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Things You Didn't Know About Virtuoso: Options? What Options?

Comments(5)Filed under: Custom IC Design, Virtuoso, Virtuoso IC 6.1.3, IC 6.1.4, IC 6.1

Recently, I got involved in helping out a customer who had become frustrated using the "stretch" command in the Virtuoso Schematic Editor.  They were posing all kinds of detailed questions about the different options to the command. 

Options?  The stretch command has options?  You just grab the stuff you want to stretch, select the command, and then you...well, then you stretch.  Oh, wait a minute, I remember now.  Lots of Virtuoso interactive commands have an options form that is normally hidden, but can be brought up during the command with a function key.  Quickly rummaging around in my brain, I determined that it was the F3 key.  (Actually, I started the stretch command and then tried pressing the function keys, one at a time, until the form came up--F1 opens the manual, in case you were wondering).

For future reference, in IC 6.1, there is an icon on the "Create" toolbar (just to the right of the "Create Pin" icon) which brings up the options form.  Also, you can force the options form to come up automatically by clicking the "Options Displayed When Commands Start" box in the CIW->Options->User Preferences... form (but that can get kind of annoying after a while, IMHO).

At this point, I spent the better part of the afternoon in "what does this button do?" mode exploring all the different combinations of options, the end result of which is the video below (as well as a few enhancement suggestions to R&D as to how to make some of the options a bit more intuitive). 

I was truly amazed at how many little tidbits I learned in just exploring this one basic command.  Hopefully you will too.

If video fails to launch click here.

 Back to more new IC 6.1.4 features next time. 

As always, your tips, comments and feedback are welcomed!

Stacy Whiteman




By kunal on January 25, 2010
Dear Sir,
how do i invert a mask in cadence virtuoso? i.e. convert a bright field mask to dark field and vice versa. I need this since i need to expose the remaining region of the layout in e-beam lithography tool using a positive photo resist (PMMA).

By Rich on February 1, 2010
Don't worry about it Kunai. The tools that convert the layout data to e-beam data can invert your data with a simple command;  it is always done this way. If you must invert it first, you can always use a NOT Boolean in any DRC tool.

By reddymsrsas on February 26, 2010
Dear sir, am using IC 6.1.  now,for this when we r drawing a layout for inverter , for pmos  transistor  we want to add bulk  ,where i have to get it that one,Before  in Ic 5.1  version ,all  ties and   vias  we are taking form  gpdk ,or  in layout  window  we are selecting  o(object) in key board  and we select which object we want, but in now ic 6.1 we didnt have that option  ,so  any other way to select that ,or whether  my library is wrong,
   please replay me,
with regards,

By Stacy Whiteman on March 3, 2010
I'm not sure I understand your question, but I suspect you will need to make sure you are using the appropriate library for the version of IC61 you are using as well as the correct one for your PDK.
I hope that helps,

By Gilles S.C. LAMANT on March 6, 2010
Probably not something you want to do for long... but if you want to see all the option form for all the commands... you can set the system to always display the option form when you start any command... Go to the CIW and set your options to display the enter function optio n form at the start of every command...

Remember to turn it off once you have had your full of these... :-)

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