How to config plots and prints consistently?

When using the print function (for PDFs or paper) or the plot function (for Gerbers) Kicad (6.0.7 for me) presents dialogs that allow specifying a large number of options, such as layer choices, border or not, various format choices and so on. These choices may or may not stick, and in any case get overridden when you change intermittently to a different set of choices.

It would be great to be able to save those selections as a “print configuration” or “plot configuration” so it could be later reused with assurance that you’re setting the same configuration that you previously established is The One for a particular task.

So first off – is there any chance I missed a feature in Kicad (6.0.7) that already implements save-able print or plot configurations?

Assuming not, I briefly looked into whether particular configurations could be scripted. I see a number of classes that look like they might have something to do with the task (like PLOTTER, PLOT_CONTROLLER, PCB_PLOT_PARAMS) and so on (nothing for printing though?). But I didn’t find docs on how to actually use those objects. And I suspect they are a way to bypass the built-in dialogs (which has its own merits), rather than just automatically fill them in.

Anyhow I’d appreciate any clues that might shed light on ways to proceed. (Including mentions of “Kicad 7 solves all this by x y z”.).

FWIW, I have already seen Board2PDF, which overlaps with part of this, though is more elaborate than I have in mind, I think.


1 Like

In KiCad 7 there is kicad-cli which lets you run individual output commands with arguments. So in V7 you can work around the lack of output jobs by creating your own in an external script / batch job that calls kicad-cli numerous times for the different outputs you want.

CAM Manager / output automation etc

So if I’m reading that issue correctly, no change in Kicad 7, but maybe in Kicad 8?

In KiCad 7 there is kicad-cli which…

That sounds useful.

Is there some documentation somewhere on the CLI commands and arguments?

manual section hasn’t been written yet, but there’s kicad-cli --help

Find hints in this thread: Post-v6 new features and development news - #79 by marekr and play around with it.

This topic was automatically closed 90 days after the last reply. New replies are no longer allowed.