A SOLIDWORKS Upgrade Installation can be carried out in different ways. If there is a history of installation-specific performance issues, a clean installation would be appropriate. If the installation has been stable and needs to be upgraded to a new version, I find that for most users, it is sufficient to create a new installation in a separate folder with the Toolbox data backed up and upgraded.
When bandwidth and time are not a limiting factor, I suggest downloading a full installation file set using the option ‘Download and Share all files.’
When the download is completed, right-click on the setup.exe file found in the download folder and select ‘Run as administrator’ or simply run the file to launch the Installation Manager.
Select individual installation unless server products or administrative image need to be installed.
Select to create a new installation. I prefer this option over straight upgrade because it leaves the previous version accessible and the user does not lose access to SOLIDWORKS if we need to troubleshoot any installation errors.
I also suggest:
- Selecting a new installation folder for each new version of SOLIDWORKS. Click Change button in the Installation Location section, click Browse and overwrite the name of the default installation folder (eg. SOLIDWORKS 2018).
- Backing up Toolbox and selecting to upgrade the existing one (applies to SOLIDWORKS Professional and Premium installations). Toolbox data is version-specific. The option to back up Toolbox is available in newer versions. Manual backing up, using Windows Copy/Paste commands, also works.
With these selections, a SOLIDWORKS Upgrade Installation will be created in a new folder using an upgraded copy of the Toolbox data.
Check out our SOLIDWORKS Upgrade Checklist for more information.