How to speed up entering power connections

I am very new at using Kicad and am very impressed on how well the development of has come. I come from a background of using PADS for many years. I just wanted to share a thought with any developers reading this post. The most used nets in any schematic are the power and ground. It would be a lot faster if there was a shortcut on the right mouse button that when pressed when routing a line that would jump you into the power symbol editor. Better yet when pressing that button have Kicad bring up a list of power symbols already listed in the schematic. Once the symbol is loaded once one could quickly select it when routing a line. Just a thought. Like I said I am not sure where to post design ideas.

Tip: Put the first couple of power symbols, e.g. GND and VCC on the schematic, then make copies of it.

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you mean like pressing ‘p’ button?

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Pressing hotkey P will bring up all Power libraries.
My personal Power Symbol library contains my “top 10” symbols which is no scroll.
If what I require is not there, below my library is the Kicad library, a much longer scroll.

So, usually my work flow is: P, double left click, single left click, enter. (2 sec. tops)

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I am in V6. I don’t know what for is double left click.
After schematic is just opened:

P - opens Power symbols
left click - extends power library
left click - selects power symbol
Enter - I have a symbol at cursor to place it.

When the power symbol was used the next time route is shorter:

P - opens Power symbols, but

  • in ‘Recently used’ there are one that I already used,
  • power library is already extended,

left click - select symbol (from Recently used or from library),
Enter - to go to sheet to place it.

Communication with developers is via bug reports where you can also write ‘Feature request’.

I assume double left click because I have more than one library.
After P select I have

Note: personal power library “1aPower” (red arrow) with Kicad Power library (Power) beneath.

Double left click gives:

Single left click and Enter on selected power symbol attaches that symbol to cursor for placement on schematic.

You can do that with [Ctrl + d] to duplicate a symbol (or a wire, label or any selection).

You can also re-assign the hotkey if you want (In Schematic Editor / Preferences / Preferences / Hotkeys) KiCad has several hundredths of possible hotkeys, and a lot do not have any key assigned by default.

You also write:

give it some time to get used to working with KiCad. New users are often enthusiastic and have new ideas, and that is good. But implementing new features takes time and effort from the developers, and that is a limited and precious resource for the KiCad project. There are around 1500 open issues for KiCad on gitlab. (from bug reports to new feature requests). And each month between 200 and 300 issues get closed, but about the same number of new issues are created too. Before creating a new issue, you should at least search though the existing issues. Maybe a thumbs up to an existing issue is enough, maybe you can add a comment to contribute to some other idea.

A simple search brings up a list of 35 issues related to power symbols:

The current power symbols in KiCad are still a kludge, left over from prehistoric times. There is an open issue for making the net names for power symbols editable, so only one power symbol is needed for the library, but I have some trouble finding it…

…also good things will come in due time:

I didn’t know that you can have more than one Power library.
I have defined my libraries in 2017 and didn’t modified their set since then.
I supposed that library named Power is the one listed when I press P hotkey.
Now I opened Manage Symbol Libraries to search what tells KiCad which libraries to list. I don’t see any flag/option different for my Power library then for others.
I just was sure that only differentiator is the Nickname = “Power”.
What tells KiCad which libraries to list for P? Does it analyses all symbols inside and if at least one is power then includes library in the list?

I just made a test.

I created a new library called “Pond”
I gave it a nickname “1Pond”
I placed three power symbols from the Kicad Power Library into my “Pond” library.

When I used the hotkey P three libraries now show: Kicad Power, 1aPower and 1Pond .

So, I must assume Kicad scans the libraries to find power symbols.
Of interest, I placed 3 ICs also in my Pond library, but after using hotkey P then opening 1Pond ONLY the power symbols show, although the ICs are in the library.

The hotkey P is scanning all the libraries for power symbols and then listing those libraries containing power symbols but only showing the power symbols, not anything else in the libraries.


My Power library contains 17 power symbols. No time yet to split it into separate libraries, but good to know that I can do it (with the cost of double click instead of one click :slight_smile: ).

A post was split to a new topic: Handling Power pins

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