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Linux Software

GPL CAD to Linux 32

An anonymous reader pointed us to this linux today bit that points to Varkon which has GPLd their Linux CAD software. We definitely need some CAD round these parts. Drawing wireframes in the Gimp doesn't work nearly as well as you'd think.
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GPL CAD to Linux

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  • Yes, Microstation is primarily Unix based. Unfortunately they limit themselves to the commercial Unixes. The only CAD program they offer for Linux is the crippleware Student Edition of Microstation. I have no idea how well or poorly it works.
  • Bentley has a Linux port of the previous version of Microstation, but it is no-support, academic- only.

    Seems to me for something like CAD, the best way for it to go GPL is for an organization like AIA (architects) to buy one of the smaller CAD companies. The higher-end stuff is largely of interest to professionals, open source will probably only get us a fairly low-end package.
  • I took a look at some of the screen dumps of this thing on their website and it looks pretty slick.
    I'm really glad to see this happening. I really anticipate alot of lesser known vendors to begin releasing their code GPL as they find it will give them a boost in popularity and give them an opportunity to make more money off of service and support. This will also put pressure on the big boys, which is always healthy for the market.
  • There are a couple of nice (but quite young) gnu CAD apps developing out there, but the addition of a good working CAD system under the GPL is gonna make my life a lot nicer. (and maybe even cause VariCAD to make litte less money off of me ... :-)

  • You should've grabbed a copy of the last version of Generic CADD when Autodesk marked it down to a list price of $99. I had to special order it from a local software store and I think they charged me $80 for it. It works fine under DOSEmu. There was a point there during the ascendance of Windows where a lot of very good, stable DOS software was available for cheap...
  • Yeah, BRL-CAD looks interesting, but it is not free software.
  • I think you hit the spot when you say that the biggest obstacle to getting high-end CAE systems like ProE and I-DEAS is the lack of good 3D-drivers.

    I have been an admin for I-DEAS on both Irix and NT for the last two years, and I have longed for the days when there will be support for CAE-systems on Linux. Heck, they were originally coded for Unix-systems, how hard can it be to port the code to Linux ? I guess this issue is closely related to the fact that CAE-systems mainly use OpenGL for displaying graphics, and that has been one of the week spots of Linux as of yet. I hope that will change since SGI has made OpenGL OSS.

  • This would be a welcome addition. I've had to admin Pro/E machines and it is very frustrating on WinNT. But I can't blame a company for buying Intel hardware because of price/performance and the ability to hand-me-down the workstations after they've been outdated. I think the biggest obstacle to acceptance of Linux for Pro/E (or other high-end CAD) is the lack of good 3D drivers.
  • Now I grew up with autocad, can't say I liked it, probable for about 5 years now. Mostly architectural. I knew there biggest compitition was microstation, saw a few larg firms actually switch over. now if I am not mistaken this is UNIX based. can anyone confirm or denie this ???
  • Personally, I would prefer an AutoCAD Linux port (oops, I mean GNU/Linux... Sorry RMS ;) ) but I use Generic CADD quite extensively for my 2D work, and like it.

    AutoCAD?!? Are you mad? AutoCAD really is the Windows of the CAD world - it sucks dead goats through a straw. /I'd/ like to see ParaCAD on Linux.

    FWIW, my Dad runs a one-man-and-his-dog engineering business, and the single thing that's stopping him ditching Microsoft tomorrow is the search for a decent CAD package. ATM he uses ParaCAD. Seriously, I would be interested to hear suggestions of a package that's up to the job (mechanical and electric engineering, BTW) under Linux.

    (And no, I'm not going to post a URL for his business - he doesn't need /.ing...).

  • Yes, Microstation is primarily Unix based. Unfortunately they limit themselves to the commercial Unixes. The only CAD program they offer for Linux is the crippleware Student Edition of Microstation. I have no idea how well or poorly it works.

    Actually I don't think that the student edition of MicroStation is crippleware. The downsides of it are:
    • Support (or lack thereof)
    • License restrictions
    • Availability restrictions

    People from Bentley have been asking for support getting Intergraph (their marketing partner) to let them do a commercial release for Linux, but so far they haven't gotten enough solid interest to move Intergraph. Then again, Intergraph is a solidly pro-Microsoft company.

  • Cool, always nice to see more GPL'd software. Although if you don't like drawing vectors in Gimp there is fig.

    (Meanwhile, my work progresses on an 'engine' that can form the core of CAD/GIS/CASE/etc packages. So far the display list manager is (more or less) working. Still in progress are the compiler/interpreter for the control language and the database interface. (Well, there's lots more to do beyond that, but that's the minimum I want to get done before I release anything, so that there's at least the basic framework.))
  • I really like this. They spoke with me and RMS a couple of weeks ago about this and it's nice to see they finally took this step. I'm looking forward to seeing this in action soon, I could definitly use it.

"The greatest warriors are the ones who fight for peace." -- Holly Near