Hi Brad,
Thanks for your explanation, t makes a lot of sense.

We are trying to solve the same sort of problem from a different angle. We
have embarked upon a company components library, arranged in component types
but all in one database. Each part is described with its essential defining
data and contained in the last three library fields is the company part
number, the component manufacturer and  the generic part number. In doing
this we have resolved the problems that you mentioned. We are, however,
still building the library as we use it and this has lead to a few problems.
In retrospect it makes sense to build the library before using it but time
pressures on projects don't allow us the luxury (Probably a false economy).

Thanks again for your explanation.


-----Original Message-----
From: Brad Velander [mailto:[EMAIL PROTECTED]]
Sent: Monday, March 12, 2001 6:20 PM
To: 'Protel EDA Forum'
Subject: Re: [PEDA] [PROTEL EDA USERS]: Database Linking...a suggested
imp roveme nt

        we use the database linking and we would not work without it given a
choice. We had numerous problems with various people working on various
designs and using their own standards for partfield information. Some would
use 1nF, others would use 1000pF or 100nF and 0.1uF, footprints CS0603 and
0603, etc. We standardized our usage with processes and rules but it didn't
work, most people ignored it. There was also a desire for more complete
information in our schematics and to automate the entry of BOMs into our MRP
system. The solution, database linking.
        In our case we were just switching to P99SE and we were using "Parts
& Vendors" for our BOMs and part info. This turns out to have been a near
perfect match because P&V outputs database information into Excel which
allows us to convert it into DBIV for linking and P&V will read in BOMs from
a generic CSV file format. Reading in the BOM from a CSV file eliminated all
sorts of stupid human error problems with BOM entry.
        In the system we use, we output the DBIV file from our P&V database
which contains value, footprint, tolerance and working voltage fields. We
link these to the schematic partfields 1, 2 and 3 and we have entered the
company part number in the parttype field by which to accomplish the link.
We display partfield1 with the value and partfield3 with the tolerance or
working voltage as required by the part type. Using Geoff Harland's recent
SCH Addon we can also stuff the footprint from partfield2 into the footprint
field so that we don't get any footprint mix-ups. Previously we were doing a
spreadsheet compare and check to ensure footprint fields matched partfield2.
        When the schematic is finished we output the Protel format bom to
Excel and convert it into CSV format containing the company partnumber,
number used and reference designators. This CSV reads directly into P&V to
create the BOM.
        The net result is that we have standard practices and data integrity
now built into our schematics and an automated BOM entry process. The end
result is that our BOMs are more correct, our schematics are more consistent
and our PCBs end up with the correct footprints for each part regardless of
whichever small nuances might try to trip us up. And all of that takes very
little user time or effort to accomplish this task.


Brad Velander
Lead PCB Design
Norsat International Inc.
#100 - 4401 Still Creek Dr.,
Burnaby, B.C., Canada.
voice: (604) 292-9089 (direct line)
fax:    (604) 292-9010
www: www.norsat.com

-----Original Message-----
From: Coleman, Tim [mailto:[EMAIL PROTECTED]]
Sent: Friday, March 09, 2001 12:51 AM
Subject: Re: [PEDA] [PROTEL EDA USERS]: Database Linking...a suggested
improveme nt

To answer your question: 
  "Does anybody else actually use database linking or is it largely
 I haven't yet worked out what to use it for so I have disregarded it.
However, I am keen to know how to get the most from this tool so tell me,
what do you use it for? Anyone?

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