Quick Start Guide: Installing Ansys Zemax OpticStudio via CADpass Client Secure Connection

Licensing Requirements or Restrictions
Usage terms and conditions apply to this software. For more information, refer to Licensing Requirements or Restrictions on the associated product page:

Table of Contents

CADpass client secure connection (will be referred to as CADpass client or CADpass in this document) is a utility provided by CMC Microsystems that creates a secure connection between client PCs, workstations, and computer sessions, and the CMC-managed CNDN infrastructure.

This quick start guide provides instructions for installing OpticStudio Professional from Zemax LLC on a Windows 10 system using CMC Microsystem’s CADpass to access shared licenses on the CMC License Management System (LMS).

Prerequisites for Installing Ansys Zemax OpticStudio with CMC License Manager System (LMS) 

You must meet the following criteria before installing Ansys Zemax OpticStudio:

  • Register with CMC Microsystems. Students may do so at
  • Faculty supervisors can subscribe through the CMC subscription page at
  • Complete all applicable access agreements listed at
  • You must have administrator rights for the computer on which you are installing this software
  • You must have a unique login name (LINUX or Windows) that does not contain a blank space. A username such as “charlie brown” contains a space, while usernames such as “charlie.brown” or “charlie_brown” do not contain spaces.

The following are examples of unacceptable login names: admin or administrator; root; super, sysadmin, user, owner, student, guest, temp, and system.

System Requirements

The technical staff at Ansys provide the following recommendations for making the best use of their software, including the operating system, graphics card, CPU, and other hardware.

Setting up CADpass client for Use with OpticStudio Software

CADpass client is a CMC Microsystems’ license access client and is used by subscribers across Canada to connect to our secure license server(s).

  1. Follow the instructions in the quick start guide to download and install CADpass client.
  2. Start CADpass client and log in using your CMC Microsystems Username and Password.
  3. When the CAD access window appears, double-click Zemax.
    A red checkmark appears next to the entry, as shown in Figure 1. Leave this checked while you are using the software.

Figure 1: The Ansys Campus Solutions for Academics Entry in CADpass client

Obtaining the Software

Navigate to the Ansys Zemax download site on the CMC Microsystems website here: Ansys Zemax.

Download the installation file archive to your workstation.

Installing the Software

You need to install the following software:

  • Ansys Zemax Optic Studio (one *.zip image)

Before installing the Ansys software:

  1. Start CADpass client and log in using your CMC Microsystems Username and Password.
  2. Download the installer archive.
  3. Extract this archive into a separate temporary folder.

To install the Ansys software:

  1. In the temporary folder, click the installer executable to launch it.
    A License Agreement window opens where you may accept the terms of the Zemax user agreement. If you are unsure of your obligations under this agreement, contact to discuss them.
  1. To continue, select I agree to the terms, as shown in Figure 2.

Figure 2: The Ansys Zemax License Agreement Window

  1. Click Install to proceed.

A Setup Progress window appears as the installation begins (see Figure 3). The installation defaults to the C:/ drive of your workstation.

Figure 3: The Ansys Zemax Setup Progress Window

When the executable file has finished installing, an Installation Successfully Completed message is displayed (see Figure 4).

Figure 4: Installation Successfully Completed Window

  1. Click Close to end the installation.
  2. From your Start Menu, open the Ansys Zemax OpticStudio software.

The software may proceed to install libraries and other required redistributables that may be missing from your workstation.

Setting up OpticStudio License Access

  1. Start CADpass client and select Ansys Campus Solutions for Academics as shown in Figure 1.
  2. From your Start Menu, open Ansys Zemax OpticStudio.

The software may copy additional data files and programs to your designated user data folder. Click OK to proceed.

  1. From within the Ansys Zemax main window, open the Help menu:

Help | License Utility

  1. Enter the server information as shown in Figure 5.
  2. Click OK to save this information.

Figure 6: Setting the Ansys Zemax License Server Information

You are now able to use Ansys Zemax OpticStudio.

Troubleshooting OpticStudio

For assistance with debugging, CMC Microsystems’ technical support staff can perform remote desktop login assistance. Use our support webpage to send in your request. Including software version number, operating system and screenshots of error messages you see will help us to understand your problem.

Other Training, Tutorials, and References

  • Books/E-books with specific Zemax examples include:
    • Siew, Ronian, “Perspectives on Modern Optics and Imaging: With Practical Examples using Zemax OpticStudio”, self-published, 2017
    • Sokolova, Elena, “Optimisation Techniques for Diffraction Spectrometers,” SPIE, 2015
    • Lau, Lee, Premachandran and Aibin, “Advanced MEMS Packaging”, McGraw-Hill, 2010
    • Fainman, Psaltis and Yang, “Optofluidics: Fundamentals, Devices and Applications,” McGraw-Hill, 2010
  • Books/E-books with general or older Zemax examples include:
    • Seward, George H., “Optical Engineering Fundamentals,” SPIE, 2010
    • Smith, Warren J., “Modern Optical Engineering: The Design of Optical Systems,” 4th Edition, McGraw-Hill, 2008
    • Fischer, Tadic-Galeb and Yoder, “”Optical System Design”, 2nd Edition, McGraw-Hill, 2008
    • Geary, Joseph M., “Introduction to Lens Design with Practical Zemax Examples,” 2nd edition, Willmann-Bell, 2007
    • Hallock Smith, Gregory, “Practical Computer-Aided Lens Design,” Willmann-Bell, 1998

Other CAD Tools: Compatibility, Support, and Availability

Zemax’s OpticStudio exports files in the following drawing formats:

  • *.IGES,
  • *.DXF, 2D and 3D

These formats are solid modelling file formats that can be imported by tools such as Dassault Systemes’ SolidWorks and ANSYS’s DesignModeler or SpaceClaim.

Contact CMC Microsystems for more information regarding bundling of tools to enhance your research and to complete your designs through thermal, solid body, and material optimization simulations.

Does your research benefit from products and services provided by CMC Microsystems?
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