KiCad Librarian

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KiCad Librarian

 
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Screen-shot of the KiCad Librarian
Screen-shot of the KiCad Librarian

The KiCad Librarian is a utility to manage and maintain libraries with schematic symbols and footprints. It supports the KiCad EDA suite.

A summary of its features:

Downloads & license

The KiCad Librarian currently is at version 1.1, build 5365. It is distributed under the Apache License version 2. There are no guarantees or warranties whatsoever; use it at your own risk.

The KiCad Librarian for Microsoft Windows, 32-bit (2.5 MiB)
The KiCad Librarian in a self-extracting setup.
The KiCad Librarian for Linux, 32-bit (1.1 MiB)
Readily compiled program, as a Debian package (".deb" file).
The KiCad Librarian for Linux, 32-bit, without repository access (1.1 MiB)
Readily compiled program, as a Debian package (".deb" file). This build does not include the functionality to access a remote repository and (therefore) does not require the curl library.
A Debian repository containing a Linux 64-bit version of the KiCad Librarian ("testing" section)
The repository is maintained by Slavko (http://slavino.sk). Nota Bene: this repository may not hold the latest release.
The KiCad Librarian source code (851 KiB)
Brief build instructions are in a readme file, inside the source code archive.
An example repository implementation, version 0.6 (9.4 KiB)
A minimalistic, but functional repository implemented in PHP using PDO to access a database (so it can work with MySQL as well as SQLite). There are installation instructions in the archive.
The file format of footprint and symbol libraries
My notes on the file format for KiCad footprint libraries and schematic symbol libraries. For the footprints, it covers both the legacy format and the new s-expression format. This is a PDF file.

Changes in version 1.1.5365

Usage

There is a manual in each downloadable archive/setup. For a "walk-through" introduction, please see the video below.


On the first launch of the KiCad Librarian, you will have to tell it where to find the libraries, see the menu "Preferences" and choose "Search paths". In contrast to earlier releases, the Librarian no longer plunges into subdirectories recursively —if you have nested paths with libraries, you need to indicate these individually.

To use the repository functions, you have to set one up (or use the demo repository, see below) and configure the Librarian to use it.

Limitations

The graphic representation of a symbol or footprint may not be indentical to how KiCad shows it, because the Librarian does not use the drawing code of KiCad. This is just a limitation of the preview; if you copy the symbol/footprint to a new library, it will be copied exactly as it is.

Demo repository

If you want to test repository access, but without setting up your own repository, you can use the repository at http://www.compuphase.com/kicad/repository.php. This is a public repository: you do not need an account for read access (download only). You do need an account to upload your own symbols or footprints.

Note: the repository is set up as a proof-of-concept. You can use it to test and evaluate the repository functionality. I may, at some point, remove or clear this demo repository.