Cambridge Structural Database (CSD)


The Cambridge Structural Database (CSD) is a collection of over 1,000,000 small-molecule organic and organometallic crystal structures that can be visualised and downloaded. There are two ways of using CSD data via the PSDS:

  • WebCSD is a browser-based interface for accessing CSD data. This service is freely accessible to users on UK academic networks. If you require access to WebCSD from outside your institution, please go to the registration page to request a general PSDS username and password. You will also be requested to read some additional terms and conditions that CCDC would like you to accept before using the service.

    The CCDC provides various resources for users of WebCSD.

    Return to the PSDS homepage to begin using WebCSD
  • We provide access to a Remote Desktop computer with various software packages that can be used to query CSD data. If you require CSD Remote Desktop access, please make a request for a CSD Remote Desktop username and password by checking the checkbox on the CCDC terms and conditions. We will send you a seperate username and password valid for CSD Remote Desktop.

The following software is provided for use on the CSD Remote Desktop:

ConQuest   For searching and retrieving CSD data   Remote Desktop   Documentation   Resources  
Mercury   A range of 3D structure visualisation tools   Remote Desktop   Documentation   Resources   Download
Mogul   Preferred molecular geometries within the CSD.   Remote Desktop   Documentation   Resources  
PreQuest   For building in-house crystallographic databases.   Remote Desktop   Documentation    

Once you have received your username and password, you can access the CSD Remote Desktop in the following ways:

Windows   Linux   Apple OS X
The Remote Desktop Connection application is found in the Accessories sub-menu.   We recommend the use of the free RDC clients rdesktop or FreeRDP.   Mac users need to download Microsoft Remote Desktop.

To change your CSD Remote Desktop password: While logged in to the Remote Desktop, press Ctrl+Alt+End and enter the old and new password. If you are using a Mac, press the start button at the bottom left, then choose 'windows security' and the 'change password' option. The new password must contain a mixture of upper and lowercase, letters and numbers and at least one non-alphanumeric character.

If you require a password reset for your CSD Remote Desktop account, please let us know.

Why is my remote desktop access not working?

If you have previously accessed remote desktop and are now getting a message saying that your password has expired, you will need to contact us through to reactivate your account. Remote desktop accounts are activated for a period of 6-months at a time. This is to ensure that all remote desktop users are still legitimate UK academics and have the correct permission to access the data sources.