"can this cause registry or crashing issues?"
Yes and No.... if all the versions are the same serial number then you really wont see any problems. WHen they vary in serial numbers it causes a lot of havoc. I found making a several *.reg file that contained 1 serial number per *.reg file would get around the issue, but thats probably not your case.
The other part your going to have a problem is the Toolbox. If you don't use the TB, then you should fine. If you do use the TB, then your going to have problem between versions. The TB only works with the version it came with. So if you upgrade your existing TB, then most likely the TB is at your most recent upgrade and none of the older releases will be able to access the TB. Otherwise you can have several TB's per version on your system to get around the problem
"Does this complicate matters if I later decide to uninstall one of the versions, say 2013?"
If you remove and older release after a newer release as been installed, I have seen the RMB Solidworks menu dissappear plus other random menus missing or *.dll files crash because the old version unregisters the *,dll. Which means you will have to rerun the latest install to fix that problem or start over.
Its my recommendation to either stay with the latest release or wait for a few SP's per the new release before upgrading. That's I do, but I am also supporting 200 users.
Hope that helps,
Message was edited by: Scott Baugh
Thanks for the info Scott. All my versions are under the same serial number, so that's not an issue.
I do multiple Toolbox installs also, putting them in the C:/Solidworks Data 201x folder. That is still a problem sometimes when I try saving a drawing that I have been working on in a newer version than it was created in. It warns me that some toolbox items are older version, and unless I want to dump all the changes I just made to the drawing, I have to cancel the save or go ahead and update the hardware by saving it along with the drawing. That leaves items in the older toolbox updated when I use that toolbox with an older version of SolidWorks. No major issue, but I wish I could remember to replace all the toolbox references every time I open and older assembly in newer version.
I understand what you are saying about the uninstall problems and appreciate knowing that. Since I am forced to run multiple versions of SolidWorks by my various clients, I guess I'll keep using the hammer and hacksaw technique that I used before to uninstall all versions at once, clean the registry and drive folders and start over. That way I know the new installs are fresh. After all, it's only once a year, right?
Scott, I also have 2013 & 2014 installed and found this thread very interesting. My 2013 TB has been seriously customized, and since you mentioned that TB 13&14 can't be interchanged how do I transfer all the customization in 13 to 14?
Sorry for the late reply, the reply above got lost in my inbox.
If you want to want to run 2 TB's you can. One for 2013 and one for 2014. You would have to copy the 2013 TB and give the copy new name or keep the name and find a new location, because as you know windows does not allow folders or files of the same name in the same location.
Which ever you decided, you would then want to update the copied TB to 2014. Then you can both on the same PC. The problem is not necesssarily the files, but the DB that SW is using. That is what causes IMO about 99.9% of the problems using TB with SW.
I hope this helps answer your question better.
As mentioned in my original question, I run several versions of SW and therefore of TBox. When an older assembly file is opened in a newer version of SW, the hardware is linked back to the older version TB, which corrupts those items in the older TB when used with other files in the older SW.
I have tried finding and replacing all hardware references using "Find References" immediately before opening the assembly in the newer SW, but this takes a lot of time. I get the feeling I am missing something when installing the newer SW. Is it as simple as changing the file location in the Options dialogs?
Thats right... thats another downfall to having multiple Toolboxes. Its linked to the original location, and there is really no good solution for that. Anything new in 13 or 14 would fine, but when you make the switch from 13 to 14 and you want to maintain more than 1 version on the same PC, then your going to have problems.
The only thing I can think of is if you do update a file from 13 to 14, then you could go to SW Explorer (do not use the file open\file references) and change all the TB locations to look at the 14 TB. could be a lot of extra work, but would save you heartache in the end. You can search file references in explorer, by using explorer that would take the SW aspect out of the loop while you try to update the paths.
You could try changing the path in the options, but I think the old TB files maintain the link to the old TB location.
Excellent idea Scott. Using SW Explorer I mean. That does sort of keep it clean. I'll try it on my next assembly update.