LDCad - Updating your Library

How can you update you LDCad Library? These steps work for me (I have a windows based version of LDCad). Important note: the library is divided in two parts: official (quality checked) parts and unofficial (not yet checked) parts. If you want to update your library, then I recommend to update both!

Part 1 - Find the location where your LDCad Library is stored on your hard drive
Step 1.
In your LDCad-menu you click on "Prefs" and in the pop-up you click on "LDraw".
Step 2.
A new pop-up window opens called "LDraw". Click on the top option "Search (library) paths..".
Step 3.
In the lower part of the pop-up window (called "LDraw search paths") you can see a subsection called "Search order". There you can see which type of library you have installed. Note: The "Official" library should always be there!!!

Select a type name by clicking on it: "Official" or "Unofficial".
Step 4.
In the top section of the pop-up window (called "Current item properties"), the location of your library files will become visible.

You can even click on "Browse folder" to go to the folder or "Browse archive" to open the zip-file (if you are using a zip-file)!

Now that you know where you library files are stored, you also have to know where you can download an update for your library!

Part 2: Download the latest version of the parts library

The latest version of the library-files can be found on LDraw.org. Here are the direct links for downloading the libraries. If they don’t work (anymore), then go to the main page of LDraw.org:



As you can see, the download is in a zip-format. It is up to you how you connect the library to LDCad. It can either be in a zip-file or unpacked. That's up to you.


I store the latest parts in a separate folder called "latest parts". I have two subfolders in it:

  • compressed (that's where I store the latest downloaded zip-files)
  • uncompressed - with two subfolders "official" and "unofficial"


I always unpack the zip-files in the uncompressed-subfolders. Note: before unpacking, always delete all content of the subfolders!

Part 3: Changing the library location and/or type

Now that you have downloaded the latest parts, you have to make sure that LDCad uses them. You can either:

  • Copy them to the folder where they are stored now (as found in part 1). If you do that, make sure you delete the old files in the folder first!
  • Or setup LDCad so that it uses the new folder where you have just downloaded the new parts.


I assume you still have the popup "LDraw search paths" opened (if not, follow the steps in part 1 on this page). If you want to change a library-path or switch between an uncompressed or compressed (zip-file) library, follow these steps:

Step 1.

In the "Search order" section: Click on the type of library you want to change. Once selected the row will become blue and in the topsection ("Current item properties") the location of your current library will become visible.


To change the library location to a:

  • Zip-file - click on the button "Browse archive"
  • Unpacked library - click on the button "Browse folder"

Step 2.

Let us pretend I want to change the library to an uncompressed (unzipped) one. After clicking on the "Browse folder" button, I go to the location where my unzipped library is stored.


There should be three subfolder in it: "models",  "p" and "parts". Click on the button "Select folder" to change the library location.

Step 3.

You go back to the "LDraw search path" pop-up. In the top section ("Current item properties") the location of your library should be changed to the one you have just selected.


Press on the "Accept" button below to implement and complete the changes. Next time you start up LDCad, the program will use the new library location (so close and open the program again to force the change).

Part 4: Adding the unofficial parts to the library

It is possible that you don't have the unofficial parts library installed yet. In the "LDraw search parts" pop-up (see part 1) the unofficial library is not present in the "Search order" section.


How do you add the unofficial library?

Step 1.

Let us assume you already have the official library selected. Click on the "new" button on the right.

Step 2.

A new row will be added, but it will be a copy of the selected "official" library. Select this new row.

Step 3.

In the top section ("Current item properties") the properties of the new added row can be altered. First: change the library type to "Unoffical" and empty the shadow box by clicking on the "None" button next to it.

Step 4.

Change the library location to the unofficial one (zipped or unzipped) with the steps in part 3 on this page.


Click on the "Accept" button when done. Close and restart LDCad to implement the changes.

Step 5.

When restarting LDCad, the part window will most like show the message "Updating content. Please wait." That means the new library location is being loaded!


If everything went according to plan, you can now find extra parts in your part library with the comment "unOff" under them. These are all parts from the unofficial library.


You are done!

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