Running the Compare Utility

To run the Compare utility:

  1. Click a utility from the Tools toolbar or Tools > Compare menu:
    • Compare Documents . Compares the properties of two SOLIDWORKS documents (or two configurations of the same document). This utility identifies the following property types:
      • File properties. Click File > Properties > Summary.
      • Document-specific properties. Click File > Properties > Custom.
      • Document properties. Click Tools > Options > Document Properties. SOLIDWORKS Utilities does not support comparison of Document Properties of DimXpert for parts.
      You can run Compare Documents on parts in the SOLIDWORKS PDM software.
    • Compare Features . Identifies the differences in solid features, including appearance properties (colors, optics, and textures) between two versions of the same part (or two configurations of the same part). Features are compared by name and type. If features in the two parts have the same name and type, this tool pairs the features and compares their individual parameters.

      Features are classified into three categories:

      • Identical features. Same name and type with identical parameter values.
      • Modified features. Same name and type with different parameter values.
      • Unique features. Unique name and type.
      If FeatureWorks is installed on your machine and you open a part without parameterized features, the following occurs:

      FeatureWorks displays a dialog box that asks if you want to proceed with feature recognition. You should click No.

      If you click Yes, which starts feature recognition, do not click Run Comparison in the Compare Features Task Pane. Running the two simultaneously can have undesirable results.

    • Compare Geometry . Compares two parts (or two configurations of the same part) and identifies differences between two versions of the same part. Compare Geometry performs both volume comparison and face comparison. For assemblies, you can compare geometry only in volumes, and for surface models, you can compare geometry only in faces.

      When you compare volumes, you can display volume common to both versions, and material you can add or remove from either version. Different colors highlight the variations between the reference and modified model in the graphics area.

      You can save comparison volumes in the reference document, in the modified document, or in both. You can then use the Intersect tool to merge any combination of the added and removed volumes into the reference or modified model.

      When you compare faces, you can display faces common to both versions, faces that have been modified between versions, and faces that are unique to the versions. The face types are highlighted in different colors. You can save the documents with colors highlighting the common, unique, and modified faces.

    • Compare BOMs (Assemblies or drawings). Compares Bill of Material (BOM) tables from two SOLIDWORKS assembly or drawing documents. You can compare BOM tables from two assemblies, two drawings, or an assembly and a drawing.

      The results list missing columns and rows, extra columns and rows, and failed rows. Comparison of Excel-based BOMs is not supported. This utility finds all BOM tables in the documents. You can select the BOMs to compare in BOM 1 and BOM 2. You can also select a column for Criteria for failed rows. Failed rows have identical data in both BOM tables for the selected column, but nonidentical data in the other columns.

      Include the Part Number column in both BOMs to display missing or extra rows.
  2. Select a Reference document and a Modified document. You can select from the list of already opened documents, or Browse to a document.
    To specify a configuration, click Browse and select a document. In the dialog box, select a configuration under Configurations, then click Open. When you compare two configurations of the same document, the file name is renamed to <document_name>_<configuration_name>.sld*.
  3. Under Items to compare, select additional items to compare if necessary. The Compare utility can compare multiple items simultaneously.
    If you are comparing geometry, select Align parts to compare geometrically similar bodies located in different positions, relative to the origin.
  4. Click Options at the top of the Task Pane to open the Compare Options dialog box. You can use this to change units, feature display colors, report options, and so on. You can also change these options after Compare runs.
  5. Click Run Comparison to begin the comparison.
  6. Open the Compare Task Pane to view the results. If you compare multiple items, select the tabs to toggle between results . Click and at the top of the Task Pane to navigate between the results and parameters panes.