Image files

Clicking on an image file imports the file into the system (if necessary) and displays the file in the Graphic Display. Macaos Enterprise is able to import the following image file formats:

  • Basic Gerber (RS-274D)
  • Gerber (RS-274X Extended Gerber)
  • NC Drill (XNC, Excellon or similar; drill only)
  • Sieb & Meyer (drill only)
  • Excellon (with limited support for rout instructions)
  • ODB++ files (in a zip, gzip, tar or tgz archive). See ODB++ for more info.
  • IPC-D-356 (bare-board test data). See the IPC-D-356 section for more info.

To import Basic Gerber files you must specify several extra parameters. There may also be difficulties interpreting incomplete Drill files, as explained in Drill Tools.

To link a file to a layer, click on the layer name (or Not Selected) and choose the desired layer from the menu. To unlink a file, choose Not used.

Normally, only Drill files should be linked to a drill layer. Some CAD systems generate Gerber files of drill drawings or drill templates, which are intended for paper documentation purposes. Attempting to link a Gerber file which contains lines, arcs or polygons to a drill layer (Additional layers|Drill) will probably give undesirable results. If your CAD system outputs a drill file in Gerber, then the Gerber file must only contain pads (flashes) where the pad diameters are equal to the hole diameters. Note: Use Additional layers|Drill drawing to link Gerber drill drawings for documentation purposes.

An image file showing which drill holes should be filled or plugged should be linked to the appropriate via protection layer (tented, plugged, filled or capped) in the Additional layers submenu. See Via protection for more info.

If while preparing a product for import, you discover that a layer needs to be updated, you can replace that layer without having to restart the entire import process. Right-click on the file name and choose Replace file. Note: It is not possible to replace the board/contour file. If this file needs to be updated then the entire product must be imported again.

Sometimes, it may be necessary to use the same file for two different layers. For example, you may have only one solder mask file, which is to be used both for the top and bottom layers. To solve this problem, right-click on the file name and choose Duplicate file. This will add a copy of the file to the list, which can then be linked to another layer.

When an image file is imported into the system, warnings and errors (if any) are stored in a report which can be viewed by right-clicking on the file name and choosing View file import report.

Note: All of the Gerber files must have the same coordinate origin. If necessary, you will need to change the setup of your CAD system so that the files have the same origin.

Note: Some CAD systems mirror alternate Gerber layers when they are generated. The import module is not able to correct for this, since it is not possible to automatically determine the mirroring axis. All Gerber files must have the same coordinate origin and mirror state.

Note: Normally, only image files are included when a product is saved or published. Non-image files may be viewed locally while preparing the product. To force a non-image file to be included, assign it to a Documentation or Assembly layer. See Non-image files.