CDS News - Cambridge ConQuest System   [updated 07 Dec 2015]

ConQuest is the primary program for searching and retrieving information from the Cambridge Structural Database (CSD). ConQuest provides a full range of text/numeric database search options, in addition to more complex search functionality.

ConQuest 1.18 is now available

See details below:

Item added 07/12/15

There have been recent problems with coordinate export files

See recent Cambridge Database and CrystalWorks News Items for details.

Item added 25/11/15

The ConQuest 1.18 is now available

Item added 20/12/14

The ConQuest 1.17 is now available

Item added 31/01/14

The ConQuest 1.16 Release Notes list the following enhancement

ConQuest searches can be restricted to noncentrosymmetric or centrosymmetric space groups.

The former can be useful in the rare and explicable cases where the presence of an inversion centre modifies the conformational distribution of a molecule in a crystal structure. (

Item added 28/03/13

CDS modifications to ConQuest literature linking added

Local modifications allowing literature links have been implemented for the new release (see Item added 22/08/11). But please note that the "LitRef" link has been removed from the CDS homepage. Access to any selected ConQuest entries is still possible using CystalWorks, however.

Item added 27/03/13

ConQuest is now available with the latest Cambridge Release

ConQuest 1.15 has been made available with the new Cambridge Release (v5.34).

Item added 22/08/11

Following the August Cambridge update we were made aware that the "IUCr" and CrosssRef" buttons had reappeared in the Author/Journal display page. These buttons did not function correctly and have been removed. The "LitLink" button remains and can be used to access the electronic literature for the selected structure entry. For background details see the Items added 04/01/07 & 14/12/05.

Please note that users of the CrystalWorks web browser interface can also access their selected (LitRef) entries via a button on the Top Level Display Menu.

Item added 21/01/11

ConQuest is now available with the latest Cambridge Release

ConQuest 1.13 has been made available with the new Cambridge Release (v5.32).

There have been a number of modifications. The following has been taken from material in the latest Cambridge Release Notes:

SMILES String export: Individual or hitlists of structures can now be exported in SMILES format. The SMILES string and the REFCODE are both exported for each entry.

Fuller details of new features of all CSD components are available. Click on the "Links..." menu bar at the head of this Newsfile for fuller information.

Item added 17/03/10

Fuller details of ConQuest are now available

The following has been extacted from material in the latest Cambridge Release Notes relating to ConQuest 1.12.

It is now possible to restrict searches to the best representative of a structure

The CSD can contain multiple determinations of the same crystal structure, reporting improved structural models, or new experiments performed at different temperatures, pressures, or using different radiations. These multiple inclusions could introduce bias in statistical surveys.

Searches can now be restricted to just the best representative of each unique polymorph, thus eliminating hits from duplicate crystal structures. Four best representative subsets are available based on R-factor, the presence of hydrogens, room temperature and lowest temperature determinations.

For further details see:

Searching the Cambridge Structural Database for the 'Best' Representative of Each Unique Polymorph. J. van de Streek, Acta Cryst., B62, 567-579, 2006

Item added 25/11/09

ConQuest 1.12 was included with the latest Cambridge Major Release.

Item added 12/12/08

ConQuest 1.11 was included with the latest Cambridge Major Release and has a number of new features.

There is a new "All Text" tabbed view in the "View Results" window where all textual information for the entry can be viewed. As well as information that is available for all entries such as publication details, chemical formula, unit cell details, supplementary information such as melting points, crystal habit, crystallisation solvent are also provided where available.

For details of other enhancements follow the link to the "Cambridge Release Notes" given above.

Item added 04/01/07

The "IUCr" and "CrossRef" buttons have now been removed from Author/Journal display option (see Item added 12/12/06).

Item added 12/12/06

The LitLink button now works for Author/Journal view option for display Search Results for the new ConQuest release. See the Item added 14/12/05 for details on how we have implemented use of LitLink for ConQuest on the CDS server.

With ConQuest 1.9 you may also see buttons labelled "IUCr" and "CrossRef" for electronic journal linking. The IUCr button is equivalent to the "LitLink" button for our implementation. If you click the "CrossRef" button you fire up a web browser window. This will hang for a period and then give you a "Network Timeout" message. Please avoid using this option.

We are currently in contact with Cambridge and hope to come up with a means of removing the "CrossRef" and possible "IUCr" buttons for our implementation.

Item added 08/12/06

ConQuest 1.9 was included with the latest Cambridge Major Release and has a number of new features. For full details of changed from version 1.8 follow the link to the CSD "Release Notes" given above.

We have added better links to the Cambridge User Guide & Tutorial material (including that for ConQuest). These are now available under the heading "Training Material" in the top pulldown menu on the CDS webpages

Item added 14/12/05

We remind CDS users that LitLink (direct linking to the primary electronic jounals) is available for the networked version of ConQuest provided by the Service. You need a web browser on your local workstation to use this facility. There is a "LitLink" button available in the Author/Journal results window. When you click this button you will be presented with details on how to access the related LitLink information.

Features include:

* Retention of previously selected entries
* Option to display structures using Jmol

Reasonably good connectivity is required to access the networked version of ConQuest. This is fine from most university sites. In our experience access via dialup is not possible. Broadband access for home working is good, but the 3-D display facilities may be annoyingly slow. If you find this to be the case we suggest you consider using the JMol display option mentioned above. Other display options (for instance linking to Mercury mounted on your local workstation) are also being considered.

Item added 30/11/05

ConQuest 1.8 was included with the latest Cambridge Major Release and has a number of new features. For details follow the link to the CSD "Release Notes" given above.

Item added 07/01/05

ConQuest 1.7 was included with the latest Cambridge Major Release and has a number of new features:

* It is now possible to restrict space group searching to
chiral (Sohnke) Space Groups.
* MDL, MOL files can be read into ConQuest via "File, Read
* Refcode searching has been improved and can retrieve all
entries in a Refcode family.