All-Platform Microsoft Visio Alternative | EdrawMax Review

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  1. What is Visio? 

Visio is a drawing software that allows users to create business and industrial drawings such as flowcharts, org charts, architectural plans, network diagrams, concept maps, etc. Microsoft Visio is now a part of Microsoft Office Suite, though sold separately.  

Visio was developed originally by Shapewear Corp that was later renamed the Visio Corporation. Microsoft acquired it in 2000 and made it a part of the Office suite. Microsoft Visio has some limitations so that we will discuss a Visio alternative as well. Though there are many software that are coined as Visio alternatives but EdrawMax has proved itself as the best option so far.  

  1. What is EdrawMax 

EdrawMax is a 2D business technical diagramming software that supports and provides tools for drawing different industrial, architectural, and teaching diagrams such as flowcharts, organizational charts, mind maps, network diagrams, floor plans, and workflow, business charts, and engineering diagrams. It is available for all platforms, including macOS, Windows, Linux and Web.  

EdrawMax is often introduced as a befitting alternative for the famous Microsoft Visio. One reason for this comparison is the availability of many tools, extensive symbol and sign libraries, and support for as many diagrams as possible. But when Visio is there, why look for a Visio alternative? Because Visio is expensive and is only available for Windows. So, we need a Visio alternative that is less pricey and is supported on all platforms. EdrawMax is the best alternative that overcomes these limitations.  

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  1. EdrawMax Features 

EdrawMax is a comprehensive software that supports 280+ diagrams and has different libraries and collections of symbols and tools. It has many features that make it a perfect Visio alternative, so let us discuss these features in detail. 

1  Cross-Platform Supported.  

As we already discussed, Microsoft Visio is biased towards the Microsoft platform and supports only Windows, though an online version is also available now. EdrawMax, on the other hand, is available on all major platforms. Here is the supported list.  

  1. Windows 
  • 2000/2003/2008/Vista/7/8/10 
  • 32 bit/64 bit 
  • XP users should use EdrawMax Version 8.4 
  1. Mac 
  • Mac OS X 10.10 and later 
  1. Linux 
  • Linux OS X Debian 
  • Ubuntu 
  • Fedora 
  • CentOS 
  • OpenSUSE, Mint, Knoppix, RedHat, Gentoo, and more. 
  1. Web 

2.  Easy to Use  

Drawings and diagrams are required by people from many professions and even by teachers, students, and homemakers for different purposes. A homemaker might be looking to decorate her room and need software to visualize her space before making an actual investment. Teachers may need concept maps, mind maps, and charts for reading assignments, writing prompts, and mathematics exercises. So, ease of use is a required feature so that even people from non-technical and non-programming backgrounds can use this drawing software.  

There are various factors that we can consider to assess the claim of ease of use from EdrawMax.  

  1. EdrawMax offers an editor with a drag and drop facility. It means you can pick a shape and drop it on the canvas and adjust its placement.  
  1. EdrawMax has auto connectors. 
  1. It has a comprehensive library of templates with both advanced and straightforward diagrams. This library has 15,00+ professional buit-in templates and 5,000+ user-sharing diagram templates. These templates are free to use, customizable, and downloadable. You can use them right away if you have the exact requirements or use them as a foundation for your customized diagram.  
  1. You can also add your templates to the library for others and for yourself to be used in the future. 

3. Supports 280+ Types of Diagrams 

EdrawMax is a Visio alternative for virtually every type of diagram. It supports 280+ diagram types and thousands of symbols and signs. It supports engineering diagrams, architectural plans, teaching aids, industrial drawings, civil structure diagrams, maps, organizational charts, business diagrams, and many more. There is hardly any drawing that EdrawMax cannot handle. 

4. Abundant Graphical Elements and Templates 

As we discussed in the last section, EdrawMax supports more than 280 types of diagrams. So, it must contain thousands of graphical elements to cater to all these diagrams. It supports more than a thousand symbols and signs along with different connectors, lines, and layouts.  

EdrawMax also provides a wide range of templates spanned around almost all types of diagrams supported. These templates have many levels of complexity, starting from the simple to the most advanced ones too. This Visio alternative provides around 5000 user-sharing diagram templates, and the collection is constantly growing as the users are also contributing to it.  

  1. Powerful Compatibility 

EdrawMax sounds good, but you are afraid of starting over? Well, EdrawMax has a solution for this limitation too. EdrawMax is compatible with Visio, and you can import your visio file into EdrawMax and modify it from thereon. You can also export your EdrawMax documents in many popular formats such as  Edraw files can be exported to other files including MS Visio, MS Word, MS Excel, MS PowerPoint, SVG, Html, PDF, GIF, JPG, TIFF, etc.  

Another compatibility feature of EdrawMax is its wide range of languages supported. It supports English, French, German, Japanese, Simplified Chinese, Traditional Chinese, Spanish, Italian, Portuguese, Russian, and Korean.   

  1. Cloud Based Software 

Another great feature that makes EdrawMax stand out from other Visio alternatives is its dynamic online storage system. Since data is the lifeline of almost all process in today’s technology driven world, it is important to keep your files and documents safe and have the ability to recover them in case of any local data loss. EdrawMax offers a comprehensive cloud based storage system. You can conveniently store and share your EdrawMax documents through this cloud storage. There are three modes i.e. local storage on your computer, personal cloud and Team cloud. Team cloud access is available for the whole team for collaboration 

4. Visio Vs. EdrawMax 

 Visio EdrawMax 
1. System Platforms  Microsoft Windows Cloud, SaaS, Web-Based limited Microsoft Windows Linux macOS Cloud, SaaS, Web-Based 
2. Features Collaboration Tools Data Import and Export Drag & Drop Templates Access controls Supports more than 280 diagram types Comprehensive templates & symbols Robust file compatibility across many programs.  Share your designs anytime, anywhere in many popular formats. Drag and Drop 
 3. Plans and Pricing  Starting Price: $99 per user per year Free Version Available. Free Trial available.  Starting Price:  $5 per month Free Version available Free Trial available 

5. How to Import/Export Visio Files Using EdrawMax 

If you are using Visio already and are now switching to EdrawMax as a Visio alternative, you might want to modify your historic files already available for reference. You do not have to worry about redrawing your drawings. You can import them to EdrawMax and start working on them right away. This includes both VSDX and VSD. You can import them individually or in batches as well.  

The process of import is straightforward.  

  1. Open EdrawMax program.  
  1. Navigate to File> Import and choose the correct option.  
  1. Once the files are selected, you will see the drawing on the canvas and can start working without any problem. 

Export the files from EdrawMax to other formats 

The export option in EdrawMax has many dimensions because there are many formats for export. It includes graphics, PDF, Visio, and others. Let us see the export options of this Visio alternative.  

1. Go to File > Export & Send and choose the required option.  

2. Click the required format and choose the suitable parameters from the dialog box. You can select size, pages, and resolution etc. 

  1. Click the OK button and you are done with export.  

6. Final Verdict 

Many softwares are marketed as Visio alternatives. It has two aspects. We need Visio alternatives because Visio is very popular and has marked a high place in the market. Secondly, there is a need for bridging the limitations of Visio programs.  

EdrawMax has proved its strength with its wide range of features and the compatibility and integration it provides. It supports more than 280 types of diagrams with over 26,000 symbols and shapes along with 1500+ templates. This comprehensive portfolio is enough for impressing professionals and non-technical people. It is available as both desktop and downloadable software. It supports Windows, Linux, macOS and Web.  

Also, it is a good Visio alternative because it allows the import of Visio documents so that the records are not wasted. Also, if your team or other stakeholders need Visio files anyway, you can export your EdrawMax documents into Visio file format without any problem.  

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