DWG - AutoCAD Drawing Database File

What is a DWG file

DWG files refer to the binary file format for storing 2D and 3D images used by CAD (Computer Aided Design) devices. Originally developed in the 1970’s, it is now used by architects, engineers, and designers. Autodesk holds the licensing for their AutoCAD application, and is the standard for CAD drawings. Autodesk has resisted attempts from people trying to reverse engineer the DWG format by placing watermark protection onto various versions.

DWG files contain vector image data and metadata using binary coding. Vector image data instructs the CAD application on the displaying of the DWG image. Metadata can include information about location and client data. DWG files created with the AudoCAD 14 have file verification checksum included to increase validation abilities with items created in AutoCAD. Autodesk DWG TrueView software allows users to view DWG files (under freeware licensing) and does not include the DWG TrueConvert software. The also free Autodesk Design Review software allows users to open DWG files while taking advantage of the measure and markup, sheet set organization, and status tracking. DraftSight allows users to create, edit, and view DWG files. LibreDWG is working on free software libraries for DWG files since there is no open source DWG viewer.

Here's a small, but not exhaustive list of programs that can open DWG documents:

  • Adobe Illustrator
  • AutoCAD
  • Autodesk DWG TrueView
  • CorelCAD
Extension DWG
MIME type application/acad, application/x-acad, application/autocad_dwg, image/x-dwg, application/dwg, application/x-dwg, application/x-autocad, image/vnd.dwg, drawing/dwg
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