SOLIDWORKS during the Covid-19 Pandemic

9th April 2020
SolidWorks and the Covid-19 coronavirus
  • types of licenses
  • standard
  • online
  • network
  • online licensing
  • licenses changes by solidworks
  • 3d experience

Due to SOLIDWORKS licensing options flexibility, there a multitude of different options to enable working out of the office to combat the current COVID-19 pandemic. With the current pandemic of the COVID-19 virus (also known as the corona virus), self isolation is becoming a very distinct possibility for many users. While this might seem like a big inconvenience, due to the nature of SOLIDWORKS licencing, working from home can become a very feasible option.


in this topic we will go over existing licensing methods and how they can be used at home

Stand alone license

Using the SOLIDWORKS activation wizard users can activate and deactivate their standalone licenses at will. A large majority of SOLIDWORKS users have standalone licenses, however, these are can only be tied down to one machine. Thankfully this process is easy and can be done directly in SOLIDWORKS, by going on Help > Licenses > deactivate.

Using the SOLIDWORKS activation wizard users can activate and deactivate the licenses at will. A large majority of SOLIDWORKS users use standalone licenses, however, these are can only be tied down to one machine. Thankfully this process is easy and can be done directly in SOLIDWORKS, by going on Help > Licenses > deactivate.

This will free up your license and allow it to be activated on another machine. Though it is important to note that this requires access to your original machine.

Online licensing

Another option for standalone license users is to convert your Standalone SOLIDWORKS license into an online license. SOLIDWORKS users (using SOLIDWORKS 2018 or later) can link their licenses to their customer portal ID. Online licenses can be set up on the mysolidworks website, and can easily be reverted back to offline option. This not only means that you can activate SOLIDWORKS on a multitude of different machines, but online licenses will even give users the option of remotely logging of their account of other machines, useful if you forgot to terminate your last active session. If you have left a file open it will even prompt you to save before logging out and closing the session. you can also borrow your online license if you are going to be working in an area with no internet connection for a period of up to 30 days.

Network licensing

Network licenses will hold a “pool” of your licenses which users can “pull” from their on-site server onto your machine while you are on site. However a good solution for network license users is to use the SNL (SolidNetWork) manager to borrow a license for up to 30 days that can be used when disconnected from the on-site server. However, one thing to note is that to initiate this process the machine must be connected to the server after which it can be taken “offsite”.

In order to do this, open the SOLIDWORKS Network License Manager on your server machine and go to the “Borrow” tab, select the product you want to borrow and specify the date you want to borrow it until (the maximum period is 30 days).


A vpn connections allows your machines to browse the internet of a different machine and browse the internet using another machines conncetion. While this could be used to browse your office machine PC from a home PC please note that borrowing a license via a VPN is not officially supported. This is because Borrowing a license over a VPN connection may cause licenses to be tied to your virtual network adaptor which will “orphan” licenses once disconnected.


SOLIDWORKS is taking proactive steps to help our customers during this time of uncertainty caused by the COVID-19 virus.

For Standalone users, it is recommended to use the above reactivation and online licensing tools discussed above. However, for users that do not have access to their machines to deactivate, It is possible for us to provide short term (30 days max) standalone license files to be used by clients during these uncertain times.

For Network license users who do not have a VPN solution, or have a machine on which they can borrow the license before taking it home, short term (30 days max) standalone license files can be provided to users during the crises.


While SOLIDWORKS licensing gives users a remarkable amount of options for working out of office it still doesn’t solve company-wide issues, such as collaboration, communication, and design reviews. fortunately, SOLIDWORKS has developed  THE 3D EXPERIENCE platform suite of tools that will innovate how you collaborate throughout your organization.

Members all the organization can all be assigned roles, that best fit their role in your organization, this makes sure users of the platform have the most relevant apps to them at their disposal. Notable examples of these roles include:

  • The Collaborative Business Innovator: Gives users access to apps and tools that connect all users inside and outside your organization, by establishing communities to share, experiment and innovate effectively product lines successfully.
  • Collaborative Industry Innovation: Collaborative Industry Innovation gives users apps that allow users in all sectors of the industry to organize, manage and collaborate on content in real-time and in a secured manner.
  • 3D Creator: A powerful parametric cloud-based modeling solution that allows engineers to create, innovate and evaluate 3D models, in the same manner, they are used to in machine-based CAD systems.

For a better example of how the 3D experience can drive innovation, look below, below is a custom dashboard that I use. Here using a combination of apps, everything I need for my work is neatly organized into one custom made dashboard combing features from all the three roles mentioned. Below on the top right, you can see me using the Collaborative Industry Innovation to see revisions of a part made by someone else in our tenant, below that I have my communities open to me where I can see contributions, post and information by other users in my organization and to the left, I have X Design open, which using its parametric modelling features I was able to model this years model mania challenge.

For more information about SOLIDWORKS or SOLIDPLANS by HardSoft please get in touch with our SOLIDWORKS team on or call 020 7111 1643.

SolidPlans By HardSoft