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Working with huge projects

mairomaster , 01-06-2016, 05:36 AM

I am currently starting working on a project, which is an expanded version of an older project. The project will contain a multi-channel design with 18 repeat blocks. Each of the blocks is pretty complex and I expect the total number of components to be well over 10,000.

I am worried that I might have problems with Altium running out of system resources (RAM) when working on the PCB. My computer is pretty good, but Altium is limited by its 32 bit architecture.

Have you worked on such big projects and did you experience any difficulties? Any helpful tips?

robertferanec , 01-06-2016, 09:05 AM
Hello @mairomaster. Hmm, my biggest project in Altium have had around 2500 components. For that project I had to buy a new computer - my old computer and laptop were slow. With the new computer (Intel i7, 16GB RAM) was not a problem. The biggest issue was PCB design, especially Online DRC & Polygons (one of the reasons why I draw polygons on the end of design process). I believe since then Altium improved the polygon drawing and maybe it is now better. Try to ask on the Altium forum, maybe someone did so large design.

BTW: 10 000 components, that is a really nice project THUMBS UP!
mairomaster , 01-06-2016, 09:19 AM
Thanks for the tip Robert, I will try with the Altium forum.

I have worked with projects up to about 3000 components. When you approach such numbers one of the problems that may occur is that when you try to import lots of changes from the sheets to the PCB using the Item Manager ECO generation (after you have changed all the footprints in the project for example), during applying the ECO changed Altium might run out of resources and crash. The walk around that is to implement the changes in steps, not all at once. However, I am worried that when the number of components/primitives gets very big, some more issues might occur.
robertferanec , 01-06-2016, 09:20 AM
I am worried that when the number of components/primitives gets very big, some more issues might occur.
Hmm, they probably will ...
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