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Selecting multiple items based on their properties

Posted: 13 Jan 2018, 14:05
by tst
I have been using Diptrace for like 10 years but I have never been able to figure out how to select multiple items based on their properties without using Ctrl+mouse.

For example, at times I would like to hide the annoying Main Marking and Additional Marking for ONLY the GND symbols, while those marking for other components like resistors and capacitors should remain visible. For larger designs, using Ctrl+mouse to hunt for all GND symbols is frustrating, inefficient, and prone to mistakes.

This is only one of the many real life scenarios that I will need to select multiple components, nets, pins, etc. based on some of their properties. Is there another way to do this other then using Ctrl+mouse? Other threads addressing this issue seem to have never been answered. Why?

Re: Selecting multiple items based on their properties

Posted: 15 Jan 2018, 10:13
by Alex
There is Edit->Edit Selection. You can select items by their type.
Besides edit selection, there is no way to select multiple items based on their properties. We will consider it for future versions.

Re: Selecting multiple items based on their properties

Posted: 15 Jan 2018, 22:48
by tst
Thank you very much for your response, Alex. Diptrace is indeed a great tool I always recommend in my local forums.

The Edit->Edit Selection you have mentioned only offer a choice of some different objects which unfortunately is not very useful. In fact, the existing Edit->Find Object function is already very close to what we need. Either add a "Select" button in there to covert the result into selected objects, or simply select all objects in the result by default. It is just that simple!

Selecting multiple items is such a basic operation that I think it deserves a rather high priority on Diptrace development team's todo list rather then some fancy new features.

Re: Selecting multiple items based on their properties

Posted: 16 Jan 2018, 10:28
by Alex
Thank you for the suggestion. I will add it to our feature list.

Re: Selecting multiple items based on their properties

Posted: 29 Apr 2020, 10:25
by ElektroLuke
Seconded! Would also be very handy to select all parts in a hierarchy (Like all refdes ending in _1). Find component can find them all, but does not select them.

(If edit selection had a search window like find component has... Would also work for this.)

EDIT:
Ah. For hierarchy there is a method: Go to route/hierarchy and select the hierarchical cheet in the window that pops up, then select the block. This also works when the block is not routed yet. This will grab and move the components, and also select them. (If some components where already placed: these get moved too...)

Re: Selecting multiple items based on their properties

Posted: 01 Jul 2020, 13:26
by FalconFour
Third! When making a new design and it comes time to construct a BOM (by filling in details), I have a lot of parts with no MFPNs, only specs - specifically, SMD resistors of all the same value/style. So I've got a list of 10pcs of 10k 0603 resistors... I find a part I want to use for it... but I have to locate every single individual resistor and individually edit them, since I can't select parts using the "Design Manager" frame (it just kinda highlights them).

I wish I could Shift+Click in the Design Manager and have it add to the selection, or Ctrl+Click to remove from selection, the same as those buttons behave otherwise. That'd be a bare minimum. From there, I'd get properties on a group of selected items, and insert MFPNs to make into a BOM.

Otherwise I can't find any way to update multiple parts at once other than manually selecting them in the schematic graphic. Kind of a bummer!

edit: Writing it out led me to a solution that works: double-clicking an item in the Design Manager takes you to, and highlights, the desired part in whichever sheet it is - but it doesn't change the selection (including not deselecting what's already selected). So you can double-click each part in the Design Manager, which locates the part, then shift+click the part to add to selection. Do this for each part in your desired group, then right click any one of them (or right-click one that has the desired properties you want to apply to all of them), open the properties sheet, change/add the property (if you want to copy a property to all, delete/retype one letter of the MFPN, for example, so DipTrace "sees" you want that to be updated in selected parts), and et voila... updates on all selected parts, easily selected by the Design Manager list. It's a workaround for sure, but it works!

Re: Selecting multiple items based on their properties

Posted: 15 Jul 2020, 18:03
by Newtham
Thank you, FalconFour, for your suggestion at the end!! I'm updating a schematic with almost 1000 parts, and this makes a HUGE difference. Like you indicate, though, it's not perfect.

DipTrace devs: Please add a spreadsheet view, or some method, where I can (for example) sort and select all 97 of my 0.1u caps, and add our company part number (without hitting Ctrl-v 97 times)! DT won't get "big" unless bigger companies can use it efficiently.

Thanks!

Re: Selecting multiple items based on their properties

Posted: 19 Jul 2020, 03:54
by fi2eewill
Newtham wrote:
15 Jul 2020, 18:03
DipTrace devs: Please add a spreadsheet view, or some method, where I can (for example) sort and select all 97 of my 0.1u caps, and add our company part number (without hitting Ctrl-v 97 times)! DT won't get "big" unless bigger companies can use it efficiently.
Thanks!
From experience, I have not come across a CAD tool that comes close in terms of efficiency and intuitive user interface to DipTrace. Yes, there are quirks but this is the case with any software - unless you want to write your own. In any case, the reason why "bigger" companies are not using DipTrace or a different tool for that matter is because of inertia factor and inherit resistance to migrate to new. No matter what you have to say, as a new guy in a big company - you don't get to choose the tools. Unfortunately, management does not care about efficiency improvement as much as migration risks and "lost productivity" to learn a new tool. I work in a relatively small company, and we are only 3 in the hardware team. Even with this small sized team, and migrating to a new tool is not a straight forward decision. For me yes, but in a team it's a different dynamics.

Now to answer you, there is actually a much simpler solution in DipTrace. However, this depends on you as the designer taking the correct steps while creating/placing your components in the schematic...

Solution 1
1. double click (or right click Properties) on one of your 0.1u Cap (let's call it CAP_0.1u_0402)
2. click [...] under datasheet text box and this bring Additional Fields menu
-> Type new field Name: i.e. INTERNAL_P/N
-> Type Default value: i.e. 10-100122

Now, to apply it to all 97 instances of 0.1u CAP;
3. Apply to "Similar Name Components"

Solution 2 [preferred]
1. open CAP_0.1u_0402 in Component Editor
-> add new field Name: INTERNAL_P/N
-> add new value: 10-100122
2. Save library [important]
3. Right click 0.1u in schematic -> Update from Library -> Similar Name Component

Voila!! Done in few steps!

In both cases, the KEY is that you must all 97 instances of 0.1u have identical name.
I assume this is a 'given' if you have been using DT for 10 years ;) ...


Good luck
fi2eewill

Re: Selecting multiple items based on their properties

Posted: 20 Jul 2020, 14:14
by Newtham
Hi fi2eewill,

Yes, good solutions, thank you! I was aware of them, but they are excellent tips. I am (was) in a situation where that kind of foresight was not applied, and our company does not generally use different parts for each value. I agree it would be better overall if we did, but that inertia you mention does get in the way. Having said that, I have used OrCAD in the past, and I don't really like it, BUT it does have a spreadsheet view which would have saved me hours last week! And since DT can generate BOMs, it seems to me (in my relative programming ignorance) that it wouldn't be too difficult to implement. Consider it a feature request. :)

In any case, FalconFour's work-around was a big help!

Re: Selecting multiple items based on their properties

Posted: 21 Jul 2020, 07:59
by Alex
Newtham wrote:
15 Jul 2020, 18:03
Thank you, FalconFour, for your suggestion at the end!! I'm updating a schematic with almost 1000 parts, and this makes a HUGE difference. Like you indicate, though, it's not perfect.

DipTrace devs: Please add a spreadsheet view, or some method, where I can (for example) sort and select all 97 of my 0.1u caps, and add our company part number (without hitting Ctrl-v 97 times)! DT won't get "big" unless bigger companies can use it efficiently.

Thanks!
There is spreadsheet view in DipTrace. Select few components, click on any ... buttons above the design manager and it will appear. But it allows to edit one component at a time. We will consider improving the table.