AutoCAD-AutoDeskGeospatial - GISMicrostation-Bentley

Connect to Data, AutoCAD Map - Bentley Map

In this post I want to make a comparison of the ways in which it is accessed databases with the geospatial platforms of AutoDesk and Bentley.

I have used it to:

  • AutoDesk Civil 3D 2008 (Which includes AutoCAD Map)
  • Bentley Map V8i
AutoCAD Civil 3D 2008 Bentley Map V8i
Wcad autocad civil 3d
File, connect to Data ...
Wcad autocad civil 3d
Settings, database, connect
Wcad autocad civil 3d Wcad autocad civil 3d

AutoCAD concentrates here all the alternatives of connection with data:

Additionally from Import you can access:

  • my f. Tab (Mapinfo)
  • ESRI (.shp, e00, E00, ArcInfo Coverages)
  • sdf (MapGuide)
  • GML (gml, xml, gml.gz) and MasterMap
  • Sdts (promoted by USGS)
  • Vpf, ft (From military standard)

Bentley here only maintains the connections with Databases:

  • ODBC
  • Oracle
  • OLEDB via Udl (SQL Server And Oracle)
  • BUDBC (OLE DB, SQL Native, and others from Microsoft)


From the Raster manager data is accessed:

  • WMS
  • ESRI (Mxd and lyr)
  • Other Rasters, more formats than AutoDesk but not the same.

From Import you access to:

  • Oracle Spatial (Such as GIS data)
  • Shp files (As cad file)

From Open it is accessed to:

  • my f. Tab (Mapinfo)

Can not access data:

  • WFS (Web feature services)
  • SDF (MapGuide)
  • ArcSDE
  • MySQL

Although some of these can be via ODBC.

In general, the two tools have almost the same functionalities, although in the case of AutoDesk it concentrates them more in a single connection panel to data services. In the case of Bentley some of them are from the raster manager, import and open.

In this AutoCAD is in better condition than Bentley, at least in access to MySQL data and ArcSDE And MapGuide, without having to resort to artilfugios via ODBC.

And in terms of OGC standards, AutoCAD has the advantage of accessing wfs, although with wms in time it is ahead of it because Bentley does it until this V8i version while AutoCAD did it from before ... record, I'm not using the 2009 version. Even so, in this both platforms have lagged behind, considering that low-cost or free tools do it in abundance ... let's not say serve data.

To open or import data AutoDesk has more than Bentley Map as being, we put some basic examples although this is not understood as connecting to data because it has to be imported.

Regarding raster formats, AutoCAD has less than Microstation, but those that usually store elevation data, AutoCAD has some more commonly used ones, such as those from ESRI. AutoDesk overcomes the fact of "connecting" to data, while what Bentley does is "call reference." Both are incipient in radar capture formats, very few to say nothing.

Golgi Alvarez

Writer, researcher, specialist in Land Management Models. He has participated in the conceptualization and implementation of models such as: National Property Administration System SINAP in Honduras, Management Model of Joint Municipalities in Honduras, Integrated Cadastre-Registry Management Model in Nicaragua, Territory Administration System SAT in Colombia . Editor of the Geofumadas knowledge blog since 2007 and creator of the AulaGEO Academy that includes more than 100 courses on GIS - CAD - BIM - Digital Twins topics.

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