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Join Date: Mar 2014
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MathCad - PTC Question

03/25/2016 10:05 AM

I have an old version MathCad (good, from early XP OS, yet occasionally maddeningly quirky, now that it is on WIN 8.1 OS), but have been "hearing" rumors about the company that bought MathCad - PTC, Inc.

With a little Googling I came up with a couple of disturbing links and wanted to get some feedback from CR4 on experiences with the new MathCad outfit before jumping into these seemingly troubled waters:

https://www.morningstar.com/news/pr-news-wire/PRNews_20160321DC51370/shareholder-class-action-filed-against-ptc-inc-ptc.html

http://www.amazon.com/PTC-Mathcad-v-14-0-Complete-Product/product-reviews/B000MV8U72

Are these guys as bad as they sound and, maybe, about to fold up and slither into the darkness? If so, any suggestions on alternatives to MathCad that may have come along?

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Guru

Join Date: Apr 2010
Posts: 5759
Good Answers: 577
#1

Re: MathCad - PTC Question

03/25/2016 11:51 AM

I guess it depends on what you want to use it for. I used Matlab when I was working, but it's not cost effective to buy a license for my personal use. I use Octave now, which looks a lot like Matlab, and runs ".m" files. It's not as slick as Matlab, but it's free.

I have an old copy of MathCad (4.0), that has limited capability but does have the Maple symbolic engine built in. (When I bought it, it was affordable.) One of the things I liked about MathCad was that you could cut and paste the equations and formulas into documents, a feature I used it for at the time.

It looks like from the Amazon reviews that you should definitely look into alternatives. Maybe try these:

http://alternativeto.net/software/mathcad/

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Participant

Join Date: Apr 2016
Posts: 1
#6
In reply to #1

Re: MathCad - PTC Question

04/01/2016 1:12 PM

New on Forum, Hello.

<One of the things I liked about MathCad was that you could cut and paste the equations and formulas into documents, a feature I used it for at the time.>

That brings back memories...

I remember buying and using my first version of MathCad, I think it was version 3. Very exciting to write the equations and then see them laid out text book style. I recall stripping some of the formatting characters from the .mcd file. The resulting equations in ASCII text with brackets in the correct place could then be pasted directly into Dbase, Turbo Pascal, Basic and C. That saved a lot of errors. Wouldn't like to try that now with the latest versions. Then came ROARK in MathCad, still using a slightly later version of that.

Have maintained my subscription, now with PTC costs £220/ year.

In January asked PTC to ship DVDs to UK. I like to have incorruptible copies. DHL sent me a £21 Bill for customs. So my subscription is suddenly nearly 10% higher

Never been charged this before. Anyone else experienced anything similar?

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Guru
Engineering Fields - Electrical Engineering - Been there, done that, still doing it. Engineering Fields - Control Engineering - New Member

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#2

Re: MathCad - PTC Question

03/25/2016 12:52 PM

I've switched to Mathematica home edition for my math crunching home amusements. The guys at Wolfram are more than eager to help the little guy with a question. Work owns a Mathematica site license so the few times I needed to bring files to/from home there was never a problem.

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Guru
Engineering Fields - Optical Engineering - Member Engineering Fields - Engineering Physics - Member Engineering Fields - Systems Engineering - Member

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#3

Re: MathCad - PTC Question

03/25/2016 3:36 PM

I still use Mathcad 2000 which I bought back when I was running Win 98. I've got the CD for Mcad 2000 plus the CD for the earlier version (MCAD 7, I think), so I had no problem moving it to newer machines running XP and now Win 7. (It works fine on Win 7.)

I looked into getting the newest version, concerned that Mcad 2000 won't run on my next machine which will probably have Win 10. But the newest version is exorbitantly expensive, so there's no way I'll buy it. I'm glad I was able to get Mcad when it was available for just a few hundred dollars.

A guy I worked with had Mcad 2001, but Mathsoft had made so many changes in going to Mcad 2001 that I refused to buy it. Many of the programs and the thousands of data files I had would not have been readable in Mcad 2001.

Maybe what you need is a linux machine configured to run the version of Mcad you have. If you can get that, it would likely be cheaper than a 'new' version of Mcad (assuming you can get it) and there would be no learning curve like you'd have with a different math program. (I'm considering a linux machine for my next pc instead of one running Win 10.)

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Guru

Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Surrey BC Canada
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#4

Re: MathCad - PTC Question

03/26/2016 12:01 AM

I still use Mathcad 8 Professional.

I am now running on Windows 7 64 bit.

It kept hanging and doing weird stuff until I put MFC42.dll in the route directory - works great now.

MFC42.dll must be version 4.21.0.73033 and reside in the install directory "Mathcad 8 Professional"

I tried the PTC mathcad - didn't like it.

I also use SimApp Workstation 2.6 - it helps flesh out the modelling.

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Active Contributor

Join Date: Mar 2012
Posts: 20
Good Answers: 4
#5

Re: MathCad - PTC Question

03/27/2016 10:49 PM

There is a free version available, named Mathcad Express.

(at http://www.ptc.com/engineering-math-software/mathcad/free-download)

It works! If you need to convert older version Mathcad files, you can get a temporary (free) license for Mathcad 15 to do the conversions.

It worked for me!

We always referred to Mathcad as "the program you love to hate."

Later,

Carl

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