Electronics > KiCad

Warning: Track has unconnected end

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Dragging already connected parts in the layout editor tends to create a lot of these small pieces of traces inside pads/vias, which are impossible to see until you launch DRC and then you need to click on the pad or via and try all selections until you find them. Fricking annoying.

I know there is a tool to clean up traces, but the problem is that it has no way of making a difference between those spurious pieces of traces that are created during dragging, and traces that you haven't fully connected yet. Sometimes I partially route traces and I don't want to have them removed! I'm sure I'm not the only one.

So is the only option to just ignore those warnings (there can be dozens of them) until the layout is fully done, and then clean up traces? Really annoying.

Wondering what's the experience of others on this particular point and whether there are changes about that in the coming v7.

I don't use KiCad, but I think that problem is not unique to that program.  In Eagle, I generally ripup any tract to a component that is being moved in a non-trivial way, then reroute.  There is also a tool to "heal" broken tracks that are in a straight line, but what you perceive as straight is not necessarily what the program to upteen digits sees.  It also doesn't fix little pieces of a tract visibly buried in the main track.

One needs to be careful in Eagle when ripping up a single track not to rip up an entire net, e.g., VCC.  Then, it's a bit of a pain, but ctrl+z usually fixes that and allows a redo.

Bottom line, I generally rip up before moving, and when I do move with some tracks attached that are only partially ripped up, I am careful to stick to usual design rules, like 45┬░bends, and setting my cursor on the exact origin when redoing the tracks.

In PCB Editor / Tools / Cleanup Tracks and Via's there are a bunch of options.  If you uncheck the Delete tracks unconnected at one end then it won't delete the open track ends.

With: PCB Editor / View / Drawing Mode / Sketch Tracks you can show only the outlines of tracks, which makes it a lot easier to see the small segments. This function is also on the toolbar on the left side.

There is also no need to clean them up immediately, but I do recommend to clean them up every now and then. It also helps if you use a grid that is not too fine. Then you can drag tracks around a bit to set them at the same X or Y location, and then often KiCad already merges co-linear track segments.

An yes, there are many changes between V6 and the coming V7.0.0-rc1. A lot are obvious, but there are also many small tweaks. The Interactive Router is also continuously being worked on, and I think it now generates a lot less of those unfortunate tiny tracks segments, but I have not used it enough yet to be sure.


--- Quote from: SiliconWizard on January 23, 2023, 11:55:36 pm ---Dragging already connected parts

--- End quote ---

Dragging is probably my only remaining quirk with kicad and unfortunately it seems the community is still on the "our way is the right way" mindset.
Try pointing out that other software have better (right?) implementations and the usual answer is on the line of "then go use that"
I also hope that V7 begins sorting out dragging

Dragging is an important feature, being able to move parts that are already routed is indispensable. If you have to delete traces and re-route everytime you move stuff, that's a gigantic waste of time.
In KiCad 6, it does work - kinda - but sure is still quirky.

The clean-up tool does the job in most cases, but hopefully next versions can make dragging a bit less quirky and avoid creating those spurious segments.


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