I was looking to run Solidworks on laptop and only issue was it was not proper workstation and just gaming laptop, even though it worked well enough on parts and basic drawings it always struggled with large assemblies and its related links. So to understand workstation in reference to CAD design is a type of computer used for engineering applications mainly and relatively for some advanced desktop publishing, software development, and other types of applications that require a moderate amount of computing power and relatively high quality graphics capabilities. - Workstations generally come with a large and high-resolution graphics, upto 254GB plus of RAM, and a graphical user interface. Modern/latest workstations now have a mass storage device [disk drive]. - The most common operating systems for CAD workstations is Windows. - In terms of computing power, workstations lie between personal computers and minicomputers. High-end personal computers are equivalent to low-end workstations. And high-end workstations are equivalent to minicomputers. ### Desktop or Laptop ? This really based on need, the biggest advantage of laptops is their portability.These all-in-one solutions contain your entire computer system in one easy-to-carry unit. Desktop workstations are difficult to transport. - Laptops are considerably smaller and lighter than workstations. - Depending on your needs, this could be an advantage or disadvantage. - Although easier to carry and occupying less desk space, laptops typically have smaller screens and keyboards than desktop workstations. - If you spend your entire workday in one location, then desktop workstation is better choice because of the full-size keyboard, larger display mounted at a more ergonomic viewing angle and, if you use them, multiple monitors. - Although modern laptops can offer near-desktop performance, these higher-end systems come at a much higher price and still won't match the raw processing power of a high-end desktop. - If all you're looking for is the most processing power for your money, the desktop workstation cannot be beat. - Workstations typically support more faster CPUs, more memory modules and larger hard drives than laptop systems, and their components are less expensive. - If you don't need portability, you'll save your business money by sticking with a workstation. - The smaller, integrated structure of the laptop also makes them harder to upgrade or repair. - Modern laptops usually offer fairly easy options for commonly upgraded items such as RAM, hard drive and battery, but if your screen, webcam, keyboard, touch pad or speakers die, it's no easy task to replace them. - In contrast, the desktop computer's modular design makes it easy to swap out such peripherals, usually without ever opening your case. - Furthermore, this modular design imposes less limits on the size and specifications of your replacement parts, so that you have a greater selection of products from which to choose. It can be argued that a CAD workstation or a mobile workstation is no different than a standard PC or personal computer, however while this is indeed true to the uninitiated and at first glance, it is far from the truth when you start to compare off the shelf computer vs workstation computers  The problem here is that unless your are familiar with CAD workstations and the requirements of the software that runs on them, it is very easy to make a costly mistake and buy totally the wrong system.  Comparing a CAD Workstation to a personal Pc is a bit like comparing a sports car with a standard family saloon i.e. they both have a 2.0 liter engine, they both have suspension, they both have 4 wheels and of course 4 tyres and brakes, so it is easy to assume they are the same.  We all understand however that this is not the case! A sports car will be tuned better and configured for performance (so will a CAD workstation), it will have better and more robust components (the same with a CAD workstation), it will have better cooling and better airflow (common with workstations) and the engine will produce more power.  At first glance, it may seem that anything that opens and closes like a laptop - and can be taken on-the-go - qualifies as a true laptop. However, many of today’s laptops are actually high-powered machines that are better classified as a mobile workstation.  So, what’s the difference between the two? A workstation is generally designed to perform intense processes such as rendering, 3D animation, CAD, data analysis, and video editing.  On the other hand, a laptop is generally adequate for less resource-heavy tasks such as browsing the web, checking email, and typing up documents. Each is priced according to their capabilities.  Let’s now talk about what classifies a laptop as a true mobile workstation, the advantages of these systems, and how to shop for the best one on the market today.  While the classification varies from brand to brand, there are a few notable features of a mobile workstation that are typical across the industry. Most will have many, if not all, of the following components.  - Multiple processor cores, The ability to handle many programs at one time, especially those that use a tremendous amount of memory, is the hallmark of a mobile workstation. Expect the specifications of a model to have an 8th Generation Intel® i5 or higher, or a comparable processor from another brand. The same qualities that make a CPU great for gaming gives a mobile workstation the power to handle intense tasks like 3D rendering and manipulating large data sets. - Solid-state drives (SSD), Unlike standard hard drives, an SSD has no moving parts. They work faster and generally last longer while standard HDD's can be more prone to physical failure. An SSD is also designed to handle the workload of systems that never stop and run programs 24 hours a day. - GPU (graphics processing unit), While all laptops have graphics cards or processors, a mobile workstation will have a much-upgraded GPU to help relieve the CPU of some of the work in displaying graphics on your display. This means more life-like output and less lag for those graphic-intense projects like 3D rendering and CAD. - RAM memory, Unlike typical computers, which can’t read or resolve single-bit errors, an ECC Memory (error-correcting code) can detect and correct data corruption so that sensitive processes can continue. Scientific and arithmetic processes, for example, can’t tolerate even the smallest interruption in their calculations, so this type of memory is needed for day-to-day computing tasks in those industries. - RAID (redundant array of independent disks), A RAID system uses more than one hard drive to store information, which decreases the likelihood that a crash will wipe your system. This makes processing and storing data easier and more efficient. If you’re a student using your device to write papers, do research, stream movies, and chat with friends on social media, then a laptop should do nicely.  Remember, there is quite range of offerings in the laptop category, including those with up to 1TB storage and better-performing 8th Generation Intel i7 processors.  Today’s laptops also include the ability to connect to multiple external monitors and DVD-RW drives, so you can watch movies, play games, and create your own projects for viewing later.  As long as you aren’t expecting to do too many processes at one time - most day-to-day computer users don’t - a laptop should suit you just fine.  For those whose work includes intensive engineering, design, and editing projects, a mobile workstation is a more appropriate solution.  These machines are made with the power to handle several very involved programs and processes at once. Having a window open with CAD drawings and another with video, for example, won’t be a problem for the mobile workstation.  These are often the workhorses of the industry, with the expectation that they can handle the same workloads as their desktop counterparts. As a result, they will be slightly heavier, use more battery life, and have a premium price tag.  What you get in return, however, is unparalleled performance that’s required by some industries, such as film and animation, engineering, mathematics, and photography. If you work mostly with the designing/drawing/modeling/drafting then you’ll definitely get the benefits from the higher clock speed regardless of how latest or how “better” that processor is supposed to be.  • For students: Intel Core i5, Core i7 with U or HQ label, whichever provides the highest clock speed.  • For professionals: Intel Core i7 8th generation or if possible, the go for HK series. If you work with rendering and simulation a lot and if you don’t have a separate machine for rendering then grab a multicore processor.  • For students: Intel Core i7 HQ or U series (depending on your assembly size)  • For professionals: Core i7 HQ (must for the large assemblies), or Core i7 H model processor.  C – Desktop processor based on the LGA 1150 package with high performance graphics  H – High performance graphics  K – Unlocked  M – Mobile  Q – Quad-core  R – Desktop processor based on BGA1364 (mobile) package with high performance graphics  S – Performance-optimized lifestyle  T – Power-optimized lifestyle  U – Ultra-low power  X – Extreme edition  Y – Extremely low power  • Beginners: small assemblies, single page drawing, simple parts – 8 GB  • Midrange: lager assemblies, multi-sheet drawings, complex parts – 16 GB  • High End: very large assemblies, simulation, very complex parts – 32 GB  • Extreme: All of the above with addition – 64 GB  • Assemble size below 500MB – 8-16 GB   • Assembly size between 500MB-1.25GB – 32 GB*  • Assemble size between 1.25-3GB – 64GB* You can settle for a consumer card if: - If you are not doing intensive rendering and simulation, any dedicated AMD or Nvidia graphics card or any gaming card can work for you. - If you only do the modeling/drawing/drafting (in this case you don’t need high-end graphics card) - Even you can do rendering/simulating that not exceed several hundreds of parts. - You have to use RealHack to work RealView with the consumer/gaming cards. - Going with a larger amount of vRAM is not recommended until you don’t want to work with more visually complex models – large pattern/textures. - They are not the best for the real professionals those works with thousands of parts in their assemblies. - Although, there is a large part of SolidWorks community who will help you with any glitches that you’ll ever face. - You won’t be able to get support from either the GPU manufacturer or the Solidworks if you face any problem with yours. - However, they offer the same programming interface (Open GL) as workstation cards, but their architecture is not designed for CAD application and this line is getting blurred every year. In general the latest driver may not be the best driver – even if you download it from the official website of GPU manufacturer, so you may have to download an older version and it also applied on the workstation cards too.  The Solidworks is not limited to use the CPU for rendering but also it is also capable to utilize your GPU – as long as it’s a CUDA capable card. And there are only a few cards from Nvidia that supports this processing mechanism.  - Visualize will only use the CPU if you have AMD card (won’t able to utilize). - GPU accelerated rendering need a CUDA card – it is only available in the Nvidia. - For handling largest assembly, you may need to opt for as much vRAM as you can afford.