Jan 14, 2011

Application Review: LibreCAD (Part II)

As I wrote in Part I LibreCAD is primarily focused on occasional and amateur CAD users.
That doesn't mean that you cannot use it for professional purposes.

The dxf interface, which offers interoperability with other CAD programs
and the ability to use the partlibrary of QCAD Professional
(you can download it for free from Ribbonsoft's Site),
adds extra functionality.
In order to use the partlibrary just create a folder named .librecad (don't forget the dot), then create a subfolder named library and put inside the contents of partlibrary.
Then open LibreCAD and right click on the toolbar
Select the Library Browser and enjoy.
Performance Issues
Sometimes the GUI doesn't have good responsiveness and sometimes you have to wait or to double click in order to execute a command. But do not forget that the application is in beta stage and most of these issues will be fixed in  further releases.
If you like LibreCAD but you want dwg support you have to wait for the upcoming release of QCAD Professional 3. It will have support for the most releases of this -proprietary but very common- file format.
(More info at Ribbonsoft's site and forum)
Also note that QCAD Professional costs about 24 Euros (33 US $) 
and it isn't Free and Opensource Software.
You can find news and more information about LibreCAD at application's blog

Definitely LibreCAD is a good application. It lacks of some features in comparison with proprietary apps but in fact doesn't want to compete them directly. It wants to be an easy-to-use CAD program  which gives the opportunity to occasional and amateur users to make drawings fast, easy and free.
Try it and you will not be disappointed.
Rating 3/5

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