How to Upgrade SOLIDWORKS Standard to SOLIDWORKS Professional or Premium Version

Article by Jim Peltier, CSWE updated May 12, 2014


Firstly, congratulations on deciding to upgrade your SOLIDWORKS Standard version to Professional or Premium, or from Professional to Premium. Perhaps you’ve purchased a new seat or upgraded your existing one, or perhaps you are just wanting to switch who uses which type of license. Regardless, it is a fairly straightforward process.

If you are switching seats, or for whatever reason you need to downgrade a computer, you need only change the serial number used for the installation. This will simply “lock out” the Professional or Premium functionality. Much of it is the same for upgrading except for one step. I would suggest performing the downgrade first to become comfortable with the serial number changing process as it is the easier process. Be sure to take note of both serial numbers.

Before you upgrade SOLIDWORKS

Before you begin the upgrade, make sure you have your installation files handy. This might be a DVD or a downloaded fileset. In any case, you’ll want to use the same service pack as you have installed (or take the opportunity to upgrade). You also want to make sure you have local administrator rights. You will also want to take note of both serial numbers (I only repeat it because it is important).

SOLIDWORKS upgrade procedure

When you are ready to begin, go to Windows Control Panel, then Uninstall a Program.

Windows Control Panel

Windows Control Panel

In the list, find the latest installed release of SOLIDWORKS, then choose Change. This will launch the SOLIDWORKS Installation Manager.

SolidWorks Installation Manager

SOLIDWORKS Installation Manager

Choose the option for Modify the individual installation (on this computer), which is selected by default. Then pick the Next button in the bottom right corner. The next screen to appear will have your current serial number on it. Important: Do not just start typing the new number! You will want to make a note of the old number in case you need it on another computer. This will be your last chance! If the serial number does not change, then you may skip this step.

Update Serial Number

Update Serial Number (write down the old number before inputting the new one!)

You can either type in the new number (not case-sensitive), or you can also copy & paste the entire number into the Installation Manager provided there are no spaces and it will populate all the fields at once. Sorry, you can’t copy it all at once from the Installation Manager. Next, you can click Next. It will check your serial number with the SOLIDWORKS server and if you are changing serial numbers, it should prompt you to Transfer your old serial number. Be sure to do this. If it proceeds to the Product Selection screen without doing so for whatever reason, cancel the installation and Transfer your license manually.

Product Selection Screen

Product Selection Screen

Obviously if you are upgrading, it is to gain access to some of the goodies that are available in SOLIDWORKS Professional or Premium. You can add them in the Product Selection screen. You should see the level of SOLIDWORKS you are upgrading to shown at the top of the list (in my screenshot, it is SOLIDWORKS Premium). If for whatever reason this is not showing the upgrade level, simply choose the “Select different packages or products” indicated to the right. That will take you into a pop-up window that lets you choose different levels of SOLIDWORKS. Afterwards, you can just pick which products to install and click Next when you are done.

If you are modifying an existing installation, then it is best to change nothing on the Summary screen. Just click Next again and SOLIDWORKS will install the necessary new components.

It is strongly recommended that if you are switching the Standard/Premium seats between two different computers to complete the switch before trying to launch SOLIDWORKS on either machine.

Related Links

Certified SOLIDWORKS Services available from Javelin

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Jim Peltier, CSWE

Jim has been using SolidWorks since 2001, and has spent most of that time working in the design of industrial automated manufacturing equipment. He has been working as an Applications Expert at Javelin Technologies in Oakville, Ontario since July 2012 and is a Certified SolidWorks Expert (CSWE).