What Changed in PowerCADD 9

What's different in PowerCADD 9 from previous versions?

In PowerCADD 9 Engineered Software added a special Help Menu item which brings up a list of the new features of PowerCADD 9 ( Help menu → What's New ). To further assist we've added to that with lists and general description of changes in no particular order, grouped by function. We have listed the PowerCADD 8 feature first, and how it has changed in PowerCADD 9, new items unique to PowerCADD 9 have been noted as NEW and did not appear in earlier versions.


  • PowerCADD version 9 (9.0.0 or newer recommended)
  • Mac OS? X 10.5 or 10.6 (Snow Leopard version 10.6.4 or newer recommended)


  • Consistency: The change is --- there was once again no change to the general look, feel, behavior of the application.
  • Performance: Faster execution of menu items, saving & opening files, and just about every other aspect of the application. In general it's been optimized to take advantage of what Mac OS X Snow Leopard has to offer with it's new architecture. The rendering, storing, and management of raster images is improved; reducing files sizes and once again increasing performance.
  • Backwards Compatibility: Opens legacy drawings from PowerDRAW6, and PowerCADD 1 through PowerCADD 9.
  • Cosmetics: Improved rendering of font sizes on high resolution monitors for various floating windows including Edit and Layer Windows, and larger Tool palette icons.

  • Preferences:

    • General → Convert Incoming PICT? Data to Objects: Deleted.
    • General → Interpret PICT Bitmaps as Placed Objects: Deleted. By default any such items may be cropped or modified using various PowerCADD 9 features and techniques.
    • General → Check for Software Updates: Deleted.
    • General → Drag and Drop Enabled: Deleted. This works on an incoming basis only from Picture Clipping Files on the Desktop into a PowerCADD 9 document.
    • View → Hilite Color, Snap Color, Background Color, Construction Line Color: Interface change from buttons to Mac OS X Color Wheel icons. Behavior is the same, interface is cleaner.
    • View → Scale Patterns: Deleted. By default patterns do not scale when zoomed in or out.
    • View → End Caps: Deleted. End Caps are now an object level attribute as opposed to a global Application Level Preference.
    • View → Palette Size: Moved to Preferences → Tools.
    • View → High Quality Drags: Deleted. By default all drag operations render a high quality live preview. To display a low quality preview press Control while performing the drag operation.
    • View → Save Window Positions: Moved to Preferences → General.
    • Tools → Scale Points on Zoom Out: Moved to Preferences → View.

    Drawing Setup:

    • Show → Simulate Thin Lines: This item no longer has a check box setting; to disable the feature (the same as Unchecking this feature in PowerCADD 8 ) simply drag the slider all the way to the right to turn it off.
    • Snap → Nudge Amounts: Nudge amounts now respect drawing scale and layer scale. Example, a nudge value of 12" will always be 12" even with switching between layers with unique layer scale settings.
    • Print → Registration Marks: Deleted.

    Menu Items:

    • File Menu → Open: Legacy files are automatically converted to PowerCADD 9, a copy of the file is saved in the same location as the original.
    • File Menu → Open, Import: Support for additional file formats including AutoCAD r2010, EPSF, Illustrator, and Postscript.
    • File Menu → Open → *.dwg: Improved translator performance and stream lined interface, support for *dwg r2010, improved text support for special characters.
    • File Menu → Save: Drawings saved as PowerCADD 9 contain a QuickLook Preview accessible in Mac OS X Leopard (10.5) and Snow Leopard (10.6)
    • PCD9QuickLookPreviewNew.jpg

    • File Menu → Place... Cropping: Behavior of Cropping Placed, Imported or Opened raster images and PDF?'s has changed. To crop from a mid point handle bar press Shift + Cmd as illustrated below. Attempts to crop from mid point handle bars without pressing those keys will not crop the object.
    • PCD9CropShift.jpg

    • Edit Menu → Edit... Polygon Edit Dialog: This feature has been deleted. The polygon edit dialog pictured below no longer appears when choosing the aforementioned menu item with a polygon selected.
    • PCD9NoPolyEditDialog.jpg

    • Edit Menu → Exit Group: Behavior changed when existing nested groups. By default it now steps out one level at a time instead of existing to the root drawing (previously required a custom key command). To exit to the root drawing assign a custom key command. See the PowerCADD User Manual for additional information.
    • Edit Menu → Select Special: Updated to support new End Cap object attribute.
    • Tool menu → Live Area: New. Allows you to insert a smart text object in the drawing display the area and/or perimeter of an object. Resizing or reshaping the object will dynamically update the displayed value.
    • Tool menu → Auto Alpha: New. Allows you to remove a specified color from a raster (bitmap) image. Once removed the previously colored pixels become transparent (see through).
    • Tool menu → Objects to Bitmap: Choosing this menu item will always display a dialog to specify the DPI to be used for conversion. In PowerCADD 8 and earlier it was necessary to press Option to set the DPI for conversion.
    • Tool menu → PDF To Objects: New. Allows you to converted postscript based object files such as PDF, EPSF, Illustrator and Postscript in PowerCADD to editable bézier curves and text.
    • PCD9NewToolMenu.jpg

    • Tool menu → Set Data: Deleted. Note this was also deleted as part of a rolling change in PowerCADD version 8.
    • View menu → Greek Text, Hide/Show Hatch, Hide/Show Transparency?, Hide/Show Dimensions: These menu items have been deleted.
    • Attr menu → End Caps: New. Allows you to assign the style of end cap used for lines and other open ended geometry for each object. In previous versions this was an application level Preference setting which assigned to the same end cap style to all open ended geometry.
    • PCD9AttrMenuEndCapsNew.jpg

    • Window menu → Object (Obj.) Notes: Deleted.
    • Window menu → Date Browse: Deleted. Note this was also deleted as part of a rolling change in PowerCADD version 8.
    • Window menu → Edit: Will also display the DPI and Bit Depth (number of colors) of a selected raster image.
    • PCD9EditMenuDPINew.jpg

    • Window menu → Layer Window: Layer Attributes for Scale and Color may be accessed by double clicking a layer name, pressing the Edit button, or pressing the new Scale or Color buttons at the bottom of the Floating Layer Window.
    • PCD9LayerWindowNew.jpg

    • Window menu → References: Interface and behavior completely reworked. Reference the PowerCADD User Manual for additional information (Help menu → PowerCADD Manual).
    • Window menu → Overview: Increased redraw performance.
    • PCD9ReferenceWindowNew.jpg

    • Help menu → What's New: New. Opens a PDF file outline new features for this release.
    • Help menu → Tutorial: New. Opens a PDF file for Chapter 2 of the manual, getting started with PowerCADD.
    • Help menu → PowerCADD Manual: New. Opens a searchable PDF file of the complete PowerCADD User Manual.
    • Help menu → PowerCADD Tool Guide: Deleted (link pointed to third party content related to PowerCADD version 7 which was out of date).

    Tool Palettes:

    • Magic Wand: Updated to support new End Cap object attribute.
    • Advanced Text, Text, Sticky Notes, Leader Lines: Text is indexed for Spotlight searching in Mac OS X Leopard and Snow Leopard.
    • Round Rectangles: Rotating a Round Rectangle will retain that object type (previously they became polygons).
    • Place Symbol: Options for Setting Data tags was deleted as a function of removing the Set Data External described earlier. This was also a rolling change to PowerCADD 8.
    • Offset Line: Optional Setting added for Multiple Increments (see PowerCADD user Manual for additional information (Help menu → PowerCADD Manual).
    • Parallel Offset: Optional Setting added for Multiple Increments (see PowerCADD user Manual for additional information (Help menu → PowerCADD Manual).
    • Eye Dropper: Updated to support new End Cap object attribute.
    • PCD9UpdatedTools.jpg

      We hope that helps

      If you found this article or the website in general to be helpful, educational or a time and money saver you can show your support. Thank you ~ Brian (huc) Huculak, Co-founder and Managing Editor, caddpower.com - powercadduser.com

Your rating: None Average: 5 (1 vote)

PowerCADD 9.0.5 Fill Pattern Editor Deleted

In PowerCADD 9.0.5 Engineered Software has dropped/removed the Attr menu, Pattern... menu item

The Pattern... menu item allowed users to create and edit existing Fill Patterns directly in PowerCADD

There is no practical work around with respect to fill pattern editing and creation directly in PowerCADD 9.0.5 or newer versions (more recent revisions) -- using custom Hatch Patterns is recommended and provides considerably more flexibility.

Custom Fill Patterns added from a Symbol Library (e.g. from Color Portfolio) or objects with a custom fill pattern copied from one drawing into another will still be appended to the drawing Fill Palette as has always been the case. As has always been the case, once in your drawing you can use the Eye Dropper tool to apply that pattern to any object or select the object and apply the fill pattern from the Fill menu item.

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.