×
INTELLIGENT WORK FORUMS
FOR ENGINEERING PROFESSIONALS

Log In

Come Join Us!

Are you an
Engineering professional?
Join Eng-Tips Forums!
  • Talk With Other Members
  • Be Notified Of Responses
    To Your Posts
  • Keyword Search
  • One-Click Access To Your
    Favorite Forums
  • Automated Signatures
    On Your Posts
  • Best Of All, It's Free!
  • Students Click Here

*Eng-Tips's functionality depends on members receiving e-mail. By joining you are opting in to receive e-mail.

Posting Guidelines

Promoting, selling, recruiting, coursework and thesis posting is forbidden.

Students Click Here

Jobs

Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?
15

Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

(OP)
Anyone running SW via Boot Camp or Parallels?  I notice someone posted this question mid last year.  Currently only Mac Pro has a SW-certified graphics card (Quadro FX 4500) as an option, but I'd rather use the cleaner iMac or a Macbook Pro if I could get away with it.  The thought of specifying another piecemeal Wintel box at work makes me cringe now that I've experienced Apple.  If on SW ran natively on OSX...

Chris Montgomery
Mechanical Engineer

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

Someone posted something like this last week.  They were met with the (appropriate) comments to the effect of "why would you even want to do that" and "why, do you have extra money you don't know what to do with" and that sort of ilk:
thread559-180551

Personally, I can't get enough of that zero-button mouse.  What a productivity magnet!

Jeff Mowry
www.industrialdesignhaus.com
Reason trumps all.  And awe transcends reason.

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

it was me that asked

however since being derided by the community at large and in the interests of going  boldly

yes i did buy a mac pro

yes i run boot camp rather than parralels

so i have osx and windows xp which works on the same hardware the only gripe now is i hear rumours of a octo core mac rather than quad core

and yes solidworks simply flies

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

ps i had the bonus of my partner being a graphic designer

so even if i came up short she could in theory just use the thing

now we argue over who gets to use it before this i used to slate her crappy i book not anymore

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

OK, can you describe, exactly, what hardware you bought, and what software you run?

Cheers

Greg Locock

Please see FAQ731-376 for tips on how to make the best use of Eng-Tips.

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

any of the intel based macs ( ihave a macbook pro 17" 2.33ghz 2gb ram)

it has an ati card but that doesnt present any problem

bootcamp (downloaded free)

parralels runs in parralell to osx the problem is that it doesnt have complete rule of the roost when it is being used
you can toggle between osx and windows rather than rebooting to your preferred OS

boot camp needs you to boot into your windows or osx the advantage being the OS gets all the hardware all the tim not shared as in parralels

this is my preferred way

i can run any software in windows native mode

currently windows xp sp2
office 2003
sw 2007
nero
wildfire 3.0
acrobat 3d

i havent had a problem with anything and it seems stable
just like windows on my old dell

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

Quote (G1DESIGN):

... since being derided by the community at large ...
I don't believe three replies constitutes "the community at large". The first reply to your thread was not derisive in any way and actually stated they would find out more details. My reply was intended as a tongue-in-cheek jibe (perhaps I should have used a smiley) and suggested that Parallels may be better than Boot Camp. (I apologise if my post offended you). The third reply, although another jibe, was accompanied by a smiley to show that it was not meant as "derisive".

What type of mouse or input devices do you use with the Mac?
Do you find it limiting in any way?

cheers

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

G1DESIGN,

   Just wondering how complex your set of parts and assemblies are that you are working with.  Are you working with dozens of files at a time, hundreds, thousands...?  I could see working with dozens of parts that are somewhat more simple, but I would be skeptical with hundreds or thousands of parts that are more complex in nature with the setup you describe.  I would be interested in seeing some benchmarks.  Right now I could buy a $400 laptop (windows box of course) and it would run SolidWorks fine for simple things and just learning.  Just curious to hear how much you are pushing your mac and just how well it "flies".

Pete

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

cbl

i tend not to take offence by comments made by yourself
and in general find your posts informative

the medium of type more often than not does not provide much of an incite into the lightheartedness a comment has has been made

such was the case when i mentioned the derision (dry sense of humour mine)

i tend to find cad guys have thick skin

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

Yikes--I guess that does come across a bit harsh--getting grumpy in my old age. ..

If you've got a graphic designer around, this is probably the way to go, if you can set it up successfully.  (Same with industrial designers, depending what they use--the Adobe stuff seems originally intended for Macs anyway.)

I think Pete's question of finding a benchmark to test against is a great idea.  I'm always concerned about productivity/dollar, so I've not seen the Mac avenue as being even a close contender--but maybe that's changing.  One of the biggest shortfalls has been the limited selection of software, but on a Windows platform (which I hope is at LEAST as stable as its native format--I can certainly deride Windows, too) perhaps that issue disappears and you end up with a much more versatile machine?

Maybe in the future we'll all just learn to get along--and the penguin will use a 12-button mouse with an Intel machine?

Jeff Mowry
www.industrialdesignhaus.com
Reason trumps all.  And awe transcends reason.

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

I would like to try a MAC Pro for my engineering applications but they're not cost affective compared to a WinTell box.

Once upon a time (way before me) our entire engineering departement were on MACs running ACAD & Vellum.  This was driven by the VP of Engineering and still a few diehards to this day.  This might have made sense back in the early 90s when one had to run UNIX based machines to be able run high-powered MCAD like Pro/E, CATIA, UG, IDEAS & FEA.  I remember the first version of Pro/E & Pro/Jr that were piped for WinNT....it was the cats meow because we no longer had to shell out $40K for a SGI or HP unix workstation.  So we have a handful narrow minded diehard MAC users that insist on everthing MAC....it's comical to here them talk about there MACs.  They feel the need to defend their machines.....don't know where that comes from wink

Heckler
Sr. Mechanical Engineer
SWx 2007 SP 2.0 & Pro/E 2001
XP Pro SP2.0 P4 3.6 GHz, 1GB RAM
NVIDIA Quadro FX 1400
      o
  _`\(,_
(_)/ (_)

(In reference to David Beckham) "He can't kick with his left foot, he can't tackle, he can't head the ball and he doesn't score many goals. Apart from that, he's all right."  -- George Best

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

(OP)
G1Design, thanks for the Boot Camp recommendation.  About graphics.. You say the ATI card in your Macbook Pro doesn't present a problem, but the Solidworks web page lists this card as having a "limited number of accelerated windows".  I've tried running Solidworks on an Nvidia GeForce that had this limitation, and the performance (even with simple assemblies) was inferior to my Nvidia QuadroFX even though they were comparably priced and had the same video RAM.  I'm not very knowledgeable about computer hardware, but it seems that graphics cards designed specifically for 3D CAD really are the best ones to use.  So my question is, what is the graphical performance like on your MacBook Pro?  Is it inferior to your Mac Pro even with simple assemblies?  My main reason for wanting a MacBook Pro or iMac rather than Mac Pro is portability from office to conference room.

Chris Montgomery
Mechanical Engineer

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

guys its early days yet with this so ill keep posting my findings

ati cards have really always been off(way off) my picklist

the problem with the graphics isnt major for me at any rate
i can have 15to20 parts openedin their own window and itrunsno problem if i tile then thisis when things get funky

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

I hink people need to realise that now that "Mactels" exist, it's not Mac vs. PC anymore but rather OS-X vs. Windows.

Inside a mac, you have the same things as in a PC: hard drive, processor, graphics card, RAM, etc.

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

I think people realize that "Mactels" exist.  I am just skeptical of how a "Mactel" would run SolidWorks better for a better price then a windoze box.  I want to use the best tool for the money to do my work.  I am skeptical that a Mactel fits the bill.  I am sure they are nice, just not cost effective for some serious several hundred part SolidWorks assemblies.  I hope they improve, as this only serves to bring more competition to the marketplace whch always results in better cheaper products for us.

Pete

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

A BMW might be the "ultimate driving machine", but I don't know why that gets all the big press and prestige.  You pay the ultimate driving price.  So what?  An $80K Japanese car would be rather ultimate as well (and probably less expensive to maintain).

I relate this because Macs are marketed to a niche, somewhat similar to how BMWs are marketed.  But this fails to address the bang/buck question--which is the only question I'm interested in answering when buying a work-horse sort of machine.  Performance and reliability are rolled up in the bang/buck consideration.  I think the marketing tactics skew what's important in this whole topic--and since we do not seem to have any performance benchmarks, this seems to come down to speculation on what's a "nice" machine for SolidWorks.

In reviewing the benchmarks that ARE available, I've found Xi Computers (PC) to be quite the value.  I wonder how Macs would compare.

Jeff Mowry
www.industrialdesignhaus.com
Reason trumps all.  And awe transcends reason.

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

(OP)
Aside from the packaging (admittedly a secondary concern), yes it really does come down to the OS.  One factor that is frequently overlooked, especially with laptops, is hardware/software integration.  For example, everyone I know with a Windows laptop is in the habit of folding the screen down only partially when they are away, so that they don't trigger any power management features which might cause problems.  I've found that power management on my Macbook Pro works flawlessly, probably because Apple controls the integration of hardware and power management software.  Software, device drivers and firmware are kept current automatically.  Everything works like it's supposed to.  Microsoft will never match Apple's level of refinement because Microsoft doesn't make the computers their OS runs on.  Of course it is more expensive to have one company make your computer and OS and be accountable for both.  With Windows machines, no one is accountable for hardware/software integration.  I'm glad Microsoft is around to keep Apple working hard, but if there was an OS-X native version of Solidworks I would never use Windows again.  I suppose that is a pipe dream though, so now I'm looking at a Dell M90.  Anyone have one?

Chris Montgomery
Mechanical Engineer

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

8
To address several of the comments here.  I run Solidworks on a MacBook Pro.  It works great under Windows XP SP2, running under Boot Camp.  It works equally well running under Parallels (my preferred mode of usage as it lets me keep the OS X desktop open, but I don't give it as many resouces or memory.)  No, my Macbook Pro doesn't have a high end Quadro card, (It's an ATI 1600) but it seems to work just fine, at least for the types of parts and assemblies I do.  My most complicated assembly might contain 100 parts total, many contained within sub assemblies.  It handles this with ease, and so far, no funny video glitches.  I have no idea how it would handle monster assemblies.

Now for some background.  I am not a Mac evangelist or zealot, like so many of the Mac community are.  I am a longtime PC user who only recently made the switch to Mac OS X.  I only began to consider doing that after Apple switched to the "Mactel" platform.  This seriously reduced the cost of their hardware, while providing a major performance boost.  The other thing that happened was thet Intel added virtual machine instructions to the CPU's, making it super easy to create a virtual Windows (or other OS's) environment under OS X.

Cost)  Old CW: Macs cost more then PC's.  This really isn't the case anymore based on my recent shopping experience.  That being said, it certainly used to be!  2X-3X the cost of a PC was the main reason I never considered Apple's stuff before.  When I went shopping for a new laptop/desktop replacement machine a few months ago, I did the cost comparison between Dell, Gateway, Toshiba, Sony, and Apple machines.  The Apple was the CHEAPEST with a common configuration. (17", 2.33 GHz C2D, 2 GB Ram, 160 GB Hard Disk, etc . . .) Now, one of the drawbacks is that Apple generally doesn't make lower end hardware that you would want, but their upper end stuff is very competitive on price. The best way to keep the cost in line is to stay far away from the Apple owned stores (except to go and play, of course), and buy from an independent dealer.  I paid $2500 for a $2799 list configuration.  BTW, Dell wanted $2850 for the same basic configuration, and the others either didn't have what I wanted, or cost even more.

OS) Mac OS X is just an amazingly intuitive interface/OS.  After playing with Vista Ultimate on a brand new machine at work, I couldn't clean it off fast enough.  I'm back running XP Pro for stability at work.  My time with Vista just didn't impress me.  It felt like XP, but with some semi-pretty smoke and mirrors additions (primarily Aero) that didn't really improve the way it works, at least in my opinion.  Plus, it is a major resource hog. What happened to all of the cool new features that were SUPPOSED to be in Vista?  We seemed to get the additional overhead, but none of the really cool new features (Aero being the exception.)  Vista also didn't seem to want to get along with my brand new HP printer while running on a brand new HP box.  So much for all new hardware working properly under Vista.

Mac OS X however, really turns out to be super easy to migrate to.  Everything just seems to work the way I think a computer should work.  I was amazed at how polished and intuitive this OS is.  I've never even looked at online help.  

Thanks to Parallels, Windows XP is always sitting there ready to run any software that can't run under OS X.  I have an older Windows piece of software that I use for interfacing to some electronics, and it has no OS X option.  It's pretty cool to see it running in what looks like an XP window floating on your OS X desktop.

As an old tech geek, it's fun to play with the *nix system that is the underpinnings for OS X.  There are elements of BSD Unix, Linux, NEXTStep, and others, that are incorporated into OS X.  If you like to write Unix scripts to automate stuff, OS X is the way to go.

I  guess I switched to Macs, for the same reason I drive BMW's (I had to sneak that in, Theophiluswink)  I finally realized that the price of entry (i.e. bang for the buck) isn't the entire cost of ownership.  My time is valuable to me, and I need stuff that actually works, which maximizes my efficiency, making me more productive, and that I derive true enjoyment from using.  My BMW's just work, are fantastic to drive, and if I have any problems, the dealer bends over backwards to resolve it.  Ignoring their marketing, they really do have a great product.  I could drive a Toyota, and it would be reliable, and get me there, but gosh what a boring appliance.
 
GoWithTheFlow is correct. It really has turned into a debate over OS X vs. Windows.  Windows has turned into a boring (to me anyway) to use tool that is at least stable in XP guise.  OS X on the MAC has made me more productive, plus it's fun.  My next project is to tweak my work box (HP) into what's called a "Hackintosh".  I want OS X at work too!  I would love to see Solidworks port over to OS X.  Since it's essentially Unix at it's core, this should actually be a rather easy thing to do.  I'm sure it will only happen if OS X increases it's market share beyond the 5% it currently has.

Sorry for the diatribe, but since I recently made the switch, I felt like it would be good to share the experience.  


 

-Tony Staples
www.tscombustion.com

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

Thanks, Tony.  I'd give you a couple of stars for that post, but it seems I can only afford one right now.

I now feel as though I've had a bit of an education as to where the Mac stuff is.  I've started another thread somewhere that takes a healthy jab at the Windows OS--I've not seen a more amazing piece of slacking for a company with Microsoft's apparent resources than their newest OS.  The Titanic is beginning to sink, and they had the world in the palm of their hand--what an amazing waste!

For what it's worth, I factor more than price of entry into bang/buck.  It's the entire experience.  If I have to fight my OS to get a color print, that's me taking a hit on behalf of my system--I HATE that.  I'm an independent contractor, so I must take personal responsibility for anything that costs my little LLC time or money (same basic thing).  So if I'm working all night because my computer is giving me grief (or SolidWorks or ANIMATOR [ug!]), I look for any available way to solve the problem and get my bang/buck quotient where I want it.

So, Microsoft is failing again, and the competition isn't just Linux.  Looks like we may have an interesting future.

I hereby take back all slights I've issued against Macs--to be henceforth reissued at any time if deemed worthy of reapplication--with the exception of the stupid non-button mouse and its derivatives.

I'd love to see more info on this and what sort of performance can be had with SolidWorks and a Mac platform--hardware or software.

Jeff Mowry
www.industrialdesignhaus.com
Reason trumps all.  And awe transcends reason.

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

Tony,

  Thanks for the post.  Would there be any way you could do a benchmark for us?  I would be interested in seeing that.

Pete

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

Theophilus,

As for the stupid one-button apple mice, (Yes, they are just stupid.  My first Mouse Systems mouse in oh, say, 1984 had two buttons!) that seems to be a strange quirk of Apple.  However, I purchased a Bluetooth mouse from Logitech, and lo and behold, it works just fine, with lots of buttons, a scroll wheel, etc . . ..  No DRIVERS Required! (Especially the Logitech drivers, which I have had problems with under Windows) It just works.  Amazing.  Right clicking gets you a context sensitive menu, just like Windows, or you can configure it to do whatever you like. Since the laptop has built in bluetooth, no dongle is required.  It's also cool because it has about 25' of range.  When doing presentations to a group with a projector, I can just hold my mouse and use the buttons to move foward and backward through a slideshow, when I'm nowhere near my laptop.

I heard an opinion that the one button mouse was actually done purposefully by Apple to keep software developers in line.  As long as one button is the standard, then they have to conform to usability guidelines and ensure that any software has all functions available via a menu selection.  If a two button mouse were the standard, then lazy developers might only implement given functions with a right mouse click menu pick.  Interesting thought.  I've certainly seen that happen in the Windows world.  Whether it's good or bad is debatable.  I personally like my multi button mice, and OS X happily supports that as well.(With no stinkin drivers required!)

Are their some standard benchmarks that I can run?  I could compare my desktop at work with my MBP fairly easily.

-Tony Staples
www.tscombustion.com

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

(OP)
About the "non-button" mouse..  I guess it is fair to call it that but it is really a 4-"button" mouse with 2-D scroll ball.  Two "buttons" are actually capacitive sensors that tell whether your intention is to left click or right click depending on which finger is resting on the mouse when you click.  A third "button" is activated by pressing down on the scroll ball.  The fourth "button" is activated by squeezing the sides of the mouse (typically this is set to tile all open windows).  The capacitive sensing concept is rediculously over-engineered, but it works reliably once you get used to lifting your left finger when you want to right click.  I don't know if Mighty Mouse can be configured for Solidworks or not.  Anyone know?

Chris Montgomery
Mechanical Engineer

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

Why are wireless mice called mice (mouse)? There isn't any tails!
I have always dislike Apple mice. They feel awkward to me. I probably feel awkward to them too!

Chris
SolidWorks 07 3.0/PDMWorks 07
AutoCAD 06
ctopher's home (updated 03-13-07)

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

There used to be a whole bunch of benchmarks here...

http://www.engtran.com/SWBM001.html

But now this is a dead end site.  Anyone know where this stuff is now?

Pete

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

Theophilus,

Great article!  A star for you.  Finally, someone wrote exactly what I've been thinking, based on my playing with Vista.  I see that my switch to OS X isn't likely to be the only one.  By the way, I also dumped MS Office in favor of OpenOffice.org.  I still have XP and Office 2003 on my Windows Partition, should I ever need it, but so far, I really haven't!

You have to give Microsoft credit.  They created the most "compelling" OS yet, in Vista.  It is what compelled me to find a better alternative.  The various Linux variants are definitely worth looking at.  I have an old Athlon 2200 box at home that runs great with Linux.  It runs some Unix scripts checking on my financial investments (emailing my Crackberry with any real time information I need to see), and runs my X10 home automation controller.  The main reason I didn't migrate to Linux for my everday system is that it's not as intuitive as OS X.  And since *nix and Nextstep are essentially what OS X is built on . . ..  So long as Jobs a crew keep providing me with good value, and don't go back to the old Apple days of charging 2X-3X prices for equivalent performance, then I'm happy!     

-Tony Staples
www.tscombustion.com

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

2
Vista just needs some time. Thats all. I think when this guy in the article Jeff posted looks back five years from now, he will view that article as containing some arrogance and stupidity. Forcing people into Vista was a way for them to rapidly bring all of its faults to the forefront, and in the long run, will proably actually be good for people. My old man still runs 98SE and doesn't see whats wrong with it. Sure, its a guerrilla tactic, and their licencing is out of control, but Bill Gates has been quoted as saying 'business is war.'

OS X is cool if you just don't get it-(which is why there is only one button and people paid 3x for sub par hardware and a bubbly OS)...


Meanwhile people are paying 99cents a song for sub quality 128kbs mp4's which will only work on a few machines. Apple is all about trapping you with their apps, data, and hardware so you will never leave. They are worse than Microsoft. They act like they are making it easy for you but they are actually making you rely on them. I've met more mac users who just don't get it. And then sit a user of soley Mac OS X at a Windows or Linux terminal and watch them bumble. I still won't even buy hardware from them even though it can run windows.

Redhat is cool if you are an open source junky. We eval'd some 30K apps that only ran on Linux and installing this stuff and Licence Keys was a nightmare. In a perfect world Linux would rule the world, but if it did it would become as big of a money pig as Microsoft. Money is what drives development, just look at SolidWorks vs your generic open source CAD app.

lets face it. The professional computing world is Windows, and will continue to be windows for a while. If you cant beat em, then you might as well join em. I'll be on Vista in a year and a half or so.

RFUS

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

Hello, can someone explain in simple terms just what exactly one needs to do in order to run Solidworks on a new Mac? For instance, what extra software peripherals you need etc. Thanks in advace for any help.

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

oh see oh see the interest is growing

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

G1DESIGN, looks like you're right.  Any updates on your findings?  The discussion is certainly getting interesting.

rfus, I think you're right, too, about things smoothing out a bit in the near future.  But I don't know if we'll ever see Vista smooth out as much as we may expect (hope).  I went to Costco the other night and just the UPGRADE for Vista (Supreme or whatever it's called) was almost $300!  Whatever.  Frankly, I don't need the eye candy, and I don't see what they offer other than eye candy that will make me more productive (except for maybe a higher RAM limit in 64-bit land).

On the other hand, I saw the Apple music scam a mile away (only their format forever?  I don't think so!) and I have no plans ever to be adorned with white sub-par "earbuds".  Again, whatever.

I think one thing the OS market isn't quite "getting" right now is that people are much better able to inform themselves of the products they may purchase than back in 2001 when XP was introduced.  This makes the flaws of the product stand out boldly before anyone ever has to learn the hard way.  This means the market is more and more likely to be based on merit than on whatever happens to be the standard.  As we get platforms that increasingly play nice with one another (or at least can share documents), merit will increasingly serve in benefiting the end users.  And shoddy products will either shape up or disappear.  Good riddance.  (What ever happened to once-dominant RealPlayer?  HA!)

Jeff Mowry
www.industrialdesignhaus.com
Reason trumps all.  And awe transcends reason.

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

Razberryjones,

All you need are an Intel Based Mac running OS 10.4.8 or higher, Solidworks, A Windows XP SP2 CD, and you must download BootCamp free from Apple, which also creates a driver CD for Windows XP SP2.  The Windows XP CD has to be SP2 on the CD, not an earlier release that you would then download updates for.  I have no idea why, but it's a requirement from Apple.

You partition your Intel based Mac with BootCamp.  I created a 40 GB WIndows Partition, and kept the remaining 120 MB for OS X.  You then load Windows XP SP2 onto the new partition.  Once this is complete, you can either boot OS X, or Windows XP (Your choice at startup.)  When you boot Windows XP, it operates exactly as you would expect any Windows box to act (because it's all the same basic hardware!)  You can then run Solidworks under XP.

The next step up is to purchase a third party program called Parallels ($79 list, usually cheaper.  I paid $59 at Fry's.)  This runs under OS X, and also requires Windows XP to be loaded.  Parallels creates a virtual machine under OS X that Windows XP then runs within.  Solidworks then runs inside that setup, but with one major limitation: Graphics Hardware Acceleration is limited.  I don't recommend it for big monster assemblies, but it works great for everyday parts and drawings, at least for me.  However, you have the advantage of being able to fire up Solidworks directly from within OS X. It pops up in what looks like a Windows XP framed window floating over what is otherwise your native OS X desktop.  It then gets treated the same as any other OS X application, and can be minimized, re-sized, etc . . ..  It's pretty cool.

I have my machine (17" MBP 2.33GHz C2D, 2GB Ram, ATI 1600) setup to do either, and I use it in Parallels mode most of the time.

-Tony Staples
www.tscombustion.com

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

rfus,
You said:
"Vista just needs some time. Thats all. I think when this guy in the article Jeff posted looks back five years from now, he will view that article as containing some arrogance and stupidity. Forcing people into Vista was a way for them to rapidly bring all of its faults to the forefront, and in the long run, will proably actually be good for people."

I respectfully disagree with your point.  If they want to bring a new operating system out, fine.  Please debug it and make it work properly before you foist it on me.  Don't make me pay through the nose for new hardware and software, so I can help finish doing the development work for you.  I don’t see how it’s good for me to have my productivity reduced because I’m constantly chasing unresolved issues with the OS.

In the automotive business, it is analogous to GM foisting Corvairs, Oldsmobile Diesels, and Cadillac’s V8-6-4's onto the automotive public before they were completely sorted out.  Those did nothing to help GM's reputation, and soured many customers. (I don't mean to pick solely on GM, but since I married into a GM family, and went to GMI, it is what I'm most familiar with.  Other OEM's have their own foibles.)


You also said:
"lets face it. The professional computing world is Windows, and will continue to be windows for a while. If you cant beat em, then you might as well join em. I'll be on Vista in a year and a half or so."

That statement made me feel old. <lol>  I’m old enough to remember when the professional (at least Technical Engineering and CAD world) computing world used to be primarily Unix, and migrated to PC/Windows, once it’s capabilities improved, because of price performance.  I was one of the biggest proponents of doing this back in the late 80's and early 90's when we were paying princely sums for Apollos, Suns, HP U/X, SGI's, and what have you.  Well, Unix begat NextStep, and NextStep is essentially what OS X was developed from.  I have seen the argument made that OS X is really just NextStep 5 or 6, and it’s fairly plausible.  When you look under the hood at OS X, it's Unix (primarily BSD), Mach, and NextStep at it's core.  I look at my switch to OS X as just heading back to a more stable foundation in which to do my technical computing, and oh by the way, it’s a more capable media environment as well.  It’s just icing on the cake if my wife, who doesn’t have the same desire to tinker with her computer hardware, can effortlessly use the MAC without any drama, or training, for that matter.

And finally:
"OS X is cool if you just don't get it-(which is why there is only one button and people paid 3x for sub par hardware and a bubbly OS)... or if you are this guy."

I’m definitely not that guy! <lol>  While I find the current crop of Apple commercials funny, I think they actually do more harm than good.  They further reinforce the stereotypes that have existed for too long.  OS X seems like a darn good technical computing platform to me.  It has all of the advantages of *nix (security, multi-threading, almost bulletproof stability, etc . . .,) an attractive interface, and it’s ported to affordable high performance hardware.  I don’t think you have actually priced Apple’s hardware lately.  It’s definitely not 2x-3x anymore.  Your statement used to be true, but I don’t see it so much so now, especially for Notebooks.  It’s anywhere from par, to 20% higher.

The only thing that I would love to see is Apple open it up to more non-Apple hardware.  However, I’m wise enough to know that if they do that, it’s bad for their bottom line.  Hardware is part of their business, and profit is what funds more development.  I’m a die hard capitalist and believe in free markets.  If Apple can charge a little more, and be successful, then there must be a reason.

I've used everything from an Altair my Dad and I built from an kit, to an OSI, to DEC's, to IBM PC's running DOS, and on to various X86 based systems running various OS's including every flavor of Windows starting with 3.0 (not 3.1, 3.0!), plus various Unix workstations on Motorola and RISC chips.  I even wrote my own real-time controls OS for the 80286 chip back in college, for a major project.  I was overclocking 5150 PC’s and 5160 XT’s before overclocking was coined as a term.  I'm fairly certain that "I get it" when it comes to computing, and yet I still find OS X to be really cool.

-Tony Staples
www.tscombustion.com

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

Well I have been a Mac person for years then forced to switch to PC's. I spend so much time keeping them running correctly it is frustrating. Probably format twice a year wasting at least a day each time. My certified Dell M70 is getting slower by the day, time to reformat, Solidworks crashed on me 3 times yesterday in simple parts files, no assembly.

So I go price a new M65 loaded to the same specs as the Macbook pro and the Mac is $36 cheaper than the Dell.

If I can dual boot and make my Solidworks and Rhino run I'm there. Vista looks like a nightmare, Dell support has been crappy, bad screen and a bad keyboard on my two last Dells.

If I can plug in the correct mouse, switch to Mac, I think I'm there unless someone can tell me a real reason not to switch back after 10 years of hell. ?  They are both PC's after all but Apple makes their own operating system as well as computers so it stands to reason they know how their stuff goes together better than anyone else

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

I tried this on my wife's iMac today, and it runs pretty well.  I was surprised how easy this was to set up.  Windows looks strange on a Mac.  Thanks tstaples!

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

Suhr,

Since all of the new Macs come with Bluetooth standard, there is no need to "plug in" your new mouse.  I use a Logitech Bluetooth mouse, and it works great.

pdybeck,

I will try to set up an run some benchmarks later this week.  I'm swamped at the moment.  I'll post some results when I'm done.

-Tony Staples
www.tscombustion.com

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

Thanks Tony.  I'm sure many will be very interested in the results.

Pete

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

Tony,

I tried to customize a Mac system even comparable to a system I built last year: 4.2Ghz AMD FX-60 64bit Dual Core, 4GB RAM, 10,000 RPM 300GB SATA, NVidia Quadro FX3450, 24" WUXGA Dell 1900x1200, 16x DVD+RW, 24bit Soundcard, gig wireless card, plus other bells and wistles system I put together with XP Pro 64 and 32 OS and tons of other software (not to mention how much open source stuff there is for windows, not to mention how easy and free it is to create partitions and use Linux or FreeBSD, ).....

Customizing a Mac to something comparable puts it at around 2x what I paid for this system.

As you are well aware, every OS has certain advantages. Windows definately has things that drives developers around here nuts, and I did not mean to imply that you don't get it if you use or develop on OS X, or Unix, as you put it. Apple gets computing. They were using intel chips in house long before they ever sold a piece of hardware with an intel chip. They just seem to be targeting the point and click crowd. Their business model doesn't seem to fit into my professional computing needs. Thier hardware prices don't fit into my budget. Their whole iXXXX line of software for OS X, Safari, lack of open souce software, and inability to buy OS X without buying hardware, etc... just turns me off. I do get sick of fixing my friends Windows systems, so thats not a bad point about your wife.

Sorry to make you feel old. I liked your overclocking story. The 5150 was my first computer. 4.77MHz processor up? I had a couple of the Performa series macs around back in the 90's but I never took to them.

I work for a company that develops software for Windows and Hardware components (i'm on the hardware side). I am already amazed at some of the doors that have been opened by Vista and Direct X 10 (and on the higher end of computing, the ability to throw memory management out the window with the advent of x64). From a productivity standpoint staying on XP is the place for me, but from a development standpoint and looking into the future, Vista has opened a whole new world.

I don't like beta testing stuff I bought, but that doen't mean that I won't do it. Solidworks releases stuff with bugs. Windows does. My company does. What is this holy grail that the Apple development team drinks from that makes them impervious to bugs as they move from Cheetah to Puma to Jaguar to Panther. It must be Steve Jobs.

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

rfus,

Your system spec is very unusual, when you look at the PC market as a whole. (Obviously, it not unusual for a high end CAD system.)  You would have to compare it to the Mac Pro with an upgraded Quadro Card.  I didn't research those, so I cannot comment.  If you built it yourself, did you factor in the cost of the time you spent building, setting up, debugging, etc . . .?  I've built plenty of systems, and I actually have enjoyed it.  But, it does take my time away from doing other things, and that has a cost associated with it.  On high end notebooks, it's a different story.  I don't know of too many people rolling their own notebooks.
  
I don't have a lot of firsthand experience, but I have read that Apple has released it's share of bugs, too.  It would seem to be far fewer.  All of these systems are complicated, for sure.  I expect to occasionally come across something strange.  I don't however, expect to be sold a new computer (HP), that contains a new opererating system (Vista), that just doesn't work.  When I can't run all of my software (old and new), and it won't even do something as basic as print (with new HP printer), correctly, then my view remains the same.  BTW, this same new box and printer runs great with XP Pro.

The best part is that we actually do have a choice!

-Tony Staples
www.tscombustion.com

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

Look at this on the requirements pages of solidworks.com:

"Please Note:  SolidWorks 2007 is not currently supported on Apple Mac®-based machines. Please consult your reseller for future updates."

Very straight forward, but do you think the "future updates" part means they are considering/testing it?

I don't think this mention was there before, I guess they must of gotten a lot of questions concerning the new macs. They could not "ignore" it as much as before...

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

With the advent of BootCamp and Parallels, there may never be a true Mac compatible SW version. However, I believe tech support will have to be provided if or when the popularity of MacTels increases and the customer base demands it.

cheers
SW07-SP3

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

There is a lot of speculation concerning new features in the next major release of OS X (i.e. Leopard), which is due this "spring," according to Apple.  Some are speculating that the virtualization functionality of Parallels may be included in Leopard.  That would pretty much make it a no-brainer to move Solidworks over "officially" onto the Mac platform.  All they would have to do is tweak the code to work through the Video Driver and take full advantage of hardware acceleration.

 

-Tony Staples
www.tscombustion.com

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

A friend forwarded this thread to me....and reminded me I am a member here.

I use the Mac platform for running a decidedly windows based 3 D printing system.  If this sounds like a sales pitch...it isn't.  Don't call me.  winky smile

I simply like Mac Vs Windows arguments...and I especially enjoy my business  runs entirely  Mac.  

As a Mac user for 10 years I was naturally drawn to CAD applications for Mac.
I use 2D PowerCADD and 3D Ashlar Vellum Cobalt.
Cobalt is dual platform.   The files it export to the printer have proved flawless.  No problems.  I've had zero troubles.

Cobalt screams on the windows side....but because of the new duel core......intel thing....Cobalt does not work nearly as food on the Mac side but that will be changing in a few days.

Here is a movie.  If you don't have high speed or upgraded Quicktime....don't try the link:

http://web.mac.com/charlesgallup/iWeb/Site/G3DP.html

I run BootCamp because I am told it handles 3D data better than Parallels.

As a Mac user, the worse thing about the process is getting used to the unproductive manner of the windows platform.  It reminds me of riding a bus.  I feel dirty after using it.  I prefer to draw on the Mac side and only use the windows side for printing.

The Mac Mighty Mouse?   It has the right click feature...you simply set it in preferences.

Here is a slideshow of a recent 3D printing job.

http://web.mac.com/charlesgallup/iWeb/Site/Gallup%27s%203D%20Printing%20Pics.html

This video shows my iMac running Bootcamp running a ZCorp 510 Spectrum full color 3D printer:

http://homepage.mac.com/charlesgallup/iMovieTheater32.html

I should point out ZCorp advised me against going with a Mac and BootCamp.
My vender advised the same thing.
I talked to an Apple Engineer who said.....a mac running on BootCamp in Win Xp- sp2 is in fact a windows machine.  Of course it will work!

For you diehard windows guys....my Mac diatribe was tongue and cheek.
winky smile

[img]http://www.gallupsconcretepumping.com/images/GallupZcorp299.jpg[/img]

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

Quote (Author Unknown):

For the believer, no proof is necessary;
For the non-believer, no proof is enough.

cheers
SW07-SP3

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

My issue with getting the Mac for Solidworks is that The Software costs more than the machine. Add to that the maintenance whihc will become a mute point if the issue you might have points to the graphics.

Solidworks told me they have 0 plans to work on a Mac version. It would be a waste of their resources.


I like the real view graphics which do not work on the mac
The 2008 Solidworks will also need specific graphics cards to work. The only mac Graphics card that will run correctly on Solidworks is a $1700 upgrade !
 
Mac Laptop Graphics are not supported.

Why wont Mac offere the NVidia grapics for their Laptops?
If they did that everything would be great!

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

looks like ugs are supporting the mac over on the ugs

thread561-182332

im thinking i like the mac more and more

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

pdybeck,

I finally got a chance over the holiday weekend to download and run the benchmark tests.  The specific SPEC apc Solidworks 2005 benchmark you listed would not run.  When you start the benchmark, it starts by looking for a copy of Solidworks 2005 running on the machine.  Since I run Solidworks 2007 SP3, it would only abort with an error message about not finding SW 2005.  I don't have an old copy of SW2005, so I could not even rig it up on a flash drive.  No dice.

However, the general SPEC benchmark test SPEC viewperf 9 does run, and the results are pasted in here:


---------- SUM_RESULTS\3DSMAX\SUMMARY.TXT
3dsmax-04 Weighted Geometric Mean =   9.389

---------- SUM_RESULTS\CATIA\SUMMARY.TXT
catia-02 Weighted Geometric Mean =   9.990

---------- SUM_RESULTS\ENSIGHT\SUMMARY.TXT
ensight-03 Weighted Geometric Mean =   6.411

---------- SUM_RESULTS\LIGHT\SUMMARY.TXT
light-08 Weighted Geometric Mean =   7.067

---------- SUM_RESULTS\MAYA\SUMMARY.TXT
maya-02 Weighted Geometric Mean =   9.589

---------- SUM_RESULTS\PROE\SUMMARY.TXT
proe-04 Weighted Geometric Mean =   3.629

---------- SUM_RESULTS\SW\SUMMARY.TXT
sw-01 Weighted Geometric Mean =   7.545

---------- SUM_RESULTS\TCVIS\SUMMARY.TXT
tcvis-01 Weighted Geometric Mean =   1.695

---------- SUM_RESULTS\UGNX\SUMMARY.TXT
ugnx-01 Weighted Geometric Mean =   5.473

There are comparitive results on the spec site.  I think this taxes OpenGL graphics more than the CPU.  Since the the ATI 1600 card isn't an Open GL card, it's performance is going to suffer due to the software involved.  Still, it's comparative data.


-Tony Staples
www.tscombustion.com

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

Tony,

  Thanks for doing that.  Looks like the performance is not very good comparatively speaking.  Could be the OpenGL issue that you mentioned, but I am a little skeptical still.  There used to be a site where there were several benchmarks - Star 2.1, patbench, etc...  This was discussed over at comp.cad for a while.  You could always try running the ship in a bottle test and see what the rebuild times are.  This would eliminate openGL and just look at processing, I think...

http://www.mikejwilson.com/solidworks/solidworks_files-03.htm

For everyone else... Here is the link to SPEC viewperf 9 for comparative purposes...

http://www.spec.org/gpc/opc.data/vp9/summary.html

There has got to be a way to benchmark your system more clearly.  I would be interested in seeing multiple runs on different benchmarks.  Until then, I am still a little skeptical.  Thanks for all the time you put in on this thread.

Pete

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

(OP)
What is the record for the longest thread? winky smile
I would be willing to bet that you Mac haters out there haven't tried using one since they switched to Intel.  Check 'em out.  I didn't abandon Windows at home because I wanted a Mac.  I hadn't used a Mac since I was a kid.  I abandoned Windows because it is broken.  After making the switch I was in awe for months.  As engineers you will appreciate Macs even more than normal people.  Yes, it is a more tightly controlled environment than Windows, but that's why everything works so well.  If Apple dominated the personal computing market like they dominate music, then I would be concerned by the closed nature of their platform.  But they don't, Microsoft does by a large margin.  I wish it would stay this way forever, with Apple (led by Steve Jobs) working to gain market share by innovating.  Windows users (myself included, when I'm at work) will continue to struggle and be disappointed.  If you think all it will take is a few service packs to make Vista a refined OS, then you've unconsciously lowered your standards.  I know I did.  XP, fully updated, is light years behind Tiger in every way.  You don't know what you're missing.  And you don't have to use a one-button mouse.. I center and right click all the time.  smile

Chris Montgomery
Mechanical Engineer

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

Having been with pc's since DOS came out, switching to a non-pc (Apple) would give me a brain hemorrhage. hairpull3
Just kidding. I could manage Apple, just choose not to.

Chris
SolidWorks 07 3.0/PDMWorks 07
AutoCAD 06
ctopher's home (updated 04-08-07)

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

Pete,

I'm in the middle of moving right at the moment.  Once I get settled, and I get some free time (yeah, right!), or else I just get exhausted and collapse in front of the computer one evening (much more likely scenario!) I will see about running the benchmark.


-Tony Staples
www.tscombustion.com

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

Thanks Tony.  Sorry to impose.  I know the feeling.  Of course, I am on vacation next week.

Pete

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

I've got Solidworks loaded onto a 17" MacBookPro under Bootcamp. It runs perfectly, except Real View Graphics is not available. My main machine is a Mac, but have done most of my CAD on a separate Windows PC desktop. It is wonderful to be able to do everything on a single portable machine.

It's the best of both worlds.

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

tgmcg,

I couldn't agree with you more.  I find I use bootcamp only for running Solidworks, and use Parallels for one piece of old custom software that has to have Windows.  Other than that, I just run OS X.  I use OpenOffice, which is open source, free, and handles all of my MS Office files with ease.  It's a great platform.  I've been using this for 4 months now, and there is no way I could go back to just Windows.

If you have a moment, can you download and run the SPECapcSM for SolidWorks 2007, referenced and linked above.  It would be good to see the benchmark, and I'm really tied up for the next few weeks with moving.  I know I used to have a family, somewhere.  I wonder what box the movers put them in!


-Tony Staples
www.tscombustion.com

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

How well does the MacBookPro handle sleep mode when running Boot Camp?  Ive used Toshiba, IBM, and HP notebook PCs with graphics cards on a train during my commute.  In every case I have to shut down and cold boot every time I close and open the case.  I spend 10 at of 30 minutes waiting to boot or shut down.  I've been borrowing a MacBook for Word and Excel use lately and it wakes up and sleeps far more reliably.  Can you just close the lid and put it in a briefcase, then take it out and open the lid and start working?  The Mac is the first Notebook I've used that does this reliably.  I can't tell if the hardware in the notebook manages the sleep mode better or  if it's OSX that is more stable - then I'm running XP I might expect to see the same delays.

Thanks,
PW

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

spaceaged,

I will have to test this.  I normally don't stay in Windows XP long enough to worry about sleep mode.  In fact, the more I use OS X, the more I try to minimize the time spent in Windows. (I guess I'm becoming a Mac zealot! <lol>)

You are correct about the sleep mode.  My Macbook Pro is the first notebook I've ever had that does sleep mode properly.  It wakes up almost instantly.  Everything works flawlessly.  The longest time is the few extra seconds it takes to re-establish the wireless internet connection.  That typically takes about 10 seconds on mine, after it resumes.  I have also had it in sleep mode, on low battery, and it does a flawless auto shutdown as well, once the battery goes critical during sleep mode.  My windows machines just pooped out, and would do an auto checkdisk the next time it was powered up and booted, because it had not previously been shut down properly.

I suspect that it's endemic to OS X. I doubt that even with Apple's drivers, that XP will handle sleep mode as gracefully as OS X.  However, one test is worth a thousand expert opinions, so I will test this the next opportunity I get.   

-Tony Staples
www.tscombustion.com

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

spaceaged,

I was pleasantly surprised.  Sleep mode worked just fine in Windows XP on my MacBook Pro, under Bootcamp.  But, with a caveat.  I tried it with MS Word running, and it worked fine.  With Solidworks running, it was a little different.  It did go to sleep, but when I opened it back up to resume, I got some strange video artifacts in SW.  It ultimately cleared up with a redraw, so . . ..

So, I guess it mostly worked!

-Tony Staples
www.tscombustion.com

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

I would swicth to the MAc in a heart beat
However.... I like Real view a lot and I hear in 2008 version it will be way cool. I work with surfaces and need it.

Oh well

But BTW my son has a iMac 2.3G dual core and it flys AND it has a 4 button mouse standard, right click works fine when he is in Windows.

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

Thanks Tony (TStaples) for your well expressed informative experience.
Question: Do you know if running soldiworks on Mac Mini is also practical and doable?
 The one I am considering has an intel core duo chip with 2 gigs ram. (purchased 10/06)
 I want to install solidworks on this if possible.

Thanks again.

Bob
 

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

Parallels virtualization software has made some in-roads on support for Hardware accelerated OpenGL and DirectX on their latest release (3.0).  Might be interesting to see if SolidWorks runs well while in a virtual session of windows under Parallels 3.0.  Mac users would not have to reboot to start in Windows, they could simply open a virtual session while in Tiger or Leopard, Zebra, Dog, Cat, or whatever and launch SolidWorks.  Not sure how good the support now is for OpenGL and DirectX graphics (supposedly it has improved), but there could be some promise there.  Seems like virtualization will really stir the software/computer industry with some of the options it presents.  Could be a disruptive kind of technology (disruptive to software/hardware vendors).

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

Well,

My wife decided she just had to have my Macbook Pro, so. . ..

So I did what I always do.  Upgrade!  I purchased a new 17" MBP with the 2.4 GHz Core 2 Duo, and the new Nvidia 8600M GT graphics.  The screen itself has been upgraded, and is now even clearer and brighter.  The Nvidia graphics are far faster than the ATI 1600 chip.  All I can say is WOW!

As for Parallels, the new 3.0 version handles Solidworks 2007 in Accelerated Graphics mode.  SW2007  has been tested and explicitly stated by Parallels to be compatible with 3.0  I now don't see any performance difference between booting Windows via Bootcamp, and running Solidworks in OS X, under Parallels.  Both modes get full Graphics Acceleration from the GPU.  I now have only one reason to boot Windows; To download patches and updates! Unfortunately, this seems to be a once a week issue these days! sad  

-Tony Staples
www.tscombustion.com

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

Hey, so is the newer MacBook Pro with the Nvidia graphics hardware significantly faster with SolidWorks than the older ATI graphics MacBook Pro?
It is good to read that Parallels 3.0 has 3D graphics acceleration that actually works well. Thanks,

Sayyad

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

Suhr mentioned a while ago that Real View does not work on a Mac.  I'm having this same issue. I'm running on a Dual core 2.66 Intel Mac with an ATY Radeon x1900 graphics card.  Rendering seems to have some glitches too.

Anyone know of a fix for this or what graphics cards will work better/ make real view and rendereing work well on a Mac?

I'm considering getting a new iMac for home and it would be sweet if I could run SolidWorks with real view on it.... as well as get this current machine to work too.

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

Oh yeah, I'm running SolidWorks 2008.

Cheers!

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

Well, at the least you'd want to check the graphics card hardware page at the SolidWorks site.  Some cards pass with RealView, others do not.  If they don't at least pass in the list posted there, I wouldn't expect them to then feature RealView on a Mac.

 

Jeff Mowry
www.industrialdesignhaus.com
What did you dream?  It's all right--we told you what to dream.
    --Pink Floyd, Welcome to the Machine

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

Thanks Theophilus,

It looks like the current card I have isn't recommended at all.

It  also looks like the and the new nVidia GE force 8800 GS that is in the iMac and suppoosed to give screaming 3D results isn't even on the radar at Solidworks yet.

It's hard to tell, though becasue it's a pull down menu where the results differ based on several variable, and Macs aren't supported.  Probably a crapshoot drawing any parallels between what they recommend and what would be good on a mac.

Do you happen to know of any reasons why real view would not be supported on any Mac, even if you had a SolidWorks recommended card?  That's what I've been hearing, but I can't think of any hardware limitations that would cause this.

Cheers,

~g


 

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

I think the limit might be in the Mac's ability to use hardware-based OpenGL--essentially proper drivers formatted to take advantage of such a system.  From what I understand you're forced to use software-based OpenGL (WAY slower) to get the graphics working at all--and the RealView feature is narrowly limited only to certain cards to begin with.  I'd guess it really comes down to getting the hardware to properly play with the OS in dealing with the software (guessing).  So I'm not sure you'll see this working with a Mac anytime soon.

 

Jeff Mowry
www.industrialdesignhaus.com
What did you dream?  It's all right--we told you what to dream.
    --Pink Floyd, Welcome to the Machine

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

Well I gave up
I had a Macbook pro 2.6G dual core laptop with 4 g memory.
Solidworks works just fine if you boot into Windows XP (dualboot) I tried parallels and Fusion, hated both and they dragged a bit. The graphics card was a NVidia GeForce.
Solidworks ran OK but forget Realview and I need realview, it is adictive.
The only graphics card Mac offers that will run RealView is on the tower and a $1200 option. I also found XP was not as stable as it is on a Dell.
So... the slender sweet Mac went to my wife and I picked up a M6300 Dell laptop. It screams, it is heavy but worth it and Solidworks runs like a champ realview and all. AND... believe it or not I'm running Vista 64 and havent had ONE hickup freeze or crash on any program in 2 months!! They fixed Vista ! At least 64bit and I'm happy and so is my wife. Solidworks costs too much money not to get the computer that works best with it. At least if that is how you make your money. For a hobby, SW is fine on a Mac, just not production, at least in my experience and I really tried to make it work.  

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

I currently have a macbook pro and mac pro sitting side by side comparing SolidWorks in Parallels and VMware w/XP pro. So far the mac pro is much better at handling large assemblies and running COSMOS. VMware seems to be the winner by a bit but not much. If any of you have benchmarks and/or questions let me know. I am trying to figure out which machine to keep. No, I do not use boot camp.

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

I tried both an you really should try boot camp, there is a world of difference. One warning to everyone, dont expect any support with problems if you have maintenance support. Solidworks says  Solidworks + Mac = no support.

Especially if you are not using boot camp

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

On topic with the original post, I have Solidworks 08 running fine on my MacBook. Here are the specs:

MacBook, 2.4 GHz- Core2
2 GB ram
gma x3100
Windows xp (32 bit, via Boot Camp)
Solidworks 08

Everything works great for small parts and assemblies. Im on the mac for personal drawings and would recommend such a setup for light to moderated use. Any complex assemblies or animations I would recommend doing on a workstation desktop.

And in regards to the mouse issue, the mac trackpad enables two-finger scrolling and for a right click I simply place two fingers on the pad and click. Sounds like a fully functioning mouse to me...

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

I'm glad everyone's keeping this thread going--it's good to see what sort of cross-OS performance can be had (any solutions with Linux yet?).

purepower, what's a system like that cost (particularly when compared with a Windows systm of comparable bits)?  What advantages do you see in running Mac hardware as opposed to non-Mac stuff?

I must admit, I'm rather attached to my Logitech MX-Revolution mouse.  Yes, I do find it well-worth the cost (I'd estimate it payed for itself within 30 days).

 

Jeff Mowry
www.industrialdesignhaus.com
What did you dream?  It's all right--we told you what to dream.
    --Pink Floyd, Welcome to the Machine

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

Love the Logitech MX-Revolution Mouse.  I use one at home with a wireless keyboard from them as well as a hi-def web cam for use with Skype.  Logitech makes some great stuff...

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

(OP)
Is there a prize for starting the thread with the greatest number of replies?  smile

Chris Montgomery
Mechanical Engineer
 

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

My system cost $1199 (normally $1299 - $100 student discount).

http://store.apple.com/us/browse/home/shop_mac/family/macbook?mco=MTE3MjA

The most similar Dell I could find costs $999, but its not quite as nice. Same size hard drive, screen size, ram, and graphics card, but its processor is a C2D 1.83 gHz, mine is 2.4.

http://www.dell.com/content/products/productdetails.aspx/xpsnb_m1330?c=us&l=en&s=dhs&cs=19&~oid=us~en~29~xpsnb_m1330_anav1~~

The lowest MacBook is even more comparable to the Dell with a price difference of only $100. For the extra cash you get a little faster processor than the Dell (2.1 v 1.83) but lose 40 gigs of hard drive. But with processor heavy programs like SolidWorks and AutoCAD, the bump in speed is defiantly worth it. Also with the mac you get OSX, which is the main reason I stick with apple. The majority of my workflow goes on the mac side (because its more stable and more intuitive to use), switching over to windoze only when i have to for my cad. Also, because the entire computer is built as one packaged deal, the hardware-to-hardware compatibility is much, much stronger (its not a frankenstein of components slapped together and shipped)...
 

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

Thanks for the feedback (star).  Looks like they're getting much more competitive than previously.  I'd have a tough time using a Mac at this point because of the amount of parts and assembly sizes I often use (graphics card/drivers wouldn't fly), but if your primary platform is Mac for other work, this looks very appealing.  That, and you're used to the (lame) mouse issue already. winky smile  (Kudos, however, to the superior track pad.)

 

Jeff Mowry
www.industrialdesignhaus.com
What did you dream?  It's all right--we told you what to dream.
    --Pink Floyd, Welcome to the Machine

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

I have been using my Macbook Pro 17"(Core 2 Duo 2.33 GHz, purchased December 2006) with 4 gigs of RAM for about a year and a half now. I chose to purchase an Apple when they had sufficient compatibility with SolidWorks through Boot Camp. At the time I was buying, it beat out all of the Windows notebooks in the same price range.

For non-SolidWorks work, I use OS X. I had been exposed to OS X and OS 9 during high-school architectural CAD training, but never worked on a Mac operating system for any extended time. All of my personal computers were Windows based. Learning to use OS X effectively took me a couple of weeks. I found myself digging too deep to find options that were actually right under my nose. I was used to right-clicking my way through a tree of menus to find the option I wanted. In OS X, the options were all where I would have looked first if I hadn't developed my habits in Windows. I find the tightly integrated package of day-to-day software (Mail, Safari, iCal, Address Book) easy to use. Microsoft Office 2004 or 2008 are pleasant to use. The only thing I can't do in OS X SolidWorks.

I am currently running SolidWorks Office Premium 2008 SP3.0 on Windows XP Pro SP3. I dual-boot using Boot Camp. The SolidWorks performance is exactly the same as on a similarly equipped Non-Apple notebook running Windows XP. Because the Macbook Pro doesn't use an integrated graphics processor, it is significantly faster than the Macbook for 3-D software. Mine has the ATI X1600 256MB graphics card in it, which runs relatively large assemblies well (several hundred parts). Medium-sized in-context assemblies using a top-down approach  don't bog the system down, and PhotoWorks renders at megapixel resolutions are in the 5-10 minute range.

At this point, if you compare hardware accurately between Windows notebooks and Apple notebooks, pricing should not differ significantly. What I gained by going with the Apple is an operating system that suits my non-CAD needs better than Windows, and has been incredibly stable. I also gained more attractive hardware that I find more pleasing to work with day-to-day. Battery life is better than comparable notebooks, and the whole package is half as thick as competing units. I have not noticed any incompatibilities or detriments when compared to running XP on any other computer.

I hope this contribution is helpful.

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

I have been running SolidWorks 2007 Education Edition on my MacBook Pro (aka MBP with (2.33Ghz with 4gb ram and the standard radeon 1600 graphics card) via Parallels for about a year and I DO have some video glitches.  First off, let me say that I do not believe the glitches have ANYTHING to do with the fact that I'm running Education Edition at all.  I believe the SolidWorks distributor when they tell me that the only differences between my Education License and the Commercial License are:  #1).  when I print a drawing there is a watermark placed on it that reads "Education license only", #2).  my version is always the previous version which means it's 6 months older than the most recently released commercial version, and #3).  it cost $300 versus $$k.  Here are the glitches:  First, it runs slow.  Yes, slow.  Even with 4gb ram and small part-count assemblies (<<50 parts in most of my assemblies), and second:  pop-up windows that ask crucial questions or choices during operation DO NOT COMPLETELY APPEAR on my screen.  That means I can't see what the window says.  I only see part of it.  

I am running Widows XP 2002 Service Pack 2 on Parallels (Desktop 3 Build 5608 June 9 2008).  The virtual machine recognizes my computer as an Intel Core 2 CPU T7600 @2.33GHZ using 1.36gb ram (that's the max allowable that parallels will let the vm use out of the 4gb I have installed)).

I've seen other posts on this site from people stating that SolidWorks is "flying" with a similar setup (or even less ram than I have) as mine.

Can anyone please suggest what I may do to improve this.  I use SolidWorks quite a bit and do not want to stop using my Mac (I recently switched from using Windows/Office completely, to buying a MBP and using Mac/Apple/OS X for the majority of my applications.)  I'm not a mac zealot, but I do like it more than Windows enough to not want to give it up.  I use Windows still in the Parallels VM because my colleagues all use it for Word, Powerpoint, and Excel.  So, even though I'm liking Mac more and more, I really can't afford to ditch Windows/Office completely.

Please help me run SolidWorks better on my MBP using Paralles.

There was an excellent post by someone  

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

Change the graphics card to whatever nVidia Quadro (or at the very least a FireGL) card the MBP will accept.

cheers

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

I believe it's impossible to replace the internal graphics card on a mbp.  Can you prove that wrong, or have any other suggestions as to settings I may try?

thx
Dave

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

@dcavalie

Your hardware seems fine, its your software that is causing the problems.

When you run SW on Parallels, you are essentially running a program (SW) on a operating system (Windows) on a program (Parallels) on a operating system (OSX).

With so much going on, the program will run a little slow, and there will be some data "lost in translation."

If you dual boot Windows (Bootcamp), Windows will be running nativly on your machine, just like any other laptop.

This should ease your troubles. Im surprised you were successful at all with your current setup...


PS just a little more on the "mouse issue"... Mac OSX has built in drivers for nearly every mouse (USB and bluetooth) in existance. If you have a mouse out there you just cant let go of, itll work on your Mac. Also, if you are worried about having it around when you are doing CAD, you are still running windows, so your driver software can be installed...

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

Here's an odd one posted by Josh at SolidSmack:
http://www.solidsmack.com/macbookpro-microsoft-vista-solidworks-nvidia-softmod-realview/2008-09-09/

As he says, "This will show you how to get SolidWorks with RealView up and running on your MacBookPro within Microsoft Vista."

MacBookPro + SolidWorks + RealView + Windows Vista.  Huh?

I'm curious to know of anyone willing to try it.  I plan to stay away from Vista entirely, and I'm not sure why you'd want to pay Mac prices to run a Windows OS for SolidWorks--after all, much of the value is with the Mac OS, right?

 

Jeff Mowry
www.industrialdesignhaus.com
A people who value security over freedom will soon find they have neither.

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

I hate my windows box. I was just perusing the apple site and saw the glory of the new Octo Core Mac.

http://www.apple.com/macpro/

It can support 4 quadro cards if you want, and run 6 30" Apple cinema displays. Imagine the size of desk you'd need for that!

Starts at $2700

Who's going to take the plunge first?

60% of the time, it works every time.
 

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

A note to add.

I'll be having a look at a new Octo core Mac Pro this weekend and doing a benchmark test with Solidworks 2007.

Anybody have anything they want me to check out when I do the test?

 

60% of the time, it works every time.
 

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

Which test(s) will you be running?

Which version of SW?

What do you expect to see regarding SW?

cheers

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

I just installed SW 2008 on a simple little macbook, running XP. I'm very pissed off. I own two SW approved windows based work stations, with killer graphics cards (my desktop has 512M of video ram) and this little macbook loaded my 400 part assembly, panned rotated a worked about as well! WTF! is it possible that a mac runs windows better than a PC? My next machine will be a mac, i think.

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

So you have a fresh install of both XP and SW and are getting good results. Tahs's no real surprise. If you do the same on your desktops they will probably give better results also.

Nowadays a Mac is basically the same as a PC. You are still running SW on Windows.

You have given far too little info on comparative specs to allow valid system appraisals. Video RAM is not the be all and end all of system performance.

CPU type and speed, amount and type of RAM, VM, size and type of HDD, video cards, etc, and how they are all set up will dramatically affect performance.

cheers

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

Hi,

I'm running solidworks 2008 on a 2.2 Ghz 4Gb Macbook Pro. It works fine with Bootcamp and also fine but a little slower with VMware Fusion; however whenever I swop between BC and VMF Solidworks needs to be activated as it thinks the hardware has changed. Does anyone know a fix for this problem please?

Cheers

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

I have been running SW on my MacBook Pro for about a year using Parallels. There is only one flaw:  some of the pull down menus in SW do not fully appear on the screen.  This would be a show stopper for someone new to SW.  But, for  an experienced user, it's just a minor inconvenience since that person is already familiar with what the pull down menu fields should be.  I have gone back and forth between using Boot Camp or Parallels to run SW.  And although SW probable runs better in Boot Camp, I find that I don't want to have to reboot in order to get out of/into SW.

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

Man, this thread won't die. I read through it and must retract my statement about Vista from almost two years ago.

Windows 7 baby! SW 09 will run on the windows 7 beta.
http://www.neowin.net/forum/index.php?showtopic=720128

I'm on the orphaned bastard child of Windows, XP x64, and am living comfortably, but will not ever be going to Vista (although I did by my girlfriend a laptop with it). I'm planning on getting the Windows 7 beta going on it's on Sata drive shortly. You can sign up to get on beta, or you can get the underground torrent installs.

Have fun with the Mac's Apple fanboi's. I'm a PC.

rfus  

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

I run an intel mac with few problems running SW2009
I also know a lot of other artists and designers that do this. It has its advantages and disadvantages like the graphics card  is a pain to update and you have to hunt the forums. However it works fine on my dual screen mode with the extra one being a 30inch cinema display. The lack of the right open gl is a pain but  i tweaked that and while I dont get the fancy glowing edges it is crisp and clear. What is awesome is that I get both worlds of software and benefit from them both on one laptop.  Yes the right click is a pain but download applemouse. or get an extra usb mouse.

I am curious about the future with win7.

also if you really want a steller laptop for SW I would get something else but for general part creation small assemblies its great.

 

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

Since this thread is still around, (and I've been MIA from the site for too long) I just wanted to update things, and mention that I'm still running SW 2007 on my Macbook Pro, but am now using Parallels 4.0.  Video response is much faster than when running under 3.0, once your assemblies get to be big.  I haven't upgraded to SW2008, or 2009, as I've read too many horror stories, and our engineering group is sticking with 2007 for now.

I'm glad to see people running 2009 on a MBPro.  I may have to try that myself.

-Tony Staples
www.tscombustion.com

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

Running Solidworks on a MAC using Bootcamp.
I have an all-in-one MAC which I am very happy with.
Specially since it ran right out of the box plus does not need IT to maintain running it.

I have used Autodesk Mechanical Desktop for 3D Solids modeling in the past through Windows. Now, I'm considering buying Solidworks and running it through Windows XP on this MAC. An individual at Apple cautions that they have seen problems with remote devices through the Firewire or USB ports. I was planning on buying an external hard drive which would run through the USB ports.

Any input from anyone?

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

WOW. This post sure has a ton of info.  I'm a bit new to this "threadding" so i apologize in advance if I break any of the rules...

I have a MacBook Pro 2.2 GHz C2D with 2 GB 667 MHz DDR2 SDRAM with a GeForce 8600M GT [VRAM (Total):128 MB]

I am looking into running Solidworks 2007 on Windows XP via Bootcamp.  I have not installed XP or SW yet. Although RealView looks awesome, i am not too concerned about not utilizing it.  I have some questions though... (some of which seem to have been answered already, but I'm gunna ask anyways hoping to have a reliable & helpful person respond)

1)Does my set-up seem powerful enough (say 400 part assemblies)?
2) Does SW need to have Office installed to function?
3)What is a recommended partition size if the only plan is to run SW via Bootcamp?
4) I am planning on sharing SW files with other people who use non-MACs. Will any data get lost or confused?

Thanks in advance for any help.  I might have more questions later ;)

vince

 

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

I just loaded SW2008 a few days into my all-in-one iMAC.
I didn't like to partition the hard drive since I was not prepared to do all the back ups it recommended. Initial partition set at 20GB for both Windows Vista and SW. I decided that I needed more space for the future but found out that I could not increase the size of the Windows side easily. So, I reinstalled Windows with a 40GB partition size.
The SW dealer came to my house where he loaded the SW himself. I had to reboot Windows since it could not access the Internet. Once I rebooted, the SW codes went in and SW was running.
I've gone through one tutorial plus imported STEP and SW documents.
Probably spent around 12 hours on it.
So far, it appears to running ok.
I initially contacted the local Apple retailer since Apple warned that the I/O ports, ie, USB, fIrewire, may not work correctly. Apple showed me external hard drives that are universal for both Windows and MAC operating systems.

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

Vincearlia,

I have a very similar setup to what you're talking about.  I can run 800+ part assemblies no prob in lightweight mode.  The only limitation I've had is when I have those huge assemblies open with multiple (detailed) automotive engines throughout different configurations of the main assembly, my computer doesn't really know how to handle that too well. After running Anna Wood's benchmark part, I had a rebuild time of 120 secs.  It's not great compared to better PCs...but not that bad either...there are other way worse systems out there.  Overall, I would give it a "C" for solidworks use...but an "A" for doing what I ask from it because solidworks is not what I originally bought it for.

Also, if you have a 3DConnexion device, it translates, rotates, and zooms smoothly within those large assemblies...which blows away some of the guys I work with :)

Earlier this year, I ran out of space on my Windows partition (originally 30 or 40GB) because of the solidworks stuff.  There's a new (FREE!!!) program out called CampTune which allows you to re-size your windows partition pretty easily.  It just takes a while to complete.  The amount of space required for your partition is up to you.  Now I have 100GB of the hard drive dedicated for my windows partition....and whenever I finish an assembly, I store the files on a Linksys NAS200, transfer files over using Beyond Compare, then delete the assembly from my Apple.  Overall, I've been pretty happy with the set-up.

Only run solidworks through Bootcamp.  Parallels and the other one are terrible to use with solidworks...I've tried them both.  When you install the Bootcamp partition, you're Apple becomes a PC, which freaks people out.  So really any application/document you can see/install on a PC, you can install it on that side of the partition.  In order to switch back to OS, you'd have to restart your computer and select OS X from the start-up screen...which takes maybe 2 minutes to do.

Be careful though, your Windows partition is vulnerable to viruses like any other PC....it would only affect the Windows partition, but void the warranty on your Apple.

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

So I'm about to order a new iMac and I'm going to run SolidWorks 2006 on it, probably under XP SP2.  The video cards currently offered, presumably in increasing order of performance, are as follows:

- NVIDIA GeForce 9400M
- NVIDIA GeForce GT 120 with 256MB memory
- NVIDIA GeForce GT 130 with 512MB memory

Is there a clear advantage to any of these?  This will be my home machine for small-ish side projects so maybe 50-part assemblies if that.

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

I have an iMac partitioned with both Mac OS & Windows Vista Home OS.
The 2009 SW runs on the Windows Vista through Bootcamp.
I run most of my applications as Apple with only SW & SW Doctor on the Windows side.
I don't do full production so the SW may only get one day per week running.
So far, it does everything I need it to do.
Primarily I receive SW files from my customer plus STEP files from other systems.
There's suppose to be a problem using the Ports, ie, printer, etc, but I only run those using MAC OS. My DSL modem/ phone line sometimes needs to be restarted in order to access the Internet. Primarily it's to get on the SW sever to download updates.

The only issue I had was that SW distributor CFO wanted to make sure they got their money while I was evaluating the system. Once I buy it, there's no returns. I have not seen any documentation from SW on how instal/ run it in the MAC.

I had to specify that I'm running an Intel-based MAC with Windows. This is not believed in the PC world since common knowledge is that MAC and Windows are incompatible.
The local technical sales person helped quite a bit.

The SW tech service still does not know that I'm doing this.
They can't perceive of what I'm doing.


 

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

When you run bootcamp on a Mac, you have a PC, end of story. The only possible source of problem with a mac is the graphics card. Since they are not supported (they are gaming cards) SW tech support might tell you any graphical problem you have is... just too bad.... But they should be able to help you with anything else.

Personally I have no problem on my macbook pro with bootcamp. Not even a single graphical glitch. (I have heard, but don't quote me on this, that Apple actually makes the graphic drivers for their cards and do not use drivers made by ATI or Nvidia. Maybe it's the same for the bootcamp/windows version?)

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

A few years ago I ran into a bloke at SWW whose company was running SW on Macs for all compute intensive applications. They were doing a lot of FEA. Bootcamp rings a bell.  

TOP
CSWP
BSSE

www.engtran.com
www.niswug.org

"Node news is good news."

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

Yo can run quadro cards in the mac

My latest i picked up for 1300 its last years twin harpetown model but i installed a 1700 quadro (again cheap) with no problems

some on here might know but solidsmack are fans of the mac and a great resource if your new to solidworks on the mac

RE: Anyone running SolidWorks on a Mac?

Hi Guys,

I'm reading through the majority of this post looking for some information on enabling real view to work on SW 2009 running Nvidia Geforce 120's...

I like many others commenting here am running a Mac Pro with bootcamp to run Inventor 2010, SW 2009 and NX5.. I have recently upgraded from a HP8800 station with Vista 64 - 16GB RAM and dual Quadro FX 3700 which worked quite well but on trialling the Mac Pro (16GB RAM Dual Quad Core 2.93GHZ Intel Xeons and 4 Nvidia Geforce 120's)I have found it to be substantially more robust for negligible cost difference.

I have had little dramas with running the Mac to support the 3D cad packages and have found my computations to be significantly better. I would highly recommend using a Mac to support 3D cad packages. Like many I now hope to see these programs native on OSX given Snow Leopard was just released given 1 year ago I wouldn't have touched a Mac to surf safari let alone allow it into a cad environment...  

We are running full assembly FEA on max 200 part assemblies. We are also managing max 4000 part assemblies for both Inventor and SW... hence the ridiculous amount of RAM.... Draglines have a lot of parts.... We have 1 Mac Pro and 8 other high end HP's and to date the Mac far out performs the PC's both in computations and performance...

My only downfall is I can't use real view... not a big loss but I would like to know how I can potentially enable it if it is at all possible..

If anyone has any information regarding enabling real view on the Geforce 120's that would be appreciated..

Cheers

Red Flag This Post

Please let us know here why this post is inappropriate. Reasons such as off-topic, duplicates, flames, illegal, vulgar, or students posting their homework.

Red Flag Submitted

Thank you for helping keep Eng-Tips Forums free from inappropriate posts.
The Eng-Tips staff will check this out and take appropriate action.

Reply To This Thread

Posting in the Eng-Tips forums is a member-only feature.

Click Here to join Eng-Tips and talk with other members!


Resources


Close Box

Join Eng-Tips® Today!

Join your peers on the Internet's largest technical engineering professional community.
It's easy to join and it's free.

Here's Why Members Love Eng-Tips Forums:

Register now while it's still free!

Already a member? Close this window and log in.

Join Us             Close