Everybody has had it happen at least once…you dig in on an important project and get so carried away by your design you forget to save your work regularly. It’s generally not until there is some sort of complication that we realize that we haven’t yet saved our files and committed our design to the sea of zeros and ones sitting on the hard drive.
With time being as precious as it is these days, any time that we can recover from a crash or unforeseen circumstance is of benefit.
When you start SOLIDWORKS after a crash any documents that had been active for more than the Auto-recovery interval should appear in the SOLIDWORKS Document Recovery Tab within the task pane. From there they can be saved as a new file or used to replace the original.
The Auto-recovery settings may be found under: Tools > Options > Backup/Recover
What if the SOLIDWORKS Recovery Tab did not appear during the restart after the crash?
If you take a look at the folder listed under the Auto-recover settings you will discover where SOLIDWORKS has been saving your Auto-recovery data. Navigating to the folder within Windows Explorer, you should see a file with an .SWAR extension.
Personally I think SolidWorks should have labeled the Auto-Recovery extension as *.SWEAR – this is what we all do when we experience a crash…
Visibility of this file extension requires having hidden files visible within your Windows Explorer options.
If you look carefully at the name of the auto-recover file, you will see that SOLIDWORKS has saved a copy of the part or assembly file and added a prefix, and appended the file extension.
- For Example: PART A.SLDPRT – Is saved as: AutoRecover Of PART A.SLDPRT.SWAR
If you edit the name and extension of the file, removing the AutoRecover prefix, as well as replacing the .swar extension with the correct part, assembly or drawing file extension – we end up with a copy of our original file, that has the last change saved based on the number of minutes set in the Backup/recover options.
I hope this short tip will benefit those who find themselves in a bind, I know it has come in handy for me on more than one occasion. View this article to help you determine why SOLIDWORKS is crashing.