS even though I was unsure of the real issue? Without a doubt yes. And I will tell you why but first I need to go into what I do to look at troublesome machines. CATI has service that we use called WebEx. WebEx is an awesome tool. It allows me to look directly at a customer desktop and even take control if I am allowed to do so by the customer. This is letting me look right down the throat of the machine. I then start looking around at the machine; depending on the issue maybe I look at graphics drivers, versions of files. The whole time that I am controlling that machine I am also trying to get a gut feel for the overall “health” of the system. The second reason that I would do tell a customer to uninstall and reinstall would be if I believe that one of the prereqs is the cause of the issue and I think that the customer will find it easier to reinstall the prereqs using the SOLIDWORKS installation manager than trying to uninstall and reinstall the prereqs manually.
So this is where thing may get a little blunt. Let me say sorry up front. Come on guys! Your machine with SOLIDWORKS, SOLIDWORKS (2), SOLIDWORKS (3) all in the program files? Yeah, not healthy. Let’s face it this machine most likely doesn’t need support, it needs a exorcism. All the ghosts of SOLIDWORKS past right there to haunt you. If the program file in SOLIDWORKS is like this, where is you toolbox folder? This location has changed of the years. Maybe it got upgrade with the rest of SOLIDWORKS, but the point is that this machine is not healthy. The number of SOLIDWORKS folders in the programs group is not the only way to check the health of a system, but it sure does clue into what this machine has been through.
CATI has a webcast coming up on this topic. Keep a eye on webinars at www.cati.com to registration info.