CAD software - AutoCAD TurboCAD SOLIDWORKS ProENGR etc.

CAD software - AutoCAD TurboCAD SOLIDWORKS ProENGR etc.


I'm looking for information on LINUX based CAD software. My application is primarily structural engineering, but I'm looking for any and all FOSS/CopyLEFT/GNU CAD software.

Any suggestions?

I'll be updating this string as my research unfolds.

MtnGuyMark's picture
Submitted by MtnGuyMark on

I'm looking for a robust full featured CAD package for Linux.

Any suggestions?

So far, the only noteworthy package I've found is BRL and it's archaic.

Ryan Cartwright's picture

"Bad" may be the wrong word. I used to be in the Structural engineering game (even being support manager for a CAD software firm at one point) before moving over to IT. I've looked and most of what is out there is probably better suited to Mechanical/CAM stuff than Civil/Struct.

One that did stand out is QCad http://www.qcad.org which is under dual licence. The Community edition is GPL'd and is usually a couple of sub-versions behind the commercial one. There are packages in most GNU/Linux distro's.

The company I worked for has ( I think ) gone now and taken their source with them but it was a pretty good system ( if poorly marketed ) and I think was better suited to Structural than AutoCAD. One of these days I will get around to moving "write a free software version of that from scratch" to the top of my projects list. :o)

Randy3011's picture
Submitted by Randy3011 on

I have been using QCAD under KDE. It is only 2D but I've only needed to print fire plans for permit submittals.

Have not had any problems, except my lack of patience for learning more about it.

Terry Hancock's picture

You should probably check out BRL-CAD for 3D CAD applications.

http://www.brlcad.org/

This would be my top recommendation at present.

There are also some limited applications for which Blender is usable (but it is primarily for artistic 3D work):

http://www.blender.org

There is also Varkon, which is primarily a library, but does have a 3D CAD front end. It doesn't look that impressive to me, but it's supposed to have support for 3D simulation work (and I may not be up-to-date with its development):

http://www.varkon.org/

Among 2D applications, there is QCAD and PythonCAD and, for some applications, Inkscape (principally an artistic SVG editor) and Dia (specialized for schematic diagrams of various types).

QCad is probably the most mature and complete 2D free software CAD available:

http://www.qcad.org/

PythonCAD is less mature, but I think it may ultimately be more powerful. It needs a lot of UI work, though (last time I checked):

http://www.pythoncad.org/