Show Clearance attribute in Copper Area Manager for info only.
41 0
andyfierman 1 month ago
This Feature Request is written based on - and proposes a simplification to - the way the Copper Area Manager works in V6.4.32 at 220307. It must be read together with the Examples given in the following project: [https://oshwlab.com/andyfierman/copper-area-manager-clearances](https://oshwlab.com/andyfierman/copper-area-manager-clearances)<br> <br> and also the following Bug Report which describes more about what appears to be incorrect behaviour of clearance assignment with copper area Order in the Copper Area Manager as described below and illustrated here in Examples 3a, 3b, 4a and 4b: [https://easyeda.com/forum/topic/Copper-Area-Manager-is-broken-54b7b79a170b449890f62027b18f2572](https://easyeda.com/forum/topic/Copper-Area-Manager-is-broken-54b7b79a170b449890f62027b18f2572)<br> <br> **Summary of this Feature Request:** Manual assignment of a net name, such as GND or VCC, to a copper area before it is created and placed on the PCB is a useful feature because it avoids accidental connections to and between copper areas as they are placed on the board. There would however seem to be no point in allowing the Copper Area Manager to be used to manually assign a clearance to a copper area. For each copper area the Copper Area Manager should only show the clearance that is assigned in the Design Rules to the net that is connected to that copper area. It should not be possible to manually assign a clearance to a copper area within the Copper Area Manager itself. **Detailed reasoning for this Feature Request:** A copper area serves no purpose until it is physically connected by a track, pad or via which is part of a net whose clearance is defined in the Design Rules. A copper area does not fill until it is physically connected to a net by a track, pad or via. Assigning a net name to a copper area as it is created or in the Copper Area Manager does not cause the copper area to fill. This is shown in Examples 1a and 1b. A copper area can have no meaningful clearance until a named net with a clearance defined in the Design Rules is assigned to it or is connected to it by a track, pad or via. Assigning a clearance to a copper area in the Copper Area Manager does not cause that clearance to have any effect until the area is assigned or connected to a net. This is also shown in Examples 1a and 1b. Once a copper area has a named net with a clearance defined in the Design Rules is assigned to it in the Copper Area Manager, it has a clearance. However the clearance that is applied and to which copper area it is applied depends on the Order assigned to the copper area with respect to others near it. This is shown in Examples 2a and 2b. Once a net is connected to a copper area, it fills and the clearance that is then applied by it depends on the Order of the copper area in the Copper Area Manager compared to others around it. Example 3a shows that if the Order number is lower than that of an adjacent copper area, the clearance between the two areas is made into the lower number ordered area at the clearance assigned to the net in the Design Rules and the clearance between the net and another area assigned to a different net is that assigned to the net in the Design Rules. Note that the clearance between the two copper areas in this example is defined by that assigned in the Design Rules to the net connected to the lower number ordered area and not that assigned in the Design Rules to the net connected to the higher number ordered area and in particular, is also not the clearance assigned to either of the areas in the Copper Area Manager. Example 3b shows that if the Order number is higher than that of an adjacent copper area, the clearance between the two areas is made into the higher number ordered area at the  clearance assigned to it in the Copper Area Manager but the clearance between the net and another area assigned to a different net is that assigned to the net in the Design Rules. Note that the clearance between the two copper areas in this example is defined by that assigned in the Copper Area Manager to the higher number ordered area and not that assigned in the Design Rules to the net connected to the lower number ordered area or the clearance assigned to the lower number ordered area in the Copper Area Manager. Example 4a shows that if the Order number is lower than that of an adjacent copper area, the clearance between the two areas is made into the lower number ordered area at the clearance assigned to the net in the Design Rules and the clearance between the net and another area assigned to a different net is that assigned to the net in the Design Rules. Again, as in Example 3a, note that the clearance between the two copper areas in this example is defined by that assigned in the Design Rules to the net connected to the lower number ordered area and not that assigned in the Design Rules to the net connected to the higher number ordered area and in particular, is also not the clearance assigned to either of the areas in the Copper Area Manager. Example 4b however shows that if the Order number is higher than that of an adjacent copper area, the clearance between the two areas is made into the higher number ordered area at the clearance assigned to it in the Copper Area Manager but the clearance between the net and another area assigned to a different net is that assigned to the net in the Design Rules. Unlike example 3b, note that the clearance between the two copper areas in this example is now defined by that assigned in the Design Rules to the net connected to the higher number ordered area and not that assigned in the Copper Area Manager to either the higher or the lower number ordered area. If the clearance manually assigned to the copper area is less than that assigned to the connected net in the Design Rules then the clearance applied by the copper area is the same as that applied by the connected net. If the clearance manually assigned to the copper area is greater than that assigned to the connected net in the Design Rules then the clearance applied by the copper area is greater than that applied by the connected net but this only applies to the copper area: the connected net does not acquire the increased clearance assigned to the copper area. Setting aside the strange behaviour of the priority of the shape of the copper area compared to the applied clearance - which is the subject of the above mentioned Bug Report -  Examples 3a, 4a and 4b seem to make sense: the clearance between the copper areas and between the track and the copper area that it connects to is defined by the clearance assigned in the Design Manager to that track. Example 3b does not seem to make sense: why would there be any need to apply a greater clearance to a copper area than that required by the net that is connected to it? Assigning a clearance to a copper area itself in the Copper Area Manager and separately from the clearance defined for net connected to it in the Design Rules seems to serve no useful purpose and in fact makes understanding which clearance is applied under which circumstances unnecessarily complicated and confusing. **Therefore this Feature Request proposes that:** 1. The clearance assigned to a copper area be defined only by the clearance applied to the net - as defined in the Design Rules - that connects to the copper area. 2. The Copper Area Manager may show the clearance assigned to the area by the Design Rules of the net connected to it but this should be for information purposes only and should not be editable.
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