I have tried to route a 2 layer board that was seemingly to dense, therefore I have decided to go down the 4-layer route.
Could someone please explain or provide some information/documentation on the ramifications of choosing these ‘Signal’, ‘Mixed’, ‘Powerplane’ and ‘Jumper’ options?
My thoughts that signal entails digital/logic signals tracks/traces only. ‘Mixed’ probably means both digital signals, power, and ground signals. Powerplane is for power pour layer, but probably also ground pour layer. No thoughts on what jumper could mean, maybe some smart routing option.
Yea I read this as well, I would like to use the Freerouter to establish some of the traces (I have a 1000 connections) after manually failing twice on two layers. Would just like to be sure of the implications of the choices.
Haha yea, I’ll “try” not to place components on the middle layers
Totally oftopic, but as you brought it up and curiosity got the better part of me…
How come a chemistry student is routing such a board?
When I went to Uni we had chemistry students in the experimental physics lectures at the start, but not in the electronics courses later on.
You do not have to worry about placing footprints on internal layers in KiCad for the moment. KiCad does not support this. There have been several requests for making this possible though, and those requests are completely valid, so it is likely that some future version of KiCad will allow you to place footprints on internal layers. An example for this is a combined Flex / Ridgid PCB where the layers do not all have the same size and the PCB also does not have a uniform thickness.
As to the original question…
To the best of my knowledge KiCad does not do anything with this information itself. It may be a hint to external software such as Freerouter, but that is not a part of KiCad itself, and therefore not supported by KiCad People.
It may have been that it is part of some partially implemented feature. Maybe this part was implemented, and then design of KiCad took another direction and nobody bothered to remove those comboboxes. Maybe it is part of some feature that is planned to be implemented but development is “temporarily diverted” to other more pressing parts, such as getting KiCad V6 ready for release.
With the knowledge of KiCad I currently have I can not find a valid use for setting those boxes. I am not aware of any change in the behavior of KiCad for changing those layer settings.
[Oops], I may have misinterpreted this. I assumed the question was were these settings come from, while it may have been if these settings end up in the Gerber Job file after you set them in Board Setup…
[Edit] I just generated a quick set of gerbers, opened the Blabla-job.gbrjob file generated by KiCad-nightly V5.99 in a text editor and it could not find any of those magic words.
Same for the Blabla-F_Cu.gbr file. So it’s still a mystery to me.
Or, a bit more elaborate (and quicker too)
In short: No output from “grep” means it did not find anything worth mentioning in the files searched.
paul@medion:/home/3TB_WD_Blue/projects/kicad/LED_PT4115_599/gerber$ ls -hl
-rw-rw-r-- 1 paul paul 1,5K Mar 11 20:14 LED_PT4115-B_Cu.gbr
-rw-rw-r-- 1 paul paul 923 Mar 11 20:14 LED_PT4115-B_Mask.gbr
-rw-rw-r-- 1 paul paul 529 Mar 11 20:14 LED_PT4115-B_Paste.gbr
-rw-rw-r-- 1 paul paul 530 Mar 11 20:14 LED_PT4115-B_Silkscreen.gbr
-rw-rw-r-- 1 paul paul 763 Mar 11 20:14 LED_PT4115-Edge_Cuts.gbr
-rw-rw-r-- 1 paul paul 55K Mar 11 20:14 LED_PT4115-F_Cu.gbr
-rw-rw-r-- 1 paul paul 2,5K Mar 11 20:14 LED_PT4115-F_Mask.gbr
-rw-rw-r-- 1 paul paul 2,1K Mar 11 20:14 LED_PT4115-F_Paste.gbr
-rw-rw-r-- 1 paul paul 36K Mar 11 20:14 LED_PT4115-F_Silkscreen.gbr
-rw-rw-r-- 1 paul paul 2,8K Mar 11 20:14 LED_PT4115-job.gbrjob
-rw-rw-r-- 1 paul paul 92K Dec 2 15:07 LED_PT4115-User_Drawings.dxf```
paul@medion:/home/3TB_WD_Blue/projects/kicad/LED_PT4115_599/gerber$ grep -in "signal" *
paul@medion:/home/3TB_WD_Blue/projects/kicad/LED_PT4115_599/gerber$ grep -in "power" *
paul@medion:/home/3TB_WD_Blue/projects/kicad/LED_PT4115_599/gerber$ grep -in "plane" *
paul@medion:/home/3TB_WD_Blue/projects/kicad/LED_PT4115_599/gerber$ grep -in "mixed" *
paul@medion:/home/3TB_WD_Blue/projects/kicad/LED_PT4115_599/gerber$ grep -in "jumper" *
More, one directory higher:
Added a “r” for recursive. “signal” is the only one that returns something, and it just mentiones this setting is saved in the .kicad_pcb file.
paul@medion:/home/3TB_WD_Blue/projects/kicad/LED_PT4115_599$ ls -hl
drwxrwxr-x 2 paul paul 4,0K Nov 23 10:54 asdf_new_Library_experiment.pretty
-rw------- 1 paul paul 341 Mar 11 20:23 fp-info-cache
-rw-rw-r-- 1 paul paul 173 Nov 22 15:21 fp-lib-table
drwxrwxr-x 2 paul paul 4,0K Mar 11 20:14 gerber
drwxrwxr-x 2 paul paul 4,0K Mar 11 20:23 LED_PT4115-backups
-rw-rw-r-- 1 paul paul 182 Dec 2 18:22 LED_PT4115.kicad_dru
-rw-rw-r-- 1 paul paul 127K Dec 2 18:35 LED_PT4115.kicad_pcb
-rw-rw-r-- 1 paul paul 1,1K Mar 11 20:23 LED_PT4115.kicad_prl
-rw-rw-r-- 1 paul paul 8,9K Mar 11 20:23 LED_PT4115.kicad_pro
-rw-rw-r-- 1 paul paul 33K Dec 2 18:35 LED_PT4115.kicad_sch
-rw-rw-r-- 1 paul paul 428 Oct 28 16:45 pt4115.lib
-rw-rw-r-- 1 paul paul 341 Nov 19 12:31 sym-lib-table
paul@medion:/home/3TB_WD_Blue/projects/kicad/LED_PT4115_599$ grep -inr "signal" *
LED_PT4115.kicad_pcb:9: (0 "F.Cu" signal)
LED_PT4115.kicad_pcb:10: (31 "B.Cu" signal)
I do have documentation installed, but can’t remember if I did it manually or it was just part of the stuff that KiCad installed along with itself.
If you have these installed, then the HTML version probably gets started in a web browser if you press [F1] or [Any_KiCad_Program] / Help / [Any_KiCad_Program] Manual
The help files are written in Asciidoc, and then compiled into both Html, .epub and .pdf so you can read what is most comfortable to you.
paul@medion:~$ apt search kicad
i kicad - Electronic schematic and PCB design softwa
p kicad-common - Old common files used by kicad - Transitio
p kicad-dbg - Debug symbols for kicad
i kicad-demos - Common files used by kicad
p kicad-doc-ca - Kicad help files (Catalan)
p kicad-doc-de - Kicad help files (German)
i kicad-doc-en - Kicad help files (English)
p kicad-doc-es - Kicad help files (Spanish)
p kicad-doc-fr - Kicad help files (French)
p kicad-doc-id - Kicad help files (Indonesian)
p kicad-doc-it - Kicad help files (Italian)
p kicad-doc-ja - Kicad help files (Japanese)
p kicad-doc-pl - Kicad help files (Polish)
p kicad-doc-ru - Kicad help files (Russian)
p kicad-doc-zh - Kicad help files (Chinese)
i A kicad-footprints - Kicad footprints (modules)
p kicad-its-files - Its file used to build KiCad on old distro
i A kicad-libraries - meta-package for dep to all KiCad librarie
p kicad-locale-bg - Bulgarian locale for KiCad
paul@medion:~$ sudo apt install kicad-doc-en
[sudo] password for paul:
Reading package lists... Done
Building dependency tree
Reading state information... Done
kicad-doc-en is already the newest version (5.1.9-202012230803+1687~27~ubuntu20.04.1).
0 upgraded, 0 newly installed, 0 to remove and 0 not upgraded.
paul@medion:~$ cd /usr/share/doc/kicad/help/en
cvpcb.epub getting_started_in_kicad.epub images pcbnew.pdf.gz
cvpcb.html getting_started_in_kicad.html kicad.epub pl_editor.epub
cvpcb.pdf.gz getting_started_in_kicad.pdf.gz kicad.html pl_editor.html
eeschema.epub gui_translation_howto.epub kicad.pdf.gz pl_editor.pdf.gz
eeschema.html gui_translation_howto.html pcb_calculator.epub plugins.epub
eeschema.pdf.gz gui_translation_howto.pdf.gz pcb_calculator.html plugins.html
gerbview.epub idf_exporter.epub pcb_calculator.pdf.gz plugins.pdf.gz
gerbview.html idf_exporter.html pcbnew.epub
gerbview.pdf.gz idf_exporter.pdf.gz pcbnew.html