Why is there still no "Save Project As" feature?

It occurred to me that the one single program I have had zero issues with is Adobe Reader; there does not seem to be any *.pdf file that I can not open successfully with the MS Windoze OS (Win7_64) along with the Adobe Reader program.

What is keeping KiCad from performing the same?

In Adobe Reader I can, "Save As Other " to perform that task with a *.pdf file. However, the same can not be done with KiCad.

Disclaimer: this is just my educated guess, I am not a core dev.

There is no “Save project as” because that function will most certainly not do what people would expect it to do (create copy of the current project including pcb, schematic, etc) but it will do something different which is not that useful but actually makes sense with how KiCad is structured (create copy of your .pro file, that’s it).

Can this function be implemented in the useful way, how most people expect it to work? Certainly, but it is a lot of work in KiCad for something any file manager can do in two button presses.
Reason is that kicad programs (project manager, pcbnew, eeschema) are pretty much separate applications with very little communication between them at this time. Project manager can act as a host process to launch eeschema and pcbnew, eeschema and pcbnew can exchange basic information like netlist/component list but that’s about it.
There is no notion of actual “project”, just bunch of files in the same directory. If you look at contents of the .pro file it doesn’t even reference schematic or pcb files, just some settings.

To do things smart way, i.e. maintain project as a coherent entity with cross links between .pro, sch, pcb files would be significant change to KiCad and there is no compelling reason to do that right now. Devs prioritize other work instead.


Hello –
I am a newb, but interested in what OP is asking.

Is the quesxn in re “Save As” some other file type? (ex.g., in Acrobat is some 15+ different file types.)

Or, is quesxn in re saving *.pro as different file name, as rudimentary version control?

Which, begs me to quesxn, is there internal revision history/version control created with a *.pro file? Can I “instantly” revert to last week’s work if current not satisfactory? For a newb, that might propel me past the sysiphian hurdles I occasionally encounter.

Please excuse my ignorance.


If you need to save a project with a new name you may find this useful…

The main problem for renaming are the cache and rescue libs. Without these the task would be really straight forward. (Simply rename the root schematic, pcb and pro files.)
The goal for v6 is to implement the new symbol and schematic file format. Part of this new file format is to include symbols in the schematic file similar to how footprints are included in the pcb file format.

In other words: v6 will most likely no longer need the cache and rescue lib nonsense. My guess is that the devs simply do not want to invest time into such a feature that will be made obsolete with version 6. (And right now it can not be added to v5 anyways as it is not allowed to add new features to minor release numbers as per the kicad release convention.)
Implementing this for v6 will be very trivial so my guess would be that v6 will come with this feature. (Unless it is forgotten to add it. -> Meaning make a wishlist bug report if it does not already exist)

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In addition to Rene’s post:
How often do you want to rename a project?
Once a month on average maybe?
I simply close KiCad and use a file manager to do such things.
This way I know which files are being renamed / copied, etc.

I’d rather see developer time spend on features I use 100x a day when working with KiCad.

The only reason why somebody might want this feature is the exact reason why it is not implemented. Because you need to be mindful about the special files and their implications.

My suggestion therefore is to have a directory dedicated to every project of yours. (This directory should only contain one kicad project.) For every new version copy the full directory, rename only the directory but keep the kicad files named the same as in the original.
This way you do not need to take care of anything on the kicad side and still are able to make multiple versions of your project. (Is this the best possible theoretical solution? No it is not. Is it a practical workaround for the currently limited feature set? I would guess yes.)

(Quite typical: 9 years old, heat 84, often asked for - not implemented yet. There are much pressures building up for v6…)

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Another recomendation is too keep your project with on a versioning control system (git, mercurial, etc.) I love the fact that they are text file and quite viable for that.

This is good for re-visioning, but ‘save as’ is also useful when you want to make a new project slightly different from the base project, but with many features similar or even identical to the base project…
Then the new project couldn’t have the same file names to avoid confusion, but it would be nice to be able to maintain the same settings and some part of the schematics.

Or when you simply want to rename the project.

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I agree with you here. But we have kicad with the feature set it has right now so here another “workaround”.

KiCad can now import DRC settings from other projects. Additionally if you notice you always want the same settings then a template project might be a good idea.

Schematics can be easily imported if you use hierarchical design.

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HAH! Appears to have finally made it!

At least for the cache file, I think KiCad must have special logic to fix it up, because I just rename my files (including the cache file), and it works great.

Yes the cache file only needs renaming. But the rescue lib really needs both the symbol library table and the schematic files updated. (Unless you want a single file in there with the old project name.)

Sadly it seems the patch does not handle the cache and rescue libraries at all so i think this one will need a lot more work put into it. (Lets see of the contributor is prepared to follow through or if it will die half done.)

Few months ago I was trying to save project as template and failed.
I plan to check it once more in some time in future.

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