Posts tagged with 'Edit'

Panel Builder

By clicking on the Panel Builder symbol, the following dialog will open:

1. Clicking on "Add a new Step" enables you to create an additional step.

2. "Import Step" allows you to import a new design / step from another file.

3. "Create Panel (Simple)" is described separatly and in detail under the post "Create Panel (Simple)".

4. "Create Panel (Intelligent Nesting)" is also explicitly described in an extra post.

5. "Edit Step" is an additional functionality to be used to individually place the origin. 

6. The "Drag and Drop" option allows you to manually place the steps on your panel. Clicking on it, the following dialog will open:

  • Minimum Distance: Minimum Distance to another step that should not be deceeded.
  • Distance to Profile: Minimum Distance to the profile.
  • Show Measure Lines: Measure lines for a better handling of drag & drop.
  • Use Orientation Elements: Orientation elements for facilitating drag & drop.

7. Clicking on a step in the list, you can transform the selected step by rotating it or moving it in individually set intervals.

  • Minimum Distance: Minimum Distance to another step that should not be deceeded.
  • Distance to Profile: Minimum Distance to the profile.

8. This list shows all steps currently placed on the relevant panel with its most important information.

9. Clicking on "Set Fiducials" allows you to define markers on your panel. The following dialog will therefore open:

  • You can either use the values from the panel border or from the origin of the border.
  • If you want to place markers, you can select the starting point (left-top, right-top, left-bot, right-bot) from which they are to be placed and - if needed - the interval (X offset) that defines the spacing of the placement.
  • You have the choice between four default marker symbols; you can also load another symbol out of the default options or choose an own symbol from a library if needed.
  • You can also choose to add a mask opening; the size of this opening can be adjusted individually in mm.
  • Before setting the fiducial markers (Click on "Set Fiducials"), you have to select the propriate layer/s where you want or need to place the markers.

10. "Add Routing" is used to define the routing for your panel. Clicking on "Add Routing" will open the following dialog:

  • On the top of the dialog, there are four symbols to be further explained (from the left to the right):
    • 1. Symbol: For checking for components placed nearby.
    • 2. Symbol: For setting the cutout on your mouse position. To multiselect, you have to use shift key; to deactivate snapping, you have use alt key.
    • 3. Symbol: Use for multiply cutouts.
    • 4. Symbol: Use to clean double cutouts.
  • Routing Layer: Choose the layere you want to use for routing.
  • Routing Size: Select the size of the routing.
  • Cutout Length: Adjust the length of your routing.
  • CMP area: Set the size of the area not to have any components within it when routing.
  • There are three further options that you can select before creating the routing layer: 
    • Clear Layer to create a new layer in case of different milling thicknesses, 
    • Ignore Holes,
    • Only in Panel Profile.
  • After the creation of the routing layer, you can "Use Mouse Click" to define a cutout for each mouse click. You just have to click on the intended routing part to set a cutout.

11. For defining holes on your panel, click on "Set Holes". The following dialog will be opened:

  • Like described in "9. Set Fiducials", this dialog works practically analogously.
  • There is the possibility to decide for the hole shape for each position (left-top, right-top, left-bot, right-bot) by clicking on : You can either decide for an oval form or a round shape. 
  • You can define the diameter of the holes to be set in mm. 
  • To set the holes like defined before, just click on "Set Holes".

12. "Set Profile" allows you to define the profile of your panel. The following dialog will be opened when clicking on it:

  • You have the option between setting the contour according to a rectangle or a manufacturing edge: Depending on your choice you have to set different parameters.
  • Rectangle: You have to define the x and y axis as well as the width and height of your profile in mm. If needed, you can select to use rounded corners (you therefore have to define a suitable radius)
  • Manufacturing Edge: You have to define the size of left, right, top and bottom of your profile in mm. You can also decide for rounded corners.
  • By clicking on "Accept", the current size of all active layers will be calculated. If there is no active layer, all loaded layers will be used instead
  • By clicking on "Set by all Outlines/Objects", all loaded objects will be used for the calculation.

13. Here, you can add another step on your current panel by choosing the step out of the provided list options. You are able to select each step that has been defined for this design.

14. Clicking on "Apply" applies all changes made by you on your currently opened design. 

Edit Dimensionings

1) After you have adjusted the settings for the next dimensionings you want to add, you can press "Add".

Then, move to the graphic interface to choose two points on your printed circuit board you want to select for measuring their distance. PCB-Investigator thereby helps you with reference points to easily mark e.g. the edge or centre of a component. To set a marker for dimensioning use a right-click. A double-click allows you to change the location of the set marker by entering new values for x and y. You can also easily relocate the connecting line and its associated text information with holding the right mouse botton and shifting the line in its wanted position. 

2) Here, you can adjust the settings for the layer, the text and the type of the new dimensioning you want to add.

  • Layer: You can only choose between the currently activated layers. It´s also possible to choose "all layers". Dimensionings with this categorization will be visible no matter of the layers being activated.
  • Text: This setting allows you to configure which information about the dimensioning you want to be displayed. %DIS% %UNIT% displays both, the distance and the unit used. If you use the same unit for all dimensions (see 7), you can only use %DIS%. It´s also possible to use any other text by entering the propriate information.
  • Type: There are four different types of dimensioning you can use: cross, vertical, horizontal or text.
    • Cross, vertical, horizontal indicate the direction of the connecting lines. The rotation can also be changed afterwards.
    • Text allows you to add additional information or notes to you printed circuit board (e.g. marking drillings). You can duplicate text marker points by holding STRG while right-clicking. A double-click will eliminate the duplicate. A text type can´t be switched into a direction type once defined.

3) There are three more options you can adjust before adding a new dimensioning: text size, text rotation and font.

  • text size: This allows you to determine the size of the text that should be displayed.
  • text rotation: Here, you can choose the rotation of text which should be used for the next dimensioning. Using -1 will adapt the text parallel dimensioning line. You can also rotate the text by double-clicking on the appropriate text information in the graphic interface.
  • font: Choose the font you want to use for the text.

4) You can also determine the colors that should be used for the visualization of the dimensioning: line color, text color, back color.

  • line color: Color of the connecting line between the two points selected for dimensioning.
  • text color: Color of the text used to describe the dimensioning information.
  • back color: Background color of the text.

5) Clicking on "Apply" allows you to subsequently change the settings of (3) and (4) for all dimensionings you have determined so far at once. 

6) In this list, you will find a overview of all dimensionings you have determined with all their relevant information. You can also adjust the settings by double-clicking on the intended configuration. A right-click on a dimensioning will highlight the appropriate dimensioning in the graphic interface.

7) Here, you can choose the unit you want to use for your dimensionings. Selecting "auto" will apply an automatically choosen unit (most practical solution) for each dimensioning. To avoid misunderstandings using "auto", you should indicate the unit for each of your dimensionings (2).

8) "Set Bounds Dimensionings" sets the dimensionings for your overall printed circuit board (lenght, width). 

Example for dimensionings on a design:

View Dimensionings:

To display or hide your dimensionings, click on the framed symbol which can be found under "View".

Add Objects

Clicking on “Add” that can be found under Fabrication, the following window will open.

You have the possibility to add 5 different types of objects:

1. Line

2. Pad

3. Surface

4. Arc

5. Text.

The here mentioned objects correspond to the different types of objects ODB++ provides.

The description of the placement of lines forms the basis for the explanation of the addition of all the other objects. Overlapping configuration options will only be described here.


1. Line

1. At first, you have to choose the layer on which you want to add a line.

2. If you want to add attributes to the line, you have to set a hook next to “attributes” and then click on values. Another window will open, which allows you to choose the propriate attributes.

After you have chosen the propriate attribute, click on “Add or Overwrite”. To add the selected attributes, click on “Accept”.

3. You can also decide, whether you want to add a positive or negative line (polarity). If you would put a negative line above a positive on, the negative line would cut away the overlapping parts of the lines.

4. There are three more options you can choose from:

  • Snap to End: Beginning the new object at the end of another object.
  • Same Net: Adopting the net name
  • Snap to Grid: Beginning the new object at a certain distance according to your adjustments

5. To select the type of line you want to add, you have to click on “Symbol” or you have the option to pick a line that’s on the currently opened design. Clicking on “Symbol” will open up another dialog, the Symbol Library. You can then select the propriate line from the symbols provided there. For more information on how to work with the Symbol Library, move to “Symbol Library

6. If you choose the other option “Pick”, your mouse will turn into a pen allowing you to pick the type of line on the graphic interface you select for adding.

How to add a line: After the selection of the symbol type, you can now add the line. To do so, right-click on the position in your design that you chose for the new line. A double-click will end the line.

7. You also have three more different options when it comes to adding lines:

  • Single Line: This will allow you to only place one single line. You can only decide fort the length of the line.
  • Polyline: This will allow you to place a polyline. To begin a new line within one polyline, just do a simple right-click. Ending the line requires a double-click.
  • Slot: This will only place a slot of a line. The length and the angle are already pre-set.

8. You are also able to place lines by entering the X and Y coordinates of the start and end point. “Add” will then place the line.


2. Pad

If you want to add pads, click on the button "Pad". You will then see the following window.

The adding of pads works analogous to the adding lines.

There are only a few different options that have to be additionally explained.

You can choose whether to mirror the pads to be placed by setting a hook on either “no Mirror” or “Mirror”.

Another option is the configuration of the angle (0°, 90°, 180°, 270°) that shall be used when placing the pad.


3. Surface

If you want to add a surface, click on the button "Surface". You will then see the following window.

When adding surfaces, there are also a few options differing from the addition of lines. These shall also be explained here.

If you want to add a surface, you have three options:

  • Polygon
  • Rectangle
  • Flood Layer


You can either place a polygon by entering the X and Y coordinates. Enter the coordinates and click “Start”. The defined point will be the starting point of your polygon. Enter new coordinates and click “Add Point”. You can then continue with this procedure until you want to close your polygon. To do so, click “close”.

The other option for placing polygons is just to do a simple right-click at the propriate position in the design. Continue to place more angles of the polygon by further right-clicks. A double-click will automatically close the polygon.

If you place an angle in a way that will hinder the automatic closure, the new (wrong) line will be shown as red instead of blue.

Besides the polarity, you can also select whether to place an isle or a hole into an existing surface. It`s not possible that holes cut each other.


To add a rectangle, you can either also use the method of entering X and Y coordinates or you can select the starting point of your rectangle by a simple right-click. The size of the rectangle can then be determined by moving the mouse. Double-clicking will place the rectangle.

Like when defining the polygon, you have the same two options: You can also select the polarity and whether to place an isle or a hole into an existing surface.

Flood Layer

To flood a layer, you have to adjust some parameters to configure the distances that shall be held and the minimal area (regarding the min. total area) and size of the flooding (regarding the min. length /width):

  • Edges Distance
  • Copper Distance
  • Drill Distance
  • Min Area
  • Min Size

In the case of “Flood Layer”, the use of entering X and Y coordinates is not reasonable.


4. Arc

If you want to add an arc, click on the button "Surface". You will then see the following window.

When adding arcs, there are also a few new options that haven´t been explained yet.

Firstly, you have to define the diameter. You can either define it by entering a specific value or you use the pick tool (“Pick Diameter”) to choose a propriate diameter that has already been used in the graphic interface.

When placing the arc, there are three different methods for setting it:

  • Start-Center-End: Start and Center of the arc will be placed by a simple right-click. The end of the arc can then be defined on the basis of these two points by moving the mouse.
  • Start-End-Edge: Start and End of the are placed by right-clicking. The edge of the arc can then be defined on the basis of these two points by moving the mouse.
  • Start-End-Center: Start and End of the are placed by right-clicking. The center of the arc can then be defined on the basis of these two points by moving the mouse.

You can also decide for the direction when placing the arc. You can either choose to place it clockwise or counter clockwise.


5. Text

If you want to add a text, switch to the button "Text". You will then see the following window.

To place a text, you can decide for the polarity (positive, negative), if you want to mirror the text (mirror, no mirror) and the angle of placement (0°, 90°, 180°, 270°).

You can either place the text by entering values for the X and Y location or you can place it by double-clicking on the propriate position on your design in the graphic interface.

The “X-Size” and “Y-Size” refer to the width and length of the letters.

A simple right-click adds the text on your design in the graphic interfact. You can still place the text on another position by simply moving your mouse. A double-click will then place the text.



Edit Objects

To edit objects, you first have to select the object you want to choose for edition (either by double-clicking or by using the selection tool). After that, by clicking on “Edit”, the following window will open showing the parameters of the currently selected object.

There are 4 general options of editing objects:

  • Edit Parameters
  • Edit Attributes
  • Transform
  • Edit 3D

1. You can either sort the properties by categories or

2. according to the alphabet. It´s also possible to change the properties by entering new values.

3. You will also see all attributes belonging to the selected object. By clicking on the green plus symbol, you can add attributes. The red cross will remove the selected attribute.

5. Editing the objects also refers to changing their position by moving, rotating or oversizing them.

Here, you have some different options to adjust the current position of the selected object. You can move (in specific steps per mm) and rotate your object (change angle) or oversize the object by entering new values for its size or a certain percentage for the augmentation.

6. It´s also possible to look up the 3D Step File Path that is deposit for the currently selected object. You can also adjust the 3D parameters by changing the values for the offset and rotation regarding X, Y and Z axis.

7. At the bottom part of the dialog, you can see 4 further options for editing objects (only the applicable ones will be shown in colour):

  • Split (only regarding lines): Dividing one line into two lines (enables to adjust the angle of these two lines)
  • Union: Summarizing several objects into one
  • Trim: Subtracting the second object from the first one
  • Cross: Only the overlapping parts will remain



Symbol Library

Symbols / Objects are stored in the symbol library. You can either access it when e.g. adding or editing objects or you can directly open the symbol library. 

By clicking on the tab “Symbol Library” which can be found under the ribbon “Fabrication”, the following window will open.

1. Under “Loaded Library”, you have three different types of libraries to choose from:

  • Job: You will see all symbols that are used in the currently open design or on the corresponding panel
  • XML Library
  • PCB-I 365: Only if you have registered for.

To get access to the symbols of one of these symbols, you have to open the subcategories of the corresponding library.

2. Then, you will see a list with all symbols and their properties stored in this library.

3. Selecting one of these symbols in the list, will visualize them on the right side of the list.

4. Clicking on the green plus at the bottom left corner of the dialog will open the following dialog:

Here, you have the choice between different ODB++ symbols that can be adjusted according to your needs by defining their parameters. Clicking on “Accept” will then add the newly defined symbol to the currently opened Library.

5. Clicking the “X” when you have selected a list item, allows you to extinguish this symbol in your library.

6. Clicking on the pen symbol will open up the “Symbol Property Editor”.

The Symbol Property Editor allows you to change the name of the symbol and create a new property by entering a new property name and by choosing a new value type for the symbol.

You can´t delete or edit the properties of a symbol that is a regular feature of your design. When you have selected one of these symbols, the two buttons will be greyed out.

7. If you have selected the currently opened Job as a Library, you have the option to pick any of the symbols on your design in the graphic interface and the corresponding symbol in the list will be highlighted.


There are two more options when you have selected an XML or 365 Library to work with. The dialog for these libraries will also look a bit different:

When choosing either an XML or PCB-I 365 library, you can click on  to open another dialog for adjusting the settings of the library.

This editor allows you to create, edit, remove, import and export a (new) library. When adding a new library (click on “Create”), you have to enter a new name for the library and you have to select the propriate path for the library file you want to choose.

If you want to remove a symbol library in the setting dialog by selecting it and clicking on “Remove”.

You can also edit the parameters of an already existing object or add a new symbol from the current selection. Clicking on  or double-clicking on a symbol in the list will open a new window of PCB-Investigator allowing you to adjust the currently selected symbol in the list to gain a special symbol that’s not contained in any of the libraries.

To configure this symbol, you can then click on “Add”. This allows you to compile a special symbol. How to add symbols or objects is described under “Add Objects”. If you have completed the compilation of your special symbol, you can click on “Save” or “Save and Close” on the upper right corner of the window and you will get back to the main Symbol Library dialog.



Assign Testpoint Attribute

User Interface of the Assign Testpoint Attribute
Fig 5. - User Interface Assign Testpoint Attribute

You can find the Testpoint Assign Tool under Plugin >> Assign Testpoint Attribute.
This tool helps to find and mark testpoints in a layout which could be defined via multiple non standardized attributes. Marking them with this tool then helps to standardize this and prepare the layout for following tools (for example the DFT Preperation).
On the top left you can switch between using the current selection or a set rule to find the testpoints and assign the test_point value.
When choosing rules you can add another rule by checking the checkbox of the lowest row in the current listview and then fill out which attribute should be tested and what value needs to be set in said attribute.
All attributes are listed in a simple drop down menu. The Filter Value then has to represent the value of the attribute. Wildcards are allowed when searching for attribute values. The image shows for example all ways to search for "tp" in the "geometry" attribute:

  • The first rows searches for all geometry attributes that have exacly the value "tp".
  • The second row seraches for all geometry attributes that end with "tp"
  • The third row searches for all geometry attributes that start with "tp"
  • The fourth row searches for all geometry attributes that have "tp" anywhere in their value

Also it is possible to search for multiple values of the same attribute as shown in the last row. Simply seperate the values with a semicolon.
Boolean attributes do not need any value since their existance already means they are set.
To remove a rule simply select the whole row by clicking on the left most column of the row you want to delete (left of Use Rule) and press the "delete" key on your keyboard.

Checking a rule will select all found possible testpoints of the job (the checkboxes Assign Top and Assign Bottom change the selection depending on the check state of them)

On the top right side there is an information panel showing:

  •  The currently already set testpoints of the loaded job for the top layer and the bottom layer
  •  A button to open this help page
  •  A button to select all currently set testpoints of the loaded job

Export Rules exports the currently set rules to a xml file on selected location on the machine or in a cloud
Import Rules imports rules from a file either from the machine or from a cloud
Remove all Testpoint Attributes removes the "test_point" attribute from all pads of the job
Assign Testpoint Attribute adds the "test_point" attribute to either the currently selected pads or the pads found by the selected rule (handled by the radiobuttons "using Selction" and "using Rule")
Assign Top is a checkbox that when unchecked the "test_point" attribute will not be set for the pads on the top layer
Assign Bottom is a checkbox that when unchecked the "test_point" attribute will not be set for the pads on the bottom layer

To find possible testpoints the attribute histogram is a good way to start.