At 08:40 PM 3/4/2004, Leo Potjewijd wrote:

All the vias that are placed during interactive routing (switching layers) show the big expansion , all the vias that are placed with the Place Via command are tented.

From all the discussion which has preceded, this is exactly expected behavior. The "Default" Via is set to Tent, and the default only controls manual placement of vias. Autorouting and Route Interactive use a via specification from design rules (Routing Via Style). In the design rules, one controls tenting by creating a negative solder mask expansion (Manufacturing/Solder Mask Expansion/Via Specification). An alternate method to use, particularly if one wants to tent some vias and not others, is to convert all or some vias to free pads; the pad name can then be used to control whether tenting happens or not.

*** WARNING : rant coming up ***

Because "Protel99SE.exe has caused errors and will be closed.

My condolences.

The weirdest part by far of all of this is that I did NOT EVER have a P99SE crash at home.... (the via problem _is_ present at the home system too).

Just to repeat, there isn't really a "via problem," rather a misunderstanding of how the "Default" works and how tenting is controlled. Autorouted and Route Interactive-created vias do *not* follow the "Default" settings.

That system (P2 @ 910 MHz) is running the _same_ W2kPro and P99SEsp6 (and loads of other stuff that doesn't run at work) on the _same_ amount of memory (768 MB).
No network though, and a different virus scanner (Norman at home vs McAfee at work; both set to leave .Ddb files alone)...

Right now, I'm in for some _very_ drastic measures.
Any hints?

First of all, the virus scanner and network differences are not likely to be the cause, in my opinion. Rather the most likely causes, at least the ones I'd first suspect, are the video card or a memory problem, i.e., a bad chip. There are video cards known to cause Protel to crash.... ATI cards were famous for this. And a bad memory can cause, of course, all kinds of problems. Sometimes they will only show up with one program that happens to be vulnerable. As far as the bad memory possibility is concerned, I'd swap around memory devices, if possible, or at least run some very thorough memory test utilities, the kind that you let run all night....

It is always possible, as well, that a particular installation has gotten trashed in some way, so reinstalling may be in order. Remember, when reinstalling Protel, to delete the *99SE* files in the System folder. (They aren't likely to be the problem here, but why not be thorough?)

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