KB: Convert P-CAD file to Altium

Altium Designer Altium Designer
Starting in version: 18 Up to Current

When trying to import a P-CAD PCB file using the Import Wizard, I get a "file not recognized" message.

Solution Details

When importing older P-Cad files into Altium, users might encounter this error message:


This can be due to the P-Cad file being exported/saved in an older version (before 2006.) 

You can use a text editor to open the file to see version information:


There are two options available when encountering this error.

  1. If you still have access to P-CAD with a valid license for P-CAD 2006, you can open the file with that version, then use File ► Save as, and then import the newly saved file into Altium Designer.

(What a resaved P-CAD file will look like when opened in a text editor)


  1. If P-CAD software is not accessible, an alternate approach would be to contact the Altium Service Bureaus.  Here's a link:
You can use the search feature to find a service bureau that has P-CAD in their "Services provided" section.
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