Updating a Schematic from a PC Board

I drew a schematic and then designed a pcb. Everything was good. I had some pc boards made and they look great.

But, then I changed the reference designators for the parts on the schematic, to make them more ‘in order’ from left to right and top to bottom. Now I realize that I shouldn’t have done this after designing the pcb.

I’ve tried to use Update Schematic from PCB to change the references on the schematic back to what they were, to match the pcb. But when I select to update the references only, I get a bunch of errors:

Error: Cannot find symbol for footprint ‘R4’

This is for about every part reference on the schematic and on the board.

What am I doing wrong? What is the proper way to update the part references on the schematic from the pcb that’s already designed?

John Rayfield, Jr.

When you the PCB Editor / Tools / Update Schematics from PCB, make sure the **Re-link footprints to schematic symbols based on their reference designators is off.

Note, this is also normal procedure. KiCad has: PCB Editor / Tools / Geographical Reannotate to give the RefDes a geographical order on the PCB, and this also has to be synchronized back to the schematic in the same way.

Normally KiCad uses UUID’s to link schematic symbols and PCB footprints, and reference designators are mostly a visual thing, and a way to re-synchronize when something went wrong.

If you have gotten yourself into a situation that neither the RefDes nor UUID’s are synchronized anymore, then the only thing left is tedious manual intervention to fix the RefDes, and then do the Re-linking to also synchronize the UUID’s again.

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