How to up issue a board

When using my previous CAD system, if I wanted to do as now and up issue a board to make minor tweaks, I would simply save the schematic and the PCB from pcb_namei1.sch to pcb_namei2.sch and pcb_namei1.pcb to pcb_namei2.pcb.

I’ve tried doing that with kicad - copied the schematic and PCB files across to a new directory, opening the PCB as i2 and it magically created a .pro file with i2 at the end. So, I thought I was all right.

However, it immediately became obvious that the schematic needs the page1, 2 and 3.sch files as well. So, I copied those to the new directory.

Now, when I open the schematic from the design editor, the the pages are there but all the symbols are missing from the pages. I even tried coping the .pro file across and renaming it to i2, but there are still some symbols missing from the schematic.

So, am I trying to do this in the wrong way? If so, what is the way to do this with kicad?

If this is the right way, how do I get my symbols in the schematic please?

Thanks :slight_smile:

You’re better off not renaming you files but rather copy the entire project to a new directory.

What you are trying to do can be done but you would need to edit some of the files manually.


I tried to this myself, with very similar results. It SHOULD work, but something gets lost in the translation, and I haven’t spent the time to figure a work around.

As far as I know, the easiest way is to “Archive” the current project; from the program launcher. This will zip all the needed files. However, the files will retain their original names; and I don’t know how to easily change the names.


You need to copy the .pro file as well.

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As I said in the original post, I even tried that to no avail!

Sounds like I need to do this ever so slightly differently in that I should keep the file names the same, but copy all the files to a new directory and have the directory name keep track of which issue the board is.

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Do you know which files and what should be modified? In future I’ll do the directory renaming method, but would be interesting to know what is needed to be changed.

Sorry I missed that bit. Do you have paths that depend on the original location? You could try copying the cache.lib as well.

Copying and renaming a project works, it’s how KiCad creates projects from templates. I posted about this recently. I may have even suggested wiring a script :slight_smile:

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I did it quite some times by renaming the files and editing the files as indicated further up:

  • copy all files in a new directory
  • rename all files
  • go into the files with a texteditor and rename all occurances of the filename with the new filename. If I remember correctly this is only necessary for .sch and .net

later I simply made a little program to do it for me.

Now, for version control I copy an paste the entire folder and give the folder a new name (e.g. Project01, Project02, etc).
This quick and never gave me problem

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I’m glad this system works (or has in the past worked) for you, but this is really poor-man’s version control. There are free tools that exist like git, svn, etc. that do a much better job and I’d recommend you use them instead; your current workflow is very error-prone and not user friendly.

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I shall politely disagree by saying I fail to see how completely freezing then copying a finished PCB, schematic and plots etc is in any way error prone at all.

I use Mercurial for my code (which is very similar to Git) and I think that works just fine, but a PCB is a completely different entity. Once you’ve released it, you do not need to go back an edit it at a certain date, you just work on it for the next issue. Actually, the place I’m working for a few months uses svn for all their PCB stuff and everyone hates it. It seems like an bit of a mess to me.

I can just about, maybe see an argument for doing parts and symbols with a version control, but even then, it’s just not like code where you might want to roll back to an earlier version for some reason. In fact in almost thirty years of doing PCBs I have not once wanted to roll back to a previous version of a part or symbol.

I shall certainly be continuing to finish a PCB, tar it up to freeze it and use that a basis for my next boards. I’ll leave Mercurial to the software. :slight_smile:


For all my KiCAD projects I use git and git-lfs for version control. There was a project at some pint that could even show diffs for PCB. Branching works if you want to have multiple versions of boards for the same schematic.
One thing I would recommend is to use scripts, so you don’t miss needed files for specific version.