New in CoDesigner


Altium's MCAD CoDesigner technology connects the mechanical and electrical design domains, allowing the mechanical and electronic engineers to pass the loaded PCB back and forth between the two domains.

In your Altium design software, this is achieved through an extension that loads and extracts board and component data from the PCB editor, the MCAD CoDesigner extension. In the MCAD software the Altium CoDesigner Add-in performs the same function, loading and extracting board and component data from the MCAD software.

The ECAD and the MCAD software pass design changes through an Altium Workspace, which can be hosted in the cloud on Altium 365, or on your company network using an Altium On-Prem Enterprise Server. The Workspace acts as a bridge, with both the ECAD and MCAD software connecting to it. The Workspace holds the board and component data, allowing the ECAD and MCAD engineers to continue to work autonomously, Pulling and Pushing their changes when they are ready.

  • The updates are listed in reverse order on this page - you'll find the latest updates at the top of the page.
  • The videos on this page demonstrate CoDesigner features using Altium Designer. The process of CoDesigning between other Altium design clients and your MCAD software is essentially the same.
  • For the latest announcements and engaging conversation, head on over to the MCAD CoDesigner forum.
  • Refer to the Note in the right-hand pane for information on which features will be available in your installation of MCAD CoDesigner.

Supported Versions

CoDesigner is under continuous development, this page outlines the changes made in each version. Because the CoDesigner extension and Add-ins can be updated separately from the update cycle of your Altium design software, this page also includes information about supported versions of Altium software, as well as the supported versions of MCAD software.

Download and install the version of the Add-in you require for your MCAD software from the MCAD CoDesigner Plugins section on the Altium Downloads page.

New in CoDesigner 3.8.0

Released: 18 April 2024 – Version 3.8.0

Feature Highlights

In the 3.8 update for Altium MCAD CoDesigner, support for ECAD to MCAD harness synchronization moves to Open Beta, making it available to PTC Creo and SOLIDWORKS engineers with a suitable Altium Designer subscription.

Synchronizing a Harness Design with MCAD CoDesigner

In the 3.8 update to Altium MCAD CoDesigner, support for MCAD-ECAD Harness Synchronization moves from Focused Beta to Open Beta. A harness is a common assembly in many electronic products, and with this update, designers who work in PTC Creo and SOLIDWORKS can now transfer the harness design from ECAD to MCAD, where the harness can be routed and the wire lengths defined. The routed harness can then be transferred back to ECAD, ready for the detailed Draftsman fabrication documentation to be completed.

Learn more about Synchronizing a Harness Design Project with MCAD CoDesigner

An ECAD harness design, ready to be pushed to MCAD.An ECAD harness design, ready to be pushed to MCAD. 

  • Harness Synchronization is currently available for PTC Creo and SOLIDWORKS, support for other MCADs will be added in future updates.
  • Refer to the Note in the right-hand pane for information on whether Harness Synchronization will be available in your installation of MCAD CoDesigner.

Update Harness Wire Lengths in MCAD

As the harness is routed in MCAD, the wire lengths are automatically calculated. These lengths may need to be adjusted by the mechanical engineer - this ability has been added to MCAD CoDesigner in the 3.8 update. 

When the MCAD assembly is a harness design, the Altium CoDesigner panel now includes a Length of Harness Objects section, as shown below. The MCAD software determines the Calculated Length based on the routing of the harness. If required, a Corrected Length can be entered and Pushed back to ECAD.

Corrected wire length values are pushed to ECAD in place of the calculated length values.Corrected wire length values are pushed to ECAD in place of the calculated length values.

  • Lengths can be corrected for the following types: Wire, Twisted Pair, Cable, and Segment.
  • If there is a Corrected Length value present, it is pushed from MCAD instead of the Calculated Length value.
  • The units displayed in the Altium CoDesigner panel are the model units. If the units are changed, click the Reload Data button () in the panel to refresh the Calculated and Corrected Length values.

SOLIDWORKS - Store all Design Files in the same Folder

Many mechanical designers prefer to store all of the MCAD Part and Assembly files that make up a single assembly, in the same storage folder. This can now be achieved by enabling the Flat Folder Structure option in the Altium CoDesigner Settings dialog. 

The MCAD design files can be stored using a flat folder structure, if required.The MCAD design files can be stored using a flat folder structure, if required.

A flat folder structure is recommended if you use Windchill with SOLIDWORKS.

Automatic Removal of Intermediate Files

In MCAD, after successful Pull of the design from ECAD, CoDesigner now deletes the intermediate Parasolid files, pictures and checksum files, leaving only the MCAD files. Note that CoDesigner does not delete the \Orig and \Expt subfolders (even if they are empty), as internal logic relies on their presence.

Versions Supported by CoDesigner 3.8.0

  • Altium Designer 24.0 (or higher) with MCAD CoDesigner extension version
  • CoDesigner 3.3 is the latest version available for Altium NEXUS Client.
  • CoDesigner 2.10 is the latest version available for Altium CircuitMaker.

This update has been tested on the following MCAD platforms and Add-in versions:

MCAD Version MCAD Add-In Version
Autodesk Fusion 360® (Note 1)
Autodesk Inventor Professional® - versions 2022, 2023, 2024
Dassault Systemes SOLIDWORKS® - versions 2021, 2022, 2023, 2024
PTC Creo Parametric® - 7.X, 8.X, 9.X, 10.X
Siemens NX® - version 1953 - 2312 (Note 2)


  1. Altium CircuitMaker only supports Autodesk Fusion 360.
  2. Siemens NX is only available to designers as part of an Altium Enterprise Solution. From MCAD CoDesigner 3.8 onwards, there are multiple versions of the installer for MCAD CoDesigner for Siemens NX, to suit different versions of the Siemens NX software. These installers all install identical versions of MCAD CoDesigner, they differ only in their detection of the currently installed version of Siemens NX. For MCAD CoDesigner 3.7 and older there is a single installer, and after installation of MCAD CoDesigner Siemens NX may show a warning when launched that the difference between the current version and the signed version is too great. This warning can be ignored, your installation of MCAD CoDesigner will function correctly. Alternatively, the Show Warning when Loading option in the Customer Defaults dialog in Siemens NX, can be disabled (show image).

Release Notes for CoDesigner 3.8.0

New in CoDesigner 3.7.0

Released: 7 February 2024 – Version 3.7.0 Hot Fix for Autodesk Fusion 360
Released: 26 January 2024 – Version 3.7.0 Hot Fix (MCAD CoDesigner extension change to version
Released: 17 January 2024 – Version 3.7.0

New in CoDesigner 3.6.0

Released: 2 November 2023 – Version 3.6.0

New in CoDesigner 3.5.0

Released: 17 August 2023 – Version 3.5.0 – Hot Fix (no change to Altium Designer CoD extension)
Released: 27 July 2023 – Version 3.5.0

New in CoDesigner 3.4.0

Released: 29 May 2023 – Version – Hot Fix for GovCloud
Released: 10 April 2023 – Version – Hot Fix

Released: 23 March 2023 – Version 3.4.0

New in CoDesigner 3.3.0

Released: 21 December 2022 – Version 3.3.0

There are no new features included in this release.

New in CoDesigner 3.2.0

Released: 17 November 2022 – Version 3.2.0

New in CoDesigner 3.1.0

Released: 4 October 2022 – Version 3.1.0

New in CoDesigner 3.0.0

Released: 18 July 2022 – Version 3.0.0

New in CoDesigner 2.x

Released: 22 May 2020 (Version 2.0.3) – 25 May 2022 (Version 2.10.0)

Learn more about the updates in the MCAD CoDesigner 2.x releases.


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The features available depend on your Altium product access level. Compare features included in the various levels of Altium Designer Software Subscription and functionality delivered through applications provided by the Altium 365 platform.

If you don’t see a discussed feature in your software, contact Altium Sales to find out more.