Greg Jankowski

Graphics cards and drivers

Blog Post created by Greg Jankowski Employee on Mar 7, 2010

This article describes the information behind the Graphics Card Drivers page. This page is used to help you find the right graphics card driver for your system to insure system performance and stability. SolidWorks tests and certifies graphics card driver for each version of SolidWorks and supported Operating Systems.


The difficult part of determining the "correct" driver for your system is that it is dependant on whether your graphics card came from a computer system vendor, or if it was purchased separately. The system vendor do not always use the same or latest version from the graphics card manufacturer. The other issue is your system/graphics card/operating system/SolidWorks version combination may not be one the certified list.


Using the Site:

There are two main options for displaying driver results; list system by computer vendor (if your graphics card came with you system), or browse for graphics cards because you purchased your graphics card separately or your system combination is not listed on the pull-down list when browsing by computer vendor.


After you have selected computer vendor, additional selections are displayed and you can either display all valid combinations or continue to filter by selecting computer model, graphics card model, operating system, and SolidWorks version.


If you are just browsing graphics cards, or your system is not listed, select Any System Vendor from the Computer Vendor list and then you can select a graphics card vendor and model.



When the results are displayed, there is a key at the bottom of the results describing the test results. If a card has limitations or notes they will be indicated within the results.


The limitations is with cards which have programmable shader capabilities but are not up to handling all of the features used by RealView. Most often, features are backed off due to performance (i.e., self-shadows and/or reflections). The pre-2008 is for cards which we used prior to SolidWorks 2008 with RealView, but cannot be used for the newer features. These would be limited to only visual effects which can be done with OpenGL environment textures.