Altium NEXUS Documentation

Unused Pad Shapes

Created: April 26, 2022 | Updated: April 26, 2022
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The Unused Pad Shapes dialog
The Unused Pad Shapes dialog

Summary

The Unused Pad Shapes dialog is used to remove any unused pad shapes. An unused pad shape is the pad shape in a pad or via that is not used on a layer (i.e. it has no other objects touching it on that layer). These unused pad shapes can consume valuable board area particularly when there are polygon pours on those layers. If unused pad shapes are removed, polygon clearances are to the pad or via hole rather than the edge of the unused pad shape.

Access

The dialog is accessed from the PCB Editor by clicking Tools » Remove Unused Pad Shapes from the main menus.

Options/Controls

  • Scope
    • Vias - examine all vias in the design and remove unused pad shapes.
    • Pads - examine all pads in the design and remove unused pad shapes.
    • Both - examine all vias and pads in the design, then remove unused pad shapes.
  • Operation
    • Remove unused - use the tool to remove unused pad shapes.
    • Restore unused - use the tool to restore removed pad shapes to all vias.
    • Update unused - use the tool to update unused pad shapes both attached and not attached to all vias.
  • Selected only - enable to examine only selected vias or pads and remove unused pad shapes.
  • Preserve pads on start and end layers - a pad or via might not use the pad shape on the outer most layers on which its structure exists; these outer-layer pad shapes can be retained if required.
    Confirm that pad-less-outer-layer pads or vias are supported by your fabricator before disabling this option.

Notes

  • To ensure that existing polygons recover all available copper area that was lost to unused pad shapes in pads and vias, run the Tools » Polygon Pours » Repour All command after removing unused pad shapes.
  • The Pad and Via objects with pad shapes removed by using the Unused Pad Shapes removal tool will not be reported as objects offending a Minimum Annular Ring design rule.

    The unused pad shapes have been removed from the inner layers for pads highlighted in the image (these pads have connections on the bottom layer only, the pad shape on the top layer is preserved to provide component solderability). While there are no pad shapes on these layers, these pads are not offending the Minimum Annular Ring design rule.
    The unused pad shapes have been removed from the inner layers for pads highlighted in the image (these pads have connections on the bottom layer only, the pad shape on the top layer is preserved to provide component solderability). While there are no pad shapes on these layers, these pads are not offending the Minimum Annular Ring design rule.

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