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This page should include user experiences with the gEDA suite.

Paul Csanyi's experiences


My name is Paul Csanyi. I am a technics teacher in an elementary school.

I use mainly Debian GNU/Linux operating system. I have installed the gEDA suite on my system.

I am a newbe to the electronics and to the gEDA tools, but the electronics is so interesting theme to me so I decide to study gEDA tools and use it for making some simple projects. With these simple projects I intend to teach my pupils to fundamentals of electronics.

I tried first the gEDA GUI, but then I red that it is better to use gEDA from the command line, so I did so.

I have tried several times gEDA tools to make some simple projects. Up to the present I learn how to use gschem tool very easily. I made schematics easily.

But then I need a symbol that I can't find in gschem library, so I decide to make it. I follow the tutorial and ask some questions on the mailing list geda-user (The list is not active anymore - check archives and current lists).

Here in this Wiki I want to share some of mine experiences with the gEDA suite. I want to share some addons to the tragesym tutorial.

If these thoughts are specific for the Debian system, like the place of the tragesym_template.gz file, then I shall write a note of this.

I made a symbol for the 36-pin Centronics connector.

From the “Tragesym tutorial”:

Step1: Open a tragesym template file

  • open xterm window: eg.: urxvt
  • cp /usr/share/doc/geda-doc/wiki/_media/tragesym_template.gz ~/gEDA/gaf/

Note: This is Debian specific.

  • cd gEDA/gaf/
  • gzip -d tragesym_template.gz
  • Open in OpenOffice the tragesym_template file. I get OpenOffice Calc with opened file. “Set the type, style and position column to the most common value.” I have saved this tragesym_template file for the future use.

Step2: Download the part data sheet and find the pin list

Step3: Copy the pin list into an editor and prepare it

  • I have tried Midnight Commander as editor, but XEmacs is much better for this. I make Tabs between columns. From XEmacs I copy the lines into OpenOffice Calc.

Step4: Insert all missing data into the spreadsheet

  • In OpenOffice Calc I inserted all missing data. The label of the Pin 36 is 'IN SEL' and have a negation overbar, so I write in the approppriate column: \_IN\ SEL\_ Note that here is a space between 'IN' and 'SEL'. Maybe it is trivial, but if one have a space in the label this works.

Step5: Export the spreadsheet into a tab seperated text file

  • In OpenOffice I did File / Save As / Filename: tragesym_template-for_36-pin_centronics_connector / Filetype: Structural text (CSV) (.csv) / Filter setup: on / Save / Text boundary: empty

Step6: execute tragesym and create the symbol

  • tragesym tragesym_template-for_36-pin_centronics_connector 36-pin-centronics.sch

Step7: check the result with gschem and do some artwork

  • “Now we have a complete symbol.”
  • “You can copy the symbol to your local symbol library e.g. /usr/local/share/gEDA/sym/local/ and use it.”

cp 36-pin_centronics.sch /home/username/gEDA/gaf/gschem-sym/connectors/36-pin_centronics.sym

This symbol can be viewed here: (dead link)

In this symbol I put the footprint: “SUBD_FEMALE_LAY 25” but this is not the approppriate footprint for the 36-pin Centronics connector. I tried to find footprint for the 36-pin Centronics connector here:, but with no success.

I think I gone to make one 36-pin Centronics footprint soon, using “PCB Footprint Guide” here: :-)

geda/experiences.txt · Last modified: 2012/10/26 17:33 by kokr