# Release notes 0.20

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This page tracks new features as they are added to the development version of FreeCAD, which is currently 0.20. When the 0.20 feature freeze happens, delete these messages, and don't add more features to this page. FreeCAD 0.20 is expected to be released end of May 2022.
!!! All images on this page must use the _relnotes_0.20 suffix !!!

Are features missing? Mention them in the Release notes for v0.20 forum thread.

Older FreeCAD release notes can be found in Feature list.

## General

### Compilation

Since this release FreeCAD can only be compiled using Qt 5 and Python 3.

To compile FreeCAD under Windows, there are different Libpacks (prepackaged libraries) available:

• Libpack for Windows with Qt xx, OCC yy, and Python zz

Lowest supported Python version is 3.6.9 according to this FC forum thread.

Supported operating systems:

• Windows 7, 8 and 10
• Linux Ubuntu Bionic Beaver (18.04) and Focal Fossa (20.04)
• MacOS minimum version 10.12 Sierra

### Bug/Issue Tracker

Note: Only bug reports with a prior forum discussion will be considered. Reports without this will be closed.

## User interface

 The navigation cube was reworked to enable these new features: There are now edge faces to view the scene at angles of 45°. The new preferences option Rotate to nearest allows to view the scene at the nearest sensible state. When it is off, clicking to a cube face will end up always to the same position, no matter in what cube state you were when you clicked the face. See the animation at the left to understand what this means. Try the same click sequence as in the animation without the option Rotate to nearest to experience the difference. By clicking at the dot at the upper right of the cube you can quickly see the backview of the current scene. The size of the cube can be adjusted by the preferences option Cube size.
 Tooltips now display the command name in the title, making it easier for new users to look for help. At the end of the tooltip the "internal" command name is added in parentheses: (Std_WhatsThis). This is also the name of the page that documents the command in the Wiki. Forum discussion, Pull request #4978 .
 The new Std UserEditMode command allows the user to choose an edit mode that will be used when an object is double-clicked in the Tree view. Click the image on the left so see an animation of the selection. If a selected edit mode is not applicable, the object's default edit mode is used instead. Pull request #5110.
 The Tree view context menu has the new entry Add dependent objects to selection.Forum discussion, Pull request #4133. In the image the Hole001 object was selected and then its dependencies were added to the selection via the context menu.
 The new tool Section Cut allows to get non-hollow and also persistent cuts of parts and assemblies.Forum discussion, Pull request #4118.

## Core system and API

### Core

 When using Edit → Copy or Edit → Duplicate selection for an object with dependencies there is a new Use Original Selections button in the object selection dialog. Click this button to copy/duplicate only the objects you originally selected prior to opening the dialog, ignoring dependencies and ignoring any actions you might have taken while the dialog was open, such as checking or unchecking some of the checkboxes. The effect is the same as if you had unchecked all the checkboxes next to the objects you did not originally select and pressed OK. Note: special care should be taken when copying/duplicating TechDraw Pages. It is recommended to also copy/duplicate all of the children of the Page (Templates, Views, Dimensions, etc.). Otherwise changes to one of the Pages will also impact the other page, for example, deleting one of the Views in one Page also removes it from the other Page. Deleting one of the pages will also remove all the content from the other Page if copies of the content are not also made.
 A new type of add-on called a Preference Pack was added, allowing a subset of a user preferences (user.cfg) file to be saved, distributed, and easily applied by other users. Preference Packs can be use to distribute "Themes," for example, by allowing a developer to include both a Qt stylesheet for widgets as well as a set of other colors and styles for items in the user interface that cannot be set using a stylesheet (e.g. text colors in the Python editor or report view, etc.). Anything that can be configured via a user.cfg file can be set using a Preference Pack. Forum discussion
 The "Workbenches" preference panel was modified to support the ability to "autoload" workbenches on FreeCAD startup.

### API

#### New Python API

• Circle2dPy::getCircleCenter: Gets the circle center defined by three points. commit 3dc91fa2
• ComplexGeoDataPy::applyRotation: Applies an additional rotation to the placement. commit 32592de8
• ComplexGeoDataPy::applyTranslation: Applies an additional translation to the placement. commit 32592de8
• ComplexGeoDataPy::countSubElements: Returns the number of elements of a type. commit 32592de8
• ComplexGeoDataPy::getElementTypes: Returns a list of element types. commit 32592de8
• ComplexGeoDataPy::getFaces: Returns a tuple of points and triangles with a given accuracy. commit 32592de8
• ComplexGeoDataPy::getLines: Returns a tuple of points and lines with a given accuracy. commit 32592de8
• ComplexGeoDataPy::getLinesFromSubelement: Returns vertexes and lines from a sub-element. commit 32592de8
• ComplexGeoDataPy::getPoints: Returns a tuple of points and normals with a given accuracy. commit 32592de8
• ComplexGeoDataPy::transformGeometry: Applies a transformation to the underlying geometry. commit 32592de8
• DocumentPy::clearDocument: Clears the whole document. commit 526dc1a0
• DocumentPy::getFileName: For a regular document it returns its file name property. For a temporary document it returns its transient directory. commit 526dc1a0
• DocumentPy::getProgramVersion: Gets the program version that a project file was created with. commit 526dc1a0
• DocumentPy::isClosable: Checks if the document can be closed. commit 526dc1a0
• DocumentPy::isSaved: Checks if the document is saved. commit 526dc1a0
• DocumentPy::isTouched: Checks if any object is in touched state. commit 526dc1a0
• DocumentPy::mustExecute: Checks if any object must be recomputed. commit 526dc1a0
• DocumentPy::purgeTouched: Purges the touched state of all objects. commit 526dc1a0
• DocumentPy::setClosable: Sets a flag that allows or forbids to close a document. commit 526dc1a0
• HLRBRep_AlgoPy: To access Part's hidden line removal (HLR). commit 73a98671
• HLRBRep_PolyAlgoPy: To access Part's poly hidden line removal (HLR). commit ea85cf5e
• HLRToShapePy: To access Part's hidden line removal (HLR). commit 73a98671
• PolyHLRToShapePy: To access Part's poly hidden line removal (HLR). commit ea85cf5e
• PrecisionPy: To access the precision defined by the OpenCascade kernel. commit 20b86e55
• PropertyContainerPy::setDocumentationOfProperty: Sets the documentation string of a dynamic property of this class. commit 8cf3cf33
• PropertyContainerPy::setGroupOfProperty: Set the name of the group of a dynamic property. commit 8cf3cf33
• RotationPy::fromEuler: Sets the Euler angles of a rotation or gets the Euler angles in a given sequence for a rotation. commit 951a0be9
• RotationPy::toEulerAngles: Gets the Euler angles in a given sequence for this rotation.. commit c1454dfb
• UnitsApi::sToNumber: Converts a quantity or float to a string. commit befbd95d
• View3DInventorPy::getCornerCrossSize: Returns current corner axis cross size. commit 9d15df29
• View3DInventorPy::isCornerCrossVisible: Returns current corner axis cross visibility. commit 9d15df29
• View3DInventorPy::projectPointToLine: Projects the given 2d point to a line. commit b6527a70
• View3DInventorPy::setCornerCrossSize: Defines corner axis cross size. commit 9d15df29
• View3DInventorPy::setCornerCrossVisible: Defines corner axis cross visibility. commit 9d15df29

#### Changed API

• MeshObject::trim(base, normal) was changed to MeshPy::trimByPlane(base, normal): Trims the mesh with a given plane. commit 837de28e

 The Addon Manager was modified to support the distribution of Preference Packs, and to display information found in an addon's metadata. The Addon Manager also includes improved support for Addons whose source code is located at several different git hosting locations. Networking support was improved to provide more robust handling of SSL connections and support for proxies requiring authentication. Support was added for automatically adding macro buttons to the toolbar after installing, for disabling Addons without removing them, and for switching which git branch of an Addon is checked out. Finally, the user interface was modified to improve searching and display of different list filters.

## Arch Workbench

 SketchArch workbench With the Attach Feature it is now possible to place Windows and Equipment parametrically and intuitively in relation to Walls. To use this feature the experimental external SketchArch Workbench must be installed. Add-on and ReadMe on Github (Not yet available in the Add-on Manager).
 New properties in the Arch Structure objects BasePerpendicularToTool: it copies the Base (extrusion profile) at the beginning of the Tool (extrusion path) and places it perpendicular to the first edge of the tool. It is the same as attaching the Base with MapMode=NormalToEdge, but its automatic and allows to reuse the same Base object for multiple Structures. When BasePerpendicularToTool = True, more properties control the placement of the Base relative to the Tool axis. They are shown in the attached image. ToolOffsetFirst and ToolOffsetLast: extend/trim the Structure at the start and end respectively (the real length of the Structure is available in the ComputedLength readonly property) BaseRotation: rotate the Base (the rotation is around the Base's "(0,0)" point which is the center for Arch Profiles, the origin for Sketches and usually the first point for Draft Wires) BaseOffsetX and BaseOffsetY: move the Base (extrusion profile) BaseMirror: mirror the Base (extrusion profile) A new command Create multiple Arch Structure was also added. It uses the first selected object as a Base, and creates Arch Structures objects for every Edge of the other selected objects. Then, the properties of individual Structure objects can be adjusted in the Property editor. This command was added for workflow with a master Sketch (there is risk of topological naming problem unless you create non-parametric copy of the master Sketch or use Realthunder's version)

## Draft Workbench

• A Global checkbox was added to the task panel of many drafting commands. Checking it allows input of coordinates in the global coordinate system even if the working plane is not aligned with the global XY plane.
• The Draft Hatch command was introduced. It creates hatches on the faces of a selected object using patterns from AutoCAD PAT files.
• Work on the Draft SetStyle command, still in progress in FreeCAD version 0.19, was completed.
• A double-click edit option was added for Draft Texts. It opens the same edit task panel used when creating a text.
• For Draft Dimensions the arch ViewUnit Override for imperial architectural dimensions was introduced.
• Draft Shape2DView objects now have an DataAuto Update property. Setting it to false can be useful if there are many Draft Shape2DViews in a document or if they are complex.

## FEM Workbench

 The new Z88 settings and their default values The Z88 solver is now fully usable. You can now specify the solver method and change the memory settings. The new default values allow you to perform also complex simulations directly. Result of a linear buckling analysis.Click on the image to see the animation. It is now possible to perform buckling analyses using the Calculix solver. Pull request #4379 Effect of Mesh Size From Curvature; left: set to 12, right: deactivated There is a new property for the Gmsh mesher. The number of mesh elements per ${\displaystyle 2\pi }$ times the radius of the curvature can be specified. The default is 12 and to get a finer mesh at small corners or holes, this value can be increased for better results. This feature requires Gmsh 4.8 or newer. Effect of the rcombination algorithm; left: using Simple, right: using Simple full-quad FreeCAD allows now to select an algorithm as well as 3D mesh recombination for the Gmsh mesher. For more details about the mesh element recombination see FEM MeshGmshFromShape.

## Mesh

### Improved support for NASTRAN GRID elements

The Mesh import tool now supports the high-precision "GRID*" element. The standard-precision "GRID" element was also improved, now supporting both space-delimited numeric input as well as fixed-field-width input, per the NASTRAN95 format documentation.

### Further Mesh improvements

Fixed false negatives during self-intersection tests when facets are coplanar: Pull request #5002.

Interoperability with OpenSCAD has been improved, adding support for several operations missing from earlier versions (linear extrude with rotations, rotational extrusions). Several operations are modified to provide improved FreeCAD object equivalents, particularly for twisted extrusions. Surface generation from discrete data was modified to give more OpenSCAD-like results, rather than splined surfaces.

New options were added to support running either FreeCAD, OpenSCAD, or both, in sandboxed environments such as AppImages and Snap packages: data can now be transferred to and from OpenSCAD via the standard temporary directory mechanism, via a user-specified temp directory that both executables have access to, or new to OpenSCAD 2021.1, via a "stdout pipe" mechanism, bypassing temporary files entirely.

Load    - load a scad file
Save    - save a scad file
Clear   - Clear text input


There is also a text box for feedback of OpenSCAD errors.

## Part Workbench

 Tapered extrusion of a sketch with an inner structure. A tapered extrusion of inner structures now creates usable results. Previously, inner structures were extruded as if they were stand-alone and not part of a structure.

## PartDesign Workbench

 Padding along an edge from the model.Click on the image to see the animation. There is a new option to pad along the direction of an edge in the 3D model. When Distance and Angle is specified in the Chamfer tool and faces are selected, the distance will be applied along the selected faces. Likewise if two distances are specified then Size 1 will be applied along the selected face. This behaviour can be swapped to the other face using the flip direction button. Forum discussion, Pull request #5039 A loft with multiple sections, the final one is a vertex. It is now possible to create an Additive or Subtractive Loft, or an Additive or Subtractive Pipe towards, or from, a Vertex of either a sketch or a body. This allows to create pyramids for example.Note: Vertices in sketches are created as construction geometry. To use them as endpoints of lofts, you must first change them to normal geometry. Pull request #5170 (for lofts), Pull request #5193 (for pipes) A tapered pocket within a non-tapered pad. The dialog for Pad and Pocket offers to set a taper angle for the extrusion. Pocketing along different directions.Click on the image to see the animation. It is now possible to specify the direction for the pocket extrusion. The dialog to edit Cylinders (additive and subtractive) now allows to specify an angle relative to the normal of the chosen attachment plane. This way one can create skew cylinders. Pull request #4708 The Helix feature has the new mode Height-Turns-Growth to create flat spirals. A single Pad and a single Revolution with nested profiles. The base block is only there to ensure that the part is a single solid. All PartDesign features that can extrude sketches can now handle sketches with nested profiles that form islands. For example it is possible to revolve a sketch consisting of 3 nested circles with the same center point.Note: Extruding nested profiles only works if the result is still a single body. Effect of the new option Length along sketch normal.Click on the image to see the animation. There is a new option to pad a certain length along the direction. The length is either measured along the sketch normal or along the custom direction. The Hole feature can now model true threads.

## Plot module

• FreeCAD now provides the Plot module by default, so any other module/workbench may create plots without requiring external tools Pull request #4971.

## Sketcher Workbench

 New Split function to split existing lines or arcs. New Rounded rectangle tool to create rectangles with rounded corners. New Centered rectangle tool to define rectangles via a center point. New Radiam function to automatically assign weight on B-spline pole, diameter on complete circle, or radius on arc. Support multi-selection as diameter/radius tools. New Remove Axes Alignment constraint tool to remove axes alignment while trying to preserve the constraint relationship of the selection. Slots can be constrained horizontally or vertically either by snapping it manually with the Ctrl key, or by using the Auto constraints option of Sketcher. New Insert Knot tool to insert a knot in an existing B-spline.

### Further Sketcher improvements

 The workbench now has Preferences. They are used by the Spreadsheet Import and Spreadsheet Export commands.
• It is now possible to select in the row/column context-menu at what positions new rows/columns will be inserted. Pull request #4704.

• Import XLSX (used by Std Import): Added support for floor and ceil functions. Pull request #5015.
• Cell binding: instruct a set of cells to display the contents of another set of cells. Part of Pull request #2862.
• Improved navigation using the Tab and Enter keys.
• Improved interface for cutting and pasting blocks of cells.

## TechDraw Workbench

 More than 30 new tools, so-called Extensions, are now available. They offer new cosmetic features to enhance drawings.

### Further TechDraw improvements

• It is now possible to Share and Move Views between pages.
• When there are several Pages and a View, ProjectionGroup etc. is added, there is now a dialog to ask to what page the view should be added. Pull request #5309.
• A new format specifier %w was added to print the given number of digits after dot and remove any trailing zeros. Pull request #5401.
• The new %w format specifier is now the default. And the format specifier preference was moved from the Advanced tab to the Dimension tab. Pull request #6504.
• Flipped diagonal hatch was added for the Geometric Hatch tool. Pull request #6429.
• There is a new option to show a grid in a page. Several related preferences have been introduced. Pull request #6465.
• The unit display in dimensions was fixed according to standards. The degree symbol is always present for the dimension value and tolerances, other units only appear if ShowUnits is set. The unit appears immediately after the dimension value unless there is a tolerance, then it appears after the tolerance. Pull request #6581

## Web

Qt WebEngine is now considered the default option instead of Qt WebKit.

## External workbenches

Note: these are the new workbenches created in this development cycle, or older workbenches that received updates. See external workbenches for more workbenches that can be installed, and which cover a wide variety of topics. If you want to see your workbench added, join the forum and present your code.

### FCGear

The FCGear Workbench received a couple of improvements

• For involute gears, the outside (aka tip) and root diameter are exposed as properties (details)
• Gear objects are now attachable (details)
• Gear objects can now be used as additive features in PartDesign Bodies (details)
• The creation of gear objects now appears in the undo stack (details)

### Plot

• The Plot module has been stripped from the workbench since it is now provided by FreeCAD.

### Ship

The Ship Workbench is back to life!