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Home » CadSoft Support Forums » eagle.suggest.eng » PCB Routing Tool Enhancement: Setting Active Routing Layers Dynamically
PCB Routing Tool Enhancement: Setting Active Routing Layers Dynamically [message #168923] Wed, 25 January 2017 00:08 Go to next message
James Morrison
Messages: 1129
Registered: November 2004
Senior Member

I often find it would be nice to tell EAGLE which layers I intend to route on in the near future. Two cases:

First Case: 4-Layer Board

Most 4-layer boards have a similar stackup to:
Top
INNER1 - GND layer
INNER2 - POWER layer
Bottom

In this case, I am very rarely going to route to the inner two layers. But with EAGLE I _always_ get a popup menu on layer switch and there is an additional step of choosing the destination layer. There is no ambiguity here in this design--I will almost always go from routing on top to bottom (or bottom to top). So the extra step of choosing layer is irrelevant and inefficient.

If I could just mark Top and Bottom as active routing layers then there would be no need for the secondary selection.

Second Case: Multi-Layer Board

In dense board layout, you want to minimize the number of vias as they take up a lot of space. So with good planning, you can often find yourself in a situation where you're routing a bus across a board and you are only going to use 2 layers to do it. If I could set my active routing layers to the two in question, then again I save the extra step of selecting destination layer for each via.

When that bus is complete I could set the active routing layers to all the signal layers again.

Cheers,

James.


James Morrison ~~~ Stratford Digital
http://www.stratforddigital.ca
Re: PCB Routing Tool Enhancement: Setting Active Routing Layers Dynamically [message #168924 is a reply to message #168923] Wed, 25 January 2017 00:12 Go to previous messageGo to next message
James Morrison
Messages: 1129
Registered: November 2004
Senior Member

Here's the same suggestion I had back from 2011:

http://www.eaglecentral.ca/index.php/m/136334/fbf4112cf39cd7a05430861a7c835 887/?srch=middle#msg_136334


James Morrison ~~~ Stratford Digital
http://www.stratforddigital.ca
Re: PCB Routing Tool Enhancement: Setting Active Routing Layers Dynamically [message #168933 is a reply to message #168924] Wed, 25 January 2017 09:02 Go to previous message
rachaelp
Messages: 571
Registered: March 2015
Location: UK
Senior Member
Hi James,

I'll second this suggestion, although it would also help if I were able to more easily switch between layers on my Mac as it doesn't have a middle button so can't scroll through the layers with just the mouse. At least with v8 they have added the keyboard accelerators space and shift+space to move between layers and also backspace to undo the last left click! I didn't know about this until I was testing out as I was working out my reply to this and found it in the manual! I won't mention the importance of providing release notes again.....

I agree with Morten from his reply to your earlier version of this suggestion. I think the place to correctly specify this would be within the net class setup but I think generally the setup and usage of net classes needs a lot of work and expansion of functionality so this is something that could form part of that.

However, being able to manually specify this would also be beneficial as often people work with just the default net class for everything and never bother with them (probably because they are of very limited use at the moment) so I think this is a really good idea which would definitely help out when routing.

Best Regards,

Rachael
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