This is something i've been dealing with for a while now, through multiple video drivers and service packs. Solidworks has a bad habit of randomly locking up solid for a good 5-15 seconds when i've got large assemblies open. With an assembly of nearly 1000 parts open, this happens relentlessly every 15-30 seconds. I notice it most often rotating or zooming in on a model, though I've also seen it happen on a regular basis when selecting something in the feature tree, menus, right clicking in the graphics view, etc.
The funny thing is, it's not necessarily at the beginning or end of rotating a part. It often freezes several seconds AFTER I begin rotating. I sometimes see it freeze all on its own in the background while I'm in another program. (Vista will put 'Not Responding' in the title bar for a few seconds...) In short, these temporary hangs are frequent and unpredictable. With task manager open, I've noticed that every time things seize up, SW processor usage drops to zero (about 3% total, system-wide) and there appears to be no correlation to a change in memory usage. The rest of my system remains fast and responsive while Solidworks is stumbling.
So i've tried Large Assembly mode, Disabled automatic rebuild, Turned off auto-recovery, Unloaded all add-ins, use lightweight parts, several different video drivers (both certified and uncertified from the nvidia website), you name it. I still spend approximately half my day staring at a frozen solidworks window.
Is this to be expected for 1000 part assemblies or am I the only one seeing this behavior?
I'm currently running SW2009x64 SP4.1 on Vista Enterprise 64 bit SP1.
Xeon 5160 3.0GHz Dual-Core
8GB ECC DDRII RAM
nVidia Quadro FX4500 512MB currently with most recent drivers (problem exists with certified drivers as well)
All files are local (we run Workgroup PDM)