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AutoCAD® 2012 FOR DUMMIES® by David Byrnes

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Design Web Format — Not Just for the Web

Earlier in this chapter, I explain how you can exchange drawings via e-mail and FTP. That's all the Internet connectivity that many AutoCAD users need, but if you're curious about connecting drawings to the Web or sharing drawings with people who don't have AutoCAD, this section is for you.

The AutoCAD Web features are built on three pieces of technology:

  • A special “lightweight” drawing format called DWF that Autodesk originally developed especially for putting drawings on the Web.
  • An updated, XML-compliant version of the DWF format called DWFx that can be viewed using the Microsoft XPS Viewer that's built in to Windows Vista and Windows 7 or available as a plug-in for Windows XP.
  • A free program from Autodesk called Autodesk Design Review 2012 that enables anyone to view, mark up, and print DWF files without having AutoCAD.

All about DWF and DWFx

The AutoCAD DWG format works well for storing drawing information on local and network disks, but the high precision and large number of object properties that AutoCAD uses make for comparatively large files.

To overcome this size problem and encourage people to publish drawings on the Web, Autodesk developed an alternative lightweight vector format for representing AutoCAD drawings: DWF (Design Web Format). A DWF file is a more compact representation of a DWG file. DWF uses less space — and less transfer time over the Web and e-mail — because it's less precise and doesn't have all the information ...

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