What Is MS Visio?

Microsoft Visio is a digital diagramming tool in the Microsoft Office family. Visio allows users to create a range of diagrams and charts such as flow charts, database diagrams and mind maps. As of Visio 2016, users can create site and floor plans as well. The application features vector-based graphics that allow diagrams to be resized and manipulated easily without loss of clarity. Visio is primarily targeted at professional users.

Visio 2016 is available in two editions: Standard and Professional. The latter offers three additional diagram types, intelligent validation rules and the ability to breakdown diagrams into sub-processes. Visio 2016 Professional also allows multiple Office 365 subscribers to work on the same document simultaneously.

Shapeware Corporation released the first version of Visio in 1992. The company was acquired by Microsoft in 2000, and Visio was rebranded as a Microsoft Office product. Despite this rebranding, Visio has never been included in any of the office suites as of December 2015.

Visio primarily uses several proprietary file formats including .vsdx and .vsdm. Prior to Vision 2013, the primary formats were .vsd and .vdx, the latter of which has been discontinued in favor of .vsdx. The application also has several other native formats for stencil and templates.