Free Visio Alternative

Free Visio Alternative

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Our free Visio alternatives lineup is packed with some juicy options that allow you to create professional diagrams. And as the title suggests, all of the following options can be availed of without you even having to spend a single penny. With the help of these delights, you’ll be able to breathe life into all your flowchart ideas that you’ve roughly drawn across the blackboard or whiteboard at office. You can even create colorful charts and floor plans as well as simple diagrams that may offer a better insight on a complex concept.

1 – Draw.io:

Draw

This user-friendly online diagramming application boasts of incorporating a plethora of visual configurations and web application attributes that include various types of icons, export options to GIF, XML, PDF, PNG, JPG and SVG, embedded widget sharing and real-time collaboration. Also known as Diagramly, the program in question is also noted to be Google Drive enabled and has been translated into 16 language support.

With this one in your sights, you’ll be able to draw flowcharts, wire frames and mockups, ERD, business process models, electronic circuits, UML, network diagrams and organizational charts. It further comes complete with an intuitive drag and drop interface as well as image search and add functionality.

2 – Dia:

Dia

The open source program which was originally developed by Alexander Larsson lets you seamlessly draw structured diagrams via your Windows, Mac OS X, Unix and GNU/Linux PC. Dia forays onto the scene bearing special sheets and objects which come in handy for drafting UML diagrams, flowcharts, network diagrams, entity relationship diagrams and more.

What’s more, you can also add more shapes, stencils and symbols like central data processing, automata, chemistry lab, CMOS, EPC, electronic, living systems theory, racks, scene-graph, gradient, digital, circuit 2 and value stream mapping to your Dia toolbox. This particular entrant in our programs like Visio roster even has the ability to export diagrams to different formats such as SVG, WMF, EPS, XFIG and PNG.

3 – Lucidchart:

Lucidchart

This free drawing program jumps out with the tagline, ‘anyone can diagram.’ The user-friendly web-based application features cloud diagramming complete with attributes such as drag and drop simplicity, real-time collaboration and an extensive shape library.

Besides the Lucidchart free version which proffers 25MB storage, 60 objects/document and web support, you can also create Basic, Pro and Team accounts which start at $3.33 per month. Through the paid editions, you’ll be able to enjoy enhanced collaboration, advanced sharing, configurable security controls and email support.

4 – SmartDraw:

SmartDraw

Want a one stop shop for creating organization charts, professional diagrams, project charts, floor plans, flowcharts and mind maps? Well, this inclusion in our apps similar to Visio array is fashioned for the Windows PC and comes filled to the brim with interesting features and tools.

With SmartDraw accommodated in your computer, you’ll be able to take complete advantage of 20,000 integrated symbols, 1,900 pre-installed templates, automatic decision trees and swimlanes, Google Map integration, built in photo capability and one-click Office integration. It also plays well with Project, Google Docs and WordPerfect, as per the developer.

5 – Creately:

Creately

Here’s another web-based application that helps you share your ideas and thoughts with others through easy-to-read charts. Creately lets you create wireframes, flow charts, UML and mind maps without facing too many hassles. And since the program is of the online sort, you and your team mates can collaborate on the same project.

Whether you’re a developer, designer or business analyst, you’ll find all the tools you require right here. You can further avail of Personal and Team versions that are priced at $5 and $25 per month, respectively.

6 – yED:

yED

This contender in our programs like Visio roundup is looked upon as a desktop application that provides ready-to-use diagram elements. This includes UML elements, shape nodes, edge types, group nodes, swim-lanes, entity relationship symbols, BPMN symbols, table nodes, flowchart symbols and computer network symbols. Sporting an intuitive user interface, the software also employs powerful mathematical layout algorithms that automatically assemble different diagram elements and even aid you while you’re manually laying out data bits.

What’s more, you can import from formats that read as GEDCOM, GraphML, GML, Excel XLS spreadsheets and arbitrary XML. And once you’ve finished creating your masterpiece, you can save it to GraphML and even export it to the web or send it for printing. The program further runs on Windows, Mac OS X, Unix and Linux.

7 – LibreOffice Draw:

LibreOffice Draw

The Draw section roped in here is bundled along with other packs like Calc, Impress, Math, Base and Writer, all of which are part of the LibreOffice suite. Besides allowing you to sketch out just about anything your imagination can conjure up, it also provides ready-made diagrams and graphics for creating masterpieces that range from general posters to technical drawings.

Through this program, you can even produce organization charts, network diagrams and flow charts without breaking a sweat. What’s more, the brains behind this endeavor has thrown a ‘styles and formatting’ box into the amalgamation as well. And finally, you can save your creations in OpenDocument format and import items in formats like GIF, PNG, WMF, BMP, JPEG and TIFF.

Conclusion:

Want to virtually sketch out shapes and stencils that will help drive home your precious points and ideas? Need to map out a complex scientific or mathematical network via your PC? Well, all of the aforesaid options in our free Visio alternatives list provide you with all the necessary tools to accomplish all this and then some. If you thought that the Microsoft diagramming software was the only reliable source out there, then we suggest you give each one of these gems a try. They even come minus a price tag so go ahead and indulge. Don’t forget to leave your comments in the space just below.

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4 COMMENTS

  1. I have been evaluating low-cost visio alternatives for years. My current favorite is Lucidchart.com (#3 above). What they don’t mention in this article is that Lucidchart is the only web-based alternative that offers full compatibility (import & export) with multiple Visio files. Additionally, I can import all my old visio stencils into Lucidchart.

    Thanks for the info! Happy diagramming.

  2. Also a big fan of Lucidchart. I’ve tried almost all the ones on this list and Lucidchart is head and shoulders above the rest.

  3. As a software engineer I have tried many Visio alternative. If you’re looking for a web based one then Creately is the best choice. LucidChart is hard to figure out/draw while draw.io offer some basic functionality. Personally I think SmartDraw is the easiest to use, but its very costly compared to other versions, which is the reason most people look for Visio alternative anyway. For best value for money I’d say Creately leads the way.

  4. My favourite isn’t even listed, Gliffy. Gliffy has been around a lot longer then all the other listed online solutions. Wherever you look for articles like these, you see the same marketing-style comments for certain products, you never see that for Gliffy…

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