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Free DWG Compare utility from Autodesk

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Identify Drawing Changes with AutoCAD

Despite our best efforts to avoid it, at some point in a project you’ll likely end up with two drawing files that are supposed to be the same, but aren’t. After running into this issue several times over the years, I learned about the incredible “Compare” feature within the Autodesk Design Review application. Although this has proven to be a great solution over the years, as I mention in my blog post from several years back, using Design Review requires you make DWF’s of your DWG’s. This isn’t exactly a paralyzing step, but I’ve always wished AutoCAD had this feature built-in so I didn’t have to convert from DWG to DWF. AutoCAD Architecture users have enjoyed this functionality for years now, but this feature has been curiously absent from the base (aka vanilla) version of AutoCAD and it’s related verticals such as AutoCAD Civil 3D.

Introduced with AutoCAD 2012, Autodesk launched the App Store they call the Autodesk Exchange. There both Autodesk and third-party developers contribute to an ever-growing library of tools. With many of these tools being free of charge, I’ve come to refer to the Autodesk Exchange as the Express Tools of the 21st century. Among the incredible tools on the Autodesk Exchange is a free DWG Compare utility from Autodesk. The utility is nearly identical to the DWG compare feature in AutoCAD Architecture, but is now compatible with a range of AutoCAD versions including the base (vanilla) and Civil 3D releases.

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