Alignex Blog

Posts by Mike Strand

Mike Strand works with both the Marketing and the Application Engineering team at Alignex, Inc. During the week he attends engineering events, edits YouTube videos and writes posts for the Alignex Blog. On the weekend you’ll find Mike driving ATVs, snowmobiling and building tools like a cantilever lifting hoist.

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Creating and Deploying an Admin Image: Part 2

Mike Strand on November 5, 2015 at 9:14 AM

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Whenever a user is installing multiple SOLIDWORKS installations, the administrative image can save time. During setup we can specify unique settings for a machine or group and select products for the install. Clients must have administrative privileges for proper deployment and installation.

This blog post is part 2 of 2 on how to create and deploy an admin image. It takes a step-by-step approach to manually deploying the admin image. We recommend reading our Creating and Deploying an Admin Image: Part 1 blog post first.

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Creating and Deploying an Admin Image: Part 1

Mike Strand on October 19, 2015 at 8:59 AM

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Whenever multiple installations of SOLIDWORKS need to happen, an admin image is a good idea. It can be a huge timesaver. It evens allows you to customize which software is installed, as well as specify certain settings per group or per machine. Read on for step-by-step instructions on creating an admin image before deployment.

Step 1:  Launch the Installation Manager by running Setup.exe. Find setup.exe by downloading the latest service pack from the Customer Portal.

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Race to Design Simulation Event

Mike Strand on October 9, 2015 at 1:00 PM

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Engineers and designers from Minnesota, Iowa and Wisconsin joined us on September 23rd for a car-themed simulation event + classic car show at the Minnesota State Fairgrounds. 

For those of you who weren’t there, here are the highlights!

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Reserving Licenses with SolidNetWork License Manager

Mike Strand on August 27, 2015 at 3:45 PM

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Say you have a team of 4 designers. The team has a total of 3 licenses (2 Standard, 1 Premium). Two of the designers require the standard features, and two utilize the features within the premium license. They are all on the same network domain. 

In order to leverage the full extent of the premium license, the license manager can be setup so only those who require the additional functionality have access to it. The process for setting up a system for license allocation uses a feature of the SolidNetWork License Manager (SNL) called the 'Options File'. If an administrator wants to structure how licenses get distributed, this is where to go.

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Lost and Found: Finding Your Parts

Mike Strand on August 18, 2015 at 10:52 AM

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Designers seem to accumulate an abundance of parts – a trend of the trade. When these are parts you can hold in your hand, the situation appears differently. Just like a digital design project, real projects have parts, tools and assemblies. During the course of a team tearing down an engine, for example, these parts and tools may end up scattered throughout the shop or garage without a trace of who, what when and where.

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8 Things Customers Love About 3D CAD

Mike Strand on June 18, 2015 at 2:59 PM

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3D design offers clear engineering advantages over 2D. Here's 8 things Alignex customers say they couldn't live without.

  1. Freedom for Engineers to Create
    With 3D CAD, engineers are no longer bound to the limitations of 2D, allowing for more creativity.

  2. Creating Market Space Through Innovation
    Give competitors a run for their money by taking the next step to improve your product development process.

  3. Attracting and Retaining the Best Talent
    People are a key asset, empower them with tools that match their ambitions.

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Model Based Definition: A Clear View for Manufacturing

Mike Strand on May 12, 2015 at 12:15 PM

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From air quality technology to ophthalmic lens manufacturing, companies from a wide variety of industries showed up at one of our recent Productivity Pack Workshop events to see some new engineering technology. The focus of the event was on becoming more productive, and we covered topics including Simulation, Electrical, Inspection, Costing and MBD. In this blog post I will run through SOLIDWORKS MBD.

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Attending a SOLIDWORKS User Group Meeting

Mike Strand on March 17, 2015 at 8:33 AM

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The power of a user group is evident once you attend. With a room full of engineers and designers who all use the same program, there’s a great chance of discovering a new technique, feature or process that elevate a design. A few of us from Alignex attended the Sioux Falls meeting to join the discussion which ranged from new features of SOLIDWORKS 2015 to facts about the larger SOLIDWORKS community.

User groups are a great place to learn more about SOLIDWORKS and engineering in general. There are also lots of video resources as well as offerings in schools and colleges. Here are a few interesting stats about the community of SOLIDWORKS learners:

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Kooima Engineer Wins SOLIDWORKS Model Mania Contest

Mike Strand on March 10, 2015 at 1:15 PM

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Would the fastest designer in the room please stand?

For 16 years, the fastest designers have been standing up to accept prizes at the SOLIDWORKS World convention. Every year there is a competition called Model Mania. In this contest designers are given a drawing of a part never before seen. They then have to create a model of this part, run through a redesign of the part and finally perform a simulation analyzing the forces applied. The rules are laid out, but the technique is not.

We recently talked with Nick Vande Waerdt, the contest winner this year from Kooima, a company we are quite familiar with. Nick is a design engineer and started down the design path right out of college. He has a natural draw toward engineering and modeling and also has experience with this competition.

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Saving and Exporting in SOLIDWORKS 2015

Mike Strand on February 24, 2015 at 3:07 PM

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While some saving and exporting options in SOLIDWORKS are pretty straightforward, others can be confusing at first. In this post, we take a look at the different options in SOLIDWORKS 2015 including Saving, Exporting, and Pack and Go and how they affect our workflow.

Save Options

There are five different options for saving in SOLIDWORKS, including the Pack and Go option. It may seem like a lot, but they can actually save you time once you learn which option is most suitable for your needs.

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