I logged https://bugs.launchpad.net/kicad/+bug/1750374 
<https://bugs.launchpad.net/kicad/+bug/1750374> for the (non-intentional) 
removal of library filters.

I imagine we’ll fix that in the Place Symbol browser.  Since we don’t have a 
Place Footprint browser yet (not to be confused with the current Footprint 
Viewer we use in that context), removal of the active library concept no longer 
sounds like a 5.0 thing.

However, that’s no reason to leave it as Byzantine as it currently is.  A 
footprint belongs to a Library.  It doesn’t matter what the active library is.  
If you Save, it gets saved in its library.  If you do a New, you need to tell 
it what library to put it in.  If you want to move it to a different library 
we’ll add a Save As… (with a New… button in it similar to the filesystem’s New 
Folder, which will allow us to dump Save in a New Library… item).

And we’ll need to put Set Active Library… back at the top and not treat it like 
it is an Open Library… command.  (We already messed that up with the icons, but 
if we move New Library to the Save As… and Set Active Library… dialogs then we 
can dispose of it on the toolbar and in the menus.)

It’s a bit involved, but I think it will make a huge improvement.



> On 19 Feb 2018, at 13:21, Rene Pöschl <poesc...@gmail.com> wrote:
> On 19/02/18 13:16, Jeff Young wrote:
>> Hi Rene,
>> Comments in-line:
>>> On 19 Feb 2018, at 12:07, Rene Pöschl <poesc...@gmail.com> wrote:
>>> On 19/02/18 12:14, Jeff Young wrote:
>>>> The Open / List All button is much faster on all libraries than it used to 
>>>> be, and it’s a bit of a step-child to Search by Keyword and Select by 
>>>> Browser anyway.
>>>> So, I’m going to propose that we add a Library selection widget to New 
>>>> Footprint..., Export Library... and Save As... and otherwise abandon the 
>>>> active library concept.
>>> If you remove the active library concept from the "list all" stuff then you 
>>> might want to add a way to filter (by library) after that dialog opened.
>>> The live filtering of the list all dialog is much more powerful then the 
>>> filter by keyword button. (I personally never use the search by keyword 
>>> feature as i in most cases know in what lib a footprint resides. Otherwise 
>>> i can use search all without having an active lib.)
>> I have no issue against this in principal, but why not just use the Select 
>> by Browser then?  It’s not only got the by-library organisation, but it has 
>> better filtering across libraries, and it shows nice images.
>> Hmmm… I suppose the Browser is missing the Filter option….
> For both the lib and footprint ;) (See next point)
>>> One use-case where filtering by a specific lib might be helpful is library 
>>> maintenance. The maintainer might have multiple different versions of the 
>>> same lib in their system. (I have three copies of the footprint library 
>>> added to my review project. Differentiated by a prefix to the library 
>>> nickname. Results in >300 libs active in this project.)
>>> The save button should also have a way to remember in which lib the 
>>> currently edited footprint resides and offer a one click save. (Fill out 
>>> the target lib and footprint name such that by default the current 
>>> footprint is overwritten.)
>>> The use-case for "i want to edit a footprint" is much more common then "i 
>>> want to copy a footprint to a different lib/name". (At least for me.)
>> Indeed, that’s the root motivation behind getting rid of the active library 
>> concept.
> To clarify: i use the select active lib dialog to filter the lib name (it has 
> live filtering of library names which the footprint browser lacks) This 
> allows me to reduce the set of libs from >300 to ~3 in most cases. (example 
> entering JST results in a list of the 3 different versions of the 
> Connector_JST lib i have on my system. For a normal user it would result in 
> one lib.)
> After that, the list all dialog allows filtering for footprints (in the 
> active lib)
> To continue the JST example: Entering 1x02 will lists all JST single row 
> connectors with two pins. (If either filtering option is missing, this 
> use-case becomes a lot harder.)
>>> A bonus would be if the selection of the target lib is made easy via some 
>>> live filtering option. (The official lib already has >100 footprint libs)
>>> And please do not remove the lib browser! This is the only way of checking 
>>> a large number of footprints in a fast way. This feature has already been 
>>> removed for symbols. (By removing the symbol selector with the preview.) 
>>> Don't make the same mistake on the footprint side.
>> Could you say more about this?  Do you mean the Footprints view in the 
>> Symbol Selector?  (You can re-enable that through preferences.)  Or 
>> something else?
>> Cheers,
>> Jeff.
> I fear this might be considered derailing the conversation. (It has currently 
> nothing to do with footprints.) I just miss a way to browse symbols in a fast 
> manner (use the arrow keys to see a preview of many symbols in a short amount 
> of time)
> This has been previously provided by the select symbol dialog in the symbol 
> editor. (To emulate this behavior in the tree view, one would need a way to 
> filter the available symbol libs and a way to navigate symbols in that lib by 
> using arrow keys. Plus fast symbol preview without further user action.)

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