At 11:31 AM 5/23/2002 -0700, Brad Velander wrote:
>Abd ul-Rahman or others,
>         do you know of a process using Protel V2.8 whereby you can read in
>gerber type data with a unique name applied to pads or vias of certain


>  Then you can replace these uniquely named pads and via flashes with
>Protel pads & vias through global edits? I don't recall the exact process
>but I did do it once under the guidance of someone who is not here anymore.
>We used to do this to return intelligence back to gerber flashed pads and
>vias in the Protel database. That typically just left tracks to globally
>edit to the correct layers. it's not perfect solution fo this problem but it
>did take care of multilayer type pad connectivity.

First of all, if the plot layers are appropriately named, they will come in 
to the proper Protel layer.

The difficulty with the process Mr. Velander has described is the 
hand-waving part: getting the file with unique names applied to pads. He 
mentioned vias, but vias don't have names....

If I have a file with pad names and locations, the spreadsheet can be used 
to bring those names into the pads; likewise, in the spreadsheet, the pads 
can be made into through-pads if appropriate; the spreadsheet can also be 
used to bring in drill data (it is not hard to turn a text drill file into 
a spreadsheet with locations and sizes, which can then be co-sorted with 
the pad data and merged).

I haven't done a major gerber import in some time; but I did use the 
spreadsheet to assign names to a mass of pads. I was creating a footprint 
with about 1600 pads (for a MEMS array), and the thought alone of 
hand-entering all those names made me tired. I had a list of names and 
locations from the client....

The spreadsheet could also be used to offset the drill data, if necessary, 
to match the photoplots; but this can be done in CAMtastic, probably 
easier. I did just do that with some client gerber, but I was only making a 
panel, not taking the data into Protel (but I merged it with Protel data 
for the panel cutouts and holes, CAMtastic is fantastic for that, once one 
gets behind the weird and poorly documented user interface.....)

>         Supposedly this process only worked in version 2.8. Sorry I don't
>recall the exact process as I was guided through it only once for a very
>small project. At the time I was assured that it only worked in V2.8 and not
>any newer versions.

As I said, the hard part is getting that file.... CAMtastic will generate a 
net list of sorts, that gives pad locations, so one could use the location 
as the name.... I don't think that would improve things much.

Tango had a nice little pad naming tool that would assign a sequential pad 
number with a single click per pad. I've missed it quite a number of times, 
such a simple procedure that is missing from Protel unless I've overlooked it.

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