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Catia Files without Catia


New member
Hello Everyone,

I work at a large manufacturing plant that is ~100 years old and has gone through a lot of changes in that time. Throughout the 80s and 90s, the plant used Catia only and did not have a CAD data management program. Around 2000 we switched to Inventor and are now heavily invested in it. However, we still have about 24,000 Catia files. I would say only about 10% of these are still relevant but sifting through these to delete the other 90% would be a massive undertaking. Myself and a few other engineers still have Catia V5 only so we can open legacy files and convert them to what we need. This is becoming increasingly expensive to support these licenses. We also have some foreign sister plants that simply cannot have Catia for licensing reasons in their countries. About twice a week, an engineer from those plants has to request a file conversion from us.

Is there an alternative software that can convert Catia files without having Catia installed. I know there are plenty of third party websites that do this but there is no way this would be allowed in our company and the downloads would be blocked by our firewalls anyway. We are fine with purchasing and downloading a different program as long as it is cheaper than a Catia license. This would be a huge cost savings for us if we could drop our licenses.

Thank you


New member
Siemens NX has an option that opens catia files. It isn't included in the basic version though so you need to check the prices for that converter license. But nevertheless NX is known for being cheaper than Catia while having significantly more features.


Super Moderator
I haven't been involved with a CAD conversion project for awhile, so I can't recommend a particular conversion software or company - sorry. Search the internet - there seems to be some companies out there.

It seems like you have a good plan for how to convert your CATIA legacy files, but before you turn-in your last CATIA license I recommend:

*** make a backup copy of all the CATIA files

*** buy a Viewer that will let you display (and measure) the CATIA data

*** purchase a direct CATIA-to-Inventor conversion software program. Autodesk may have a converter. There are several companies that sell this kind of software based on a Google search I just did. Just make sure you test it thoroughly to make sure it converts your files as clean as possible.

The legacy data can probably be divided into 3 categories:

1. data that will definitely need to be converted. I would convert this data now, while you still have your CATIA license.

2. data will be never need to be converted. I would back up these files, and then delete them.

3. all the other data that might need to be converted in the future. I would only convert these files if/when they are needed. Use the Viewer software to verify the data. Use the direct conversion software to convert the files.
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Hello senior

I just want to increase my information about what you told, but I didn't understand what you explained about your old Catia files.

You told, you have now Catia V5 but are not able to use it to open the old catia files? What problem is there?! What kind of conversion you want to do? If the old files can be opened with your Catia V5, so which conversion you need? This made me confused.


Strange question.
If you need Catia just to open old files, stop paying license.
You dont need new releases!!