How to Modify power lib symbols?

Hello, I am a newbie to KiCad and this is probably a simple question for many. I want to modify the symbols in the power library. When I try to modify the GNDA or GNDD symbols I get an message saying I don’t have permission to modify the power library. How can I get around this?

Save the power library as a different name and put it in the C:\Program Files\KiCad\share\kicad\library dir?

Thank you

You shouldn’t modify the library which comes with KiCad. You should create your own libraries. Copy the symbols (and footprints) which you want to modify to your own libraries and modify that new component.


As a new user, why start with modifying libraries?

But if you want to:
The FAQ articles are the most up to date documentation at the moment.

Making custom symbols ( and Footprints) are common and easy to do. My suggestion is to start with making a project specific library in the same directory as your project. Then later, as your knowledge increases you’ll learn other options.

Thank you very much. I only want to change the symbol for the GDND. I don’t want to change anything else.

Thank you very much for the link.

How come I can’t make a copy of the GNDD symbol and Save As DGND? I get a message saying I don’t have write permissions on the power.lib library.


As you’ve read the documentation by now, (or at least some of it) and the advice above, you should know that the default libraries are read-only because they are maintained by a group of very good and thorough library maintainers. Therefore, you should create your own libraries if you want to use custom symbols. The steps are (approximately).

  1. Open the symbol library editor with your favorite symbol.
  2. Symbol Editor / File / New Library
  3. Choose a name + [Save].
  4. Add to Library Table: Start by using “Project” for now…
    I’ve given my library the name “asdf_New_Library”
  5. You should now be able to copy and paste existing symbols from other libraries into your own brand new library, or start making new schematic symbols from scratch.
  6. Save your changes when you’re done.

Export Symbol allows you to make new library.
Save as allows you to select library to wich you wont to save a new symbol.

Is there a way that I have my custom power library show up when I click the Place Power Port button?

Yes, it’s possible. It’s in the manual.
Eeschema / Help and then read chapter 12.10. which I found quickly for a text search for “power”.

Thank you very much,

Yes by having at least one symbol in it that has the option “this is a power symbol” set. You might want to read all of the following:


I am a little like you in that I like to use all my own symbols and footprints. I have been doing this with KiCad since I started with version 3 (??) a few years ago. There is some learning curve as some of these things work differently from other software I have used, however it is remarkably easy to get advice as I think you are finding.

I am not sure how up-to-date the KiCad help files are, because many things have changed through the versions. I think the FAQ on this forum is more updated and is one of the best places to start.

Be sure to thoroughly check out the “preferences” menu in the KiCad project manager.


I keep my own symbols and footprints together in a KiCad folder in my own data folder on my hard drive. Of course a disadvantage of this is that if I change any of these the change will ripple through all of my various and previous projects.

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