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The new Find Similar Components dialog now provides the ability to define search preferences based on the selected component in a schematic or PCB document. The dialog is accessed by right-clicking on a listed component within the Components panel then selecting Find Similar Components. The Find Similar Components dialog is used to define your search preferences based on the selected component. The final search results will depend on the selected component type, be it managed or unmanaged components, and your server connection status. For example, managed components will often display more parameters than a unmanaged component. To specifically gather components and parameters that are the same or different from the one selected, the drop-down may be utilized to select Same, Any, or Different choices. Use the Apply button to test and fine tune search criteria to yield the desired results without closing the dialog. Click OK to view a curated list of similar components based on your fine tuned search criteria.
It is now possible to set favorite parameters in the Components panel. To mark parameters as favorites, click Show More to expand the parameters list then click the next to each parameter you want set as a favorite. You can then click Show Less to view the favorites that you selected.
To reset your favorites to the five default parameters, right-click then choose Reset Favorite Parameters.
The Components panel's Categories pane (or drop-down menu in docked mode) lists any installed/open libraries and all available Managed Components under the All category entry. When the panel is in its wide mode, click the Categories heading (or the « icon) to collapse or expand the display of the column – the pane now fully collapses to a narrow format.
The Compare feature allows you to compare parameters of two selected parts. This feature is accessed by selecting two components (parts) in the grid region. The Selected Component Details region opens below the grid region. The upper region displays the name, price, and view of the components' parameters, with differences highlighted in red text for easy comparison. The lower region displays a side-by-side view of the components' Symbols and Models.
With this release, you can use custom filtering to further refine filtering in the Components panel. The feature is available by clicking the icon in the header then selecting (Custom). This will open the Filter Editor dialog, which allows you to define the condition, operator, value, operator type, etc., for which you want to filter results.
With this release, the Search function has been enhanced to include the ability to reuse the active search string in the Search field for modification as required. To search for available components in the Components panel, enter a phrase in the Search field and/or use the panel's Categories and Filters selections to narrow the component listing to your specific needs. Click the 'active' search string to enter it into the Search field. You can re-use or edit that search in the Search field.
Placing components just got easier with the addition of the Enter hotkey. To use the new shortcut, in the Components panel, select the component to be placed then click the Enter key. The component will appear "floating" in the workspace; click to place it in the desired location.
The Symbol and Footprint can now be manually hidden within the Models section of the Details pane.
The symbol and footprint of a given component can now be hidden within the Models section of the Details pane, which is accessed by clicking at the upper right. Once hidden, the symbol and footprint will be replaced with clickable links that revert the hidden items to their original view. Also included is the ability to scale the size of the displayed models. For both the symbols and footprints, click and drag the lower perimeter of the model area to resize the image.
The Replace Component dialog provides direct access to all available server-based managed components and file-based library components. The dialog offers full details of the selected component (parameters, models, part choices, supplier data, etc.,), component comparison, and for Managed Components, a filter-based parametric search capability for specifying target component parameters. The dialog uses the basic search engine functionality and view that is applied in the Manufacturer Part Search panel, and has been updated to clearly show the original component you are about to replace.
The Replace Component dialog is opened from various locations during component replacement, including the schematic component Properties panel (shown below), and the ActiveBOM right-click menu.
Additional options and controls have been added when configuring the snapping options in the PCB. This can be seen in the Snap Options region of the Properties panel when browsing the options for the board and nothing is selected.
A key feature of working with the snap options is being able to reconfigure them as you work. The snap options pop-up displayed in the image below can be accessed from the PCB and PCB Library editor by clicking on the Active Bar or by using the Ctrl+E shortcut. This allows you to configure snap options on-the-fly.
The new options featured in the snap options section of the Properties panel are designed to help you accurately position and align design objects. The system brings together different sub-systems to collectively configure:
The video below demonstrates various snap options in action.
Component selection has been enhanced with the ability to configure the bounding box that surrounds the selected component. The bounding box can be configured to display as shown and described below.
0 - legacy 1- by layer 2 - by graphic
The setting is configured on the Advanced Settings dialog, which is accessed by clicking Advanced Settings on the System – General page of the Preferences dialog. To configure the component selection bounding box, update the Value of the PCB.ComponentSelection Preference Name (highlighted in the image below). There are three settings available for component selection (listed in the Description column).
Keepouts now present with cross-hatching to help enhance their view in the workspace. Cross-hatching applies to all keepout primitives.
The View Configuration panel now provides the ability to configure visibility for Keepouts.
Several new features have been added to the Layer Stack Table object.
There are three different alignment options provided in the Align section: left, center and right. Click the horizontal lines to set the desired alignment.
The Width can be manually determined by changing the Auto value to a specific value.
Click the Add button to add a Layer, Name, Material, Thickness, Constant, Gerber, or Board Layer Stack column. If no longer desired, select a column, then click the to delete the column. You will be prompted to confirm the deletion of the selected item(s). Use the Up and Down buttons to reorganize the columns, where the top-most column will be the left-most column featured in the workspace.
Center Dimension, Baseline Dimension, Linear Diameter Dimension, and Radial Diameter Dimension are once again available in this release. The objects can be placed in the PCB and PCBLIB Editor by using the Place » Dimensions sub-menu and the Active Bar.
These group design objects allow for the dimensioning of various objects, ranging from tracks, arcs, polygons, or components, among many others. Center dimension allows for the center of an arc or circle to be marked. Linear diameter dimension and radial diameter dimension allow for the dimensioning of an arc or circle with respect to the diameter rather than the radius. The baseline dimension can be utilized to dimension the linear distance of a collection of references that are relative to a single base reference. The 'base' refers to the first point chosen. The references can be objects (tracks, arcs, pads, vias, text, fills, polygons, or components) or points in free space.
To add a Sheet, right-click anywhere in the Layers region of the View Configuration panel then select Add Mechanical Layer to open the Layer(s) Editor dialog. Use the Layer Type drop-down to select Sheet. After clicking OK in the Layer(s) Editor dialog, the Sheet will be added to the Mechanical Layers region.
Sheet Settings can be customized in the Properties panel with regards to the X/Y Axes, Width, and Height. You can customize all of the size values or enable the Get Size From Sheet Layer option to show the default size values from the Sheet.
The Sheet Line/Area Color is now available to be configured in the System Colors region of the View Configuration panel.
In this release, exporting a region's Outline Vertices to a CSV-formatted file has been restored. This command is accessed by right-clicking on the Outline Vertices in the Region mode of the Properties panel then selecting Export to CSV. After launching the command, the Save as dialog opens in which you can select the desired location and name of the *.csv file.
The option to merge net-tie nets for ODB++, IPC-D-356A and IPC-2581 outputs has been made available when configuring Fabrication Outputs. If a design contains nets connected by Net-Tie components, these nets will report as distinguished single nets in the netlist. The Merge Net-Tie Nets option has been added to the following dialogs (shown in the images below): ODB Setup, Testpoint Setup. and IPC-2581 Configuration. The dialogs are accessed from the File » Fabrication Outputs sub-menu.
The new X,Y Axis Scale object now provides the possibility to define line styles and units between drawing view points in the Draftsman Editor. You can place and attach the X,Y Axis Scale object between any two drawing view points to determine and label the distance between them. Various properties of the object may be customized, including the thickness, stylistic design of the line styles, and font choice. The primary units, dual units, primary values, and dual values may also be set in accordance to your preferred unit choices. The object may be placed in the Draftsman Editor by choosing Place » X,Y Axis Scale from the main menus, the right-click menu within the workspace, and from the Active Bar.
The new Diametral Dimension object has been added and can be placed in a Draftsman document by using the Place » Dimensions sub-menu and the Active Bar. A Diametral Dimension is an automated dimensioning graphic that applies to circular hole objects in a Board Assembly View. The visual style of the dimension lines and the configuration of the dimension text data can be set in the Properties panel when a placed Diametral Dimension is selected. The Diametral Dimension can be graphically modified by selecting any part of its graphic representation and then dragging its editing handle to the new location; its associated extension lines will adjust accordingly.
A new column has been added to the Layer Stack Legend, which represents the physical layer number. The column presents a sequential number of the electrical layers, which can be added in the Layer Information dialog, accessed by clicking the Layer Info button in the Layer Stack Legend mode of the Properties panel. In the Columns region of the Layer Information dialog, a physical layer can be added by enabling the # (hashtag) in the drop-down.
The existing Callout object has been enhanced to support multiple sources in a Draftsman document. This is done by right-clicking on a placed Callout then selecting Add Source. After initially placing a Callout, the multi-source Callout option will remain active, allowing for multiple sources to be continuously created. A source can be deleted by right-clicking on a placed Callout then selecting Delete Source.
Dimensions can now be placed 'freely' on a Board Fabrication View in a Draftsman document without being limited to snap points. Dimensions must still be attached to an object, but allows for the freedom of dimension placement in many more places on the Board Fabrication View.
The image below shows a placed Linear Dimension and Radial Dimension on a Board Fabrication View.
If the Generate Table of Contents option is enabled in the PDF Settings dialog, the PDF bookmarks will be generated in accordance with the actual Bookmarks panel content.
The new Operations sub-menu in ActiveBom groups all of the available commands together, which can be accessed by right-clicking on a selected component.
The ability had been added to select and use Unmanaged Components when changing or replacing existing components from the ActiveBom. To change a component, right-click on a selected component in an ActiveBom document then select the Operations » Change <ComponentName> command. The Replace Component dialog will open, where the replacement component can be searched for using the Available File-based Libraries and the File-based Libraries dialogs, which are accessed from the drop-down after clicking the .
The Multi-board Assembly Preferences pages have been restored and are accessed by clicking Multi-board Assembly in the main Preferences dialog (accessed by clicking the button in the top right corner of the workspace). Use the Multi-board Assembly - General page to configure which objects to import from the PCB when building a multi-board. The Multi-Board Assembly - View Configuration page is used to configure the default system colors and display options of a Multi-board Assembly.
The View Configuration panel has been restored to the Multi-board Assembly editor. Use the panel to configure the Projection style, Section View mode and planes, and the System Colors. The panel can be accessed from a Multi-board Assembly document (*.MbaDoc) by clicking Panels on the lower right of the workspace then choosing View Configuration or by using the keyboard shortcut L.
In the workspace, drag a colored access handle to move that section plane.
The ability has been added to make components and/or STEP parts semi-transparent. This allows you to easily find other parts or define where to make a section view. Use the right-click context menu to enable (checked) or disable (unchecked) the Transparent option.
STEP models in a Multi-board Assembly (*.MbaDoc) now can be updated by right-clicking then choosing Update Selected 3D Body. The object's location and user-defined Mates are retained.
In this release, an option has been added that allows you to skip free 3D bodies during ECO or when importing a board file. The Import Free 3D Bodies option can be accessed from the Multi-board Assembly - General page of the Preferences dialog. Enable or disable the option as required.
The ability to export in 3D STEP and PARASOLID X_T formats has been added. To export in 3D STEP or PARASOLID formats, use the File » Export sub-menu.
The 3D Step function can be configured on the Installed » Configure Platform page (accessed by clicking the Configure button on the Installed tab of the Extensions & Updates page). Enable the MBASTEP exporter then click Apply.
The exports can then be added as a new export output in the Outjob file (*.OutJob) by right-clicking [Add New Export Output] then choosing MBA Export PARASOLID or MBA Export STEP.
Once the active migration has completed, you now have the opportunity to start a new migration by clicking the New migration button, which is located below the report.
Notice also that upon completion, your migrated components (now managed components) will be presented in the Components panel.
An option has been added to Include Datasheets in order to manage the migration of datasheets linked to unmanaged components.
You now can split your library to support migrating monolithic libraries, which contain components of different types. The Split Library Feature supports setting separate migration options for each sub-library.
The date and time present under "Last Modified" in the Open Project dialog is now set in accordance with your personal computer's settings. To configure each project's modification dates and times in a specific format, use your computer's system region settings. Once set, they will be automatically adopted in the Open Project dialog, which is accessed by choosing File » Open Project from the main menus. The date and time will display in the format chosen.
There are now two commands for 3D Body placement. From the Place menu or right-click context menu, choose Extruded 3D Body to begin interactive placement of an Extruded 3D Body object or choose 3D Body to place an MCAD Model.
The position and size of the Symbol Wizard dialog is now automatically saved. You can resize and move the Symbol Wizard dialog during use, and the next time the dialog is opened, the size and location of the dialog remains as the previous use.
Support has been added to the Eagle Importer for Eagle 9.x formats.
The Convert to Managed Project command has been renamed Make Project Available on Server. In accordance with the previous iteration, this command is only available if the installation of Altium Designer is currently signed in to a server. The Make Project Available on Server command is accessed by right-clicking on a project then selecting Make Project Available on Server. When used, the Make Available On Server dialog will open, which allows you to convert a standard, non-managed project to a managed project based on the workflow defined for the process you selected.
Users may now clone (copy) projects. The command can be accessed from the Projects panel by right-clicking on a managed project then choosing Clone Project.
After running the command, the Clone Project dialog will open with the Project Name field pre-populated with "- Copy" appended to the original project name to differentiate the two projects. You can add a Description of the cloned project and select which Folder and Local Storage in which to save the project.
The CAMtastic Editor now includes an option to export DXF files. The command is used to export the selected layers of the current document in .dxf format for use with AutoCAD. The command can be accessed from the CAMtastic Editor by choosing the File » Export » DXF command from the main menus.
After launching the command, the Export DXF/DWG dialog will open. The top section of the dialog allows you to specify which layers of the current document you want to export information for. The Output Control section of the dialog allows you to specify whether lines will be exported as zero width outlines, or filled lines (with, or without end caps). You can also filter out any unwanted Dcodes and convert text to polylines (Plines).
After setting the export options as required, click the Save button - the Write AutoCAD DXF dialog appears. Use this dialog to define where the exported file is to be stored. By default, the data file that is generated will take the name cam.dxf. The file can be renamed by clicking within the name field. The associated file extension can also be changed to another if required, by again clicking directly within the name field or, alternatively, right-clicking on the entry and choosing File Extensions from the context menu. The new extension required can be typed into the subsequent Enter Value dialog that appears.
With name, extension, and storage location defined as required, click OK to generate the file.
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