SYMMICTM Users Manual
Version 3.1.3
(TM) Trademark 2008 CapeSym, Inc.

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Windows Installation

To install the software, run the SYMMIC.exe file. The installation wizard will display the terms of the license agreement and prompt for user input before the installation proceeds. The software will be installed to the folder “c:\Program Files\SYMMIC” by default. A different installation folder can be chosen, if desired.

Installation of the software requires assent to the software license agreement.
See the license.txt file in the program folder after installation for details.

One or more configurable templates will be installed along with the application, but in a separate folder. During the installation, the user is given the option of specifying where the templates will be stored. Templates may be stored in any folder for which a user has write permissions. Please select a familiar folder for storing the template, such as “C:\users\myname\SYMMIC”, so that results can be easily located later. The thermal solution and other files produced by the simulation are written to this folder.

System Requirements

OpenGL Settings

SYMMIC uses the OpenGL graphics library to display a template and its thermal analysis. The main window of SYMMIC is rendered with OpenGL, so the program will not run without OpenGL. OpenGL libraries are standard with Windows, but the display hardware must have a complete implementation of OpenGL in order for SYMMIC to function properly. If the SYMMIC program crashes when displaying a template, mesh, or plot, the most likely issue is faulty OpenGL display drivers. To update the computer to fully support OpenGL, follow the instructions in the readme.txt file in the program folder.

The quality of OpenGL graphics is determined by the OpenGL drivers, as well as the rendering quality, color resolution, and aspect ratio assumed by the software. To optimize the quality of the OpenGL display, use the dialog provided by the display hardware manufacturer. This dialog can often be accessed through the Windows Control Panel. For example on a Windows XP machine with an NVIDIA graphics card, the NVIDIA Control Panel can usually be found in the Windows Control Panel by way of the Start Menu.

>> Set the OpenGL settings to highest quality. <<

If the aspect ratio of the object does not look correct, use the Aspect Ratio dialog from the Settings menu (as described in a later section of the manual.) For more serious rendering problems, try adjusting 3D quality through the display adaptor control panel or try updating the display drivers. See the readme.txt for tips on updating or rolling back display drivers.

If the OpenGL display of a template looks like this:

then the OpenGL depth buffer does not have sufficient resolution to determine the depth of triangles for smooth rendering of the surface. A similar-looking artifact can occur when zooming in because the depth representation is too coarse for smooth rendering of small differences in depth. Potentially problematic limitations of the OpenGL implementation are reported to the console window when SYMMIC starts, so check this window for an OpenGL-related message.

A possible solution is increasing the color resolution properties of the display to 24-bit or higher. Then restart SYMMIC so it can detect any changes to the OpenGL settings. The settings that are used for OpenGL windows are referred to as the “pixel format”. These settings can be displayed in the console by selecting the Pixel format? option from the Settings > Window display submenu.

As a last resort, SYMMIC can be started in software-only graphics mode by holding the spacebar down while the application is starting. In software-only mode OpenGL is rendered by the Windows GDI rather than by the GPU (Graphical Processing Unit). Without hardware acceleration, graphics will update more slowly, but all issues related to hardware drivers should be circumvented. When in software-only rendering mode, the pixel format will include the setting: PDF_GENERIC_FORMAT.

MPI Installation

In order to use the Message Passing Interface parallelism now available in xSYMMIC, the mpiexec.exe MPI launcher is required. Download and install the Intel MPI library for Windows:

Intel MPI Library:

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