Work from home with SOLIDWORKS

With the developing situation in regards to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) virus, there is a growing possibility people will be self-isolating or working from home. While this could be inconvenient, it doesn’t mean that you cannot continue to work with SOLIDWORKS.

SOLIDWORKS products are licensed via a number of methods and it may be possible with your license, to temporarily transfer it to a home PC so you can continue to work whilst away from the office.

Standalone Licenses

The most common type of SOLIDWORKS license, which uses a “Product Activation” process to “Activate” or “Transfer” licenses between computers.

This is a simple process and can be completed by following the steps below

  1. Load up SOLIDWORKS
  2. From the “Help” menu select “Licenses” > “Deactivate“.
  3. Select All” the products that may be listed in the Activation wizard, click “next” and follow the prompts.
  4. Your SOLIDWORKS licenses will be returned to the SOLIDWORKS Activation Server and will then be available to activate on another computer.
  5. On your other computer, once SOLIDWORKS is installed (if it isn’t already see point “2” below if not), when the software is loaded you will be prompted to “Activate“. Follow the Activation process and once completed SOLIDWORKS should be ready to use.
    1. Please remember to complete this process again from your home computer, when you need to return the SOLIDWORKS license to your work computer.
    2. We have created a guide to downloading SOLIDWORKS here, but also a guide to installing SOLIDOWRKS here, should you not have SOLIDWORKS already installed on your other computer.

These steps are also detailed in our document covering the transfer of SOLIDWORKS licenses here.

This is also possible if you have a SOLIDWORKS Term license.

Online Licensing

SOLIDWORKS online licensing gives you the flexibility to use one license across all your devices, in any location, without having to manually activate and deactivate the licenses on each machine.

For example, you can work on a machine in the office during the day, then go home and log into the same product from your home computer. You do not need a second license for the product, and you do not need to manually deactivate a license on the office machine and activate it again on your home computer.

You must have internet access to sign in and use online licenses, but after signing in on a machine, you can select offline mode and work while the machine is not connected to a network.

Also, you can synchronize SOLIDWORKS settings across machines, and access SOLIDWORKS websites such as and the SOLIDWORKS Customer Portal without having to log in again.

More information on Online Licensing can be found here.

Network Licensing

The last type of license that may be in use would be if you run your SOLIDWORKS products in the SolidNetWork Licence Manager (SNL) environment. The SNL server holds a “pool” of licences on your company network and allows client PCs to connect to and use licences locally, if available.

You can borrow a SolidNetWork license to use the software from a remote location. Since the license is removed from the pool of available licenses, a borrowed license must be returned for it to become available again.

Borrowed licenses are valid only for the current user and machine on which they were borrowed; they cannot be moved.

The license is lent for a specified period of time, up to 30 days (or as defined by the system administrator), and the license is removed from the pool of available licenses.

Borrowing and returning a license does not work if the SOLIDWORKS license is in use.

It’s worth knowing that for a PC to borrow a licence it must be connected to the same network as the SNL server. Once borrowed, it can be moved offsite temporarily or disconnected from the network for the borrowed period.

To borrow a SOLIDWORKS SNL license, please see the steps outlined here.

Additionally, if your company has the facility, it may also be possible to access the SNL licenses and server via a Virtual Private Network (VPN). The see your companies IT Administrator to find out if this is an option to you.


If you would like any help with any of the above, or would like any further information on SOLIDWORKS licensing please get in touch via or call us on 0121 544 1400.

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