(solved) Didn't use projects in old version of KiCAD, am now stuck now that new KiCAD 'forces' use of projects, help please

Hello, apologies if this has been covered, I have searched but found nothing.

I’ve been using a KiCAD version from 2013 for a number of years. During this time I (ignorantly) never made use of KiCADs project manager. I just opened my files within eeschema and pcbnew, the version of KiCAD I was using allowed this and cross referencing worked fine.

Now…I’ve bought a new computer and installed KiCad 4.0.4 but can’t really open any of my old schematics and PCBs, because they’re not organised as projects it would seem. This new version of KiCad doesn’t allow opening of files straight from eeschema and pcbnew, unless I open the programs separately, which will be a bit of a farce.

Is there a way to prepare all my old files so that they will open properly with the new version of KiCAD? Going through and making them into projects I guess would be the way to do it but not sure how to do that, if indeed it is the best way?

Any help appreciated, many thanks.

First, you have to collect particular project files (schematic, pcb, netlist, output files) in separate directories. It’s recommended to keep the same name for directory folder, schematic, pcb, netlist.
Now, if you doesn’t have any .pro (project manager file) you need to copy default kicad.pro file from share\kicad\templates and rename it to match other files in each project folder. The default .pro file include the default libraries list, so if you’re using your own libs you should update the list. It can be done with text editor or via Eeschema.

Once you do this you need to make a full migrate of older projects to the new version. See PDF document in

for further guidance.

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Thanks very much for that. I seem to have got it sorted, was much less painful than I expected it to be!


It’s worth doing to get the automatic cross probing between schematic and pcb