10 Replies Latest reply on Oct 20, 2015 6:30 AM by James Riddell

    solidworks simulation professional without CAD

    Umberto Zanola

      To make a long story short, as FEM need a lot of time for setup and run, we don't want to lock a CAD license and a workstation to perform this task.

      We prefer a separate machine that can run for hours without fearing a crash or slowdown while a user is modeling.

       

      This is probably a silly question, but from all the pamphlets I received is nowhere written that Solidworks Simulation is a simply addon to a solidworks license and seems to be advertised as a complete separate package (not explicitly, but even the opposite is not cleary stated), it is not written in the requirements that you need a solidworks (standard or whatever) to run it. So I imagine I can run the software, load a model, setup the analysis environment and kick the simulation but... am I missing something?

      Is it possible to use simulation package to load a cad model and use only the simulation enviroinment?

      I think it is some basic piece of information, but it is not cleary stated that it is an mere add-on and we had the salesman offering even a dedicated workstation,

      but without the cad license (anyway I will call them next week, but it would be nice to have some feedback beforehand).

       

      Thanks in advance

        • Re: solidworks simulation professional without CAD
          Chris Michalski

          In order to run a simulation you need the Solidworks license open.  If you are using SW Professional to perform the simulation then that entire license is considered in use and unavailable to another user while the simulation runs.  You cannot run the Simulation add-in without the main SW program running also.

            • Re: solidworks simulation professional without CAD
              Umberto Zanola

              Thank you for the reply.

               

              This is what I thought, but may I ask where is it cleary stated?

              Not in the requirements at least and I think it is very important to write it as a prerequisite.

               

              If it consumes a CAD license while performing a simulation for hours, without releasing it back to the server it means an additional cost for our budget.

              The VAR offered a workstation paired with the simulation license, but if I have to give up a modelling license, well something is wrong... at least they should have offered an additional license as they know how many workstation and CAD we have in the company.

            • Re: solidworks simulation professional without CAD
              Alessandro Tornincasa

              SOLIDWORKS Flow Simulation offers a capability called "remote solver" which means you do pre-processing with your SOLIDWORKS Standard license and then a remote computer in your network will solve analysis. In the mean time you can use your CAD license to do something else. I bet there's an enhancement request to have this functionality in SOLIDWORKS Simulation as well.

              You should check whether there's already an enhancement request and posssibly vote for it.

               

              Also Dassault Systèmes will soon open ideas proposals for future releases: maybe you can submit this an idea.

              Cheers,

               

              Alex

                • Re: solidworks simulation professional without CAD
                  Umberto Zanola

                  It is the norm with FEM, you have the pre-post processor (basically the GUI) and the solver (the math engine) as a separate process.

                  Autodesk Moldflow is like this and many others. In fact even SW launch a different exe to solve the calculation, but the stupidest thing is that you need the CAD open to complete it...

                   

                  What is bugging me is that DS is advertising Simulation as A SEPARATE PACKAGE and not an add-in.

                  As a proof I have a pamphlet from my VAR with a comparison matrix in wich they compare SW series (standard, premium etc) with SW Simulation series and this is NOT HONEST as the former is a prerequisite of the latter.

                  Again, nowhere is writen that simulation is a add-in unusable without the CAD package.

                   

                  OT

                  IMHO this is another good reason to get rid of this (bug ridden) software.

                  It is like wildfire was: dangerous and hard to control. Let alone the panic service packs (1.1 and 2.1 for 2015)

                    • Re: solidworks simulation professional without CAD
                      Alessandro Tornincasa

                      Hi Umberto,

                      "It is the norm with FEM, you have the pre-post processor (basically the GUI) and the solver (the math engine) as a separate process.

                      Autodesk Moldflow is like this and many others. In fact even SW launch a different exe to solve the calculation, but the stupidest thing is that you need the CAD open to complete it..."

                       

                      Indeed, solidworks simulation solver runs as a separate process, check here:

                      Run Simultaneous Simulations

                       

                      SOLIDWORKS Simulation does not require to have the CAD open to carry out solver task: there was one time in which I was running a simulation, and in the meantime I opened a corrupted file: my CAD crashed, but process star.exe was still running. Luckyly I saved my assembly before launching analysis. Simulation carried out analysis, and when I reopened my assembly results were there.

                      Also, a new SOLIDWORKS option was added named: Save auto-recover info after meshing and after running a simulation study

                      It means that if you forget to save your solidworks document before launching the analysis, SOLIDWORKS will save an auto-recover copy of your assembly with alla pre-processing data.

                       

                      So you can work on somehting else with SOLIDWORKS while analysis is running.

                       

                      I'd agree with you that this could be improved, so why not vote for this enhancement request:

                      569598 - Allow the Simulation solvers to run on a remote computer attached to the network

                      This way you could do pre-processing on a workstation that has been configured for CAD, and solve analysis on a more powerful workstation with a much faster CPU.

                       

                      "What is bugging me is that DS is advertising Simulation as A SEPARATE PACKAGE and not an add-in.

                      As a proof I have a pamphlet from my VAR with a comparison matrix in wich they compare SW series (standard, premium etc) with SW Simulation series and this is NOT HONEST as the former is a prerequisite of the latter.

                      Again, nowhere is writen that simulation is a add-in unusable without the CAD package."

                       

                      I agree with you, but since the solution is integrated with CAD, and it's quite well advertised (Integrated Simulation Workflows | SOLIDWORKS) it implicit it needs a CAD license, and I can't see how it could be in a different way.

                       

                      Cheers.

                       

                      Alex

                        • Re: solidworks simulation professional without CAD
                          Umberto Zanola

                          My issue is that I want to use the CAD on my workstation and launch the analysis on a FEM only machine.

                          The scenario is multiple license of the CAD and one license of Simulation Professional: I don't want to consume full time the CAD license for the sake of the FEM as after the preprocessing I basically want to work on the CAD on another machine.

                           

                          In the mean time I will try to launch a FEM on my premium shutting down SW to see if I can read the results anyway

                           

                          The solution would be allow a "viewer enviroinment", no 3d  editing, no 2d drawing only to setup and launch the simulation with the simulation license,

                          but it would be a political choice in the hands of DS (ahahahah sarcastic laugh).

                          Anyway we  can discuss about the wording for hours, but in business is what is written that counts, so they must state all the prerequisites explicitly.

                          Integration in workflow could mean associativity with native CAD data IMHO.

                           

                          But again if the VAR offered a machine and a license for simulation ONLY and there is obviously a problem as this is an unusable package (or at last we need another license)

                          • Re: solidworks simulation professional without CAD
                            Umberto Zanola

                            I think to solve this issue in the following workaround:

                             

                            1- temporary stop SW on my workstation (premium license released)

                            2- start SW on FEM server  (premium + simulation license in use)

                            3- setup FEM and launch analysis

                            4- close SW (release premium license, simulation license in use)

                            5- back to my workstation (premium license in use)

                             

                            If analysis results are saved as stated above it would be not the best, but at least should work out.

                      • Re: solidworks simulation professional without CAD
                        James Riddell

                        If your workstation has the horsepower then you can do CAD work while the solver (STAR) is also running.  I do it all the time, setting up one job while another is running.  Just be careful that you open a new file instead of clicking on a file in Windows Explorer - this takes another license.

                          • Re: solidworks simulation professional without CAD
                            Umberto Zanola

                            Thank you for the suggestion I've already done that. I run 4 simulations at the same time, but instability risk, RAM issues on a very big structure and other simulation needs make us buy SW simulation professional and a new workstation with 32 Gb RAM.

                             

                            I don't understand SW license policy for the same workstation.

                            I mean, even Siemens let you run as many NX instances as you want on the same PC without additional licenses consumed...

                             

                            anyway after launching STAR on the FEM workstation and closing SW, I will continue my job on the other workstation.

                            At least seem a good compromise.