SOLIDWORKS System Requirements
We get a lot of support inquiries dealing with what kind of PC is the best to run SOLIDWORKS. Here are a few tips from the CATI tech staff on selecting your next SOLIDWORKS system. You can also download our latest PDF on SOLIDWORKS system requirements on the right.
|Client Products (e.g. SOLIDWORKS)|
|Windows 10, 64-bit|
|Windows 7 SP1, 64-bit|
|Server Products (e.g. SOLIDWORKS PDM)|
|Windows Server 2019||
|Windows Server 2016|
|Windows Server 2012 R2|
|eDrawings for Mac|
|macOS Big Sur (11.0)|
|macOS Catalina (10.15)|
|macOS Mojave (10.14)|
|macOS High Sierra (10.13)|
|macOS Sierra (10.12)|
- 16 GB or more, SOLIDWORKS
- 32 GB or more – recommended for large assembly work and Simulation
- Visit https://www.solidworks.com/support/hardware-certification for a list of certified cards and drivers.
- Nvidia Quadro or AMD FirePro or AMD Radeon Pro.
- Intergrated Intel HD graphics and gaming cards (Nvidia GeForce for example) are not certified and not recommended.
- Quadro NVS are not recommended; they are 2D only cards.
- While a certified video card is important SOLIDWORKS is a CPU bound application, you’ll see more performance gains from a faster CPU.
- For SOLIDWORKS 2019, the new performance pipeline requires Nvidia Quadro series cards Kepler, Maxwell, Pascal and Volta that support OpenGL 4.5.
- 3.3GHz or Higher
- Current generation Intel or AMD with SSE2 support processor – as fast as you can afford.
- The Intel i7 Generation 8 Coffee Lake series are the fastest CPU’s today.
- SOLIDWORKS will take advantage of multi core and multi CPU architectures up to 4 cores.
- All SOLIDWORKS Simulation products take advantage multi core and multi CPU architectures.
- Sata Controlled SSD (solid state drive) recommended at minimum.
- New PCIe M.2 drives are strongly recommended for use for the primary drive.
PDM Contributor or Viewer: 10 GB or more
PDM Web Client or Web Server: 5 GB or more
PDM Archive Server or Database Server: 50 GB or more
SOLIDWORKS Manage: 10 GB or more
Very few laptops that have the certified graphics cards for SolidWorks:
- Boxx MXL Laptops.
- Dell Precision mobile workstations.
- HP EliteBook mobile workstations.
- Lenovo Thinkpad W series.
SOLIDWORKS has created a benchmark to gauge system performance.
See what other SOLIDWORKS users have for hardware and their performance to make a better informed decision.
Hypervisors (Virtual Environments)
|SOLIDWORKS 2019||SOLIDWORKS 2020||SOLIDWORKS 2021|
|VMware vSphere ESXi||6.5||6.7||6.7 U3|
|Parallels Desktop, Mac||14||14||TBA|
Microsoft/Apple Products Support Lifecycle (SOLIDWORKS 2018 and older)
|Products||Start of Support||End of Support1|
|Windows 8.1, 64-bit||SW 2014 SP1||SW 2018 SP5|
|Windows 7, 32-bit||SW 2010 SP1||SW 2014 SP5|
|Windows Vista, 64-bit||SW 2008 SP3.1||SW 2013 SP5|
|Windows Vista, 32-bit||SW 2008 SP0||SW 2013 SP5|
|Windows XP, 64-bit||SW 2006 SP4||SW 2012 SP5|
|Windows XP, 32-bit||SW 2001Plus SP0||SW 2013 SP5|
|Windows Server 2012||SW 2014 SP0||SW 2018 SP5|
|Windows Server 2008 R2, SP1||SW 2009||SW 2017 SP5|
|Windows Server 2008||SW 2008||SW 2014 SP5|
|SQL Server 2008 R2||SW 2010 SP4||SW 2017 SP5|
|IE 10||SW 2013 SP0||SW 2016 SP5|
|IE 9||SW 2011 SP4||SW 2015 SP5|
|IE 8||SW 2009 SP5||SW 2014 SP5|
|Excel, Word 2010||SW 2010 SP5||SW 2018 SP5|
|Excel, Word 2007||SW 2008 SP1||SW 2014 SP5|
|OS X El Capitan (10.11)||eDrawings 2017||eDrawings 2018|
|OS X Yosemite (10.10)||eDrawings 2015||eDrawings 2018|
|Guidelines to help ensure SOLIDWORKS installation success and optimal runtime performance|
Though these recommendations are a good starting point for specing out a SOLIDWORKS machine, it is always a good idea to conduct your own hardware/software tests before purchasing any workstation, computer hardware, or video card for SolidWorks.
- End Of Support (EOS) corresponds to the last SOLIDWORKS release where a Microsoft product is supported (This is synchronized with the Microsoft Mainstream Support End Date). SOLIDWORKS releases after the EOS are not supported for the said Microsoft product and SOLIDWORKS installation is blocked in the case of an operating system.
- SOLIDWORKS Product Support Lifecycle defines the End Of Support for SOLIDWORKS versions.
- SolidWorks recommends using the latest Microsoft update of Windows, Office and Internet Explorer.
- SolidWorks supports each Windows 10 release for applicable SOLIDWORKS releases as long as it is still covered by both the SOLIDWORKS Product Support Lifecycle and Microsoft Windows Lifecycle Fact Sheet.
- SolidWorks recommends using a Windows Server operating system for all SOLIDWORKS server-based products. Refer to the Microsoft Windows Server documentation to select the Windows Server edition that meets your needs.
- Windows Home Editions and Windows To Go are not supported.
- Apple Mac ® based machines running Windows using Boot Camp are not supported.
- SOLIDWORKS 2018 on Windows 8.1 and Windows Server 2012 R2 requires the Microsoft April 2014 update
- It is not recommended to install any instances of other applications on the SOLIDWORKS PDM Archive or Database Server. For PDM Professional, it is recommended the Archive and Database servers are two separate, dedicated machines.
- SolidWorks does not test or certify VPN (Virtual Private Network) solutions but provides best-effort support. Users may be directed to work directly with their VPN provider to resolve issues on a case-by-case basis.
- Beginning with SOLIDWORKS 2020, DVD distribution media will only be provided on request. Please contact Computer Aided Technology if you require a physical copy of the software.