Are you, or your Team at High Risk During SOLIDWORKS Upgrade Season? Now that I have your attention, let us stop here and define what affliction we are speaking of: To answer your very first question, no this article is not about a degenerative spinal disorder or anything of the sort.
The primary symptom of SOLIDWORKS Disc’s Disease is the act of uncontrollably placing newly received SOLIDWORKS installation media into a drive and running the Installation Manager without a SOLIDWORKS upgrade plan in place.
Disc’s Disease most often occurs when a user receives installation media for a new SOLIDWORKS release, and is unable to resist that urge to stick the DVD in the drive and begin an unplanned upgrade of their SOLIDWORKS workstation!
This is when Disc’s Disease becomes the most infectious, and contagious as other users who are unaware of the unplanned upgrade are unable to access files, or an entire shared toolbox library as they have been upgraded by a single user – bringing an entire design team to a halt. If you are lucky your design team may have performed a self inoculation by having a well managed PDM system, for which your users can roll-back and perhaps only loose the last 8 hours of work or so.
We see an upswing of cases every year, coinciding with the first service pack release of each major release of SOLIDWORKS.
How do we Combat the Epidemic ?
The most common and effective treatment for this SOLIDWORKS Upgrade disease is education and communication!
- Have a Plan in place for SOLIDWORKS upgrades! The plan does not need to be elaborate, but a well thought through plan that takes into account file backup, User downtime and installation best practices will often protect an organization from this affliction, far more effective than anything from your local pharmacy. Check out our upgrade checklist »
- Communicate the plan to your SOLIDWORKS users! Without communicating your plan to all of your users, you leave the door open for the primary symptoms to occur (it’s kinda like washing your hands…frequently).
- Appoint a leader! Just like first aid and CPR training, it helps to have someone on your team well versed in the special needs and best practices that SOLIDWORKS requires in order to conduct a robust, proper upgrade.
A SOLIDWORKS Upgrade does not have to be administered by seasoned IT veterans to succeed! Here at Javelin, we have assisted many SOLIDWORKS users to become installation leaders for their teams; all it takes is a few minutes of conversation to get you started with the best practices that will allow you to succeed.