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In the business world, everything is about standards. Every industry has its own standard software that almost everyone uses for one reason or another. For engineering and technical drafting, AutoCAD is that near universal software.
AutoCAD is a very well rounded tool, attributing to its popularity. For technical drawing and all that, it is the best.
Unfortunately, no matter how useful or full featured a program; it is rare to find one that is perfect. AutoCAD is no exception. One major feature lacking from AutoCAD is the ability to export a drawing to a PDF, the standard almost across the board for business documents.
Never fear, with DWGgateway you will be cranking out PDF’s of your drawings in no time to add to a report or to just send up to a boss or client.
You can download the software here. It’s not too big and therefore shouldn’t be too much of a hassle to download.
After you have the software downloaded, you should check that AutoCAD is installed on your machine because the software will not install if it is not.
Double click the install and the process should begin as any other install.
After the splash screen you should be prompted with the following screen:
Select all of the versions of AutoCAD on your machine that you want to install DWGgateway to and then hit “Next.”
Next, you will get the standard license stuff, hit “Next“ and then “Install.” After a speedy install, you will a confirmation screen. Hit “Finish“ and you’re all set.
Now for what the program’s good for, making a PDF in AutoCAD. Open up a drawing. Go to the top and press “File“, then “Plot.”
After that, you should get a dialog like this:
Under “Printer/Plotter,” choose “DWG to PDF.pc3.”
Hit OK and the program should ask you to input a file name for your PDF and to choose where to save it. Type what you would like the file to be called and navigate to the directory you want to save your file to.
Click “Save“ and the file will be saved as a PDF in the indicated directory. When the process is done, you should get a little bubble at the bottom right to let you know the process was successful.
Another nice feature of the software is the ability to use your version of AutoCAD to open any previous or future DWG file versions.
Say for example you have AutoCAD 2004. You can use DWGgateway to open AutoCAD 2007 files without upgrading your license or software. Very useful if you want to wait a while to upgrade your AutoCAD or if you are in a tight spot and really need to view some files that were saved in a different version.
Overall, making a PDF with DWGgateway is simple and intuitive. The small app does not seem to affect performance, so for an AutoCAD user, it is invaluable. The added benefit of being able to open DWG files from different versions of AutoCAD is just icing on the cake.