Autodesk kills the golden Eagle...?

Autodesk are moving to a subscription model for new versions of Eagle, which is causing consternation among small/hobby users. Expect a lot of people coming over to KiCad. I’m not sure exactly, but the “free” version is now appears to be only for users with an EDU email address. Either way, an active account with Autodesk will be required, and local use expires after 14 days with no internet.

Open Source FTW!

My guess is that this will be huge boost for KiCad. In fact, it is why I am here in the moment :slight_smile:


Also be prepared for more questions from them about the “different-but-equally-funky” KiCad GUI.


Did anyone follow the Hackaday series on KiCad? etc
I can’t read Hackaday for very long, it gives me a headache.


Well that’s great news for KiCad I guess. I’ll have to admit that I got Autodesk’s strategy all wrong: I imagined that they’d improve Eagle and get people hooked on it before moving to subscriptions. I guess some people believe that Eagle is mature enough. Hopefully we get some more good developers contributing, or at least enough new users who contribute a little to paying devs to work on kicad.


Well, Chris hinted at KiCAD over at hackaday in the announcement of that change.

So yeah, get them Eagle to KiCAD conversion tools polished up :wink:

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Well, I am glad I spent the effort getting to know the nooks and crannies of KiCad instead of Eagle.

I tried the KiCad converter which runs in Eagle, but on last run it generated lots of errors. I’ve never been real happy with the output, but that is mostly because Eagle is weird :slight_smile:

KiCad imports the Eagle PCB very nicely, but it is detached from the schematic, so if you try to import the netlist it falls over everywhere. I am hoping to get a more “KiCad friendly” conversion.

Just spent half an hour trying to figure out how pad sizes are specified in the Eagle schematic file, it seems to be magic!

I toyed with Eagle several years ago, but never manufactured a board from it. The work flow was just too unintuitive for me. I’m glad I never got further.
There are many people out there violating the existing “free” licence by using it in paid for projects, but the numbers of those and non-edu hobby users who will cough up will be tiny compared with the commercial sales that must have been caused by their Eagle experience

I wonder how the ‘this feature from Eagle needs to be in KiCAD’ list looks like? :slight_smile:

have you tried this Eagle to KiCAD converter

Eagle SCH/LIB to KiCad SCH/LIB ULP conversion script

Yes, that is the one I was referring to which I had problems with. It takes so long to fix up projects after conversion, it is often better to just create a new KiCad version, which also uses native KiCad components with 3D models etc. I am hoping to cut the 11 step process down to 1 step :slight_smile:

It seems Autodesk have already backtracked slightly, and removed some of the login restrictions. I didn’t realise that Autodesk also bought Instructables. It seems like they are trying to monetize the “Maker” segment, along with companies like Hackaday, Adafruit. I expect Adafruit will cash out soon as well.

It would be good to see companies like Arduino and Sparkfun moving to KiCad. If all the people who used Eagle freeware paid just $10 to Kicad, KiCad could be a lot better. And if all the companies that paid $600 for Eagle single-seat licenses donated that to KiCad, KiCad could be awesome.

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Here’s a deck of slides Wayne shared during the hack chat over at about the KiCAD roadmap for versions 5 and 6.

and if you’re interested in the whole transcript of the chat, follow this link

If you have problems with the conversion script report them, then I can fix them,

If you don’t report problems there is no way I can fix them.


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Well, I think it’s a question of style as much as specific problems, but I did get a lot of errors when the script was unable to modify the Eagle files. Perhaps that is a limitation of the free Eagle version?

Anyway, I am developing my own conversion tool which runs independently from Eagle.

Is your tool open and in a public repository? You might want to get people peeking at the code as early as possible, especially folks like Lachlan who’ve already spent a lot of time studying the Eagle->KiCad mapping.

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GPL2 according to the GitHub licence file

In a read only area like Program Files(x86) perhaps?

So far I have got most of the info directly from the Eagle schematic file XML file, it is really nicely laid out. One question I got stuck on I mentioned early, how to work out the pad size because it doesn’t seem to be in the XML file. I assume that Eagle applies a default, I think it might be half the grid size.

My code is entirely original, I will probably publish it on github some time. I have done most of the schematic conversion, I want to also apply some fixes in the PCB. One Eagle feature is that pad names can be longer than 4 characters, in Kicad these are truncated causing non-connects.

I have quite bit of spare time on my hands at the moment :slight_smile:

No, the error was from Eagle. I will get some screenshots of the error tomorrow maybe.

Nice to hear you going to do a conversion toll free from the limit of having to install and run eagle
like my tools has, But remember that limit’s you to and above of eagle files.
Apart from that and the limits on how KiCad handles free tracks and net labels in schematic files
and of of course not allowing angled text other than 90deg in lib parts.
it should be very nice, if you need any advice I will be happy give any of my knowage.
I look forward to seeing you project up on github, where I can contribute to it