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Top FAQ's


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 www.designspark.com 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.


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


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.


Yes. Please download the latest version from Download and Installation


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.

The paid upgrade option is for SOLIDWORKS® Electrical.

You’re also eligible for a significant discount on the upgrade if you activated DesignSpark Electrical before November 30, 2019.

This discount applies to the following SOLIDWORKS® Electrical packages:
SOLIDWORKS® Electrical Schematic Standard CAD software- perpetual licence + optional one-year subscription service
SOLIDWORKS® Electrical Schematic Professional CAD software- perpetual licence + optional one-year subscription service
SOLIDWORKS® Electrical eCourse- one-year access**
**Only with purchase of both software licence and subscription service

Upgrade order placement and queries:
Send an e-mail to SOLIDWORKS.DSE-upgrades@3ds.com mentioning you are a DesignSpark Electrical user, your DesignSpark registered username and which country you are located in.
If you have a preference of standard or professional version, please indicate that in your e-mail.
SOLIDWORKS® will quickly verify your discount eligibility and help you with next steps (price, order placement, etc.).


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


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 https://www.rs-online.com/designspark/api/activate to a “White List” of web links which are set in the proxy server to allow access.

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: https://services.electrocomponents.com

In addition, the port number 8881 must be opened. In effect the application must be able to communicate on https://services.electrocomponents.com:8881


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


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.


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.

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