When you receive a new system there are some things you can
do to ensure optimum performance and other things that are good to know in the
event of problems. This blog details everything you need to know if you encounter an issue.
We have worked with Dell for over 20 years and use their
Precision range of Workstation products internally as we have found them to perform
optimally and reliably. We also value the hardware support they offer since
they are vital tools for us and our customers maximising performance while
minimising any potential downtime is key.
In the rare event of issues, all of our Desktop and Laptop
Workstations are provided with 3 Year Dell Pro Support based in
Ireland/Scotland between UK office hours and 24/7 coverage through various Dell
support locations worldwide.
They are on hand to diagnose any hardware related issues and
in the event they cannot resolve it on the call an engineer will typically be
on site the next business day (subject to parts availability etc). This keeps
you working with the minimum of interruption. In cases where you are not sure
if the issue relates to your SOLIDWORKS Software or Hardware, please contact
our Support team (firstname.lastname@example.org)
who are happy to rule out Software issues as far as possible.
Before Contacting Dell Pro Support
Firstly you will need to locate your Service Tag and Express
Service Code. Dell uses these product
identifiers to access information about your device’s specific tech specs and
warranty so that they can provide personalized support options.
The Service Tag is a 7 alphanumeric character code, and the
Express Service Code is a 10 to 11-digit code that is a numeric version of the Service
Locate your Dell Laptop Service Tag
Windows users can detect the service tag automatically with
Dell Support Assist
This also allows you to check your system is up to date which
can also resolve many issues. Alternatively you can locate it on the system
Dell Laptops, the Dell Service Tag sticker is on the bottom. Some models have a
flap, covering the sticker.
More information can be obtained on the Dell Website.
Example Location of Service tag on Dell
Precision 7000 Series.
Locate your Dell Desktop Service Tag
Dell Desktops, the Dell Service Tag sticker is probably located on the back of
the computer case, but can also be located on the top or side of the system.
Location on Dell 3000 Series Workstation Towers
More information can be obtained on the Dell Website
You can check Warranty information, download drivers etc from
either Dell Support Assist or the Dell Support Website
Contact Information for Dell Pro Support
If you have issues with your Dell Hardware then Dell Pro Support are on hand to help your directly
on 0844 444 3844, 24/7, 365 days a
year. During business hours Monday – Friday this is staffed locally in
Ireland/Scotland and out of hours by various offices worldwide to keep you productive.
Remember to have your service tag to hand.
If you need a visit from an engineer subject to parts being available
in time a local UK engineer will be typically be out on site the next business
Further contact Details can be obtained from the Dell Support Pages
If you are unsure if the issue is hardware or software we are
happy are happy to assist the process from the software side to ensure you get
the best resolution please contact email@example.com
also have tips below for basic Troubleshooting you can go through yourself
prior to contacting support.
Ensuring your System is Up to Date
Many issues can be solved by ensuring your system has the
latest updates. Dell systems are supplied with an application that is typically
pre- installed called “Dell Support Assist” which will show your service tag
information, and can be used to automate the download of drivers, BIOS updates.
Alternatively they may be managed by your IT support team.
You can also manually check for required updates on the Dell Support
Website run diagnostics, check warranty etc.
Downloads and Drivers can then be narrowed down by category
or you can download and install everything.
Note that for the certified SOLIDWORKS graphics card driver,
first check the driver that is supported for SOLIDWORKS ideally this should be
used. Use this website
for their suggested setup.
This may list two driver types, “Standard” and DCHU. The
driver you need depends on what was installed when your system shipped, most
systems older than Q4 2018 will have the standard type.
To tell which driver you have for NVIDIA systems Right Click on the Desktop, open the NVIDIA
Control Panel -> select “System Information from the bottom left hand corner
-> locate Driver Type. The text that follows will show if the driver
type is DCH or Standard.
There are no performance differences between the two so there
is no need to attempt to change the one you have installed.
In the event that you are not able to install the driver from
the SOLDIWORKS Website you can also see if the Dell Support Downloads page has
a matching driver.
Initial PC System Setup Tips
For desktops the key thing is to ensure your cables for
the monitors are plugged into the dedicated graphics card, this is typically
horizontal near the bottom of the case.
Typically this will be a DisplayPort or Mini DisplayPort connector*
If plugged into the on-board
graphics you typically will not get any graphics acceleration and experience
performance and stability issues, you aren’t using the workstations graphics
If your monitor does not support DisplayPort then
typically you will require either an adaptor or cable e.g. Display Port to HDMI
or Display Port to DVI, VGA etc.
*Due to the many different display connectors, number of
monitors in use and therefore cost of each adaptor, plus potential waste,
systems supplied by Solid Solutions do not include these adaptors as standard.
For laptops the key thing is that most use a function
called Switchable Graphics.
This should detect the graphics requirements of programs
on the system and automatically use the correct graphics card. However if you
experience performance issues or just want to ensure you always get the best
performance you can manually set the program to a list to force it to use the
high performance workstation graphics card.
This can be done
by Right Clicking on the Desktop and choosing the NVIDIA Control Panel.
Under Manage 3D Settings, click on Program Settings and
ensure that SOLIDWORKS is set to Use the “High Performance NVIDIA Settings.
Repeat this process for any other applications you use
such as SOLIDWORKS Visualize, Composer etc. If it does not appear on the list
the easiest process is to make sure the application is open then click “Add”
under Program Settings.
Note - Most Workstation laptops have a single HDMI port +
Mini DisplayPort so you may require an adaptor or docking station if you wish
to plug in to multiple monitors.
Alternatively, for some systems it can be disabled in the
BIOS of the system so that the laptop always uses the dedicated workstation
We only recommend dual graphics cards for SOLIDWORKS
Visualize users where it is used to compute renders. Dual cards will not
benefit SOLIDWORKS, however if running dual cards, ensure that all monitors are
connected to a single card to avoid issues.
You can also choose which cards are used for compute and
graphics again under the Program Settings.
If you have any queries please get in touch with Support@solidsolutions.co.uk