When working in SOLIDWORKS and trying to improve performance, it is important to understand how your workstation's hardware functions. Learn how to find all the attributes of your computer's hardware.
- [Instructor] No matter what you use SolidWorks for, it's important that you have a basic understanding of computer software and just as importantly, computer hardware. Starting out with a workstation or laptop that can meet the demands of your SolidWorks install will be critical to decreasing design time. As well as increasing your productivity, it will limit the frustrations that come along with random crashes, frozen screens and failing models. Let's take a look at the most critical components in any workstation or laptop.
When looking at computer hardware, the most important piece of any workstation or laptop, is going to be your CPU. This is your main processing unit for the computer. The more capacity your CPU has, the better SolidWorks will perform. Next on the list we have RAM, or random access memory. By increasing the capacity of our RAM, it gives us the ability to open larger files and work on multiple designs at once in SolidWorks. If you limit the RAM that's in your computer, it'll make it harder and harder to open files.
Both the CPU and RAM requirements for SolidWorks will be discussed in another video. Moving down the list, just as important, is your video card and monitor. The video card supports the RAM and CPU by giving more processing capacity to SolidWorks. This is very important for people who do rendering or work in large assemblies. You want to be able to have the computing power in your workstation to be able to backup 100 parts or 1,000 parts or 10,000 parts.
Each of these will require a different video card, so you want to make sure you get the one that works best for your requirements in the right price range. Moving down the list, we also have hard drives. Storage is very important when working with CAD data. We want to make sure that everything is saved and we have ample space. If you're always working up against a hard drive that's almost just full, this is going to cause random issues to happen in SolidWorks when it goes to its virtual memory. You want to make sure that you have at least 30% empty space on the hard drive that you're working on in any given time.
I prefer, personally, to use a solid state drive, and then store any Legacy information on a server or an external device. Last but not least is the power supply. You want to make sure that you have the right power supply for the workstation that you're putting together, so that your power requirements are met across all of the hardware that we've just listed. Now to find out what we have in our workstation, let's take a look at Windows Explorer. By right clicking on This PC, and going to Properties, we can now see the CPU, the installed amount of RAM.
But if we want to know more, like our video card information or our hard drive information, we'll have to go to the Device Manager. Here we see all the components that are installed in this workstation. If you go to Disk drives, you can see the hard drives that are installed, and Display adapters shows you the video card that you have. This is going to be important in later videos when we're talking about video card requirements and how to update drivers. You can also see the monitors that you have installed, or any other hardware related to your device.
- How your workstation's hardware functions
- Adjusting System Options settings
- Modeling best practices
- Creating custom configurations
- Fixing your assemblies
- Using SpeedPak
- Increasing modeling performance with Instant2D and Instant3D