SOLIDWORKS PCB Installation Overview (formerly PCBWorks)

Article by Justin Flett updated January 25, 2016



Traditionally mechanical and electrical design have been treated as two separate and distinct entities. As we move forward and continue to innovate, it is becoming more and more apparent that close collaboration and integration is needed to fully utilize our projects.

SOLIDWORKS PCB is a powerful and exciting full design solution that unites electrical and mechanical engineering and design by facilitating real-time collaboration.  With SOLIDWORKS PCB mechanical and electrical designers can communicate and collaborate with each other effortlessly and streamline their productivity.

For a SOLIDWORKS PCB installation three main components are required:


This contains the ECAD portion of the product including the full schematic and PCB design software.  Also included is the SOLIDWORKS Collaboration extension which adds the collaboration panel into the SOLIDWORKS PCB software.

ECAD-MCAD Project Collaboration Server

This contains the project collaboration server to help control and maintain all collaboration between the Mechanical CAD (MCAD) and Electrical CAD (ECAD) products.


This contains the MCAD portion of the product, a software product from Dassault Systémes.  The SOLIDWORKS PCB-SOLIDWORKS collaboration add-in is added to the collaboration panel within SOLIDWORKS.

Once these three components have been set up we can start collaborating between our SOLIDWORKS PCB ECAD and our SOLIDWORKS MCAD!

* Note: A full installation guide can be found in the article below:

System Overview

The core of SOLIDWORKS PCB centers on utilizing the collaboration between electrical and mechanical design.  Traditionally mechanical and electrical design have been disconnected and viewed as two separate entities.  This lack of communication and collaboration generates a large amount of re-design, re-work, confusion, and frustration.

SOLIDWORKS PCB offers a full solution which centers on improving communication and collaboration between electrical and mechanical engineers and designs, this generates a complete electro-mechanical design rather than keeping the two segments separated.  The benefits of this are of course improved communication, increased teamwork and productivity, reduced re-design and re-work, to help produce a superior product with a streamlined product development lifecycle.

SOLIDWORKS PCB contains the schematic editor and PCB editor for electrical design, and collaborates directly with SOLIDWORKS mechanical design through the Altium Collaboration Vault.  Each application contains a Collaboration panel which is used to perform and control collaboration between SOLIDWORKS PCB and SOLIDWORKS.  Fully integrated collaboration is as simple as clicking a “Push” or “Pull” button to update changes made.

SOLIDWORKS PCB Installation Collaboration

SOLIDWORKS PCB Collaboration

For more information about SOLIDWORKS PCB

Read our recent SOLIDWORKS PCB blog post for a demo video, images, and detailed explanation to help potential users understand SOLIDWORKS PCB. Or call 1-877-219-6757.

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Justin Flett