How do I search for schematic symbols?


#1

My first effort in drawing a schematic in KiCAD involves a Nordic nRF24L01+ RC chip, a DHT22 temperature/humidity sensor, a 10uF capacitor and an Arduino UNO. I have KiCAD(2007-11-29-c) - unicode Version.

How can I find if the default library contains those items (the search text box is de-activated)

If the default library does not know these items, how do I expand its knowledge?


#2

That is seriously old, maybe consider updating ? :slight_smile:

Strangely the part browser is not an ideal way to search, there is no search box. However, if you click on a library, you can see what general things are in it, then make a mental note, aka “window shopping”. Once you have browsed all the libraries, you have an idea what is available and where to find things in future.

Alternatively, if you do “Add part”, then the search box searches in part descriptions. This is much improved in recent versions.

I can tell you that in your version, capacitor (“C”) is in device. The other parts are not there, but there may be an Arduino Uno template (not sure). Those parts are more likely to be available in the latest official libs, but even the v4 libraries may not be compatible with your KiCad version. V4 compatible libs are in https://github.com/KiCad/kicad-library

Personally I spend 5 minutes searching on Google for KiCad parts, and if that gives no results its usually quicker to create my own.


#3

I gather my version is not the latest.
It’s what I came up with on a Google search.
Where do I find the new version? I might as well start with the most up-to-date version :slight_smile:


#4

Downloads for most popular OS are at http://kicad-pcb.org/download/, 4.0.7 is the current stable release.


#5

Wow! What a mess! :fearful: It looks like no-one wants anything to do with version 4.x.x but version 5 is not available. :grimacing: I am not sure what I should download.

I have 4.0.7 but it only has the power library. I went to https://github.com/kicad/kicad-library and confusion reigned. The big box at the top with the green clone or download button got me kicad-library-master.zip. Is that all I need to get me up to date?


#6

Are you sure? That often happens because people press “P” instead of “A” to add a part… “P” only brings up power symbols.

I think v5 is 95% the same as v4, so getting started with v4 will be mostly transferable to v5. V5 is in the release process, you can install a beta version now, but it may be less polished than a final release. KiCad documentation, examples etc mostly refer to V4, it will take a while to catch up with v5.


#7

Normally symbol libs should already be included in your kicad installation. (Some linux distros require you do install separate packages, the windows installer has an option to disable lib installation.)

For kicad 4.0.x there is no real central way to control which libs will be used. The list of symbol libs is stored in the project file. (The default list is copied from the kicad template file found in the system directory)
So if you add symbols to your installation you also need to add them to the project you currently work on.

A detailed discussion about this can be found in this thread. The last few posts detail how all installed libs found in the official repo can be added to the template project such that they are available in every new project you create.

You might want to click the releases button and download the lib marked as 4.0.7.
You should then repeat something similar for the footprint lib. Sadly footprints for the 4.x version are one repo per lib so it would be impractical to download them manually.
Luckily there are snapshots for all library files on the kicad download server. More details see my FAQ entry about installing a specific lib version

The footprint libs will not work for any kicad version before kicad 4.0.0 and as the symbol libs assume that the same version of footprint libs is installed, they will not really work either.


#8

’A’ brings up

I only have the power library installed, but I do have kicad-library-master.zip. Is that all I need to get me up to date?

BTW: what do I do with it? How do I include a library in my installation?


#9

If you create a new project, what do you see in the dialog eeschema -> preferences -> component libraries?

What version of kicad have you installed? How did you install it? What operating system?

If you installed kicad correctly the symbol libs should be included. (Assuming you have a version 4.0.x installed. Older versions do not work with that lib!)

Everything else is detailed in the post i linked in my previous answer.
You can either add the libs by hand to every project you have using the preferences -> component libraries dialog or you must edit the template project.

As i already stated above this might not be the best option. Either download the 4.0.7 release of the lib or even better download the snapshot that also includes the footprint libs that come with these. (Details in the FAQ post i already linked above)
If you only install symbol libs you will not be able to benefit from the fact that most symbols have the correct footprint already assigned.


#10

eeschema -> preferences -> component libraries


Current KiCAD version 4.0.7

In you library installation instructions you write:
Installation of the libraries

No matter what library version you want to install, you will need to point KiCad to it.
The first step is to download the library or libraries of your choice.
For the best user experience it is suggested to install the symbol and 3d libs of the same version as well.
If necessary extract them from the archive they come in.
Put them somewhere convenient. (Some place where your user of your operating system has write access. For a multi user setup choose a location that at least provides read access to all users.)

Okay - they arrived in ZIP files, three of them:
kicad-footprints-4.0.7
kicad-library-4.0.7
kicad-packages3D-master
It doesn’t seem to matter where I unzip them - I am going for D:\Downloads\KiCAD\Libraries - but, do I just unzip them all into the same folder, and if so does it matter which order?

I guess this sounds like I am really dumb, but … well … I just don’t know the answers. It is these silly questions that computer documentation must answer for Dummies like me. I have written computer documentation, and I know how hard it is. You must assume that the reader knows absolutely NOTHING! Sorry to be a PITA, but I know nothing about this.

When I get the above sorted out I’ll go on to the next step. You write:
Add libs to the fp-lib-table using the library wizard.

This is the easy workflow.
As a first step you will need to delete all entries from the fp-lib-table using the footprint library manager.

Dumb question one: Does this only refer to the footprint library?
Dumb question two: What is a footprint library manager?
Dumb question three: What about the other libraries?


#11

I hope I have not offended anyone with my last posting. Terribly sorry if I did.

I really would appreciate some detailed instructions on installing those libraries.

Thanks


#12

From your screenshot of the component library dialog it seems the libs are already added to your system. (No need to install anything.)

Do you also only get the power lib in the project where you made that screenshot?
Do you get any error message about missing symbol libs on starting kicad?
Can you look at the libs using the symbol editor?
Could you try to use Place->component instead of using a shortcut? (in some versions shortcuts are editable. It might just be that your system is setup differently to ours.)


#13

Sorry to be so long getting back, Rene. I’ve been down country for a while.

You are right. It appears that the libraries are loaded, and I don’t get any error messages.

Thanks


#14

Where did you find that version? I have seen 2013 for reference on the website and packaged on older Ubuntu.


#15

Just Googled it as I recollect.


#16

Only ever download KiCad via the official website. There is no knowing what third party download sites have repackaged it with


#17

Come to think of it, downloading had something to do with GitHub or suchlike strange species of site. I never did figure out what all that Git… stuff was all about.


#18

BTW: My machine is Intel QuadCore i5-3470 CPU @ 3.20GHz, 32 GB RAM, running MS Windows 10 Home on an MSI B75MA-P45 motherboard.
It was assembled by Net Solution Computers of Morley, Western Australia, and has a SAMSUNG U28D590D VDU driven by an NVIDIA QUADRO K620 Video Card and RealTek High Definition Audio.
I have Windows Defender and Malwarebytes as Anti-virus with Firefox and Skype running in the background.

KiCad is 4.0.7


#19

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