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New features in DeskProto Version 6.0

New options that have been added in DeskProto V 6.0

(released in 2011 - now obsolete)

(December, 2011) The new DeskProto Version 6.0, released in December 2011, contains a number of exciting new features. You can find them listed below.

Starting with V6, DeskProto is available in three Editions:
DeskProto Entry Edition (replaces the Lite version)
DeskProto Expert Edition (replaces the 'in-between' Version 4.2)
DeskProto Multi-Axis Edition (replaces the Full version)
The differences are presented in the Edition comparison table.

All these editions share the same Setup (so only one download is available): the Unlocking code that you receive after purchasing decides which edition will be started. The dongle (hardware security key) that was present will no longer be used, which will save shipment cost.

Screenshot a a wizard page
The new Basic 3D wizard. Seven pages, see the icons:
1. Which wizard / 2. What to machine / 3. Material and supports / 4. Roughing (optional) / 5. Finishing / 6. Contouring (optional) / 7. Send to machine.

Completely new features:

  • Completely new wizards: including more options, nevertheless easier to use - see the picture above.
    These wizards will automatically generate operations for Roughing and for a smoothing Contour.
    Also wizards for 2D milling and for Bitmap-to-Relief conversion are present.
  • Five axis machining: DeskProto now supports five-axis indexed machining, so for machines with CNC controlled A and B rotation axes. This makes models possible that could not have been made on a three axis machine, see for instance the Austin Healy project.
  • Multithreaded toolpath calculations: on multi-core PCs so far DeskProto could use only one core. Resulting in the CPU Usage not rising above 25% on a quad-core machine, which is annoying for long calculations. Now each operation will be assigned a core, which is much faster.
  • Ramping now is possible, for the first movement of each operation. Ramping means that the cutter enters the material along a sloping line instead of by making a vertical drilling movement.
  • The new Welcome screen offers a clear overview of all available options.

Five-axis machining a car model
Five-Axis machining A five-axis machine can position the block of material in any orientation by rotating the fourth and the fifth axis. So all sides can be put on top (one by one), in order to machine the model from that side. This allows quite complex models, that could not be done on a three axis machine. Even 'undercuts' are possible, like the pedal area in this car model.

Improvements in the user-interface and internal improvements:

  • DeskProto now can be started without administrator rights. The previous version could not, which was a problem for many schools and large companies.
  • DeskProto now runs OK in the Aero interface: translucency, 'glowing' buttons, flip 3D, etc.
  • Faster loading of large (complex) DPJ files.
  • The OpenGL Graphics in DeskProto V6 have been completely redone:
    - Graphics hardware acceleration: the power of the processor on the graphics card is now exploited when changing the viewpoint.
    - For large bitmap files now a simplified version is used to draw on the screen, which makes drawing much quicker (for calculating toolpaths the original data are used).
    - Removing hidden lines now is done by the graphics card: gives much better results.
    - New Preferences for the graphics: Use AntiAliasing and Optimize simulation rendering.

Progress bar showing two simultaneous calculations
Multi-threaded calculations Currently any new PC has a 'multi-core' processor: emulating multiple processors in order to do multiple jobs simultaneously. For an application this only works if it can distribute it's calculations over these various cores, in several 'threads'. DeskProto V6 supports this multi-threading, making complex calculations go much faster.

Other new features and improvements:

  • Also for a Freeform segment the Border options are available.
  • Importing a DXF file with 3D polylines in a 2D Operation (resulting in a 3D toolpath).
  • The Load Geometry dialog can also open 2D and Bitmap files (will automatically add such operation).
  • Option Help >> Create problem report bundles all files needed to mail a project.
  • Mouse zooming more intuitive: the effect on the zoom is made relative to the current zoom factor.
  • Extra option for Skip Ambient: 'Only skip hor. and vert. movements'.
  • Extra postprocessor option "Leading zeros", for machines that need line numbers with a fixed length.
  • The Support blocks have been redone: various models, custom support blocks can be added.
  • New optimization for waterline toolpaths (less positioning within one layer), will save much time for very complicated geometries.
  • Edit Freeform segment shows the points on the segments contour line when editing this line.
  • In 2D operations the 2D data also can be mirrored.

Screenshot of the Trial Screen
One build for all editions When starting DeskProto V6 in Trial mode it will allow you to select any of the three editions, for evaluation. When the trial period has expired it will no longer be possible to save NC files. After purchasing a license you will receive a registration code, to be entered in the Register dialog. This code will determine which Edition will be present when starting DeskProto afterwards.


DeskProto V 6.0 is a major update, meaning that for users of previous DeskProto versions this will be a paid update. Update prices can be found at the Price info page.

Any client who has bought his/her license after May 1st, 2011 will receive an update to Version 6 free of charge. The update is in fact an unlocking code: users of DeskProto Full will no longer need their old dongle. The unlocking codes will be emailed in December 2011: directly from us or via the reseller.
Please install the V6 trial version and use the 30 trial days: when your free updates comes in you can use it to remove the 30 days trial limitation. If you have not yet received it in January 2012 then please email us.


DeskProto V 6.0 runs OK using Windows XP (Service Pack 3 or newer needs to be installed),
Windows Vista, Windows 7, or newer. Both the 32 bits and the 64 bits versions are supported:
on a 64 bits Windows the Setup will automatically install a 64 bits build of DeskProto (all editions).
So Windows 2000 is no longer supported for DeskProto V 6, sorry about that.
Win95, Win98 or WinNT already had been dropped for DeskProto V 5.