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SketchUp is a 3D modeling program developed by @Last Software from 2000 to 2006, and by Google from 2006 to the present.

  • Google Sketchup is a free version of the program with some restricted features
  • Google Sketchup Pro is the unrestricted pay version. It has a free trial of 8 hours of use offered in 2008 for SketchUp Pro 6.

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Please Note: In the past, Google SketchUp has been a free download of the Pro version, which, if you did not buy a Pro licence would become a slightly throttled back version which you could keep and use free. However, now SketchUp is owned by Trimble, with the 2016 version this is no longer the case. Unless you buy the Pro licence, version 2016 stops working at the end of the trial period (30 days).

I suggest that we (FG Scenery modellers) keep using the 2015 version. Many of us can't or don't want to pay for the Pro software licence and if anyone who uses the 2016 version wants others to look at their files ( if/when they need assistance) the files can't be opened.

Unless the Trimble SketchUp policy changes to allow the non-Pro version to continue after the trial period, I suggest FG SketchUp users stay with the 2015 version. That will enable others to open your files.

Quote from Trimble T&C 2016: "2.6.2 SketchUp Pro If you choose to download SketchUp Pro for a Trial Period, SketchUp Pro may be made available to you without charge for the Trial Period for your evaluation purposes of its functionality. The time remaining during the trial will be displayed within the Software. Upon the expiration of the Trial Period, the Software will automatically cease to operate."

2016/2015 SketchUp Workaround (VicMar): To revert an existing .Skp file to 2015 from 2016: Open in 2016, select and copy all, open 2015 and paste, then save. Other SketchUp 2015 users will then be able to open this file.