AutoCAD 2017 for Mac released, still half-baked

AutoCAD 2017 for Mac released, still half-baked

AutoCAD 2017 for Mac and AutoCAD LT 2017 for Mac have been released. Here’s a video highlighting exciting and innovative new features such as drawing and layout tabs. Despite such stellar advances, it’s safe to say that AutoCAD for Mac remains half-baked, even after all these years. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.

According to Autodesk, these are the features missing from AutoCAD 2017 for Mac:

Tool palettes
New layer notification
Navigation bar
Sheet Set Manager***
Steering wheel
Feature finder for help
Model documentation tools
Dynamic block lookup parameter creation/editing
Table style editing
Multiline style creation
Digitizer integration
Geographic location
Simplified, powerful rendering
Material creation, editing, and mapping
Advanced rendering settings
Camera creation
Point cloud
Walkthroughs, flybys, and animations
DWF underlays
DGN underlays
Data extraction
Markup set manager
dbConnect manager
WMF import and export
FBX import and export
Design feed
Import SketchUp files (SKP)
Design share
3D print studio
Reference Navisworks models
Right-click menus, keyboard shortcuts, and double-click customization
DCL dialogs
Action recorder and action macros
Reference manager (stand-alone application)
Password-protected drawings
Digital signatures
User profiles
Autodesk desktop app
Migration tool enhancements
CAD standards tools
CUI import and export
BIM 360 add-in
Performance Reporting
Sysvar monitor

* To be fair, AutoCAD 2017 for Mac does have a Ribbonesque feature, albeit one that that looks more like the pre-2009 Dashboard than the Windows-style Ribbon.

** Autodesk claims Content Palette to be roughly equivalent to DesignCenter, but it claimed that (wrongly) about the awful and short-lived Content Explorer. It’s wrong here too; Content Palette on Mac has nowhere near the functionality of DesignCenter on Windows.

*** Autodesk claims AutoCAD for Mac’s Project Manager is functionally equivalent to the missing Sheet Set Manager.

Also, some PDF export features don’t work when plotting, only when using Publish.

No workspaces? No model documentation? No hyperlinks? No table style editing? Various kinds of reference files unsupported? No Visual LISP or DCL? Still? Come on Autodesk, you’re not even trying.

That’s before we get on to the lack of third party applications, vertical variants and object enablers. Is Autodesk expecting full price for this thing? Really?

It’s not all bad news, though. Not having Autodesk desktop app is no handicap at all. Also, according to Autodesk the following features are unique to AutoCAD for Mac:

Coverflow navigation
Multitouch gestures
External reference path mapping
OpenGL Core Profile support
OS notification for updates
Language switching in product

Well that’s all right, then.


  1. Why would anyone buy AutoCAD for Mac which is just a fraction of a full AutoCAD when for less money they could buy a BricsCAD+BIM that is a full implementation and perpetual license of a product that in my humble opinion has even more features than an AutoCAD and that runs natively on MAC. It is truly beyond my understanding

    1. It does have LISP, it just doesn’t have Visual LISP. ActiveX and DCL functions are inoperative. Some simple LISP routines will probably work in AutoCAD for Mac. BricsCAD for Mac is much, much more compatible and capable than AutoCAD for Mac.

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