At 06:26 PM 12/27/2001 -0500, Bob Wolfe wrote:
>Well Guys and Gals,
>All I know is a while back I tried a number of times to keep an alternate
>footprint to no avail. I made a contact switch symbol which had 2 pins.
>I needed 3 different footprints for this same function. So rather than
>creat 3 separate symbols I just added the other 2 footprints to the list.
>Well if you do need to update footprints with synchronizer it ripped up
>the ones that used the 2nd and 3rd footprint on th elist
>an dreplaced it with the 1st EVERY time.

There are two update processes, in discussing this we should be careful not 
to confuse them. One is to update the schematic symbols from a modified 
library symbol. The other is to update a PCB from information on the 
schematic. Okay, Mr. Wolfe added footprints to the list of footprints in 
the library. What then? He did not say.

Assuming that by "synchronizer" he means Update PCB from schematic, and 
that by "the ones that used the 2nd and 3rd footprint" he meant schematic 
symbols with the second and third choices made so that those footprints 
appear in the edit symbol dialog in schematic, and that there were 
corresponding PCB components presumably manually placed, the behavior he 
has reported is not confirmed by anyone else so far (with the possible 
exception of an old P98 bug).

I urge writers who are having a difficulty such as that reported by Mr. 
Wolfe to take the trouble and time to become very precise in describing 
what happened. Not only will this make response easier, but more than half 
the time, I would guess, one will figure iout the problem oneself. I don't 
know for sure if this is the case here, and this is not personal against 
Mr. Wolfe, most of us do not write -- or speak, for that matter -- with 
precision, we have strong points in other areas and we communicate 
sketchily, which can work very well face-to-face, especially if there is a 
listener who is willing to seem stupid, i.e., "I don't understand...."

So let me describe what Mr. Wolfe should have done, in my opinion.

(1) Edit the library symbols to have the three optional footprints. Make 
the first one the most commonly used, if there is any difference. Save the 

(2) Update the schematic from the library with that symbol open, so that 
all instances of the symbol now have the three choices.

(3) Go to each one of them and choose the correct footprint for that instance.

(4) Update PCB with "update component footprints" checked. The synchronizer 
should now replace all instances with footprints other than those chosen 
for them. Those which already have a footprint of the same name will be 

If he did this, and footprints were replaced with footprints *other than 
those specified in the edit symbol dialog in schematic*, then we have a bug.

>  I finally got fed up and made 3
>symbols (by the way Protel was no help on this either) for the 3 footprints
>an dhaven't had a problem since. As lon gas I did not try to update any
>footprints with them all on one symbol it was OK.

The information transfer in the synchronizer is usually the same as would 
be transfered with a net list. The footprint field in the net list is what 
has been entered in the footprint field on the symbol; quite often this is 
manually entered, it is not even from the schematic. If the schematic 
footprint field for a symbol is empty, the net list field will likewise be 
empty, and Load Netlist will leave any existing footprint in place. 
Likewise the synchronizer will do the same. At least it should!

>Now I don't know what other buttons or oprions to click on or off. It seem
>syou either
>want update footprints or you don't.

Frankly, once you have placed the correct footprint information in the 
schematic, you should want to always update footprints. And you should 
always preview changes unless you are very confident that everything is 
copacetic. If a footprint change macro is created, you want to see it 
before approving it. When you are first creating a PCB, you might skip the 
preview, but whenever you are making small changes, you should definitely 
preview the macros to make sure that what is being changed is what you want 
to change and nothing else.....

>  Unless there are some other config
>items burried somewhere
>to play with???

No, it is terribly simple. But sometimes we get a wild hair in our head 
that makes simple things complicated, so we can overlook the obvious. I 
suspect that this has happened to Mr. Wolfe because he keeps mentioning the 
footprint options but has not actually mentioned the chosen footprint, 
which may be one of the choices or it may be something completely different....

*Footprints are not controlled from the library.*

I don't know what happens if a footprint choice has been made for a symbol 
and then the symbol is updated from library to add choices. It *should* 
leave the footprint field untouched, but I would not bet on it.... It is 
conceivable that there is a problem here, and that it is behind Mr. Wolfe's 

Abdulrahman Lomax
Easthampton, Massachusetts USA

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