Autodesk AutoCAD Alternatives for Windows

Known for robust compatibility and as the standard application for computer-aided design, Autodesk AutoCAD supports a wide variety of files formats. Though there are other alternatives that support the opening of .dwg files that store 2D and 3D data.

As AutoCAD is paid software, you might want to look into the many free alternatives that are available. On top of this, though AutoCAD is available on most popular desktop and mobile operating systems, it does not have a Linux-based client, so alternatives to AutoCAD that run on Linux are available as well.

The list of alternatives was last updated: 6/27/2019 10:13:00 PM

Alternatives to Autodesk AutoCAD for Windows with any license

  • FreeCAD

    FreeCAD is a general purpose parametric 3D CAD modeler. The development is completely Open Source (LGPL License). FreeCAD is aimed directly at mechanical engineering and product design but also fits in a wider range of uses around engineering, such as architecture or other engineering specialties. FreeCAD features tools similar to Catia, SolidWorks or Solid Edge, and therefore also falls into the category of MCAD, PLM, CAx and CAE.

    • Because is an user friendly software and is free to use.Autodesk Autocad is very expensive eduardoortiz1Mar 2018 • 1 agrees and 2 disagrees Disagree   Agree
    • AutoCAD is a 2D drawing program, mostly used for architecture and structures. FreeCAD is 3D and aimed at mechanical engineers. They do different things. Guest • Feb 2018 • 4 agrees and 8 disagrees Disagree   Agree
    • Not bad for a free Software, but Workflow seems very antiquated and unneccessarily complicated. It lacks logic on available tools in different workbenches. There are much ways to get to your goal but every way takes really a lot of clicks and more of trial and error. Guest • Aug 2017 • 4 agrees and 3 disagrees Disagree   Agree
    • Freecad is (as mentioned in the description) for 3D parametric CAD, and has no drafting functionality worth speaking of. Not a bad program, but certainly not an AutoCAD replacement. It has much more similarity to SolidWorks than AutoCAD Guest • Jan 2017 • 20 agrees and 7 disagrees Disagree   Agree
    • Not directly supporting DWG: needs a commercial/trial license of a file converter Guest • Apr 2017 • 2 agrees and 4 disagrees Disagree   Agree
    • Very good app, has many workbenches for different branches of engineering. It has a very helpful community forum. I really recommend trying it before looking for any other alternative. Guest • Jun 2017 • 1 agrees and 1 disagrees Disagree   Agree
    • FreeCAD is not a bad program, but it seems to lack functionality that AutoCAD provides. Currently FreeCAD seems to be in an early stage of development, and should probably not be considered for use in a professional production context, as a replacement for AutoCAD. Guest • Mar 2017 • 1 agrees and 3 disagrees Disagree   Agree
    • I use Freecad to design my 3D printing models. Guest • Oct 2015 • 8 agrees and 4 disagrees Disagree   Agree
    • FreeCAD is a software for 3d parametric model, AutoCAD is not that. Guest • Sep 2015 • 0 agrees and 7 disagrees Disagree   Agree

    Free Open Source Mac Windows Linux

    FreeCAD icon
  • DraftSight

    DraftSight is a professional-grade, open 2D CAD product for users who want a better way to read, write and share DWG files. DraftSight is easy to use and is available for professional CAD users, students and educators to download and activate for free.* Based on advanced architecture, DraftSight has a small footprint, should take less than a few minutes to download, and runs on multiple operating systems, including Windows XP®, Windows Vista® and Windows® 7.

    • Good compatibility and excellent 2D drafting tools Guest • Nov 2018 Disagree   Agree
    • Despite my continuous research, I have never found anything else closer and compatible to autocad. I say this with a critical spirit, because compatibility is good, not perfect ...Unfortunately. Guest • Jun 2018 • 5 agrees and 1 disagrees Disagree   Agree
    • It is almost the same as Autocad for 2D drawings. It is very good for small size drawings but no so good graphical performace for more complex drawings. Guest • Jun 2018 • 1 agrees and 0 disagrees Disagree   Agree
    • Because i'ts equal in 2D part. Very good, has free version, and multiplatform. Guest • Feb 2017 • 12 agrees and 2 disagrees Disagree   Agree
    • the free version really read/write autocad files. rbadillarxMar 2017 • 5 agrees and 1 disagrees Disagree   Agree
    • This is the closest program in functionality to Autocad, It could use some stability improvements. Guest • May 2017 Disagree   Agree
    • The interface is very similar and it was able to open existing autocadd drawings. this allowed a seamless transition. Guest • Jan 2017 • 1 agrees and 1 disagrees Disagree   Agree
    • One of the better, if not the best CAD for Linux. Works on Fedora, would recommend this program. Guest • Mar 2017 • 2 agrees and 1 disagrees Disagree   Agree
    • Fully compatible with, industry standard, AutoCAD DWG files. Uses a command line based interface that works in the same way as AutoCAD. Guest • Dec 2016 • 1 agrees and 1 disagrees Disagree   Agree
    • DraftSight is developed as a competitor to AutoCAD 2D. Distributed as a free (well also has a paid version) software to compete with 2D AutoCAD. Guest • Jul 2016 • 2 agrees and 1 disagrees Disagree   Agree

    Commercial $ $ $ Mac Windows Linux

    DraftSight icon
  • LibreCAD

    LibreCAD (originally QCad then CADuntu) is an open source 2D CAD application for Windows, Apple and Linux. It is based on Qt, which is a leading cross-platform application and UI development framework. LibreCAD can read DWG files (and others) as of the latest Nightly build. It writes DXF files, but can also export SVG, JPG, PNG, PDF and other files.

    • Ideal for preparing 2D drawings. Better than AutoCAD LT in some ways but can be a bit flaky. Guest • Apr 2019 Disagree   Agree
    • No blockeditor or creating dynamic blocks. Guest • Feb 2018 • 1 agrees and 1 disagrees Disagree   Agree
    • If you know Autocad, you will learn librecad lightning fast. Guest • Jan 2018 • 2 agrees and 2 disagrees Disagree   Agree
    • Similar GUI like AutoCAD, and for 2D drawing, it is a perfect solution Guest • Jul 2017 • 1 agrees and 2 disagrees Disagree   Agree
    • LibreCAD is only a 2d Drafting software while AutoCAD also has 3d modelling capabilities Guest • May 2016 • 8 agrees and 8 disagrees Disagree   Agree

    Free Open Source Mac Windows Linux PortableApps.com

    LibreCAD icon
  • SketchUp

    SketchUp (formerly Google Sketchup) is a 3D modeling computer program for a wide range of drawing applications such as architectural, interior design, civil and mechanical engineering, film, and video game design—and available in a freeware version, SketchUp Make, and a paid version with additional functionality, SketchUp Pro. SketchUp comes with a 3D Gallery that lets you search for models and share yours.

    • Despite Sketchup not being a "True CAD" tool, it's a viable alternative for a similar real life goals, at least for planning hobbyist home renovations. Guest • Aug 2019 • 3 agrees and 0 disagrees Disagree   Agree
    • This is not as same as Autocad 2D Guest • Aug 2019 • 4 agrees and 2 disagrees Disagree   Agree
    • you need to be really numb out of your mind to think SketchUp is an alternative, lets start with the fact that SketchUp cant even recognize any kind of vectors Guest • Apr 2019 • 2 agrees and 2 disagrees Disagree   Agree
    • Sketchup is a 3D modelling package, not a CAD package. Guest • Mar 2019 • 4 agrees and 2 disagrees Disagree   Agree
    • Sketchup doesn't seem to be able to open .dwg files Guest • Jan 2017 • 9 agrees and 11 disagrees Disagree   Agree

    Freemium $ $ $ Mac Windows Web

    SketchUp icon
  • BricsCAD

    BricsCAD the first all-in-one CAD design solution in .dwg that answers all your needs; 2D drafting, 3D modeling, mechanical design, and BIM. The BricsCAD® family of products brings a cost-effective, multi-platform CAD solution to Windows, macOS, and Linux. BricsCAD is available as a permanent/perpetual license & subscription license, for networked or stand-alone computers. You can also add All-In Maintenance for ease of keeping up-to-date.

    • BricaCAD runs most native AutoCAD programming interfaces, lisp, diesel, pgp, brx (modified arx). Guest • Apr 2018 • 3 agrees and 1 disagrees Disagree   Agree

    Commercial Mac Windows Linux

    BricsCAD icon
  • OpenSCAD

    OpenSCAD is a software for creating solid 3D CAD objects. It is free software and available for Linux/UNIX, MS Windows and MacOS. Unlike most free software for creating 3D models (such as the famous application Blender) it does not focus on the artistic aspects of 3D modelling but instead on the CAD aspects.

    Free Open Source Mac Windows Linux

    OpenSCAD icon
  • SolidWorks

    Dassault Systèmes SolidWorks Corp. develops and markets 3D CAD design software, analysis software, and product data management software. SolidWorks is the leading supplier of 3D CAD product design engineering software.

    • SolidWorks aimed to design parts for the manufacturing and mostly used for mechanical engineering. AutoCAD is used for general things from mechanical to civil, has many different ways of use. Guest • Jul 2016 • 6 agrees and 4 disagrees Disagree   Agree
    • solidworks is based on solid 3d modeling Guest • Feb 2016 • 0 agrees and 1 disagrees Disagree   Agree

    Commercial $ $ $ Windows

    SolidWorks icon
  • nanoCAD

    nanoCAD is a pro-grade 2D CAD system with native DWG support and full customizability. It is totally free, for business, professional, or personal purposes. It is fast, lightweight, capable, and , unlike most free CAD programs, completely uncrippled. nanoCAD includes: 1. Classic CAD interface. Any engineer could easily master nanoCAD since everything is in their right places: menu, button icons, panels, command line, and the commands theirselves are easily recognizable.

    • Our autocad needs are simple and NanoCad seems to have everything we need. Guest • Jul 2019 Disagree   Agree

    Commercial $ $ $ Windows

    nanoCAD icon
  • BRL-CAD

    BRL-CAD is a powerful cross-platform open source solid modeling system that includes interactive geometry editing, high-performance ray-tracing for rendering and geometric analysis, image and signal-processing tools, a system performance analysis benchmark suite, libraries for robust geometric representation, with more than 20 years of active development.

    Free Open Source Mac Windows Linux

    No features added Add a feature

    BRL-CAD icon
  • QCAD

    QCAD is an application for computer aided drafting in 2D. With QCAD you can create technical drawings such as plans for buildings, interiors, mechanical parts or schemas and diagrams. QCad uses the AutoCAD DXF file format internally and to save and import files. AutoCAD DWG support is available as a commercial plugin. QCAD is available in two versions: Community edition and Professional edition. QCAD Community Edition is free and open source.

    Free Personal Mac Windows Linux

    QCAD icon
  • Onshape

    Onshape is a professional CAD system – Parts, Assemblies, Drawings – with version control and collaboration built in. Each Onshape plan (Free for STUDENTS, Professional & Enterprise) gives you all of the CAD and data management functionality with no time limit. - Onshape is the first full-cloud 3D CAD system. It runs in a web browser and on any mobile device. - Onshape uses cloud-native Documents, not files.

    • Cloud-based, faster and more modern. JohnSevierNov 2018 • 1 agrees and 0 disagrees Disagree   Agree

    Commercial $ $ $ Mac Windows Linux Web Android ... iPhone Android Tablet iPad

    Onshape icon
  • pCon.planner

    The professional furnishing 2D-/3D-tool for everybody: The pCon.planner is a cost-free application allowing you to comfortably and professionally create complex furnishing concepts and to visualize them in a photo-realistic quality. File Formats: dwg, dxf, 3ds, skp, ... Languages: English, German, Dutch, French, Italian, Portuguese, Romanian, Spanish;

    Free Windows

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  • Autodesk Inventor

    Autodesk® Inventor® products offer a comprehensive, flexible set of software for 3D mechanical design, product simulation, tooling creation, and design communication. Inventor takes you beyond 3D to Digital Prototyping by enabling you to design, visualize, and simulate your products. Design—Integrate all design data into a single digital model. Visualize—Create a virtual representation of your final product to market it before it’s built.

    Commercial $ $ $ Windows

    Autodesk Inventor icon
  • Open CASCADE

    Open CASCADE Technology is a software development platform freely available in open source. It includes components for 3D surface and solid modeling, visualization, data exchange and rapid application development. Open CASCADE Technology can be best applied in development of numerical simulation software including CAD/CAM/CAE, AEC and GIS, as well as PDM applications. System requirements: http://www.opencascade.org/getocc/require/

    Free Open Source Windows Linux

    Open CASCADE icon
  • CorelCAD

    Enhance your visual communication expertise with the precision of superior 2D drafting and 3D design tools available in CorelCAD™ 2019. It’s the smart, affordable solution for drawing detailed elements in technical design. With native .DWG file support, and optimization for Windows and macOS, this computer aided design software can increase productivity and performance.

    Commercial $ $ $ Mac Windows

    CorelCAD icon
  • ZWCAD

    ZWCAD software, as a highly reliable and powerful CAD tool, meets the needs of 2D/3D design & drafting industry, including architecture, engineering, construction (AEC), mechanics, electronics...and anyone who creates CAD drawings.

    • Most user friendly and similar to what I am using , no need to learn anything new. Guest • Jun 2019 • 1 agrees and 0 disagrees Disagree   Agree
    • It works stable and fast, not bad. Great experience in open, edit .dwg drawings. Guest • Nov 2017 • 2 agrees and 1 disagrees Disagree   Agree
    • Cheaper than Autocad, and have the same options. I recomend it at 100% Guest • Oct 2016 • 2 agrees and 0 disagrees Disagree   Agree

    Commercial Windows

    ZWCAD icon
  • KOMPAS-3D

    KOMPAS-3D is for creating three-dimensional associative models for individual parts and assembly's containing both original and standardized elements. The parametric technology allows quickly obtaining models for typical products basing on a once designed prototype. Numerous service functions facilitate solving auxiliary designing and production maintenance problems.

    Commercial Windows

    No features added Add a feature

    KOMPAS-3D icon
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  • ArchiCAD

    ArchiCAD offers computer aided solutions for handling all common aspects of aesthetics and engineering during the whole design process of the built environment — buildings, interiors, urban areas, etc.

    Commercial Mac Windows

    ArchiCAD icon
  • Designspark Mechanical

    DesignSpark Mechanical is a 3D modeling software reported to be easy to use so that all engineers will be able to create and share models. Designs can be linked directly to RS/Allied off-the-shelf components for automatic bill of materials generation, part numbers, and costs for included components. DesignSpark Mechanical can export to DXF, SketchUp, ECAD, OBJ, STEP, and STL formats.

    Commercial Windows

    Designspark Mechanical icon
  • PTC Creo

    Creo Elements/Pro – formerly Pro/ENGINEER – is the standard in 3D product design, featuring state-of-the-art productivity tools that promote best practices in design while ensuring compliance with your industry and company standards. Integrated, parametric, 3D CAD/CAM/CAE solutions allow you to design faster than ever, while maximizing innovation and quality to ultimately create exceptional products.

    Commercial Windows

    PTC Creo icon
  • GstarCAD

    GstarCAD is a cost-effective and innovative solution that has supreme data compatibility. GstarCAD has a user-friendly interface, which has everything you have come to expect from CAD software. It has familiar controls as well, allowing you to navigate it comfortably and to complete your tasks with ease. With more than 27 years of continuous improvement and innovation, GstarCAD 2019 and GstarCAD 2020 are also available. How GstarCAD can help you? 1.

    • Very similiar Interface to Autocad and mostly same commands. I have the Pro Version of GCad Pro Version is still very affordable and comes with tools similar to the Express Tools. A dynamic Block Editor is also included in the Pro Version. It's also compatiple with CADProfi Addons (Arch, HVAC, Electro etc.) Guest • Feb 2019 • 0 agrees and 1 disagrees Disagree   Agree
    • in 2019 of GstarCAD is more compatible and faster than ever. i strongly recommend this program for everyone who architecture or engineer(civil,mechanical) compatible with 2018 .DWG and very cheaper than AutoCAD. Guest • Nov 2018 • 2 agrees and 0 disagrees Disagree   Agree
    • It's cheaper ,but has similar interface and function.So why bother with AutoCAD Guest • May 2018 • 2 agrees and 1 disagrees Disagree   Agree

    Commercial Windows

    GstarCAD icon
  • MicroStation

    3D CAD modeling, drafting and visualization software for architecture and engineering.

    • Much better licensing options if nothing else. sandravollrathAug 2018 • 0 agrees and 1 disagrees Disagree   Agree
    • They are par. The others are limited. Guest • Aug 2017 Disagree   Agree

    Commercial $ $ $ Windows

    MicroStation icon
  • ActCAD

    ActCAD is a 2D Drafting and 3D Modeling CAD software meant for Engineers, Architects and other technical consultants. ActCAD is a native DWG & DXF CAD software to create and edit drawings. ActCAD uses IntelliCAD engine, Open Design Alliance DWG/DXF Libraries, ACIS 3D Modeling Kernel and many other Technologies. In-addition, ActCAD has many add-on command, features and other Productivity Tools.

    • The best part of ActCAD is being able to do practically anything without an interface. You're able to run all the commands just by typing them. It's customizable, lightweight, easy to get started. santhoshkumarraviralaJul 2018 • 2 agrees and 1 disagrees Disagree   Agree
    • Full 2D & 3D functions without any limitations. Licenses won't expire and we get free Technical Support. Guest • Jul 2018 • 2 agrees and 0 disagrees Disagree   Agree
    • With full features, lifetime global validity and availability at very affordable price makes it the good alternative to Autodesk AutoCAD. Its self License Transfer feature also allows me to shift my license from one PC to another on the go. Highly Recommended. sarthakpatraMar 2018 • 3 agrees and 0 disagrees Disagree   Agree

    Commercial $ $ $ Windows

    ActCAD icon
  • progeCAD Smart

    progeCAD Smart 2009 is a limited version of progeCAD . It is free for private, non-commercial use only. You need to register the software to continue using it after 30 days. Of course registration is totally free. This software can: read and write Autodesk AutoCAD DWG files from 2.

    Free Personal Windows

    progeCAD Smart icon

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