Cygwin + CalculiX + FreeCAD + Gmsh

Cygwin is a collection of tools for running programs under MS Windows that were originally intended for Linux / Unix-style computers. This package contains the CalculiX pre / postprocessor cgx (compiled under Cygwin) and minimal components of Cygwin/X (X11 server) required to run it. It allows CalculiX to run on a desktop / laptop Windows system. A Windows binary distribution of FreeCAD is also included, which also contains CalculiX ccx (the FEA processor) and Gmsh (automatic mesh generator).

Hardware requirements

Minimum recommended specification is a core-i processor with 4GB memory; newer / faster processors will generate results more quickly and more memory may be required for larger models.

Operating system requirements

64-bit MS Windows Operating system (10, 11 or Windows server 2012 or later)

Installation - setup.exe version 3 (from December 2023)

A new package is now available in the common Microsoft Windows setup.exe format. Run the program to install. The recommended location is at the root of your system drive (typically C:\FEAServer). You can install to other locations but it's highly recommended NOT to install in special locations such as \Windows or \Program Files. Windows imposes extra security for these locations, preventing write access to users, which will stop the package working as intended if installed there. The files installed are as described below.

Extracting the files will take several minutes but when complete you should find the following directories in your chosen location (default C:\FEAServer):

cygwin64 (Cygwin and parts of Cygwin/X 64-bit, plus CalculiX cgx)
freecad (FreeCAD Windows binary distribution, 64-bit portable)
gmsh (included in FreeCAD distribution)
python(included in FreeCAD distribution)
SonoAnalyzer-README (License and README files, plus source code of modified CalculiX files)
Utilities (Microsoft Visual C++ Redistributable, may be required for FreeCAD)

On completion of the file extraction you should be prompted to run a "RunOnce" program. This will install the required Microsoft Visual C++ Redistributable libraries and set an environment variable "SA_FEASERVER" to the installation directory. SonoAnalyzer from version 2.0.7 up will check for this environment variable and prompt you to set up the server automatically.

FEAServer3-setup.exe download (628MB) MD5: 33f4bca3954a8e05afba5bc52d0e5301

Adding analysis engine to SonoAnalyzer Pro

Once extracted, the files are ready for use by SonoAnalyzer Pro version 2.x.x. The final step is to tell Pro to use it. If you've used the setup.exe package above and you haven't set up any other native FEA servers, SonoAnalyzer should prompt you to perform the setup automatically.

Alternatively to do the setup yourself Select Pro -> FEA Servers from the main menu, click the "New "Native FEA (v2)" tab, change file paths / drive letters if you have installed in a different location, click "Setup" and then "Select".

Other use

This is a fully-functional open-source package for running CalculiX, FreeCAD and Gmsh on MS Windows. Please see the README file in the folder SonoAnalyzer-README for more information.

Compared to previous versions

Compared to the previous version 2.02 this contains updated software versions in a minimal form to support SonoAnalyzer Pro version 2.3.0 onwards. CalculiX and FreeCAD (including Gmsh) are updated to the latest versions at the time of release (December 2023). Netgen is no longer included. Cygwin/X and the full Cygwin distribution are no longer included; instead minimal files are provided to run CalculiX cgx without graphical support. Batch files for launching applications are no longer included.