Well, one of the reasons you haven’t heard much from me the past week was due to my preparations for our upgrade to SolidWorks 2008 at Dynetics. Every year I try to pick a time where we are wrapping up some major projects and have had ample time to test the software prior to implementation. This year that time was last week. In addition to upgrading SolidWorks, we are also implementing a dedicated server for PDMWorks.
Last year I detailed my Upgrade Recommendations which I pretty much followed to the tee again this year. There were some differences in the way the Installation Manager handles the upgrades. Most of the differences had more to do with the order of the information that is entered as you go through the installation screens. One thing that caught my eye as different was an option to install a service pack as a separate version. For example, if you were currently at SP 0.0, according to the menus, you could install SP 1.1 as a separate installation. I’m not quite sure if I will ever use this but the appearance of this option is intriguing to say the least. All in all, the upgrade process itself went off pretty much picture perfect.
Today was our first day on SW2008 and things went very smoothly. All communications to our PDMWorks Vault were perfect and the systems were stable with exception to one crash which was not reproducible. One interesting effect of our upgrade seems to be some possible improvements in importing neutral CAD data. One particular .STEP file that was opened in SW2007 on Friday with errors opened perfectly in SW2008 with no errors! (I’ll have to look into this a bit more.) If this is the case, then it wouldn’t be the first time this has happened. I have documented some pretty substantial improvements in this area between SolidWorks 2006 and 2007.
If you are getting ready to upgrade, make sure you plan well. My upgrade preparations have worked very well for us for the last several years, so check them out. I’ll post again in two weeks and let you know how everything is going. I’d like to hear how YOUR upgrade is going.