How do I install, update, or move the SOLIDWORKS SolidNetwork License Manager?

This article will guide you through installing the SolidNetwork License Manager on a new computer, updating an existing license manager, or transferring the license manager to a different computer.

Download Installation Media

Prior to installing or updating the SolidNetWork License Manager Server, download the installation files. The files can be downloaded at

It is necessary to have a 3DExperience ID account in order to download SolidWorks software. To create an account, navigate to and click the Join link near the top right corner of that webpage. Follow the instructions to create your account.

It is also necessary to have the appropriate roles assigned to your account which will grant download privileges. This information may already be present within the DSx.Client Care system. If not, it can be added by your reseller. Please contact your company system administrator or your SOLIDWORKS reseller for assistance in acquiring the proper roles. To submit a support request to CADimensions, please visit If a system administrator already exists at your company, we can tell you who that is.

  1. After clicking the download link, scroll down and accept the terms of the license agreement by clicking “Accept Agreement and Continue”.
  2. Click Download.


Please note the initial file which is downloaded is only the Installation Manager. The file is named SolidWorksSetup.exe and will only be relevant for whatever software version was selected prior to downloading the file.

Place the SolidWorksSetup.exe file on the server where the license manager will be installed or updated. It will be needed shortly.

Transferring a license off an existing SolidNetWork License Manager Server

If there is an existing SolidNetwork License Manager, it is necessary to transfer (deactivate) the license first. This is good practice if the license manager is being upgraded, and is required if moving to a new server. Skip to the next section if installing the SolidNetwork License Manager for the first time.

1.   Launch the SOLIDWORKS SolidNetwork License Manager Server from the Windows program listing > SOLIDWORKS Tools menu.

2.   Select the Server Administration Tab > Modify… .


3.   Select “Move your product license(s) to a new/upgraded computer”.


4.   Click Next.

5.   Click the Select All button > choose “Automatically over the internet (recommended)”.


6.   Add your contact information and click Next. THIS IS REQUIRED!

7.   Once the process has completed, a window will state Transfer Succeeded. Click Finish.

The Add button is only available when activating/reactivating a license, not when moving (transferring) a license. It can be used to add serial numbers (licenses) to the license manager. This functionality was added in SOLIDWORKS 2023. Previously, it was necessary to modify the SolidNetWork License Manager installation through the Windows Control Panel > Programs and Features, in order to add or remove serial numbers.

Installing or Updating the License Manager

1.   To run the SOLIDWORKS Installation Manager on the server machine, double click the SolidWorksSetup.exe file downloaded earlier (see "Download Installation Media").

2.   If a Windows User Account Control window appears asking if you want to allow the app to make changes to your computer, click Yes.

3.   A WinZip window will appear. Click the Unzip button. Optionally, click the Browse… button if you wish to extract the files to a specific location.


4.   The WinZip self-extractor will confirm a number of files were successfully unzipped. Click OK to close that window.

5.   A “Windows reboot…” window may appear. This almost always happens, even after rebooting. It is fine to click OK and ignore it.

6.   Select Install Server Products and check the box to “Install SolidNetWork License Manager” or “Update SolidNetWork License Manager”, depending on what fits your situation. Click Next.


7.   On the Summary screen, click to accept the SOLIDWORKS terms and then click Install Now. The installation will complete in a few minutes.

8.   Select whether you want to see the What’s New information or join the customer experience program and click Finish.

Activate the License on the SolidNetWork License Manager Server

After installing, moving or even just upgrading the license manager, it’s always necessary to activate the license.

1.   Launch the SOLIDWORKS SolidNetWork License Manager Server from the Windows program listing > SOLIDWORKS Tools menu.

2.   If not prompted to activate, select the Server Administration Tab > Modify…

3.   If the SolidNetWork License Product Activation window appears, select “Activate/Reactivate you product license(s)”. (This window may not appear if activating on a computer for the first time because the activation task is assumed.)

4.   Click Next.


5.   The SolidNetWork License Server Information window will appear. It is not usually necessary to change anything. The name of the computer being used as the license server should automatically appear.

6.   Click Next.


7.   Click the Select All button > choose “Automatically over the internet (recommended)”, add your contact information and click Next. (Refer to the image which follows step 5 in the section "Transferring a license off an existing SolidNetWork License Manager Server", if needed.)

8.   The next screen which appears should say “Activation/Reactivation Succeeded” and list all of the currently activated products. Click Finish.

Activations Exceeded Error

This error will occur if a license exists on another computer. The license must be transferred off one computer before it can be activated on another. Sometimes hardware changes or operating system upgrades can cause this error to occur. Please contact your reseller if you feel you are getting an erroneous activation exceeded error. Your reseller can also tell you what computer the license is currently active on.

Connectivity Tests

If SOLIDWORKS will not launch from the client machines, check for connection issues between the SolidNetWork License Manager Server and the SolidNetWork License Manager Client.

SolidNetWork License Manager Server Machine Tests

  1. Verify the SolidNetWork License Manager Server is started.
  2. Check the License Usage tab to make sure there are free licenses available.

SolidNetWork License Manager Client Machine Tests

  1. Check to see that the server has been added to the client machine.
  2. Check the SolidNetWork License Manager Client Usage tab to see if SOLIDWORKS acknowledges the fact there are free licenses.

If there are no free license, check the TCP/IP connectivity between the client and server. There are two tests that must be run to verify this. First, open a Command Prompt on the client machine and perform the following:

  1. Type “ping <server_name>”. A message must be received stating the ping was successful.
  2. Type “telnet <server_name> <port_number>” where <port_number> is the port being used by the SolidNetWork License Manager. The default port value is 25734. If the connection was successful, the DOS prompt will go blank showing only a blinking cursor.

Both of these tests must pass. If either one or both fail, there is not sufficient TCP/IP connectivity between the client and the server for a SolidNetWork License environment to function correctly. The most common reason for connectivity issues relates to firewalls being too restrictive. It may be necessary to add exceptions to your firewall software. Please contact CADimensions for more information on this topic.

Click here to learn about firewall settings for the SNL Manager.