4.0.7 is dead but still can not yet find replacement!


I am writeing about what we are doing based on my experience in old (close to DOS) Protel we have bought in 1997 I think. There I have less layers to use and at the beginning it was my brother who was working with it and set up standards. I took PCB design in about 2004 with all footprints designed that way and see no really need to make it once more differently.
Our idea was to have as small doccumentation (in sense of how many paper kg are at the shelfs) as possible. So till now we generate really two pictures for top layer and one (or two) for bottom. As in Protel we designed everything in mils one of that pictures had dimensions in mils and second in mm. At one there were CrtYd with pin1 marks and with value (second with reference). Text written inside CrtYd (much more place than in Fab)
Imagine array of 0603 elements placed with CrtYd touching one to another.

As makeing that pictures in Protel was time consuming (and easy to make little mistake with effect of doing all once more) checking how to get those pictures directly from KiCad was first thing I have checked if possible.
At that moment my decision is to have at Silk the same picture than at CrtYd and values at one and references at second of these layers. If during Export I could on/off value/reference I would have both of them at CrtYd.

I have asked for it here.
As export has no its own colours but uses the screen colours then why not uses the screen visibility flags.

I supposed that if I close PCB without saveing, all colors changes were be lost but I found it is not. My idea (at that moment) is that I will check where KiCad keeps that colours. And as changing to B&W and gray is simple that I think I will make a copy of that file before makeing my pictures and then after it I will copy it back.
Yes it is cumbersome but much less compared to how I am doing it in Protel.


Nicely worded. This is much more nicer way than what I start off with.
But I hope we don’t forgot about another issue I had mentioned about the ratsnets that help improve the component placement workflow.


Also this look like very closely relative:


I feel happy that I do not do that, and the picture I have updated after I done Silkscreen work. It can be found here: Btw, using v5 now for 3 days (after some hiatus) and


Well Mentor Graphic has mess that up badly. I would think If you ever make footprint in Mentor, you would dream about KiCad.


I told you were those color settings reside… the file is called pcbnew and is located in the KiCAD settings folder, for windows that’s here:

C:\Users\ < your user name > \AppData\Roaming\kicad\

The content you are interested in starts at line ~35:

ColorPCBLayer_F.Cu=rgba(132, 0, 0, 0.800)
ColorPCBLayer_In1.Cu=rgba(194, 194, 0, 0.800)
ColorPCBLayer_In2.Cu=rgba(194, 0, 194, 0.800)
ColorPCBLayer_In3.Cu=rgba(194, 0, 0, 0.800)
ColorPCBLayer_In4.Cu=rgba(0, 132, 132, 0.800)
ColorPCBLayer_In5.Cu=rgba(0, 132, 0, 0.800)
ColorPCBLayer_In6.Cu=rgba(0, 0, 132, 0.800)
ColorPCBLayer_In7.Cu=rgba(132, 132, 132, 0.800)
ColorPCBLayer_In8.Cu=rgba(132, 0, 132, 0.800)
ColorPCBLayer_In9.Cu=rgba(194, 194, 194, 0.800)
ColorPCBLayer_In10.Cu=rgba(132, 0, 132, 0.800)
ColorPCBLayer_In11.Cu=rgba(132, 0, 0, 0.800)
ColorPCBLayer_In12.Cu=rgba(132, 132, 0, 0.800)
ColorPCBLayer_In13.Cu=rgba(194, 194, 194, 0.800)
ColorPCBLayer_In14.Cu=rgba(0, 0, 132, 0.800)
ColorPCBLayer_In15.Cu=rgba(0, 132, 0, 0.800)
ColorPCBLayer_In16.Cu=rgba(132, 0, 0, 0.800)
ColorPCBLayer_In17.Cu=rgba(194, 194, 0, 0.800)
ColorPCBLayer_In18.Cu=rgba(194, 0, 194, 0.800)
ColorPCBLayer_In19.Cu=rgba(194, 0, 0, 0.800)
ColorPCBLayer_In20.Cu=rgba(0, 132, 132, 0.800)
ColorPCBLayer_In21.Cu=rgba(0, 132, 0, 0.800)
ColorPCBLayer_In22.Cu=rgba(0, 0, 132, 0.800)
ColorPCBLayer_In23.Cu=rgba(132, 132, 132, 0.800)
ColorPCBLayer_In24.Cu=rgba(132, 0, 132, 0.800)
ColorPCBLayer_In25.Cu=rgba(194, 194, 194, 0.800)
ColorPCBLayer_In26.Cu=rgba(132, 0, 132, 0.800)
ColorPCBLayer_In27.Cu=rgba(132, 0, 0, 0.800)
ColorPCBLayer_In28.Cu=rgba(132, 132, 0, 0.800)
ColorPCBLayer_In29.Cu=rgba(194, 194, 194, 0.800)
ColorPCBLayer_In30.Cu=rgba(0, 0, 132, 0.800)
ColorPCBLayer_B.Cu=rgba(0, 132, 0, 0.800)
ColorPCBLayer_B.Adhes=rgba(0, 0, 132, 0.800)
ColorPCBLayer_F.Adhes=rgba(132, 0, 132, 0.800)
ColorPCBLayer_B.Paste=rgba(0, 194, 194, 0.800)
ColorPCBLayer_F.Paste=rgba(255, 255, 194, 0.800)
ColorPCBLayer_B.SilkS=rgba(0, 72, 72, 0.800)
ColorPCBLayer_F.SilkS=rgba(0, 194, 194, 0.800)
ColorPCBLayer_B.Mask=rgba(255, 255, 194, 0.800)
ColorPCBLayer_F.Mask=rgba(132, 0, 132, 0.800)
ColorPCBLayer_Dwgs.User=rgba(0, 0, 255, 0.800)
ColorPCBLayer_Cmts.User=rgba(194, 194, 0, 0.800)
ColorPCBLayer_Eco1.User=rgba(0, 194, 0, 0.800)
ColorPCBLayer_Eco2.User=rgba(0, 194, 0, 0.800)
ColorPCBLayer_Edge.Cuts=rgba(194, 0, 194, 0.800)
ColorPCBLayer_Margin=rgba(194, 194, 194, 0.800)
ColorPCBLayer_B.CrtYd=rgba(132, 132, 132, 0.800)
ColorPCBLayer_F.CrtYd=rgba(132, 132, 132, 0.800)
ColorPCBLayer_B.Fab=rgba(255, 255, 194, 0.800)
ColorPCBLayer_F.Fab=rgba(255, 255, 194, 0.800)
ColorTxtFrontEx=rgba(194, 194, 194, 0.800)
ColorTxtBackEx=rgba(0, 0, 132, 0.800)
ColorTxtInvisEx=rgba(132, 132, 132, 0.800)
ColorAnchorEx=rgba(0, 0, 255, 0.800)
ColorPadBackEx=rgba(0, 132, 0, 0.800)
ColorPadFrontEx=rgba(132, 0, 0, 0.800)
ColorViaThruEx=rgba(132, 132, 132, 0.800)
ColorViaBBlindEx=rgba(132, 132, 0, 0.800)
ColorViaMicroEx=rgba(0, 132, 132, 0.800)
ColorNonPlatedEx=rgba(194, 194, 0, 0.800)
ColorRatsEx=rgba(255, 255, 255, 0.800)

Just keep another file that is set up for printing colors - and no other changes - and swap them out between restarts of KiCAD to be able to print grey scaled layers in the color printing mode of the printer driver as the black&white one doesn’t work for you.

Naturally if you have a business that depends on less cumbersome tools you could chip in a little money to help get a more user friendly feature on it’s feet. After all you’re drawing an income from using a tool that others made and maintain.


Yay - Version: (6.0.0-rc1-dev-1512-gfe30460ae), release build
Now have what I like for ratsnets for component placement work.
Thank you very very very much to CERN. They are crazy fast, faster than what I can think.


So I’m in one step toward jump on 5.x version if the next release out with less crashed on simple operations. Well I still have to check if Gerber are correctly generated.


Why would you have any reason to post the question that they may not be?


I have noticed that but:

  • I was printing about my decision I made about half year ago when I have checked that closing PCB without save don’t get me back to previous colours.
    I didn’t expected any problem to find that so I was not searching it.

I didn’t supposed to look inside. I just supposed to find which file and make a copy of it just before changing colours to B&W and then copying it back.

May be, but as I supposed not only colours are there I thought of doing copy before each export B&W. But I didn’t get to that stage yet.


Attention - there is nothing interested about KiCad in that what I write. Save your time by skipping my post.

I will tell you @Joan_Sparky what are the effects of your words (not claim on you but just to know).
You see here that I am looking at KiCad to do professional works and I have some feature needs so when you yesterday have written:

I read it as probably you said it to me but it should happen any miracle to me be able to really sponsor anything. I spend 2 hours trying to explain as short as possible why I really can’t. Then I deleted all I have written as it is not the place here for it. Today night I wake up at 4 a.m and couldn’t sleep till morning thinking how world is unfair.
And what I see today. You write something like it once more. Because of it I decided to write what follows, even if it is not the right place for it. Sorry all others but I don’t know how I can write directly to Joan.

If you wont to do busienss the first thing is to have some capital to begin. After my study I was working at Gdansk Technical University teaching students. My salary was about $13 not per hour or day (as you can expect) but per month. Can you imagine collecting any capital in such conditions.
My older friends at work each holiday were going to Norway to work at farms just to have money for live. In 1987 I got permission (in socialistic country you don’t have your passport at home) and went with them. I was (among others) collecting cucumbers in glasshouse. We (with my wife) get back with $800. Being so rich we spend $400 on dishwasher - we were the first among all our friends to have one.
Next year we decided (with my brother) to set-up our own busines. Our first product was EPROM programmer. We used 8748 microcontroler there (one costed more then my half month of work - not possible to start without money from Norway).
Poland were not and still is not the good place for small businesses. Mainly because clarks still have the same mentality as when we were socialistic country.
After first year we had to pay (fortunatelly small) fee for writeing in our business book (don’t know if I use the right term) the value of what we bought and the costs of buying it (tram tickets) in the same row. We were told that we were punished as what we have done disturbes the clark work as two separate economy events need be in separate rows. It was about April next year and we asked what we should do with this year book as we have the same writes in it. We got the printed instruction how the book have to be filled this year and there were written that starting from that year to make clark work easier the costs of buying something have to be written in the same line with it :slight_smile: The “to make clark work easier” is not my comment it was written there. So we had been luck - we had not to rewrite our that year book.
Small firms in Poland were punished for using OpenOffice. If you get something free then you have profit. Firm should pay tax for each profit it has. They counted the price of Microsoft Office (not Microsoft Works as they decided Office is a standard representation of value of such software) for each PC OpenOffice were used as incom of the firm. And the tax was the smallest of firm owner problem - the real problem was the penalty for not reporting that incom in time. Why it was and is such - because clarks get reward proportional to money they get by punishing anyone.
In my opinion the good measure of situation is “tax freedom day” - counted by some economic organisations a theoretic day in the year when you stop working for country and began for yourself. As I remember good few years ago I sow that for USA it was about the end of April and for Poland about the end of June (1/3 to 1/2 - important difference).
I could say much more things hard to believe to people born in normal country.
I wonder how to explain as short as possible my ability to sponsor anything.
Activity I like the best is skiing. When I was a student my father bought me a skeeboots. When they were 30 (±2) years old I have bought the next ones. We have here in Poland not good places for skiing but during whole my life (I am 60) I was only once skiing abroad (Dolomity Italy). Reason - going abroad is 2 times more expensive. I have also never fly by plane for my own money (only when send somewhere by University).
And about me getting money from using KiCad. I design about 10 PCBs a year. I can use Protel from 1997 (we have). I know its drawbacks perfectly. I have it in my fingers. It is ready for 16 layer PCB. Till now I have designed only 2 layer PCBs. During last year I spend long time (I think few months) at KiCad (reading all doccumentations for V4 and then for V5, my activity at forum and in bug reports (English is not my oryginal language - I have to search some words in dictionary - I am writeing slowly - this one post I am writeing 3,5 hours now)).
May be (only may be!) I will save few hours per one PCB compared to Protel (and only after few years when get skilled - 60 years old people don’t get skilled fast). I see many things are better in that old Protel and others are better in KiCad.
If I looked only at economy I should never spend any hour at KiCad (time is money, time spend by me on KiCad will never be returned).
I have such nature that I like learning and always find something new to read about (this time it is KiCad).
When I started working at Gdansk Technical University and the best computer in our division was Commodore-64 I dreemed of writeing PCB design software. When IBM/XT commed I have done a small program to conwert Orcad netlist to Racal-Redac netlist. All people designing PCB in my division used it as Orcad was a very good schematic editor but not PCB design.
I am trying to do my best - to help to anyone here who don’t knows something I know, but sorry I will no sponsor KiCad in that life (may be in next if born in better place).
Reading these two sentences (what I cited) makes me feel really badly (world is unfair).


It wasn’t meant hostile - sorry that I caused you bad sleep - I just stated my feeling that if KiCAD misses some important feature for someone who uses it professionally and they draw enough income from a tool like that, they could chip in a bit.
If that doesn’t apply to you, then it’s ok. Really no harm.

As for heritage… we have been neighbors. I was born in the GDR in the late 70’s and moved to Australia 10 years ago, starting to pack potatoes and bananas here. I can 100% relate to how it was back then. Crappy economic system. Crappy governmental system. Only thing somewhat alright was the social system. But without the other two functioning flawlessly that one didn’t had a chance.
Lucky for all of us, the army was recruited out of the regular folk, so they didn’t turn against their own when push came to shove.

PS: you guys make the best plum-povidl in the world :wink:

PPS: and yes, the world is unjust on every metric and scale and society is not solving that problem - I could talk about that thematic for days. :frowning_face:

PPPS: if you want to send someone a direct message, click on their avatar.


If you introduce that economic system at Sahara then after a week you will be short of sand.

I noticed that there are some informations of people and was looking for mailaddress looking tekst but didn’t noticed that blue rectangle. KiCad is the first forum I am really active at, so I didn’t thought of concept of sending directly but through the forum (I am only at some Usenet groups).