RSoft / Optodesigner Quickstart Guide

    Acknowledging CMC Microsystems

    If your research benefits from products and services provided by CMC Microsystems, please acknowledge this support in any publications about your work. For more information, please visit:



    Licensing Requirements or Restrictions

    Usage terms and conditions apply to this software, which can be found under Licensing Requirements and Restrictions at:



    The following information will help you download, install, and setup Synopsys' RSoft CAD software for use with the CMC License Management System.



    Table of Contents




    Software Components


    The "Full Suite" is comprised of:

    • RSoft CAD Environment—a layout program that allows researchers to design photonic devices, and it also acts as a control program for RSoft’s passive device simulation tools. It is used to define the most important input required by these simulation modules: the material properties and structural geometry of a photonic device. A user will typically first design a structure in the CAD interface and then use one or more simulation engines to model various aspects of the device performance.
    • BeamPROP—a simulation engine for the design of integrated and fiber-optic waveguide devices and circuits. It incorporates advanced finite-difference beam propagation method (BPM) techniques for simulation.
    • FemSIM—uses the finite element method to calculate modes, both waveguide and cavity, of any two-dimensional cross-section. A generally non-uniform and irregular mesh is used to solve for all field components of supported modes, both guided and leaky. FemSIM can easily find modes for highly hybrid structures, highly leaky structures, and structures with small feature sizes.
    • MOST—the Multi-variable Optimizer and Scanner Tool, for design optimization of photonic devices. It is capable of systematically searching the parameter space for favorable regions, as well as automated optimization in one or more dimensions. Acting as an automated driver for RSoft’s physics-based simulators, MOST streamlines the definition, calculation and analysis of scans and optimizations.
    • FullWAVE—a simulation engine based on the finite-difference time-domain technique that enables you to model the electromagnetic field in a given index structure in response to a given electromagnetic excitation
    • BandSOLVE—a fully integrated CAD tool and simulation engine for generating and analyzing photonic band structures
    • DiffractMOD—a design tool for diffractive optical structures such as surface normal gratings, photonic bandgap crystals, and sub-wavelength periodic structures
    • ModePROP—a design tool for studying the propagation of light in structures
    • GratingMOD—a design tool for analyzing and synthesizing complicated grating profiles in optical fibers and integrated waveguide circuits
    • OptoDesigner—a tool for designing photonic integrated circuits for any technology, for a range of industries including telecom, datacom, sensing, and biomedical.


    RSoft licenses from CMC are valid for either Windows- or Linux-based operating systems.  RSoft is fully supported for 64-bit Windows 7 and 64-bit Linux systems.  RSoft support is limited for other operating systems, beyond RSoft software release 2013.12-2.  The instructions below describe installation on a Windows-based PC.  Additional notes for Linux users are contained at the end of this guide.



    Prerequisites for Installing RSoft with CMC License Management System


    Please note that you must first meet the following criteria:

    1. You must be registered with CMC Microsystems:
    2. You must have the appropriate level of subscription (Designer or Prototyping) if you are faculty, or belong to a research group supervised by an appropriately subscribed faculty member.
    3. You must have purchased an access token to the RSoft software.



    Setting up CADpass v3.0 for Use with RSoft or Optodesigner


    1. If CADpass V3 is not already installed, then install the latest version from CMC Portal at:
    2. Start CADpass V3 directly from the CMC website, at: CADpass | CMC Microsystems .
    3. Login using your CMC login user name and password. The CADpass window appears as shown in Figure 1.


    cadpass3 w rsoft.jpg

    Figure 1: CADpass 3.0.2 window


    When the CADpass access window appears, double click on your required RSoft icon. You can also right click and select “Start”.  A message box appears, and a green check appears on the left of the icon.


    Note: If you have purchased a RSoft license pass but have not previously installed an IP Tunneling Driver on your computer, CADpass will display a message “Double Click for Tunneling Driver Install” beneath the RSoft icon. To install the IP Tunneling driver:

    1. Double click on the Rsoft icon
    2. Follow the wizard to complete the installation.
    3. During the installation, if you are prompted to select the number of instances of IP tunneling driver to install, leave the default setting of 2.
    4. Exit and restart CADpass.



    Obtaining the Software


    From the CMC CAD tools webpage at

    1. Sign in to your CMC account.
    2. Click the RSoft product link.
    3. Select and double click on the version of the software corresponding to your computer's operating system.  Optodesigner is available only in 54-bit format
    4. The RSoft and Optodesigner installation files may be downloaded in a compressed *.zip format.  Save the folder to a temporary location on your hard disk.



    Installing the Software


    1. Locate the RSoft or Optodesigner download that you previously saved. Double click on the installer program version corresponding to your computer's operating system. The installer program has a file format: RSoft(version#-bits#).exe
    2. The installer wizard appears. Follow the default prompts. The default program files installation location is C:\\RSoft.
    3. When the dialog box entitled License Type Setup appears, select Network/Client.
    4. When the dialog Additional Information Required for Network/Floating Setup appears, enter lmserver-4 (Note that this is a lower case L).
    5. The installer will acknowledge your choice of server installation, as shown in Figure 2.


    lmserver_4 confirmation.jpg

    Figure 2: License File Server Confirmation



    Confirmation of mapping your local computer to CMC server for CADpass access


    The following step is optional:  You should also ensure that RSoft application on your computer is mapped to the CMC server though which the licenses are managed.  To do this:

    1. From your Windows start menu, right-click on Computer.
    2. From the left panel of that pane, select Advanced System Settings.
    3. Click on Environment Variables.
    4. Scroll through the list at the top of this window and locate RSLM_SERVER. This utility should be mapped to lmserver-4. If it is not, edit that line so that it is mapped to lmserver-4.  If an entry for RSLM_SERVER does not exist, click New, and create this mapping as a new variable name and value.


    Running an RSoft or Optodesigner Session


    To start a RSoft session:

    1. Obtain a RSoft license key using CADpass.

    2. From the RSoft Photonics CAD Suite folder in the Start menu of your computer, launch the RSoft program you require.

    3. You may access RSoft user guides, documentation and examples from the same start menu location as well as directly from the program files directory where you installed the software.


    Additional Notes for Linux users


    Some additional steps are required in order to implement a CMC license of RSoft on Linux RHEL 6.  These instructions require that you have access to the CMC Supported Technology Configuration (STC).  Contact CMC for support on other Linux OS.

    To install RSoft on your Linux-based system:

    1. Please review the system requirements, at
    2. You must manually install an IP Tunneling Driver to access the CMC license.  Instructions to do this may be found at:
    3. You must manually configure RSoft's license management utility, RSLMD, in your local system.  To do this, locate file: /etc/rc.local: , and add the following text:  /CMC/tools/synopsys/rsoft_2013.12/bin/rslmd


    To run an RSoft session you must run CADpass and select RSoft.  Then, configure your system so that the RSoft application can locate the CMC license management server.  This requires that you run a CMC script (available on the STC), as follows:

    1. From a command prompt, type: $ source  /CMC/scripts/synopsys.rsoft_2013.12.csh
    2. When prompted to set the RSoft license variable, type: lmserver-4
    3. Start RSoft by typing: $ bcad


    Technical Support


    You may submit requests for technical support on this software tool through CMC’s technical support:

    You may post more general comments or technical suggestions on CMC's community webpages located at: