A free-to-use desktop product in the Cadcorp SIS product suite. It can be used to read many data formats – GIS, CAD, web, and database - directly, and without translation.

What can I do with Map Express?

Map Express offers the following geoprocessing functionality:

  • spatial querying
  • attribute querying
  • tabular visualisation
  • statistical analysis
  • advanced thematic mapping
  • 3D visualisation
  • map publishing in Adobe Portable Document Format (PDF)
  • map printing

Map Express can be deployed as a completely stand-alone desktop GIS. It can also be used to provide data to – and consume data from – other products in the Cadcorp SIS product family.

Because Map Express is built from the same core source code as all other Cadcorp SIS products, and adopts the same look-and-feel, it offers an excellent introduction to working with the software and its concepts. 

Video tutorials

Music: Unity, Kevin McLeod - incompetech.com, Perspectives, Kevin McLeod - incompetech.com

Operating Systems Supported

The following operating systems are supported by Map Express;

  • Microsoft Windows Vista
  • Microsoft Windows 7
  • Microsoft Windows 8
  • Microsoft Windows 10

Map Express does not run on Windows XP

Using Map Express and Office 2010

Cadcorp recommends that users have the same version (32-bit or 64-bit) of Microsoft Office 2010 and Map Express installed. For users on 64-bit machines that are running Microsoft Office 2010 32-bit, Map Express 32-bit should be installed.  

Users of Microsoft Office 2013 and above can run mixed versions of Office and Map Express.

Quickstart Instructions

1. Download a sample data set to be used to demonstrate the capabilities of Map Express by selecting from the list below.  Note that the data files are large, and may take some minutes to download to your PC.

Sample data set File size (MB)
Exeter, UK 824
Sydney, Australia 400

(Note the sample data for Exeter, UK, is provided under the OS Open Data agreement and contains Ordnance Survey data ©Crown Copyright and database rights 2018

2. When you have successfully downloaded a zip file, unzip it. This will create a Cadcorp SIS project file, with the file extension .swd

3. Now download the version of Map Express software appropriate to your PC's operating system: 32-bit or 64-bit (see below), and save it to your PC. By clicking on this exe file you will start an installation wizard. Simply follow the instructions to install Map Express on your PC.

4. Launch the Map Express software. (Click on the Map Express icon, or press the Windows key, and type 'Map Express').

5. Load the sample data into Map Express by dragging and dropping the Cadcorp SIS project file (.swd) into the Map Window.  Alternatively use ‘File – Open’.

Revealing item properties in Map Express6. The panel on the left will show the project, and you can open this to explore the available layers. Greyed icons indicate that a map layer is available but switched off. You can switch map layers off and on by clicking on the icon.  Italic text signifies that the layer is out of scale range until you zoom in or out further.

7. Experiment with zooming and panning.  Navigation works just like many common web mapping sites.  The mouse wheel zooms in and out, and pushing the wheel down (middle mouse button) lets you pan the map.  If you are on a laptop, traditional tools are available on the ribbon.  If you have a touchscreen, pinch/zoom and pan are already active. You will notice that as you zoom, different scales of mapping are automatically revealed.

8. Clicking on items will select them if selection has been enabled for those features. Looking on the ‘Item Properties’ control will show more information about the item and any hyperlinks that are available.

Viewing available themes in Map Express

9. Many overlays have multiple themes to show different types of analysis.  Open the theme drop-down to see what has been made available.

10. To understand the rich functionality that is available, go to the on-line help by clicking on the blue question mark icon ‘?’ in the upper right of the Main Window, or press F1 at any time.


Map Express 32-bit software

Register to download your own copy of Map Express (300 MB)


Map Express 64-bit software

Register to download your own copy of Map Express (385 MB)