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Top FAQ's

What is DesignSpark Electrical?

DesignSpark Electrical is an Electrical CAD tool that allows electrical designers or automation engineers to accurately design and modify electrical systems. It is available, at no cost, to download from and provides the capability to create synoptic/single line diagrams, schematics and 2D panel layouts with access to an integral parts library, live price and availability data as well as the option to purchase by linking your BoM directly from the design interface to the RS website.

Do I need to purchase a license for DesignSpark Electrical?

No, you do not. DesignSpark Electrical is available to download, at no cost, from

Is DesignSpark Electrical a multilingual package?

Yes. Both the project content and the user interface can be configured to display in a range of 14 languages. It is even possible to select more than one language to display in the project.

I'm currently using V1.3, do I need to upgrade to V2.0?

Yes. Please download the latest version from Download and Installation

Are there any limitations with DesignSpark Electrical?

DesignSpark Electrical is not time limited or restricted in terms of the number of symbols or connection points. However, there is a maximum of 3 schematic pages (including wiring line diagrams) per and 15 total documents allowed per project, but the number of projects is unlimited. If you require more pages or capability from the software, please refer to the other question on this page about paid upgrades to SOLIDWORKS Electrical.

What is my DSE paid upgrade option and how do I place an order?

A paid upgrade option is available for SOLIDWORKS® Electrical since February 21st, 2020. More information about the upgrade path is available here:

Upgrade order placement and queries:
Fill the form at

SOLIDWORKS® will review your information and help you with order placement.

I am experiencing an issue with DesignSpark Electrical, is there anyone I can speak to?

You can report issues or bugs via the Support Centre, link above

You will also find our support forums, Tutorials and FAQ's on our Support Centre pages

My computer operates behind a proxy server - is this likely to be a problem?

At the point of activation of the tool during first use it may be that the proxy server will block the comms link from the tool to the web, preventing activation from taking place. You should ask your local IT administrator to add the following URL (PORT 443 - HTTPS) to a “White List” of web links which are set in the proxy server to allow access. If the above step does not resolve the issue, check that your firewall settings are not preventing Internet access to DesignSpark Electrical.

It may also be that working behind a proxy or firewall will block the data transfer required to provide price and stock details in the tool. There are some steps you can take to resolve this. The base URL which would need to be authorised is:

In addition, the port number 8881 must be opened. In effect the application must be able to communicate on

Which operating systems is DSE compatible with and what are the system requirements?

DesignSpark Electrical is Windows compatible and these are the minimum configuration requirements: -

Computer requirements for activation of DSE: Internet

Computer User requirements: Windows® 7 SP1, 64-bit or, Windows® 10, 64-bit.

V2.0 and upwards will run on 64-bit machines only

Can I import DWG files into DesignSpark Electrical?

Yes, you can. If you want to introduce drawings into your project, such as details of non-electrical items, these can be imported as symbols or 2D footprints using the Library function within the tool.

The key point here is that existing electrical schematics imported as DWG files would not have the intelligence of the features in the tool and hence would not generate the benefits in use. Our recommendation is to create new drawings using the old drawing as a guide. Using the intelligent features in DesignSpark Electrical, this can be done quickly and easily.

Do I need internet access to use this software?

Our DesignSpark software is available for use by registered DesignSpark members.

The software will periodically check that the user is still registered on DesignSpark, if the software can not verify the user i.e. there is no internet connection, then it will continue trying for 30days and then give notice that the software will stop working after a further 30days.

It is therefore recommended that the system is connected to the internet at least once every 30 days to ensure seemless usage.