Chapter 6: Advanced Editing
6-9: Networks
6-9-1: Introduction to Networks

A collection of electrically connected components defines a network. Networks may span many arcs, or they may reside on only a single export of a single node. Because networks are stored in the Electric database, they can be immediately accessed when needed.

Whenever a port on a node is selected, the highlighting indicates the entire network that is connected to that port. Another way to see an entire network is to use the Show Network command (in menu Tools / Network). This will highlight all arcs on the currently selected networks. Repeated use of the command causes the network to be highlighted at successively lower levels of the hierarchy, useful when cell instances are part of the network. The command will also "cross-probe" by highlighting networks that have the same name in other views of this cell.

Cells that are imported from other EDA systems often have no connectivity information and are built with pure layer nodes (see Section 6-10-1 for more). When the Show Network command is run on such cells, it quickly extracts the information, then displays it. Also, if a cell instance is selected but no individual port is selected (such that there is no single network selected) then the command highlights all wired ports.

If the design is very dense, you can select one or more networks by name with the Select Object... command (in menu Edit / Selection). The Show All Networks command (in menu Tools / Network) highlights every network in a different color (useful if there are not too many nets).

There are many commands in the Tool / Network menu that give information about the networks in a cell:

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