25 Replies Latest reply on Mar 21, 2018 12:21 PM by Rick McDonald

    New Machine after Subscription Lapse?

    John Willett

      I'm considering dropping my subscription to SW Premium this year, BUT I'm also looking at a computer and OS upgrade in the next couple of years as I'm still running Windows 7 SP1 on a now-four-years-old laptop.  I have dutifully downloaded the final SPs of all of the SW editions that have appeared over my subscription tenure, but I'm still wondering about the machine transfer process in the absence of a VAR.  In particular, if I'm to be allowed to install on a new machine after dropping my subscription, how does SW prevent me from still running it on the old machine (effectively a second seat)?  Does this transfer process work indefinitely, or must I keep up my subscription until I've installed SW on my new machine? -- John Willett

        • Re: New Machine after Subscription Lapse?
          Jeff Holliday

          Installing SW on a machine is different from using it on different ones. SW maintains controls in recent years by limiting usage thru "activations". it is allowed to be activated on only 1 machine at a time. The license itself is a "perpetual" type of license. You are able to continue using it after a subscription lapse but you may not update it without re-subscribing and paying a substantial fee to do so. Transferring to another computer should be allowed.

            • Re: New Machine after Subscription Lapse?
              John Willett

              Has anyone actually succeeded in doing this?

               

              Jeff -- Thanks for the helpful outline of the situation.  So (and I'm mostly guessing now) the procedure would go something like this:
              1) Allow subscription to lapse.  (Current SW installation should continue to run.)

              2) Acquire new PC and OS at some future date.

              3) De-activate SW on old PC.  (I presume this step is essential, but note that it might not be possible if the PC dies first.  Then what?)

              4) Install and activate SW on the new PC.  It's this activation phase that I'm most uncertain about.  Is it automatic, as SW would be installed using a copy of Installation Manger that was created during a full download before subscription lapse?  Or do I have to save some sort of activation code for future use?

              Are the above steps about right, or how must they be modified to work successfully?

               

              Please forgive me for being a worry-wart, but I can immediately think of a couple of pitfalls that might prove fatal:

              1) Microsoft makes some update to its OS that is incompatible with my latest licensed version of SW.

              2) The hardware of the new PC (as after some future hardware change to mitigate the Meltdown/Spectre flaw) is similarly incompatible.

              I suppose there's no way around such problems except to retain the old machine in its original state (necessarily disconnected from the Internet!) and transfer SW back to it.  The problem here is that I doubt SW can be installed at all, perhaps not even started on a routine basis, without an Internet connection to verify the license.  True? -- John Willett

                • Re: New Machine after Subscription Lapse?
                  Richard Gergely

                  John Willett wrote:

                   

                  Has anyone actually succeeded in doing this?

                   

                  Jeff -- Thanks for the helpful outline of the situation. So (and I'm mostly guessing now) the procedure would go something like this:
                  1) Allow subscription to lapse. (Current SW installation should continue to run.)

                  2) Acquire new PC and OS at some future date.

                  3) De-activate SW on old PC. (I presume this step is essential, but note that it might not be possible if the PC dies first. Then what?)

                  4) Install and activate SW on the new PC. It's this activation phase that I'm most uncertain about. Is it automatic, as SW would be installed using a copy of Installation Manger that was created during a full download before subscription lapse? Or do I have to save some sort of activation code for future use?

                  Are the above steps about right, or how must they be modified to work successfully?

                   

                  Please forgive me for being a worry-wart, but I can immediately think of a couple of pitfalls that might prove fatal:

                  1) Microsoft makes some update to its OS that is incompatible with my latest licensed version of SW.

                  2) The hardware of the new PC (as after some future hardware change to mitigate the Meltdown/Spectre flaw) is similarly incompatible.

                  I suppose there's no way around such problems except to retain the old machine in its original state (necessarily disconnected from the Internet!) and transfer SW back to it. The problem here is that I doubt SW can be installed at all, perhaps not even started on a routine basis, without an Internet connection to verify the license. True? -- John Willett

                  Solidworks starts fine without a internet connection. The only problem would be trying to transfer the licence to another computer without internet connection.

                   

                  I doubt you will have a problem with windows 10 on a new machine and your existing version of SW you have. Beyond windows 10 no one has a crystal ball so no one can definitely give you an answer on that.

              • Re: New Machine after Subscription Lapse?
                Glenn Schroeder

                I've never gone through that process, so maybe someone else can verify if I'm right or not, but it's my understanding that your VAR would need to be contacted about de-activating the license on the old computer and activating it on the new one.  I've heard varying stories about how cooperative they are with that if you're off subscription.  I believe it depends on the VAR.

                  • Re: New Machine after Subscription Lapse?
                    John Willett

                    >>it's my understanding that your VAR would need to be contacted about de-activating the license on the old computer and activating it on the new one.  I've heard varying stories about how cooperative they are with that if you're off subscription.<<

                     

                     

                    Well, that's worrisome!  I don't think I want to ask my VAR about that right now, but if I decide I have to, I'll report back.  Sure would be glad to hear from somebody who's actually tried it! -- John Willett

                    • Re: New Machine after Subscription Lapse?
                      John Willett

                      >>I don't think I want to ask my VAR about that right now, but if I decide I have to, I'll report back.<<

                       

                      Well I decided to contact my VAR and got the following information.  On this basis I guess I'm now going to quit paying $2K per year mainly for the privilege of reporting more bugs to SW.  Perhaps this information will be useful to someone else as well:

                       

                      "If you have setting that you’d like to save, use the Copy Settings Wizard in SolidWorks Tools to create a file that you can copy to the new machine. You can save System Options, Toolbar layout, Keyboard shortcuts, Mouse gestures, Menu customization and Saved Views. When using this option, note where the file is being saved to.

                       

                      "If you have custom templates that you use, note the file location for those so you can copy them over to the new machine.

                      When you’re ready to transfer/deactivate SolidWorks on your machine for activation on a different machine, follow these steps [on the old machine, I presume]:

                       

                      1. Open SolidWorks and from the Help Menu, select Deactivate License.
                      2. Click “Select All” to select all products and versions for deactivation.
                      3. Choose the default option of “Automatically over the internet”.
                      4. Continue through the on screen prompts until activation has transferred successfully [not sure what this last means, as activation presumably occurs on the new machine].

                       

                      " When you install on the new machine, you'll be asked to activate once the installation has completed. If at any time you want to reactivate on the old machine, follow the directions for deactivating the license that I sent earlier.

                       

                      "SolidWorks does not publish SP 5.0 media so your method of downloading all the installation files for that service pack will work. [I had noticed that there is an 'Activation Wizard' available for download for each of the versions archived on the Customer Portal, so I also asked what this does.]  The SW Activation Wizard 2017 SP 5.0 is a tool for releasing an activation when a SolidWorks license has been uninstalled. It's useful but not necessary. We can get that for you at any time."

                       

                      I just downloaded the Activation Wizards to go with each of my SP5.0 saved versions, but I still don't know whether I may need it or how to use it.  Has anyone had experience with this?  Other cautions? -- John Willett

                        • Re: New Machine after Subscription Lapse?
                          Dan Golthing

                           

                           

                          "If you have setting that you’d like to save, use the Copy Settings Wizard in SolidWorks Tools to create a file that you can copy to the new machine. You can save System Options, Toolbar layout, Keyboard shortcuts, Mouse gestures, Menu customization and Saved Views. When using this option, note where the file is being saved to.

                           

                          "If you have custom templates that you use, note the file location for those so you can copy them over to the new machine.

                          When you’re ready to transfer/deactivate SolidWorks on your machine for activation on a different machine, follow these steps [on the old machine, I presume]:

                           

                          Wrong...

                           

                          Keep this stuff on the cloud and then it's always available whatever computer you're using.

                           

                          Map solidworks to the file location for your cloud account and you can even have multiple computers pointing to these reference documents, if you're using multiple computers that is like many of us.

                      • Re: New Machine after Subscription Lapse?
                        Richard Gergely

                        Just as a interesting thing that happened when I put a new ssd drive in my computer. I used the Samsung wizard if I remember correctly and solidworks didn't pick up it was on a new ssd until I upgrade to 2017 from 2016.

                        At that point I had to contact my VAR to sort it out but it didn't get past the fact I had been using 2016 and even upgraded to sp5 without solidworks realising.

                        My VAR was quite surprised when I told them I had been using the new ssd drive for months it was only the fact I did a clean install for 2017 alerted the licence system.

                        • Re: New Machine after Subscription Lapse?
                          John Kreutzberger

                          I recently did exactly this. My subscription lapsed 11/30/16. I am a semi-retired independent contractor and could not justify continuing to pay the subscription fee. (I initially purchased SW on 11/30/1998 and have paid every year since.) (( I also feel that long-time users like myself should be granted a lifetime license, but in our current greed-based society I can't see that ever happening.))

                           

                          First of all, in March/2017, I needed to re-install my OS on my older workstation. I called my VAR and explained things to him. He said-"no problem" and sent me a link to the full version of SW2016, sp5. After downloading it I was able to re-install and then save it in total in case I ever needed to re-load it onto my other computer-a portable workstation. This worked well. You do need to remember to de-activate your SW license before-hand or you will have problems re-activating it.

                           

                          Then just this last December, I was having problems with that portable workstation and needed to re-install the OS on that machine as well. I had the full final version of 2016 saved and the re-installation went smoothly this time also. However, I was searching my bookcase for my Windows 7 license information for the re-install and ran into the SW 2017 dvd's that had arrived 2 weeks before my subscription had expired in November of 2016. This got me thinking. I remembered reading that if your subscription is current at the time of release of a new version, then you are eligible for the latest service pack of that release even if that sp is released after your subscription expires. I called my contact at my old VAR and he confirmed this and was happy to provide me with another link to the full version of SW 2017, sp5. I now have SW 2016, sp5 on one machine and SW 2017, sp5 on the other. I am evaluating 2017 currently and will eventually have it on both machines.

                           

                          As I said before-be sure to de-activate your license before updating your OS or getting a new machine. Another thing to keep in mind is that SW only allows 1 machine for license now. (We used to be allowed 2 active machines per license but this has changed.-see greed comment above.) Not a huge problem because you can easily de-activate the license on one machine and then reactivate on the other.

                           

                          So-YES- you can do what you are asking. It was easy for me because I had met one of the support techs from my VAR at a SW new release roll-out several years ago. We were chatting between sessions and discovered we had mutual connections from his home town where I had lived for many years. He gave me a card and told me if I ever needed help, I should call his direct line rather than the general support number. This helped a lot, obviously, but the bottom line is that even without a personal connection-you are entitled to the latest service pack of the version that was current during your subscription period. Good Luck!

                            • Re: New Machine after Subscription Lapse?
                              John Willett

                              >>...if your subscription is current at the time of release of a new version, then you are eligible for the latest service pack of that release even if that sp is released after your subscription expires.<<

                               

                              John -- Thanks, I did not know this!  Great news, as they had already send me the SP0.0 DVDs of the 2018 edition.  It's important to me in particular because they claim to have fixed one of my pet peeves -- that Pack&Go almost always saves simulation results even if you tell it not to -- in 2018 SP2.0.  Now I'll be able to find out if this actually happens... -- John Willett

                              • Re: New Machine after Subscription Lapse?
                                John Willett

                                John -- Did you ever have to use the "Activation Wizard" during your re-installs? -- John Willett

                                • Re: New Machine after Subscription Lapse?
                                  John Willett

                                  >>if your subscription is current at the time of release of a new version, then you are eligible for the latest service pack of that release even if that sp is released after your subscription expires.<<

                                   

                                  John (or anyone) -- Another question about this.  It appears from your post that you had never installed SW 2017 SP0 while your license was alive, but that they still gave you a link to the final SP of 2017 much later.  Correct?

                                   

                                  I have the DVDs for 2018 SP0, (I think SP1.0 is out now) but have never installed it, thinking I would never get to update it.  The clock is ticking on my subscription, which expires 1/31/18.  Should I install 2018 from the DVDs now, get my foot in the door so to speak, before my subscription expires?

                                   

                                  Your experience suggests that it doesn't matter.  Either they will allow me to download the final SP later this year or they won't.  I don't intend to run the software until it's in at least SP 2.0 or 3.0... -- John Willett

                                  • Re: New Machine after Subscription Lapse?
                                    John Willett

                                    >>...if your subscription is current at the time of release of a new version, then you are eligible for the latest service pack of that release even if that sp is released after your subscription expires.<<

                                     

                                    I just asked my VAR about this, and unfortunately for me, he disagreed:

                                     

                                    "Your license expired on 1/31/2018 this entitles you to all of the service packs for SolidWorks 2017 and only service pack 0 and 1 for SolidWorks 2018."

                                     

                                    I don't know how to find out if this is the final word.  If so, I guess I'm out of luck with 2018.  Does anyone know of a higher authority (or a written statement from SW) to appeal to?  Or maybe you were just lucky in having a friend in the right place? -- John Willett

                                      • Re: New Machine after Subscription Lapse?
                                        Rick McDonald

                                        Ned Hutchinson and John Willett -  information I got from my VAR (although it was nearly 2 years ago) was that you are eligible for ALL service packs for a Year version of the software that was current when your subscription ended.

                                        I was on SW2015 SP1 when my subscription ended. I had the new Service packs but didn't want to install if I wan't allowed.

                                        I asked my VAR and he confirmed that I could install all service packs for that Year version (1 through 5).  If I was not eligible the software would not allow the installation.

                                        The restriction was that you could not download the service packs unless you were on subscription (or you could get it from someone who was).  He told me that I I did not have it, he would get me a copy.  We had another seat in our company that was on subscription, so we were able to download it.  I installed it without any problems or errors or messages that I was not able.  If you tried to install a version or SP that you were not eligible for, it will fail to install.

                                        This may have changed since then, but I have not heard anything different.

                                        If you can get a copy, try the install. If it allows you to install (since SWX checks your S/N and eligibility during an install) then SWX is telling you it is allowed.  If it fails then the rules have changed and SWX is informing you of that.

                                          • Re: New Machine after Subscription Lapse?
                                            John Willett

                                            Rick -- Thanks for this.  I cannot directly obtain the new SPs because I'm locked out of downloads on the Portal.  (Anyhow the final SP of 2018 will not be out until late fall.)  I could try asking Tech Support at my VAR (assuming they will talk to me at all), instead of the salesman who gave me the quoted information.  It would sure be nice to have some sort of documentation, however, with which to confront them!

                                             

                                            I now know of at least two folks (on this thread) who have succeeded in getting the remaining SPs after a subscription lapse, and one who has not... -- John Willett

                                              • Re: New Machine after Subscription Lapse?
                                                Rick McDonald

                                                John Willett

                                                Are you a member of a SolidWorks User Group in your area?

                                                That would be a good place to get with other users that may have access to the SP's when then come out and get you a  copy.

                                                I am not on subscription now but I always see someone from my VAR at my user group meetings and I have always had good answers from them on questions like this - even without being on sub.  It is in their best interest to help you with simple answers or updates like this since if / when you go back on subscription you will be more likely to get your service through them.

                                                The keys will be if the rules are the same where you will still be eligible to install the SP and you get the correct answers from the VAR.

                                        • Re: New Machine after Subscription Lapse?
                                          Brian McEwen

                                          """Another thing to keep in mind is that SW only allows 1 machine for license now. """ 

                                          Did something change on activations recently? With a standard license I thought they still allow a 2nd activation.  The idea is you can have it installed on a work computer, and then on one you can use at home. That is the way I have our SolidWorks 2016 license set up.

                                          I either set this up in late 2016 or early 2017.  We are still using it that way. I believe the agreement includes something about only using one copy at a time.

                                           

                                          How Does Home Licensing for SOLIDWORKS Work?  Ok, so sounds like that is more tightly enforced now, I think.  

                                          • Re: New Machine after Subscription Lapse?
                                            Bobby Penland

                                            There is a discussion of SolidWorks licenses for two machines at this link:

                                            Solidworks rescinded the ability to have a two machines activated at the same time?

                                            • Re: New Machine after Subscription Lapse?
                                              Ned Hutchinson

                                              I have been told by my VAR you are only able to get the service packs until your subs lapse.

                                              So if you lapsed say on the 5/6/2018 and say 2018 sp4 came out on 6/6/2018 you would not be eligable.?