PCBNew 6: How to constrain track or via drag to 0/45/90?

Often I need to lay down a section of track that goes only part way to the destination, sometimes just leaving the end dangling, or ending in a via I know will be needed. (For example, when “routing out” a bunch of tracks from an MCU in a crowded neighborhood). Those tracks lay down with nice 0/45/90 constraints.

However, when I come back later to extend those tracks, I might start by dragging the “dangling” endpoint or via. Infuriatingly, that drag operation fails to obey any 0/45/90 constraint, and instead causes the last segment of track to move to any diagonal angle, such as the always-popular 88.5 degrees, or 47.2 degrees. :frowning:

I have Preferences > PCB Editor > Editing Option > Track Editing set to “Drag (45 degree mode)”, and also the nearby Graphics Editing > “Limit actions to 45 degrees from start” checked.

But these don’t appear to do anything for the drag endpoint or drag via operation I described.

What am I missing? Thanks!

Application: KiCad PCB Editor (64-bit)
Version: (6.0.7), release build
wxWidgets 3.1.7
libcurl/7.83.1-DEV Schannel zlib/1.2.12
Platform: Windows 10 (build 19044), 64-bit edition, 64 bit, Little endian, wxMSW
Build Info:
Date: Jul 26 2022 02:49:38
wxWidgets: 3.1.7 (wchar_t,wx containers)
Boost: 1.79.0
OCC: 7.6.0
Curl: 7.83.1-DEV
ngspice: 37
Compiler: Visual C++ 1929 without C++ ABI
Build settings:


Try the “D” hotkey, not the “G” hotkey.

Right mouse click on selected track segment explains the difference.

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@jmk Thanks!

Ah-hah! G = Free Drag. D = Drag constrained to 0/45/90.

What a relief!

Sure would be great if the settings dialog that purports to affect this had a note pointing out the D vs G distinction! But at least it’s good that the context menu gives a clue.

1 Like

Do you mean this? This is specifically referring to when you click and drag on a trace, not what happens when you use the hotkey.


For what it’s worth, the hotkey dialog explains the difference as well.


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