System requirements?

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System requirements?

Postby nat » Fri Jul 22, 2016 8:26 am


I may have the possibility of giving an introductory course of freeCAD in a fairly large research center (they are looking for ways to reduce the software cost).

They are asking me for the minimum system requirements but I can not find them anywhere. Can any of you provide me with one, please?
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Re: System requirements?

Postby r-frank » Fri Jul 22, 2016 10:04 am


As you can see from the FreeCAD files page listing the supported platforms, a PC running
- Windows 7 or younger
- Ubuntu 12.04 or younger
- Mac OSX 10.9 or younger
would basically do the job.

At the moment FreeCAD does not support parallel processing, but using a good CPU won't hurt.

The more complex your model is the more RAM will be needed.
My personal recommendation would be using a 64 bit - operating system and 8 GB of RAM as
a minimum.

GPU (Graphic Card)
FreeCAD uses OpenGL. In 3D-CAD world normally stability against speed is preferred.
Concerning FreeCAD for Windows.
A lot of CAD-Workstations I know have NVIDIA Quadro-Graphic Cards (like the K2000 for example).
At home i am using FreeCAd on a computer equipped with a AMD 7750 graphics card.
I have a black background around the constraints-symbols in the sketcher, but that's all on the
"negative" side - I never had graphical crashs with FreeCAD on that system.
But as I said, if you have the chance to set up a new system for use mainly with FreeCAD on Windows
using an NVIDIA Quadro would be a good choice.
Concerning FreeCAD for Linux.
Well, the is now an offical AMD graphics driver for Linux.
I am using it with FreeCAD on a Linux Mint 17.3 - Mate system with very good performance.
I have no experience about using NVIDIA-cards on Linux, maybe some other users can elaborate.

Specifically with Windows you may have to consider the fact that other applications should be
running in the background (anti-virus, e-mail programm ...) so that may use performance.

Hard Drive
Well having a SSD for the operating system can't hurt - it' s aquestion of the money you want to spend ...
The rest is a matter of where you want to store and backup your data.

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Re: System requirements?

Postby PrzemoF » Fri Jul 22, 2016 11:03 am

As far as I know the only part FreeCAD that can use multiple CPU cores (indirectly) is FEM workbench when running CalculiX.

It's hard to define minimum spec, because it heavily depends what you want to do. I'm quite sure that if they have other CAD software running right now the hardware will be good enough to run FreeCAD.

I use on-board intel HD4000 graphics card and it works fine, but I don't do anything very complicated.

P.S. Has anyone tried to compile and run FreeCAD on raspberry pi?

Edit: I just found info that FreeCAD runs on raspberry PI (raspbian, wheezy and jessie), so probably it can run on just about anything :D
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Re: System requirements?

Postby nat » Tue Oct 11, 2016 6:31 pm

Thank you both for your answers! (Sorry for the late reply, I thought I came back earlier and did it.)