Stop and Read Before Upgrading to SOLIDWORKS 2024:

SOLIDWORKS has changed the way it decides what computer a given license is on, and it's caused a lot of customers to get locked out of the program after upgrading to 2024. Here is a really simple step you can take to keep this from happening.

SOLIDWORKS has recently released the 2024 version of their software. While they added quite a few great new features (Check out our What's New Playlist), one back-end change has caused an influx of support tickets. It's simple to avoid after reading this, but harder to undo once it's done. This article's purpose is to explain what the issue looks like and how to avoid it.

Let's start with the solution. Before you install SOLIDWORKS 2024, Deactivate your SOLIDWORKS license, then Reactivate it after you have completed your installation. If you do not, you are liable to run into an Activation Count Exceeded error, and will be unable to open SOLIDWORKS.

For assistance with Activating or Deactivating your version of SOLIDWORKS, please refer to this article. And if you need further help, please feel free to reach out and submit a new case online.

What's causing this?

SOLIDWORKS has an internal Computer ID (CID) algorithm, to assign each computer a unique identifier. This CID ensures that a given Serial Number gets activated on exactly one computer, and one computer only. If you wish to learn more about CIDs, how they work, and what changes them, please have a look at this article.

It appears that SOLIDWORKS 2024 modified this CID algorithm. Because of this change, the new algorithm may generate a new ID for the same computer. If this happens to you, SOLIDWORKS's Activation Database will consider your device to be a different computer entirely. So when you go to Activate your license, the Activation Database thinks it is a new computer with the same serial number and gives you the Activation Count Exceeded error above.

Thankfully, this issue is very simple to prevent. Simply Deactivate your license before you install SOLIDWORKS 2024 and Reactivate it after you've completed the installation. The Activation Database sees this process as a transfer of the license instead of a new activation, and you don't run into any issues.

What if I already installed SOLIDWORKS 2024?

If you were able to Activate and Launch SOLIDWORKS without issue, then great! Your CID didn't change, and your current installation should run without a problem.

If you've already encountered the Activation Count Exceeded error, then your CID has already changed. Your old CID and new CID are fighting for the same serial number, and the Activation Database won't allow for that. You'll have to remove the Serial Number from the one of the CIDs before it can be usable again.

There are two ways to go about this. The first way, if you'd like to solve this issue on your own, is to follow these steps:

  1. Uninstall SOLIDWORKS 2024
  2. Reinstall an older version of SOLIDWORKS if necessary.
  3. Deactivate your license in the older version
  4. Reinstall SOLIDWORKS 2024 once more,
  5. And finally, reactivate SOLIDWORKS from within the 2024 version.

This will take time and effort, and there's a chance it may not change the CID back.

Thankfully, the alternative is far simpler. Simply reach out to CADimensions (or your own reseller) and submit a new case online. Once we know what happened, we'll perform a Disable on the old CID, thereby freeing up the Serial Number for your use again. It shouldn't take us more than a few minutes, and minimal work outside the initial ticket on your end.

As always, please feel free to reach out to us for help or questions if you like.