> I assume this kind of thing has been done before on this forum, but since
> does not seem to be a coherent thread of this kind running I thought I
would try to
> start one...
> I am sure every user has their own mental list of 'worst' bugs, and 'must
> improvements for the various aspects of Protel. Well, SP6 has now been
released and
> hopefully it addressed some of these for some of us. There may yet be more
> packs before we see a full new release, so perhaps the readers of this
forum would
> like to join me in trying to put together a prioritised list of 'things to
fix' and
> 'things to add'. My intention is not to make any of these tasks to large
> completely re-write the autorouter so it handles high speed rules and is
10 times
> faster ) but the kind of things that can be addressed in a service pack
> running too high a risk of introducing their own undesirable side-effects.

> Rob Malos

I haven't really spent that much time to date looking at SP6, but here are
some things that I would like fixed/provided/enhanced:

Next Service Pack:

Rectify problems associated with reviewing and printing text when *Windows*
fonts are used in the PowerPrint Server. (In my experience, if Windows fonts
are used instead of Protel fonts, text within *un*-mirrored Printout
definitions displays OK when being previewed, but does not alwys print in
the appropriate location within the actual printout. Text within *mirrored*
Printout definitions is the opposite, in that it sometimes appears misplaced
within the preview, but always seems to be printed in the appropriate
location within the actual printout.)

Facilitate "un-hiding" of fields associated with components within Schematic
files, i.e. add checkboxes to display/control the visibility of these within
the dialog box provided to edit the component's properties. (The present
procedure is very circuitous, and not at all obvious to many neophytes.)

Support a parameter of "Repeat=True" for the Sch:Paste and Pcb:Paste
processes (such as is currently provided for the Sch:PlacePowerPort

Next major version:

Components within PCB files aquire a Boolean variable which records whether
the component is currently in an unmirrored state or a mirrored state.

Add support for saving/exporting/loading/importing/linking PCB Library files
in ASCII format. (At present, such a format is provided for Schematic,
Schematic Library, and PCB files.)

Restore support for (genuine) polygons on Power Plane layers (as opposed to
just "split plane" polygons).

There are other items I could add to this list, given sufficient time and
thought. I don't know how difficult they would be to implement, i.e. they
could fall under either the next SP or the next major version, but another
two items are:

Add support for "inverting" a PCB file. (Top side components become bottom
side components, and vice versa. This is different from mirroring the entire
contents of a PCB file; in the former, all components remain in an
unmirrored state (assuming they were all unmirrored previously), while all
components change to a mirrored state in the latter (same qualification).)
(As discussed previously, there are differences between "standard" inversion
and "deep" inversion, and ideally, both versions should be provided.)

Add support for "exploding" components within *schematic* files.

Some of the above (but not all) could probably be provided by
"roll-your-own" processes within addon servers. But I don't have spare time
to burn, and Protel's staff know what is happening inside their code better
than I do (or *should* know this better) ...

Geoff Harland.
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