The SOLIDWORKS Performance Evaluation Tool sheds light on slow loading Drawings

Article by Rod Mackay updated July 7, 2016


In SOLIDWORKS there are many different tools to help you speed up the load time of your files. In the latest release of SOLIDWORKS you can now generate a report that examines a drawing for performance issues, and lists rebuild times for drawing elements such as drawing views, sketch entities, and referenced files. You can use this report to determine which elements take longer to load and rebuild.

Slow rebuilding drawing

In this example we will determine why does the following drawing takes quite a few seconds to rebuild? It is a simple part drawing which includes a hole table and should run a lot faster that it does presently. I’ll use the SOLIDWORKS Drawing Performance Evaluation tool to determine why the rebuild time is so slow.

SOLIDWORKS Drawing slow load

SOLIDWORKS Drawing slow load

Get a performance evaluation

To generate a performance evaluation report, open a drawing document, then click Tools > Evaluate > Performance Evaluation or in the CommandManager select the Evaluate tab > Performance Evaluation icon.

Performance Evaluation

Performance Evaluation Icon in CommandManager

After a few seconds SOLIDWORKS will rebuild the drawing and then a performance report dialog will appear with statistics and recommendations for your drawing and referenced files:

SOLIDWORKS Drawing Performance Evaluation Report dialog

Performance Evaluation Report dialog

From the report I can see that:

  • At the top there is a warning that the part referenced in the drawing is from a previous release and this is affecting the rebuild time.
  • The open and rebuild times are reported in the next section down, it takes over 5 seconds for the drawing to rebuild.
  • The hole table in the drawing takes the most time to generate which is to be expected.
  • A section view takes nearly a second as SOLIDWORKS needs to regenerate the section with each rebuild.

So the biggest issue with this drawing is the part reference is from an older release.

Following SOLIDWORKS advice

Based on the findings of the report I’ll open and resave the part to make sure it is up-to-date with the latest release. Then run the performance evaluation on the drawing again.

Thanks to the advice you can see in the updated report below that the rebuild time has now dropped from 5.5 seconds to 0.9 seconds.

Performance Evaluation Updated Report

Performance Evaluation Updated Report

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Rod Mackay

Rod has been using 3D CAD software for over 25 years and has trained thousands of designers to use their CAD systems more effectively. Rod is the Javelin Webmaster and is based in Ottawa, ON., Canada.