I agree with Ian,   the testpoint feature is pretty much useless.   I also
found the testpoint report to be incomplete and inaccurate.  For those
reasons,  I have my customers generate a separate schematic page with
nothing but testpoints.   The clear advantages are you can control
clearances,  top or bottom  sides, and have much better control over size
and location.   There is no easy method to do some tasks, this is one of
them.  Even the testpont generator in other programs like spectra doesn't
work well either.   It generates  top test points under components which is
not desirable.    Using Ians method  doesn't take long .    I will complete
a design,  then add the testpoints after importing a netlist for the final
time.    Move component  (testpoint) manually to desired locations  is a
cinch.  Afterwards I use the pick and place output to generate their
locations, merge is with a netlist report and it works everytime on all

Mike Reagan
Frederick MD

----- Original Message -----
From: Ian Wilson <[EMAIL PROTECTED]>
To: Protel EDA Forum <[EMAIL PROTECTED]>
Sent: Wednesday, August 21, 2002 6:25 PM
Subject: Re: [PEDA] "Find and Set Testpoints"

> On 03:07 PM 21/08/2002 -0500, Michael Biggs said:
> >What issues prevent Find and Set Testpoints - from converting connector
> >or vias to be testpoints if your Testpoit style and Testpoit usage are
> >ok. I have to manually go and set the pads for testpoints and they are
> >through holes. The design rules clear ok but why doesnt it pick up on all
> >the vias and pads needed?
> Protel's testpoint finder is not really all that useful for current
> technology tester.  It assumes that the points must be on a grid - most
> modern testers only require a certain separation (100mils preferred, 75
> mils OK).
> I have had poor results with the Testpoint finder.  The testpoint rule is
> great - it will alert my to any net without a testpoint.
> There is/was, I think an third party testpoint finder - it may (not sure)
> have been at:
> http://www.eda.co.uk
> We often have quite dense boards.  We usually try to achieve 100%
> coverage.  Although we prefer not to use a via as a test point, due to
> possible barrel damage, we do sometimes.  Since the boards are dense we
> like to tent the top of the via but expose the bottom of those that are
> as testpoints.  P99SE did not allow selective top and bottom tenting (DXP
> does).  So we manually placed a testpoint component (a simple 1mm round
> pad) over the vias that we want to expose as test point.  The Sch has all
> the testpoints marked for debugging.  The testpoint components can be
> placed on vias if necessary or nearby a via and a track run, if
> possible.  A simple rule can be set to check clearances between testpoint
> components (we normally name the single pad as something like TP, within
> the library footprint and then set a Pad to pad clearance rule with a
> suitable scope based on the pad name.  The testpoint component can include
> a 5mil wide, 47.5mil radius arc on a mech layer to show (visually) the
> clearance required.  Since the testpoints are components they have
> automatic text (designator) that can be hidden or shown as desired, which
> matches the Sch. There are lots of advantages in this over using existing
> pads and vias as testpoint.
> In fact, the ability to be able to set a rule checking the distance
> testpoint pads is missing unless you use a separate pad, or you use other
> contrived methods.  We use Footprint-Pad scope - only out TP component
> (with its single TP pad) is used as a testpoint so the rule is easy).  Can
> any one else come up with a clearance rule that checks that any via or pad
> marked as a testpoint (either free or within a component) is at least xyz
> mils from its nearest neighbour?
> >  Is is there anyway to select all the pads you want
> >as testpoints and do a global edit? Mine was'nt working for me. Any
> >thoughts?
> http://www.considered.com.au/Protel01.htm
> There is a freeware server there to allow this.
> In the past I used to do it (set the testpoint status of selected
> pads/vias) by saving-as an ASCII format and then using a search and
> to change the testpoint status as required for records marked as
> selected.  I got sick of doing this hence the server.  For some very
> unknown and unfathomable reason Altium did not permit global operations on
> the testpoint status.  No idea why.  It may be that the global code in
> P99Se was getting quite complex and any change required significant
> elsewhere - I can't imagine that it would be deliberately left out if it
> was easy to do.
> Ian Wilson
> ************************************************************************
> * Tracking #: C6DAC609AD84274D8D85C98F600DC9C9E842FAA2
> *
> ************************************************************************

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