ARES® Commander 2017 – New Features

Our CAD software offer you more than a low-cost alternative to create or modify drawings in DWG. We keep innovating to improve your productivity release after release.

Top new features in ARES Commander 2017

ARES Touch for Android® and iOS®

Fresh new UI and release of the iOS version

Create, modify, annotate and share your DWG drawings on the go! ARES Touch is the most complete solution for CAD on smartphones and tablets and it is now available for both Android and iOS. ARES Touch gets also the brand new dark User Interface introduced in ARES Commander 2017. You get ARES Touch for free¹ when you buy ARES Commander!

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New “Trinity” Dark User Interface

The new Dark UI is harmonizing the user interface across all the ARES CAD software and introducing new features

The new Dark UI contributes to Graebert’s unique “Trinity” concept offering a seamless user experience across desktop, mobile and cloud. Besides the fresh and modern look and feel you will enjoy enhancements such as auto-hiding palettes, command line completion, history for undo-redo and a welcome screen.

See it in video

Customer portal to manage licenses and devices

Use your license on any computer and enjoy maximum flexibility

The new Customer Portal facilitates the management of your licenses and subscriptions. You can also use your license to work from any computer. Indeed the same user can activate his license on up to two computers simultaneously and log out at any time to use his license on other computers.

See it in video

Multifunctional Grips

Quick editing options appear when you fly over mid and end point grips

Fly over entity grips and you will discover new contextual shortcut menus offering quick editing features that can vary based on the entity type: edit the length or stretch an entity from its end point grip, change the radius of an arc, insert a vertex on a polyline or convert an arc into a polyline.

See it in video

Polylines Editing Improvements

Add vertex to midpoint, convert a segment to an arc or line and more

New options in the command EDITPOLYLINE offer an increased productivity in the edition of polylines. You may convert an arc segment into a line and vice-versa, you may also add a vertex to the midpoint of a segment and change its position. Other new options include Taper and Reverse.

See it in video

Relative Angles in Coordinate Input

Use the “@” prefix to enter the angle from the last given segment

You can now use the “@” prefix to enter relative angles just like you are already used to for relative distances. This unique ability simplifies significantly the coordinate input when you draw successive lines or polyline segments.

See it in video

Trim and PowerTrim in Hatches and Gradients

Unrivaled flexibility to edit the shape of your hatches and gradients

You can now trim hatches and gradients with the TRIM and POWERTRIM commands. It’s never been easier to edit the shape of the areas containing hatches and gradients. Divided hatches and gradients maintain associativity and remain as one entity.

See it in video

Advanced PDF to DWG conversion

New features allow to recover more information from the PDF

Besides converting or batch-processing your PDF files into DWG files, ARES Commander offers now the option to recover the layers organization and names but also to maintain the LineStyle and LineWeight of entities.

See it in video

Insert Center Lines

Insert Centerlines between pairs of lines, concentric arc and polyline segments

Very popular for Mechanical design but also very helpful in other situations, the CENTERLINE command will draw a line at equidistance of the pair of entities you selected. The CENTER linestyle will be assigned by default and you can fine tune the extension of the Centerline.

See it in video

Pattern Along Any Path

Copy entities along a path defined by another entity

Array multiple copies of a chosen entity along a line, polyline, arc, circle, ellipse or spline. Different options let you define the distance and total number of insertions but also how to align each insertion with the chosen path.

See it in video

Split Dimension Lines

Split Dimension lines and extension lines to avoid any overlap

Improve the readability of your annotations, when a dimension line or an extension line is overlapping another entity the command SPLITDIMENSION will help you split them with a default or manual distance without breaking the associativity.

See it in video

Advanced Block Attributes Editing

New dialog for advanced editing of block attributes and properties

Select one or more block insertions and use this new dialog to edit one or more attributes but also block properties such as layer, linestyle, color, text style and more.

See it in video

Dynamic Print Preview

The Print settings dialog has been redesigned to improve productivity

Enjoy a reorganized dialog for Print settings with a dynamic preview representing your drawing as it would be printed. You no longer need to switch between settings and preview to adjust your print configuration.

See it in video

More XtraTools™ Commands

More power features to help you solve tedious tasks – Now also on Mac and Linux

Take a look to the XtraTools² menu or ribbon tab and you will discover many new features to manage layouts viewports, import/export dimension styles, create nice text labels, scale blocks, define draw order by color, and more.

See it in video

Also in this 2017 release of ARES Commander:


Change property overrides of selected entities to ByLayer

The new SETBYLAYER command helps you to edit entities that should inherit layer properties and decide which properties are affected: color, linetype, lineweight.


Move entities from Model Space to Layouts and vice-versa

The new CHANGESPACE command facilitates the migration of content between Model and Paper Spaces. Besides moving the entities, this command will insert the entities at the same location and at the right scale considering the scale ratio of the viewport in the layout.

¹ ARES Touch and ARES Kudo will be working for the duration of your Graebert subscription. 12 months of Graebert subscription are included when you buy a new license or upgrade. When your subscription expires, you will be invited to renew it to continue receiving upgrades and email support but also keep using ARES Touch and ARES Kudo.

² The new XtraTools commands are not translated and displayed in English only.

New features previously released in ARES Commander 2016

ARES Touch for Android® (and iOS® soon)

New features for Android version – ARES Touch for iOS: end of Q2 2016

Acclaimed as the most complete CAD solution for smartphones and tablets, ARES Touch is the ideal companion to create, annotate or modify your DWG drawings on the go. You get ARES Touch for free¹ when you buy ARES Commander!

See it in video

Quick Input

Dynamic information and input boxes, right next to your cursor

Enter coordinates, angles and distances right next to your cursor. Quick Input also displays dynamic information about lengths, angles, prompts and options. The interaction with ARES Commander has never been so intuitive and fast.

See it in video

Annotation Scaling

Smart scaling of annotations on layout sheets and printouts

Annotative scaling adjusts the size and scale of your dimensions, texts, hatches and blocks to the scale of each viewport. Annotations are displayed with consistent and uniform sizes across all viewports in layouts sheets.

See it in video

Pattern Hatch

Improve your drawings with hatches using images or blocks – Windows® only²

Create hatches using patterns of images or blocks. Advanced options include scaling, spacing and rotation of the pattern of your choice. PatternHatch is one of the new XtraTools™ commands introduced with ARES Commander 2016.

See it in video

Curved Text

New text feature to draw texts along or inside arcs – Windows only²

Create curved text entities along an arc. Some options include text formatting, offset distance and choice between convex or concave sides of the arc. You will find the CurvedText command in the new XtraTools™ menu and tab.

See it in video

Drawing Tabs

Switch easily between open drawings

Drawing Tabs are now displayed at the top of the drawing window area. When flying your cursor over one tab you see a preview of the drawing and its different layouts to switch quickly to the desired view.

See it in video

DGN Import

Convert DGN files into DWG entities you can modify in ARES Commander

The ImportDGN command inserts content from DGN files (V7 or V8) as a block in your drawing. The .dgn format is popular among users of MicroStation® and some other CAD software. DGN import offers you a higher interoperability with other professionals.

See it in video

Head-up Display toolbar

Quick editing options available from a contextual toolbar

This new contextual toolbar appears next to your cursor when you select entities. Shortcuts include zoom to selection, change entity layer, change LineStyle or LineWidth, and the possibility to create a dimension or a block from the selection.

See it in video

LayerState Manager

Create and manage configurations of layers

The new LayerState Manager allows you to create and name different scenarios for your layers to easily switch between them. You may for example hide some layers and change their color to show different aspects of the same project.

See it in video

New selection methods

Quickly isolate or hide entities in your drawings - search and select entities sharing similar properties

SelectMatching allows you to find similar entities. IsolateEntities and HideEntities let you to show or hide parts of your drawing. IsolateLayers is also improved with new option to lock and fade the remaining layers.

See it in video

New utility tools for blocks

New XtraTools™ commands to manage blocks faster – Windows only²

ReplaceBlock and ReplaceBlockByReference help you substitute existing blocks by others. GetBlockInfo generates a report listing the number of occurrences of each block. Other commands help you to import or redefine block attributes.

See it in video

More XtraTools™ Commands

New power features to help you solve tedious tasks – Windows only²

ARES Commander 2016 introduces a new group of productivity-driven commands. Besides PatternHatch and CurvedText or the utility tools for blocks some of these features include Break Lines, Convert a single line text into a multiline one, Make LineStyles by specifying entities , and a Lisp Explorer.

Dimension Location Snap

Improve the visual impact of your annotations

When activated, this new setting lets you define an incremental distance between successive dimension lines. Radius and diameter dimension lines are also placed at specified angle intervals. Your drawings look cleaner and better organized.

Improved OLE Support (Windows only)

Insert Excel tables or other elements linked with Microsoft® Office

The PasteSelected command provides a paste link option allowing you to use the features of Microsoft Office directly in your CAD drawing to edit the content with the OpenOLE command.

Command name completion

ARES Commander helps you find keyboard commands

Search for command names and system variables by entering the first letters in the command bar and pressing the Tab key for suggestions.

Multiline Block Attributes

Create block attributes with paragraphs of text

Block attributes creation and modification is enhanced in ARES Commander 2016. You can now create multiline texts as block attributes and use all the text formatting options available for multiline texts.

Improved Properties Palette

Properties groups can now be collapsed or expanded

The Properties Palette helps you to browse the properties of selected entities faster. Now you can collapse or expand properties groups which is in particular useful for some entity types that have many properties such as dimensions.

Export WMF

Export the current view to a .wmf file

The ExportWMF command allows you to export content to a .wmf file. The Windows MetaFile (WMF) format offers you higher interoperability to share with non-CAD Software.

Support for Picture Notes

Improved collaboration with ARES Touch

Picture Notes inserted in your drawings on your smartphone or tablet with ARES Touch are now displayed in ARES Commander. Picture Notes help you to annotate your drawings with photos and related comments.

¹ ARES Touch and LicenseToGo will be working for the duration of your Graebert subscription. 12 months of Graebert subscription are included when you buy a new license or upgrade. When your subscription expires, you will be invited to renew it to continue receiving upgrades and email support but also keep using ARES Touch and LicenseToGo.

² The new XtraTools commands are currently Windows-only because they were very recently developed with the COM API that is specific to Windows. They are also not translated and displayed in English only. Translations in the 13 other languages of ARES Commander will become available in the coming months with our Service Packs. Graebert is also actively working to provide these productivity-driven tools to its Mac® and Linux® users.

New features previously released in ARES Commander 2015

ARES Touch for Android

ARES Touch: The power of ARES Commander on Android tablets (and smartphones).

Discover the first .dwg-based full CAD software for Android tablets. Its user interface is both adapted for touch and intuitive for ARES users. Files are synchronized via Dropbox or Google Drive or shared by USB. You get ARES Touch for free* when you buy ARES Commander!


The new activation dialogs make it very easy to use your license from other computers.

Use your Product Key to activate your license on another computer, eventually under a different OS (Windows, Mac OS X or Linux). You can work from any PC*! Your LicenseToGo will last for up to 5 days and you can renew it after on the same PC or another one.


Trim or extend entities faster than with any other CAD Software.

Trim multiple entities in once by moving your mouse around. Just describe a path with your mouse and ARES will trim while you move. If you use the shift key you do the same but with the Extend command.

See it in video


Draw and modify much faster by combining these frequently used commands.

Use only one command to perform and combine multiple actions on a same selection of entities: Move, Rotate, Scale and/or Copy without leaving the command.

See it in video

2D Constraints

Add intelligence to your drawings and capture the design intent to facilitate further modifications.

Powered by the CDS solver from Dassault Systèmes Spatial, this new set of features will help you to define relations between entities in terms of geometry (stay parallel, perpendicular, tangent...) or dimensions (equal length, proportional, formula...). When you will further modify one element the others will adapt following these constraints.

See it in video

Dynamic blocks editing

Dynamic blocks are smart blocks you can configure with options and grips.

Edit dynamic blocks inserted in a DWG drawing by other CAD software such as AutoCAD. You can use the grips to dynamically and interactively modify these “intelligent” blocks and eventually reinsert them in the drawing. Creation of new dynamic blocks is not supported yet.

See it in video

OnScreen Dimensions palette

Create or click on a dimension and you will see a contextual button to activate a new floating palette.

Editing dimensions has never been so quick and easy than with ARES Commander 2015! This new contextual palette helps you to edit them directly in the drawing: formatting, styles, tolerances, prefixes or suffixes and more. Modifications can also be saved and reused.

See it in video

Tables edition

Quickly edit tables right inside your drawings with a contextual toolbar.

Click inside a Table cell or launch the command EditTableCell and you will get a toolbar with all the options to insert, resize, merge or delete cells, rows and columns.

See it in video

In-place text editing

Click on any multiline text (Note) and you will see a new floating dialog for editing.

The Note command (MTEXT in AutoCAD) has been improved with a new contextual dialog to define advanced formatting like on a Word processor but directly in your .dwg drawing. The new Stack dialog helps you create fractions and tolerances in your text.

See it in video

More bonus tools...

DiscardDuplicates and ExplodeBlockX help you fix your drawings.

DiscardDuplicates deletes duplicate entities and lets you define advanced settings to fine tune what should be ignored (similar to OVERKILL in AutoCAD). ExplodeBlockX explodes blocks or tables and converts attributes in text (similar to BURST in AutoCAD)

See it in video

Customize the Ribbon

Reorganize the User Interface to boost your productivity.

Customize the tabs and panels of the Ribbon to group the tools you need and like. You may also create your own workspaces in addition to the 2D and 3D ones we created for you. Still, one of the workspaces allows you to switch back to traditional menus and toolbars if you prefer.

See it in video

* ARES Touch and LicenseToGo will be working for the duration of your Graebert subscription. 12 months of Graebert subscription are included when you buy a new license or upgrade. When your subscription expires, you will be invited to renew it to continue receiving upgrades and email support but also keep using ARES Touch and LicenseToGo.

New features previously released in ARES® Commander Edition 2014

Fresh and modern look & feel

The new Ribbon interface introduces a modern and intuitive environment but you can switch back to the traditional interface at any time.

Designed for flexibility, ARES Commander Edition 2014 continues to offer the easiest transition: whether you learned to draw with menus or with the ribbon, you will find instantly a familiar work environment.

Design Resources palette

This new palette will significantly contribute to increase your productivity by very easily sharing content between files.

You may browse your computer or network to find useful contents to use in your drawing like blocks, reference drawings or images, layers, sheets, styles…

Drawing Standards (.dws files)

Drawing Standards help you to define and check the compliance of your drawing against custom, corporate and industry standards.

You may define some rules for the layers, line styles, dimension styles and text styles and this feature will not only spot the errors but also help you to fix them to achieve conformity.

Fresh look & feel for MAC too

The Print and Page layout dialogs have been redesigned to meet Mac standards.

No ribbon interface on a Mac! With floating user interface elements, ARES Commander Edition 2014 is not only the most complete DWG CAD Software on Mac OS X, but also the one offering a Mac look and feel. Print and layout configuration dialogs have also been redesigned according to standards on any Mac.

Quick Grouping and Ungrouping

Group and ungroup entities in two clicks via a right-click shortcut menu.

Groups offer an easy way to combine drawing entities without creating a block. You can later select only one entity to manipulate all the group. Each entity can be in several groups. You may select for example one entity to move all the groups it belongs to.

Layer and Entity Transparency

Transparency on specified layers help to reduce the display complexity of the drawing.

When you work on a drawing with tens of layers it is sometimes a little confusing, particularly when you receive a drawing with layers created by others and you want to add your own layers. With this feature you may fade selected layers or entities (e.g. hatches) but also define the fading for all the locked layers.

Layer Preview Tool

The new LayerPreview command offers a quick preview of the content of layers.

When dealing with drawings made of multiple layers it is frequently time-consuming to switch on and off layers to understand what is or is not on each layer. This feature instantly shows the content and lets you either restore the layers as before or after preview.

Layer Grouping & Filter

We have improved the Layers Manager to better group and filter the layers.

The Layers Manager now makes it incredibly fast and intuitive to group and filter layers. You can organize layers into groups and sub-groups and manage their visibility or lock them. The same layer can belong to several groups and you can simply drag and drop layers into groups. You may also search and filter them.

RichLine Editing completed

The EditRichLine command has been improved to edit multiple lines entities.

RichLines help you to draw smart multiple lines according to the styles you defined. RichLine editing is now completed with new commands to edit the RichLines like open, closed or merged Tee or Cross, Corner Joint and other options to break and weld.

Keep your software up-to-date with a Graebert Subscription

A Graebert Subscription entitles customers to email support and software updates for the duration of their subscription. If you purchased ARES Commander within the past 12 months or if you purchased a Graebert Subscription (previously called ServiceCARD), you may still have coverage.

If your Subscription has recently expired or is about to expire, it’s easy to purchase a new 12-month Graebert Subscription. Please contact us for further information.

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