Frequently Asked Questions

You are a teacher or a researcher and cannot register because you do not have an institutional address

Send an email to Education.Europe@3ds.com indicating:

  • Your name and first name
  • The name and city of the establishment in which you teach
  • Whether you are a teacher or a researcher
  • Your date of birth
  • The subject matter that you teach
  • The main CAD software that you use

You are a student and cannot register because you do not have an institutional address

Send an email to Education.Europe@3ds.com indicating: your name and first name, class, name and city of your establishment and we will indicate to you the procedure to follow.


You can not register because the system says “username or password already used”

This is actually your ID ( or username ) to be unique. You just have to change until it is accepted by the system . Ex : Your name is Eric Smith and the system denies you Dupond – Try edupond or erdupond etc.


You already installed a version that will end soon and you want to go on using this version.

This is possible only if that version is a Y-1 one. For instance, as from today you can download the Y version OR the Y-1 one. No former version to those 2 ones won’t be available anymore.


Installation issue when a former version is already installed

  • Login as administrator (not as a user having administrative privileges)
  • Turn off all anti-virus, popup blocker, ad-ware and spy-ware applications.
  • Uninstall SolidWorks.
  • Clean up registry by deleting registry key folders
    HKEY_CURRENT_USER > Software > SolidWorks and
    HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE > Software > SolidWorks using registry editor.
  • Run registry editor from Start > Run > type “regedit” (without quotes) and select OK. (This will launch registry editor).
  • Please ensure not to modify any other registry key or folder since it can lead to malfunctioning of other applications.
  • Restart the machine.
  • Repeat step 1 and 2.
  • Install SolidWorks by using the serial number provided and activate the license.

You did not manage to download your SDK license completely:

It presumably involves a downloading error (minor crashes in the network, slowing down, overload…). We therefore recommend you download the file again, if possible on another machine and another network (home…). It is possible to use the free utility to facilitate downloading big files: “Free Download Manager” for example.

It may also involve a connection problem (or more precisely bandwidth) or antivirus. At the time of a SolidWorks installation, you can leave everything running, except the antivirus. We therefore recommend you:

  • Deactivate the AVAST antivirus before installing SolidWorks
  • Try to start SolidWorks without antivirus once this is done ((then with the antivirus if it works but prevent the antivirus to scan the SW files)
  • Check that the machine’s network is activated when running on battery
  • Check that the network access works and that the communications are not locked by software protection (antivirus or firewall…)
  • The SolidWorks 32 version must be installed on a 32 (bit) machine, not the 64 version (that normally should refuse to install on a 32 (bit) platform) and will not work.

If the uninstall procedure does not work, here is what you can try and it works well on Windows XP:

  • Delete the SolidWorks Corp directory on the disk, as well as SolidWorks Data directory (normally in C root directory)
  • Delete all “solidworks *. *” keys in the HKEY_Current-User register
  • Delete all “solidworks *. *” keys in the HKEY_local_machine register

Issue when installation is done at 70% only

This error may happen if the user does not have proper permissions on registry keys while installing SolidWorks, or if registry keys are corrupted. Try the following steps to resolve this issue:

  • Login as an administrator and turn off all anti-virus applications.
  • Uninstall the existing VSTA installation from Start > Control Panel > Program and Features > (Microsoft visual studio tools for applications).
  • Rename following registry keys: (run registry editor from Start > Run > type “regedit” (without quotes) and select OK. This will launch registry editor). Please ensure not to modify any other registry key or folder since it can lead to malfunctioning of other applications.
  • 64 bit system (x64)
    HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Wow6432Node\Microsoft\VSTAHost
    HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE \SOFTWARE\Wow6432Node\Microsoft\VSTAHostConfig
  • 32 bit system (x86)
    HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\VSTAHOST
    HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\VSTAHostConfig
  • Rename the folders to VSTAHOST_OLD and VSTAHostConfig_OLD
  • Run SolidWorks installation using Installation Manager again

Activation license issue

This error can be given if older activation information is not removed from system.
In one instance, this was resolved by renaming the activation files on the machine manually. If the activations were previously transferred or do not exist, Please rename the following folder: (rename it to Flexnet_old)

  • XP: C:\Documents and Settings\All Users\Application Data\FLEXnet
  • Vista®/ Windows 7: C:\ProgramData\FLEXnet
  • The ProgramData folder is hidden folder. Either you can enable to show hidden folders from Folder options or you can directly type c:\Programdata on to address bar and press enter to access this folder. You will be able to find Flexnet folder.
  • Once done, try to re-activate again and the problem should be resolved (it may be required to activate twice if no licenses are shown on the first successful activation).

You wish to format your hard disk:

Do not forget to deactivate the SDK license before any formatting.


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