How to Convert MXD to DWG

MXD files are maps that have been created using ArcGIS, a suite of mapping software from Esri. MXD files store maps, symbols, hyperlinks, and settings from the ArcGIS software. DWG files store 2D and 3D design data. The DWG format is the default format for many CAD software. Since MXD files contain information that cannot be correlated to DWG format automatically, special software is needed to make the conversion.

Direct Conversion

Step

Download and install an MXD-to-DWG format converter. The two converters available as of November 2010 are: SmartExporter.DXF and Arcv2CAD 5.0.

Step

Import the MXD file by using "Import" in the "File" menu.

Step

Convert to DWG format by clicking on "Convert."

Indirect Method

Step

Open Adobe Illustrator and click on "Import."

Step

Select the MXD file to import it into Adobe Illustrator. Convert it to "AI" format and save it in a location of your choice.

Step

Open your CAD software and import the "AI" file.

Step

Convert the file to DWG format.