As of December 31, 2018, SOLIDWORKS will no longer support Workgroup PDM.

What does this mean for Workgroup customers? You must migrate your data either into SOLIDWORKS PDM Standard or SOLIDWORKS PDM Professional OR migrate to another PDM/PLM solution, such as Dassault’s 3DEXPERIENCE platform.

SOLIDWORKS is providing tools to their resellers and partners to help make the migration process as easy as possible. xLM participated in prototyping some of these tools and thus we have solid experience in helping you define your migration project.


The following considerations will help you define which solution works best for your enterprise.

Size of the current Workgroup Vault – SOLIDWORKS recommends that if your Workgroup Vault is larger than 20 gigabytes, you should select Professional.

Users – How many users will access and modify the data and what are their roles? Will engineers be the only users or will managers and staff from other departments use the data?  If you have 20 or more users, Professional will be a better choice than Standard.

Data access interface – How will the users access the data? Do they need to access through the PDM thick client, Web Client or some custom developed client interface?

PDM functions – Which functions are you looking to perform? If you routinely use these functions, select Professional. For example:

  • Which file types are you managing today? Do you manage more file types beyond SOLIDWORKS, DWG and Office?
  • Do you need data replication? Will there be users at other locations that need to access and or create/modify the data?
  • Do you need any automated tasks for creating PDFs, Batch Printing, or other customizations? Note that Standard includes a task to create PDFs for SOLIDWORKS files, but will be limited to just that.
  • Does the data need to integrate with any other systems such as ERP?
  • Do you have custom Status states defined in Workgroup and need to manage similar lifecycle states in the new system?

Growth – Not only should you consider the current state of your data/data management requirements, but consider where your company is heading and which functionality you will need to support it in the future. Here are some specific items to think about:

  • Are your current business/engineering processes dependent upon how Workgroup manages your data? Could you optimize these processes if you had a more flexible product?
  • Where do you see the company going in x number of years? Which challenges do you anticipate due to growth or change?
  • How is your data trending today? What is the rate of growth for the number of files being created, number of revisions, number of projects, etc.?

Cost – Based upon information xLM has seen to date, we believe there is no change in the license price to switch from Workgroup to PDM Standard. However, there will be additional license costs to upgrade to PDM Professional. There is also a cost to migrate from Workgroup to PDM (regardless of Standard or Professional). The cost for migration will depend on various factors, such as how clean your Workgroup data is (will there be data clean up required?) if you are performing a one-to-one migration, and if you require any data translations or data modifications to support how you configure the PDM solution.

Thinking of Migrating to a Different PDM/PLM Solution?

If you need different functionality than what SOLIDWORKS PDM offers, you may want to consider other products. Perhaps your enterprise would benefit from the 3DEXPERIENCE platform.

Dassault’s 3DEXPERIENCE platform can easily manage SOLIDWORKS data. Companies can implement it from a very simple data storage space similar to GoogleDrive or Dropbox with SOLIDWORKS link interface and viewing. You can select a simple cloud-based PDM system for managing SOLIDWORKS data with full traceability of history, revision control and engineering change workflows or a full PLM solution containing all of the PDM functionality plus additional modules of project/program management, quality management, requirements management, export control security and more.

Customers have the option of implementing 3DEXPERIENCE on premise or based on a cloud hosted solution. 3DEXPERIENCE customers can also access all of the 3DEXPERIENCE services, such as Marketplace Make and Part Supply, which are described in our recent blog, Takeaways from SOLIDWORKS World 2018.

Our xLM experts can help you analyze your current Workgroup environment and make recommendations for migration paths to SOLIDWORKS Standard or Professional PDM, to 3DEXPERIENCE or to another PDM/PLM solution.

Next Steps

xLM Solutions has extensive experience in implementing PLM/PDM systems with proven methodologies and tools that will streamline the migration process while addressing business needs, limiting issues and minimizing down time. Specifically we can help you:

  • Identify possible issues or corruptions with your data in Workgroup and suggest options to address and fix such problems
  • Install and configure SOLIDWORKS PDM to mimic similar functionality in Workgroup or expand SOLIDWORKS PDM to address additional requirements driven by the business
  • Migrate data from Workgroup to SOLIDWORKS PDM
    • Simple migration – One-to-one mapping from Workgroup to SOLIDWORKS PDM
    • Advanced migration – Most likely due to process re-engineering where it is not a one-to-one mapping; data needs to be manipulated and changed to migrate into the new system
  • Porting of customizations from Workgroup to SOLIDWORK PDM Professional
  • Support in administrating SOLIDWORKS PDM

Thinking of Continuing to Use Workgroup without Support?

Some customers may think they can continue to use Workgroup without the support from SOLIDWORKS. We do not recommend this idea.

Most likely, your company’s intellectual property is stored in the Workgroup system. If Workgroup ceases to function properly and you cannot access your data, this could have a major impact on productivity and costs, and could lead to legal issues. You will also be limited when it comes to upgrading your SOLIDWORKS to newer versions in the future. Even though xLM and companies like it understand the intricacies of Workgroup and most likely would be able to deal with such issues, we find that it is risky and unnecessary given the alternatives.

Contact xLM Today

Contact xLM’s team of experts today for help migrating out of SOLIDWORKS Workgroup PDM.



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