You may have heard that SOLIDWORKS Visualize Professional 2021 can import Solidworks configuration data!  The days of File “Save As” each configuration for a Visualize rendering are OVER!  If this is news to you, then welcome to the party.  If you knew about this, then you are likely here to figure out how it works.  This blog will cover preparing your SOLIDWORKS files with configurations for Visualize.

We begin the process in your SOLIDWORKS File.  As seen below, I have prepped a model for a nice modern coffee table that I would like to build, if I could build such things.  I have made two configurations of this table and each configuration is linked to a display state (this is important later). 

Apply appearances to my Solidworks model before importing into Visualize
apply appearances to my Solidworks model before importing into Visualize

I like to apply appearances to my SOLIDWORKS model before importing it into Visualize.  This way the Visualize import can identify parts based on the same appearance.  It makes working with the models much easier.

Before moving to Visualize, there is one crucial step you MUST do in SOLIDWORKS that allows Visualize to find the configuration data.  You must add a display data mark to the configurations you want in Visualize.  Right-click > Add Display Data Mark. 

You must add a display data mark to the configurations you want in Visualize.  Right-click > Add Display Data Mark.
The configuration icons will change to visually inform you that the mark has been added.
Configuration Icons Update to This

The configuration icons will change to visually inform you that the mark has been added.  Then save the assembly and switch to Visualize.  You can also use the SOLIDWORKS Visualize add-in to export directly to Visualize.

Once in Visualize, I start a new project and import my assembly with automatic import settings.  I find that automatic is, primarily, the best import type and it has the option to monitor files which will check for changes to the assembly in SOLIDWORKS.  You will also want to make sure the Appearances box is checked so that Visualize brings in our display state information.  

Once the configurations are imported, they will behave independently as they do in Solidworks.

After the import, you will find a new box in your Model Palette.  Once the configurations are imported, they will behave independently as they do in SOLIDWORKS.  Additionally, you can use the model configuration in tandem with Visualize configurations to easily produce a lot of renderings very quickly.

Additionally, you can use the model configuration in tandem with Visualize configurations to easily produce a lot of renderings very quickly.
Once the configurations are imported, they will behave independently as they do in Solidworks.

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