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What's Good About Allegro GRE Planning? You’ll Need the SPB16.3 Release to See!

Comments(0)Filed under: PCB Layout and routing, PCB design, SPB, Allegro PCB Editor, Allegro, PCB Editor, PCB, SPB 16.3, Allegro 16.3, layout, SPB16.3, GRE, global route, routing, Predictable PCB design

This new SPB16.3 Global Route Environment (GRE) Plan Status and Router Status functionality will assist you in finding errors and is designed to make it easier to work with the router and obtain feedback from the router. It employs a Constraint Manager type spreadsheet interface with cells that are active. In other words, you can execute commands on the data found within the cells.

The Plan Status and Router Status forms work similarly so you can pick any cell in either dialog and execute an appropriate command on the data in the field. To do this, you use the same command system found in the Constraint Manager – namely the right mouse button (RMB) to obtain a pop-up menu with the allowed commands based on the cell selection.

Read on for more details …

Plan Status

In the Plan progress form, we can see that there are now several commands available to us in the Bundle name column, which can be accessed using the RMB. For example –

  • Select – The system zooms to the Bundle(s) selected.
  • Select and Show Element – Same as select, but it also brings up a Show Element form.
  • Deselect – Removes the Bundle from the current selection set.
  • View Errors – Displays an Error Form listing all the errors pertaining to the cells currently selected.
  • Plan – This will let you “drive” the router from the Bundle name field. It has a pull-right sub-form that lets you pick Spatial, Topological or Accurate.

When a Bundle has errors, you can pick on the error cell for that Bundle and obtain information about the errors on the Errors Form as shown below:

The View Errors form contains detailed information about the error. If you zoom into a “small” area of the design and click on the hyperlink, the canvas will move the error location.

Note1: There is no automatic visibility changes available to turn on/off appropriate or invalid layers.
Note2: You can have as many View Errors dialogs open as desired. However, if you run the router on some data and it happens to clear up a particular error, the View Errors forms DO NOT know this. Therefore, they could be reporting out of date or stall errors.

Selection Functionality

This new functionality also supports multiple selections so you can pick as many entries as you want from the columns to execute your desired command.

The standard drag, SHIFT, and CTRL keys and functionality can be used to create the appropriate selection set:

Note1: When you pick some Bundles and run a route command, the current selection set is replaced with the objects you currently have selected.
Note2: Since you can use either dialog, you can do selections in the Plan Status dialog that could “replace” what is currently in the Router Status dialog.

When the router is running, the selection mechanisms are basically unavailable and are grayed out as shown below:

Finally, you can sort the columns in ascending or descending order by either using the RMB> pop-up (as shown below) or double clicking on the column to toggle sorting from ascending to descending:


 I look forward to your comments on using this new SPB16.3 capability.

Jerry "GenPart" Grzenia


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