SOLIDWORKS® PCB (formerly PCBWorks) is a PCB (printed circuit board) design tool that is integrated with the SOLIDWORKS 3D design software. It is installed by SOLIDWORKS Installation Manager as part of the Individual installation.
An electrical engineer using SOLIDWORKS PCB can make changes to a printed circuit board and push those changes to a shared repository. A mechanical engineer using the SOLIDWORKS software can pull the changed circuit board from the repository, analyze the modifications, make additional changes, and push the design back to the repository, where it can then be accessed again by the electrical engineer.
To enable this collaboration, you must install SOLIDWORKS PCB Services, which manages the repository on a shared server. It is installed by SOLIDWORKS Installation Manager as part of a Server installation and does not require a separate license. It includes Microsoft Internet Information Services and a database that stores data used to synchronize the work of the electrical and mechanical designers.
In network environments, SOLIDWORKS PCB Services is typically installed on a share server that is not running the SOLIDWORKS software. It can also be installed with other SOLIDWORKS PCB components on a single machine. SOLIDWORKS PCB Services must be running at all times, and have uninterrupted, bidirectional communication through firewalls and virus scanners with clients running SOLIDWORKS PCB and the SOLIDWORKS software, and with any clients running Altium Designer that are going to be integrated with the SOLIDWORKS software.
It is recommended that you install SOLIDWORKS PCB Services before installing SOLIDWORKS PCB.
In addition, another component called SOLIDWORKS PCB add-in must be installed on machines running the SOLIDWORKS software. It is installed by default in SOLIDWORKS 2017 and in SOLIDWORKS 2016 SP3, and can be separately installed for SOLIDWORKS 2015 SP5.
Electrical engineers who have licensed Altium Designer can also exchange designs with SOLIDWORKS 3D design software users through the repository. To do this exchange, users need to install the SOLIDWORKS PCB Connector. This software is installed from the Altium Designer client.