Anybody here have any experience with CAD programs running under
There sure are many. Any favourites?
I will need 3D capability and export in .dxf and/or .dwg
I won't need much of a rendering engine.
Any and all help will be much appreciated.
Some distros let have "Design" or "CAD" subsections in their package
managers. You can take a look there for something you like.
Also, if there's a CAD program on Windows you like, you might be able to
get it going on Linux with Wine.
Wise is the man who attempts to answer his question before asking it.
To email me directly, send a message to puckdropper (at) fastmail.fm
I don't have any favorities--CAD under Linux is a pretty dismal scene
with something "good" being that which sucks less than something else.
That said . . .
BricsCAD (note--you want the Linux-specific version) for 225 bucks is
probably your best bet in terms of utility per dollar--it doesn't do
anything the Windows version doesn't, and it runs under WINE but it's
reasonably stable and it does most of what AutoCAD does using pretty
mucht he same interface. It will export DXF and DWG nicely--importing
on the other hand isn't always very clean. It was designed originally
as an AutoCAD clone and you can learn it from an AutoCAD text.
The various GPL projects are all either still in early development or
very limited in capability. The other commercial products that have
free trials available don't seem to work any better and tend to be
If you've got big bucks and want a full CAM solution, Catia V.4 runs
on Linux. If you don't know what Catia is you probably don't need it.
Thanks for all the great suggestions. I've been drilling deeper into
the net and there sure are a lot of options I wasn't aware of.
I have been a happy Vectorworks user for a looong time. Now that
Leopard is out for the Mac, they have decided not to support older
versions ( not THAT old either). That disturbs me as I have been
paying for upgrades since Version 1 (MiniCad)
As Leopard and my MacPro, allow me to run XP-Pro or Linux via
Parallels at no loss of speed (Intel chips now), the whole CAD
business can be evaluated rather than dropping a $ 1000.00 for an
upgrade to a company which only seem to understand loyalty in one
For $ 1000.00 US (That's about $ 950.00 Can) what are my other
It is obvious from all the replies, that there's a whole lot more
going on in CAD for other platforms that simple DAGS will cough up.
(Us Mac users sometimes have our head up our snob-asses.)
Some people wonder why I just don't go to an Intel box...well.. I did
and I have a lot of money and learning in Mac software already
invested. 7 years of MYOB for instance and Strata, PS, Illustrator and
so on... not to mention Logic music stuff.
The ARGON V8 version has all the bells and whistles I will ever need
and then some.
Many moons ago, 3 guys were bouncing ideas off each other where to go
with CAD on the Mac. That would be 1986-1987-ish. One went with
ArchiCAD, another went with Microstation, and I went with Diehl's
MiniCAD (Now Nemetchek Vectorworks).
The Microstation guy became a city planner and tossed the whole thing
out because where he went, it was all AutoCAD.
The ArchiCAD fella, a local architect, spend bezillions of dollars and
hours trying to do what I was doing with Vectorworks and Strata.
We all had looked at Vellum at the time, and found it awkward,
expensive (for what it did at the time) and limited in capabilities.
Just big bad MacDraw.
I, for one, thought they had simply disappeared.
After your tip, and I thank you for that, I was very surprised to see
what had become of them. I mean, talk about a Who's Who of designers
who use it.
The learning curve can't be all that bad, a NURB is a NURB, right?
WAIT! There is MORE!. Ashlar offers a competitive upgrade and I am
well within range for that.
ALSO, something I had bugged Vectorworks about for years, Ashlar
allows both a Mac and a Windoze version on the same license. Wintel at
the shop, Mac at home..same price...go figgur. (Always made sense to
me, but nooooooooooo... you can only be at one machine at the time.)
And, with my Kanuckistani dollars, I'm out the door for less than my
I will call them in the morning.
Again, thank you.
You just can't even take a nap anymore in this business...lol
Given your budget, VariCAD is certainly worth a look. You may also want
to seriously investigate PRO-E Wildfire (the PTC link on the link page that
was previously posted). PRO-E is an industry standard and used in multiple
applications. However, I'm not sure what the going price for a low-end
(most likely sufficient for woodworking needs) is.
Whatever you decide, please post your findings. Others of us who have
leapt from the jaws of MSoft are looking at our alternatives. At this
time, there are two applications for which I have not found good
1. CAD -- I was using TurboCAD. It doesn't run under WINE and they
going to Linux anytime soon
2. MindManager -- a truly remarkable organizational and task
planning/tracking tool (with Results Manager, it really rocks). Again,
doesn't even load under WINE and looks like no hope of a linux version.
Yep, when you are invested in the platform, changing everything would be
painful. Not that Windows has much to offer other than more restrictive
Digital Restrictions Management and phone-home software as MSoft tightens
If you're going to be dumb, you better be tough
Google "mind mapping mac" and you'll find a variety of similar
applications. I've always found that sort of thing to be awkward
compared to using a piece of paper (or Painter and a graphics tablet)
but maybe I've just never stuck to one long enough for it to become
Some of the freeware is pretty slow. To use Robatoy's words, MindManager
is "all growed up" and is very fast, intuitive and lets one organize
thoughts and plans much faster than drawing with paper and most especially
faster than graphics programs. It is especially faster when you want to
If you're going to be dumb, you better be tough
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