View Full Version : Old CAD software

July 26th, 2015, 12:00 AM
Basically I need to draw up an architectural floorplan for a house soon and I thought it would be fun to do it on one of the old machines. By old machine I was thinking something 8088,80286/386.

Is anything like that still around? I did some searching on the net and didn't find too much. Seems like all the free versions from back then have been lost.

July 26th, 2015, 12:28 AM
The sharewhare version of Draft Choice is at Vetusware http://www.danielsays.com/ss-gallery-dos-sw-draft-choice-215.html

There's also this monster http://www.4dgraphics.net/4design.htm

And the simtel collection http://www.lanet.lv/simtel.net/msdos/cad-pre.html home25.zip might be useful.

July 26th, 2015, 12:50 AM
If you have never used an old CAD package I think you may find its not fun. Remember they were invented before Windows so there is no "drag" to resize. Lots of keyboard short cuts to try to learn. I tried a few and usually went back to pencil and paper. I would get the job done in SketchUp and then try and reproduce in a DOS package...

July 26th, 2015, 12:51 AM
Let me know if you don't find anything and I will see what is in my disk collection...

July 26th, 2015, 02:15 AM
I'm personally a massive fan of AutoCAD release 12. It has a great base package and the AME package if you can still find it is amazing.

July 26th, 2015, 08:14 AM
I used Generic CADD back then which seemed a perfectly adequate DOS CADD. Not sure if you can find them anymore but Generic CADD had a number of symbol libraries focused more on the home design market.

Generic got gobbled up by Autodesk and had a brief existence as a cheaper side product to AutoCAD.

July 26th, 2015, 12:31 PM
By old machine I was thinking something 8088,80286/386.

With or without the 8087, 80287/387?

July 26th, 2015, 04:10 PM
I learned CAD using DesignCAD for DOS back in the day. Oddly enough I have the super rare boxed version for Mac now.

July 29th, 2015, 05:02 AM
For very old computers I'd recommend AutoCAD 2.5 - it requires just 640KB RAM, CGA and about 5MB disk space - but still is a quite professional CAD program, so it runs on pretty old hardware. I have seen it on that vetusware website under "office" programs.

July 29th, 2015, 05:49 AM
AutoCAD was an awesome program back in the day, especially with its dual-monitor support (MDA for text commands, CGA or higher for graphics). Newer versions require a parallel port dongle to run, and some versions won't run with EMM386.EXE loaded, since they were designed to access extended memory directly via Int15.

July 29th, 2015, 07:51 AM
Even without a GUI, using only the command line (which you can still even do on the later versions if you want), AutoCAD is still very powerful and user friendly. In fact, the GUI only executes text commands.