PCB routing: how to easily select a component


A problem that happens all the time. I need to move a component. I can of course use M while
hovering and it will select the whole chip.
However, one function I use a lot is to set the accurate coordinates of the chip. In this case, if it happens that I hover on a pad, it will open a panel for the pad, not for the chip. What’s the point of editing a single pad of a given chip? Is there a way to disable this pad editing which I will probably never use?

Thanks for any hint.

What’s the point of editing a single pad of a given chip?

Some users want the flexibility to adjust the properties of single pads without the library-editor.
Usecases for instance: reduce pad-size because of space-restictions. Or make one with a increased diameter for easier THT-mounting. Or change the zone-connection-settings (none-solid-thermal relief, independent from the global zone setting).
All this can also be done with the library editor, but for users who modify their footprints quite often I see some advantage with the current flexibility.

Is there a way to disable this pad editing which I will probably never use?

Sadly no. I’m on your side of the discussion and don’t use pad-modification (because it gets overwritten on the next “update from libraries”-action, without noticing that important changes get overwritten), and therefore I also quite heavily dislike this behaviour.
I opened a gitlab-issue 2 years ago (as I started working with Kicad), but it was rejected because it was diametral to the Kicad-flexibility approach.
You can try your luck and open a new proposal, maybe it get’s more positive resonance today.

You can uncheck the Preferences–>PCB editor–>Editing options–> allow free pads, but this disables only pad-movement (and dragging) with the mouse, not the pad editing in general.
You can also uncheck “Pads” in the selection filter, but than hightlighting and routing works not as good.

Only if you single or double click the mouse.

If you hover over the pad, without selecting, then press M, the footprint will be highlighted with the cursor attached to the pad selected.
If you hover near the Anchor, press M, the Anchor will be selected by the cursor.

Keep finger away from Left Mouse Button. :slightly_smiling_face:

You can filter your selection, bottom right:


or do a long Click and then select what you want . . .

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Thanks for the replies.

I just tried. This looks like what I was looking for. Not sureyet whether there are drawbacks, but at least on a small test PCB, it seems to work.

Screenshot from 2023-05-28 10-51-11

And beside this, the setup survives a restart of the software.


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