How to Understand DWG TrueView

by David Ripley
drawings image by Chad McDermott from

Autodesk DWG TrueView is a free program that allows users to read AutoCAD and other DWG files. DWG is a file extension used for drawing programs, such as CAD software. DWG TrueView is just a viewer so you cannot change the drawing, but you can print the files and convert DWGs between AutoCAD formats. It is a useful program for those who do not have a full CAD program, but need to view CAD files.


Step 1

Download and install DWG TrueView from the Autodesk website, You will find the download link under "Products," then "All Products."

Step 2

Open DWG TrueView by double-clicking on the desktop icon. Once it is loaded, click on the "Open" icon on the Quick Access Toolbar.

Step 3

Navigate to your DWG file's location and click "OK." The drawing will open and the Ribbon will be loaded. A ribbon is an interface with tabs in a tab bar. The tabs contain sets of toolbars and multiple control elements.

Step 4

Plot the drawing by going to the Ribbon Output panel. Click on the "Plot" icon and in the Plot dialog box, choose your printer, paper size, scale and any other options before clicking "OK" to plot the drawing.

Step 5

Check sizes on the drawing by using the Measure Panel. Various types of measurements are available, but they are not added to the drawing. Snaps are available from the Ribbon to aid accuracy.

Close the drawing when you have finished reviewing it by opening the Application Menu under the blue "D" and choosing "Close." Note that there is no "Save" option, so you will need to note your comments or any measurements separately.


  • The DWG TrueView Plot dialog box is the same as one used some in professional software programs, which allows a wide range of print options to be used.


Photo Credits

About the Author

David Ripley has been writing about computer-aided drafting and theater since 2004. His articles have been published in "Autodesk Users Group International Magazine," "ABTT Sightline," "ALD Focus," "ET News" and "Lighting and Sound International." Ripley is an AutoCAD certified associate and trained in technical theater at the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Arts.

More Articles