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ProfiCAD - electrical schematics


Version 5

If you cannot find answer to your question here, please send an e-mail to info@proficad.com

Last update on 5th December 2008.

This document in PDF: http://www.proficad.com/proficad.pdf

Getting Started
Proceed as follows to get familiar with ProfiCAD:


The first source of information about ProfiCAD software is this help file (F1). We tried to keep it as brief as possible so that the user does not have to spend
much time searching the required information. If you cannot find the information you need, try the help search engine:

Switch to the "Search" tab

Enter the item you want to search (e.g. "raster") and press Enter.

A list of articles containing the entered work is displayed.

You can use wild characters * or ?

* stands for any number of characters

? stands for one character

Sample diagrams

Go through the sample diagrams, which are installed with the program (SXE files) to get an idea about program possibilities.


Go through the symbols, which are currently available in the program. Start the Symbol Editor and select the File - Print preview commands. A detailed list of
all symbols will be displayed.


We welcome any questions and tips for program improvement. Please send your feedback to:info@proficad.com. All your questions will be answered quickly
(generally within 24 hours). Warning - please check whether your e-mail box works correctly. Frequently, we cannot send answers to questions because the
response cannot be delivered. If you do not receive the answer to your questions, please check whether your e-mail box works correctly!

Do you have the latest version?

If you purchased the ProfiCAD program from a third party rather than downloading it directly fromwww.proficad.com website, check whether you have the
latest program version (build) on www.proficad.com website. You might find that a new version is available wih new functions and/or file format. Check your
program version by selecting the Help - About menu commands.

Registered users are informed about new versions well in advance.

ProfiCAD Components
File Description Location
ProfiCAD.exe Diagram editor program root directory
ProfiCAD.chm ProfiCAD program help program root directory
common.dll and
Dynamic libraries required for program operation program root directory
Dynamic library required for error log generation. It
dbghelp.dll is only installed with Windows 2000. When using program root directory
WindowsXP it is not necessary to be installed.
Sends out an error log when the program crashes
XCrashReport.exe program root directory
Licence key, which you will receive after the
key.dat program root directory
purchase of the program
english.ini Contains text strings used in the program. program root directory\lang
These files form a library of components and
several files with .ppd
Integrated Circuits (IC). Each files bears information program root directory\proficad library
and .picd suffixes
about a single component
program root directory\proficad
files with .lin extension these files contain lines styles definitions
program root directory\proficad
files with .ptb extension these files contain title blocks definitions
several files with .sxe
sample diagrams program root directory\diagrams
C:\Documents and
contains a list of characters for easy insertion into
charmap.txt Settings\your_name\Application
the text
C:\Documents and
favs.txt * contains a list of favourite diagram symbols Settings\your_name\Application
C:\Documents and
contains list of documents which were open during
ProfiCAD.wsp * Settings\your_name\Application
the last usage of the program
Executes both manual and automatic updates of the
updater.exe program. It is launched by menu Windows Start - program root directory\updater
Programs - ProfiCAD - Check for updates.
settings.ini configuration file of the updater program root directory\updater
language configuration file of the updater program root directory\updater/lng
slovensky.xml atd.

* These files are not installed, they are created by the program

Program Relocation
If you need to move the program to a different directory or a new computer, just move the above mentioned files. It is not necessary to reinstall the program.
The program may also be run from an external hard disk or a flashdisk.
Electrical Symbols and IC library
Symbol and IC library comprises files with "PPD" (symbols) or "PICD" (IC) extensions. Each file contains one symbol.

Individual symbols contained in the diagram are copies of the symbols from the library. Therefore you can send your diagram to anybody regardless the fact
whether they have copies of the symbols on their PC or not.

If you modify the symbol in the Symbol Editor program, the symbols in you previously made diagrams will not change.
Frequently asked questions and
How can I add symbols to the favourites pane?

Drag them onto the heart icon.

What symbols are available in the full version? Do you have other symbols?

The full version contains the same symbols as the home version. The symbols library is being enhanced continuously. You can easily create symbols in the
ProfiCAD symbols editor.

You can find additional symbols on gallery.proficad.com. If you created symbols on your own, please consider submitting them to the library.

The drawing size has scaled down and the diagram I have drawn cannot be fit to the
screen size.

Adjust the paper size in the File - Printer setting menu.

Is it possible to edit the title block fields?

Go to File-Settings-Summary information menu to edit the title block fields.

Is it possible to use simultaneously the symbol editor and diagram editor?

Yes, it is not a problem since the version 3.0 as only one symbol is edited at a time. After you save your symbol, press the F5 key to redisplay the list of

How do I install a new version of the program?

When installing a new version (e.g. replacing the 2.x version by 3.0, etc.) it will normally be necessary to convert the diagrams and libraries. Always stick to
the installation instructions. When installing a new build (e.g. replacing the 2.0 version by 2.1) just install the new build over the existing one. Download the
installation file for upgrade (the icon on the right). In this case the installation does not change the libraries and sample diagrams which you already have.

If you have purchased ProfiCAD, there is a key.dat file on your hard disk (this file is stored in the ProfiCAD directory on your PC). This file will not be
modified during installation and your license will therefore still be valid.

CAUTION!!! - Do not forget to back up your files, both ProfiCAD and other important files on your PC!

If I modify a symbol in the symbol editor, will this symbol be changed in all diagrams
I have already drawn?

No! It is not possible as each symbol is stored as a unique copy in every diagram. Your diagram is therefore independent on you library of symbols and it can
easily be transmitted to anyone else. This applies for versions 3.0 and up (for IC versions 3.1 and up).

How do I number the pins in symbol editor? Do I have to set up the font for each text
label separately.

If installed on your PC, select the "small fonts" font as this setting will allow you to use very small font sizes. Select one text label and set up the font and its
size. Now use Ctrl+C and Ctrl+V to copy and paste the other text labels and just set up the necessary font.

When I attempt printing the diagram on the 5L laser printer, some lines blur and
some parts of the diagram are not printed at all.

Adjust the resolution of your printer from 600 DPI to 300 DPI (see Printer property settings).

The program is slow

When drawing a large diagrams the program may be slowed down by UNDO/REDO function. Toggle this function off to speed up the program. Go to the File
- Program setting (Control tab) menu and tick off the UNDEO/REDO tickbox.

An object cannot be selected - when clicking on an object it cannot be selected and a

different object, further from the pointer is highlighted instead.

When creating a symbol, graphical shapes needs to be placed in a symmetric way, so that the symbol is symmetric to axes of the working screen.

Correct Incorrect

When drawing the lines to gates and IC it is only possible to connect some pins.

This is the raster problem as some of the pins are out of the raster. You can solve this problem by pressing the Shift key, which temporarily disables the raster.

How can I link two components, which are far one from the other and are not
displayed on the screen both at the same time.

Option 1: when drawing a link between the components use cursor keys to move the screen area in the appropriate direction.

Option 2: adjust the scale to a smaller value, e.g. 50 %.

When I sometimes want to rotate the text or label in the "View" menu all angles are
ticked and it is impossible to rotate the text.

Only main text labels can be rotated. It is not possible to rotate the symbol labels (types and values).

Can I customise the gates? When pasting a gate the program lists only the default
gate symbol to select and I have not found a way how to customise it.

After you insert the gate, press the Escape key (to make the cursor change to arrow), place the arrow over the gate and click the right mouse button. A dialog
box allowing you to customise the gate parameters (number of outlets, gate type, etc.) will appear.

Please send your questions by e-mail to info@proficad.com

Keyboard shortcuts - accelerators
To speed up work with the program the following keyboard shortcuts may be used:


Ctrl + A Edit - Select All
Ctrl + B Edit - Copy to clipboard as image
Ctrl + C Edit - Copy
Ctrl + N File - New
Ctrl + O File - Open
Ctrl + P File - Print
Ctrl + S File - Save
Ctrl + V Edit - Paste
Ctrl + X Edit - Cut
Ctrl + Z Edit - Back
* on Numeric Keyboard View - Center working area
+ on Numeric Keyboard View - Bring Forward
- on Numeric Keyboard View - Send Backward
Ctrl + + on Numeric
Object - Bring to Front
Ctrl + - on Numeric
Object - Send to Back
F1 Help
F5 Redraw the list of symbols in diagram editor
B Draw - Curve
E Draw - Ellipse
H Insert - Gate
I Insert - IC
L Draw - Polyline
M View - Grid
N Insert - Label
O Draw - Rectangle
P Draw - Polygon
S Insert - Wire
T Insert - Text
U Draw - Line
Z Draw - Rounded rectangle
Esc Go to selection mode
ProfiCAD gallery
ProfiCAD gallery, which can be found at http://gallery.proficad.com, is an Internet service for ProfiCAD program users.

On this website you can find additional electrical symbols and diagrams. There is also a search engine available, which allows to search the database of
symbols and diagrams using keywords, categories and upload date on the website. On the web, there is also a discussion forum on individual symbols and

On the ProfiCAD gallery website you can find symbols and diagrams, which have been created by other ProfiCAD users. You can share symbols and diagrams
you created with others, just send them to the gallery.
ProfiCAD provides several panels that facilitate common tasks. These panels can be dragged and docked to any side of the working area. They either auto-
hide to conserve space or the can be pinned.

There are two small buttons in the top right hand corner of each panel. You can use the first one (pin) to pin the panel to switch off the auto-hide feature. The
other button closes the panel completely. It can be re-enabled by manu command Show-Panel od using the "Panels" toolbar.
symbols and favourites
Panel Symbols is used to insert symbols into the document. It has two parts: the upper part shows groups of symbols. The lower one shows symbols of the
active group.

How to insert a symbol: select a symbol in the lower part of the pane. Move mouse pointer over the work area. Drop the symbol by pressing the left mouse
button. If you click the right button, the symbol is rotated by 90°. Insert as many symbol as you wish. Hit the Esc key to finish inserting.

You can drag frequently used symbols to the Favourites panel. You can remove a symbol from the Favourites panel by dragging it back to the Symbols panel.
Panel Explorer facilitates work with large documents. It makes it easy to select small object that would be dificult to select using the mouse. The fact that the
Explorer takes up space is compensated by its ability to scroll selected object into the visible area of the work space. If you have multiple monitors, you can
drag Explorer to the other monitor and gain more space.

With Explorer it is possible to discover some errors - for example having two symbols in the same position, a line that is too short and therefore cannot be seen
etc. Removing such objects from the document reduces its size and makes ProfiCAD work faster.
When an object is selecting (by mouse or from the Explorer panel), its properties can be set from the Properties panel.

Position of objects are shown in tenths of mm. Line style is selected from a list. You can definecustom line styles.

If two components with the same hatching type are displayed next to each other, it is necessary to ensure that the hatching of the components is not linked.
This can be ensured by modifying the setting of these two values (or just one of these values). The upper picture shows an incorrect setting of hatching, the
lower picture shows the correct setting.
integrated circuits
You can use IC panel to set up properties of integrated circuits.
drawing electrical diagrams
The ProfiCAD program uses three types of symbols:

symbols from libraries - these symbols are loaded from the PPD files. They can be edited in the Symbol Editor.

integrated circuits (IC) - these symbols are loaded from the PICD files. They can be edited in the Symbol Editor.

built-in symbols - gates and transformers. Only some parameters (number of outlets, coils, etc.) can be edited for these symbols

Symbol inserting

Library symbols:

Select a symbol group from the group list (upper left symbol of the screen).

Now the symbols from the selected group are displayed in the lower left window of the screen. Select the symbol you want from the lower left window of the

Select the selected symbol location on the screen by moving the mouse pointer to the desired spot. If you need to rotate the symbol click the right mouse
button. Each click will cause the symbol to rotate by 90°.

Press the left mouse button to complete the symbol inserting. Proceed in the same way for other symbols from the selected group, which you want to draw in

your diagram. Now switch to the view mode (for instance by pressing the Esc key or the button on the toolbar).

you can move the frequently used symbols into the "favourites" group. This will allow you to find the symbols you need more easily. To move the symbols in
the "favourite" group, proceed as follows:

1. Select a symbol or group of symbols by the left mouse button.

2. Drag the symbol over the "favourite" folder (to drag the symbols press and hold the left mouse button).

3. When the mouse pointer changes its form (to a rectangle and +) release the left mouse button. The symbols are now in the "favourites" group.

Proceed in the same way to drag the symbols back from the "favourite" group to the "all" group.
Transformers: Select "Insert" - "Transformer". A dialog box appears where the number of primary and secondary windings can be set (maximum number of
coils for each winding is 6). Select the core type and press OK. The transformer is now inserted in the document. If you double click the left mouse button on a
symbol, a dialog box allowing you to set the symbol properties will appear on the screen.

Gate: Select "Insert" - "Gate". Now press the left mouse button on the spot of the document where you want to place your symbol.

symbol properties

Every symbol has two basic properties: type and value.

The type stands for the symbol type. R for resistor, C for capacitor, T for transistor, etc.

The value defines electric properties of the symbol, e.g. resistance in O, capacity in pF, transistor type, etc.

For each symbol you can also set the position of the labels describing the type and value properties. The units are tenths of mm. The easiest way to set the
position of these labels is to drag the text by mouse. If you need to set up the label position more precisely set the position by numbers.

The last setting allows you to toggle on/off the text label displaying. Use this function if you do not want to display the labels in the document but want them to
appear in the netlist or bill of material.

When a diagram contains a symbol, which is not in your library (you obtained the diagram from someone), you can save it (by pressing the "Save" button) and
update your symbol library.

Moving the symbols in the diagram

If you want to move a symbol in the diagram, proceed as follows:

1. Click the left mouse button on the symbol.

2. Drag the symbol to the position, where you want it to be (do not forget to hold the left mouse button when dragging the symbol).

3. symbols get automatically fixed at the grid. If you want to place a symbol out of the grid, press and hold the Shift key while dragging it.

4. You can move several symbols at a time if you previously selected them.

5. It is possible to move the symbols (for very short distances) using the cursor keys. Select the symbols you want to move first. When you press the cursor key
the selected symbols will move by one tenths of mm in the appropriate directions.

Automatic numbering

All symbols in the diagram are automatically numbered, e.g. have a unique type number. For instance if the symbol type is "R", individual symbols of the same
kind are numbered "R1", "R2"... etc. If no type is selected for the symbol, only the numbers are assigned to it, e.g. "1", "2"... etc.

Color of symbols

Individual symbols in the diagram can be colored. The color is selected by the "Object" - "Border color" menu command.
Drawing wires
It is recommended to draw wires between the symbols only after you have placed all the symbols into your diagram.

Proceed as follows:

1. Select Insert - Wire or press the Wire button on the toolbar. You can also use
the short-cut "s" key.

2. The mouse pointer shape changes (soldering iron).

3. Move the pointer to the outlet, where you want to start the wire. When the
cursor comes close (several milimeters), the appropriate outlet will be displayed in
red. You can now press the left mouse button to confirm that this is the starting
point of the wire.

4. After you confirm the starting point of the wire you can draw it in any of the 8
directions (8 octant axes of the working area) by draging the mouse in the
appropriate direction.

5. If the outlet of the symbol you want to wire to the previously wired symbol lies
in one of these 8 directions, move the mouse pointer close to the outlet you want
to wire with the previously wired outlet and as soon as the outlet on the other
symbol gets red press the left mouse button. You have now confirmed the end
point of the wire and your wire has been drawn. Caution - you must wait until the
outlet gets red to click your left mouse button. If you click the mouse before the
selected outlet gets red the program will assume that you want to make a branch
to your wire and a branch will be drawn.

6. If you need to add a branch to your wire, press the left mouse button at the
starting position of the branch. Again, a line in one of the 8 directions will be made
by dragging the mouse in the appropriate direction. This way you can add as many
branches as you like.

7. If the outlet of the symbol you want to wire to the previously wired symbol does
not lie in one of these 8 directions, move the mouse pointer close to the outlet you
want to wire with the previously wired outlet and as soon as the outlet on the
other symbol gets red press the left mouse button. When clicking the mouse
button the end point of the wire is confirmed and the wire is drawn. Caution - you
must wait until the outlet gets red to click your left mouse button. If you click the
mouse before the selected outlet gets red the program will think that you want to
make a branch to your wire and a branch will be drawn.

8. After the first wire is completed you can start drawing the next one. You can
interrupt wire drawing any time by pressing the Esc key.
8. After the first wire is completed you can start drawing the next one. You can
interrupt wire drawing any time by pressing the Esc key.

Drawing a wire between a symbol and another wire

1. The procedure is the same as when drawing a wire between two symbols but in
this case you end the wire on the next wire (by clicking the left mouse button). A
drop showing the interconnection of wires will be added automatically.

2. In case of crossed wires you can draw the drop showing the junction of wires by
the "Insert" - "junction" menu commands. You can also use the icon on the toolbar.

Adjustment of completed wires

Completed wires can be adjusted (position and shape adjustment):

1. Select the wire (by clicking the left mouse button over it). At the starting point,
end point and branch points black squares will be displayed.

2. Press the left mouse button and drag one of the black squares to change the
wire position.

3. If you want to move the whole wire, press the left mouse button anywhere out
of the black square area and drag the wire to its new position.
4. You can also move the whole blocks of symbols, including the corresponding

5. If there is enough space around the wire, it can be freely moved as shown in the

Drawing the wires which do not connect the symbols

Sometimes you will need to draw a wire which will start or end "in the air", (not on a symbol's outlet). These wires can be drawn in the same way as the
normal wires but by pressing the right mouse button. After that you can proceed in the normal way (draw branches by clicking the left mouse button). If you
need to end your wire "in the air" press the right mouse button.


If you cannot wire some outlets of a symbol, it may be caused by the fact that such
outlet is out of the raster. In this case press and hold the Shift key to (temporarily)
disable the raster.
Drawing graphical shapes
graphical shapes are used to draw links between individual components of electric wiring diagrams, such as mechanical links between individual components,
border lines around individual functional units, etc.

Individual graphical shapes to be drawn may be selected from the "Draw" menu or by pressing the corresponding soft button on the toolbar.


First select the line graphic object from the "Draw" menu. Then click the left mouse button at the starting point of your line, drag the mouse to the end point of
your line and press the left mouse button. You can now start drawing another line or select a new graphic object from the menu.


First select the polyline graphic object from the "Draw" menu. Then click the left mouse button at the starting point of your line, drag the mouse to the next
point of your line, press the left mouse button, drag the mouse to the next point, etc. After you have completed drawing the polyline, press the Esc key.


Use this function to draw one or several linked Bezier curves. The curves are automatically linked together to get a smooth link.

First select the curve graphic object from the "Draw" menu. Then click the left mouse button at the starting point of your curve, drag the mouse to the next
point of your curve, press the left mouse button, drag the mouse to the next point of the curve, etc. After you have completed drawing the curve, press the Esc

The Bezier curve shape is defined by 4 points: two end points and two control points. The ends of the curve are defined by the two end points. The curve
shape also depends on the control points, which act like magnets. Based on the distance of the control points from the end points the shape of the curve is
defined. Therefore the curve may take many different shapes.


First select the rectangle graphic object from the "Draw" menu. Then click the left mouse button at the rectangle left upper corner , drag the mouse to the right
bottom point of your rectangle and press the left mouse button. You can now start drawing another rectangle or select a new graphic object from the menu.

Rounded rectangle

The procedure is similar to drawing a rectangle except a third point, which is used here to define rectangle rounding.

Arc, chord and pie

Proceed in the same way as when drawing a rectangle but you will also need to set up the starting and end angles of the arc. Enter the values of the angles in
the Properties panel in tenths of degree.


The procedure is similar to rectangle drawing but the inscribed ellipse is drawn instead of the rectangle.


Draws a polygon.

First select the polygon graphic object from the "Draw" menu. Then click the left mouse button at the starting point of your polygon, drag the mouse to the
next point of your polygon, press the left mouse button, drag the mouse to the next point, etc. After you have completed drawing the polygon, press the Esc


Outlet can be inserted only in schematics editor (document .sxe). It is defined by one point. It is displayed in red to be easy visible and it is larger when it is

Orthogonal drawing mode

Orthogonal drawing mode is activated by pressing Ctrl key when drawing objects. Lines are drawn vertically, horizontally or with angle 45°. Rectangles and
ellipses are drawn as squares and circles in this mode.
Working with documents
Electrical diagrams are saved on your hard drive as files with "sxe" extension. Commands for working with your electrical diagrams are located in the "File"
menu. Some of the commands may be activated using buttons on the toolbar.


Creates a new document.


Opens an existing document, stored on your hard drive.


Closes the active document, e.g. the document, which is currently opened. If you have not saved the last changes to your document, you will be asked to save
the document before its closed.


Saves the active document, e.g. the document, which is currently opened. Is it important to save your work as frequently as possible.

Save as...

Saves the active document, e.g. the document, which is currently opened, under a new name. This will allow you to save your document under a new name.


Prints the active document.

Print preview

Shows the layout of the document as it will be printed on the paper.

Printer settings

Shows a dialog box to set printer parameters, such as paper size, feeder type, print quality, etc.


Sends the active document by e-mail.

This function only works if you have an e-mail client (such as Microsoft Outlook Express 6) installed on your PC.


Saves a document or its part as an image. You can choose from the following formats: bitmap, PNG or EMF.
Basic graphics format of Windows system. It is a raster graphics format. The
Bitmap image is saved as a two dimensional field of pixels. If you change the
dimensions of raster graphics image the image quality will be lower.
PNG is, the same as Bitmap, a raster graphics format. Advantage of this
format is a very high compression rate. Therefore a PNG file is much smaller
than a bitmap file. A black and white electronics diagram saved in a PNG
format does not take up more than just several Kbs. Small diagrams
PNG - Portable Network Graphics
frequently take up even less than 1 KB!

This format is very useful for publishing the electrical diagrams on the
Internet, as part of HTML pages).
EMF is a vector graphics format. The main advantage of this format is the
fact that the image is stored as instructions to draw the graphics item the
image is composed of. Dimensions of the image can be adjusted without
affecting the image quality. The image quality remains the same.

EMF format is particularly useful when inserting your electrical diagrams into
other document formats, such as MS WORD, MS EXCEL, etc. It is very easy
to adjust the size, background color, contours, etc. of the electrical diagram
in EMF format. It works in the same way as for instance cliparts in MS Words.
In addition to exporting electrical diagrams we can also draw any other shape
and use the ProfiCAD software as vector image editor.
EMF - Enhanced MetaFile
There are two methods of pasting a electrical diagram into a document:
(successor of the WMF - Windows MetaFile)
1. In ProfiCAD click on Edit - Copy the diagram to clipboard as an image. Now
switch to the application in which you want to paste the diagram (for instance
MS Word) and press Ctrl+V. The image is now inserted in the document. Now
you can change the size, location, position, background color, frame, etc.

2. In the ProfiCAD menu select File - Export. Select the EMF file format. An
.emf file will be stored to your hard drive. The EMF file can be inserted any
time to any application (for instance to MS Word). Proceed as follows: Select
menu Insert - Picture - From file and browse the EMF file you wish to paste
into the document.

There are four export options:

Whole document - exports the whole document.

Whole document including the title block.
Screen - exports only the part of the document, which is currently visible on the screen. Before using this option adjust
window size so that the area of the drawing you want to export is visible.
Automatic - the program automatically selects the minimum size of the document required for displaying all symbols
and graphical shapes.

You can also specify whether you want a frame around the diagram or not and, if you selected the frame, its color. Finally, a dialog window will be displayed,
where you need to enter the name of the exported file, where you want to save it on your hard drive (path) and type of image - black and white or coloured.


If you export to EMF format, the program automatically selects the automatic export option, regardless the setting you made in the dialog box.

Resolution of the image is determined by the zoom that was active when the export was made - the larger zoom, the higher resolution.

Bill of material...

This command displays a dialog box with a list of symbols used in the electrical diagram. The symbols are sorted into groups. This list of symbols can be
exported into a text file. The exported file is in a Tab Separated Values format. The exported list of symbols can be opened - for instance - in MS Excel. You
can also insert this list into the drawing.

...more about Bill of material

This command displays a dialog box with a netlist - list of wires and symbol outlets conneted to them. This netlist can be exported into a text file. The exported
file is Tab Separated Values format. The exported list can be opened - for instance - in MS Excel. You can also insert this list into the drawing.

...more about Netlist

Inserting images
Images (such us photographs) can be inserted in the document. Supported image formats are BMP, JPG, PNG, GIF and WMF. To insert an image into the
document use the menu commands "Insert" - "Image". A dialog box allowing you to select the image you want to insert will appear.

Before you Insert an image in the document,adjust the image in the graphics editor to avoid the increase of the document size. For black and white documents
we recommend setting the number of colours to just black and white (in most graphics editors this command is generally called "decrease colour depth").

For image adjustment we recommend for instance a freeware program IrfanView

Working with objects
The following operations can be performed with objects (parts, graphical shapes and text):

Selecting an object

Object (symbol or graphic object) can be selected by the left mouse button. If you want to select several objects at a time, press and hold the Ctrl key while
selecting the objects by clicking the left mouse button. If the objects we want to select are located in a rectangular area, we can select them in the following

1. click the left mouse button in the upper left corner of the area you want to select.

2. move the mouse pointer to the bottom right corner of the area you want to select while holding the left mouse button.

Copying an object

Press and hold Ctrl key. Shift the object with mouse (as if you wanted to move it). A copy of the object is created.


symbols and texts can be rotated in 45°steps. To rotate an object use the menu commands "Object" - "Rotate". On the Rotate tab enter the rotation angle.
You can also use icons from the toolbar to rotate the object per 90° steps (for 45° rotation use the commands from the menu).


symbols and texts can be overturned both vertically and horizontally. To overturn an object use the menu commands "Object" - "Flip horizontaly or Flip
verticaly". You can also use icons from the toolbar to flip an object.


symbols, texts and graphical shapes can be aligned. Use the "Align" menu commands. The alignment commands become available when at least two objects
are selected. You can align to both right and left side (vertical axe aligning) and upper and lower borderline (horizontal axe). The alignment is always based
on the first object you have selected.

Changing the order of graphical shapes layers

Sometimes it may be necessary to change the order of graphic object layers. This can be done by the "Object" menu commands "Move more forward" and
"Move more backward" (these commands bring/send the selected object one position closer or further) and "Move forward" and "Move backward" (these
commands bring/send the selected object to the beginning (e.g. front) or end (e.g. back)). For instance in the following picture the rectangle was drawn first
and then the circle. To bring the rectangle to front select it and click on the "Move forward" command.
Availability of described operations

The following table summarises operations, which can be performed with objects:

symbols graphical shapes texts group of symbols

rotating YES NO YES (only one row texts) NO
overturning YES NO NO YES
alignment YES YES YES NO
changing the order of graphical shapes layers NO YES NO NO

Background objects

All objects (symbols, texts, images, graphical shapes, etc.) can be placed to background to make the symbols inserting and wires drawing easier. If you want to
move an object to the background, select it by clicking the mouse over it and then use the menu command "Object" - "Object to Background". To bring the
object back to the foreground, activate the background working mode ("View" - "Switch to background mode"), select the object by clicking the mouse over it
and activate the menu command "Object" - "Object to background".
export to DXF data format
DXF is a data format developed by Autodesk for enabling interoperability between CAD programs.

ProfiCAD can export documents to DXF format version 21 (AutoCad 2007).

Online Conversion

Free online converter from SXE to DXF formst is available onhttp://p2d.proficad.eu (Help - Online Converter to DXF).

Export directly from the program

Is available only in commercial version. Select menu command File - Export to DXF to export the current document. A dialog window appears where you
need to select the output location of the conversion.

This feature requires Microsoft .NET Framework Version 2.0. Download page of this library may change. Ifthis link does not work, try enter "Microsoft .NET
Framework verze 2.0 Redistributable Package" into your internet search engine. The size of .NET framework is 22.4 MB.
Inserting texts
You can paste any text into your document by using the "Insert"-"Lettering" or "Insert"-"Text" commands. To make text inserting easier, there are two types of
texts: a lettering and a text. Both, the lettering and text were assigned a default font. However you can easily change the font setting using the toolbar
commands, so any font can be used.

Fonts for symbol labels (types and values) and fonts for the title block are set globally in the document settings window.

A double-click on the label shows a dialog box, where you can enter the text. Less frequent characters may be entered in the following ways:

using Alt+numeric code of the character. For instance, the character O can be inserted by pressing Alt+937.
clicking on the selected character on the character map, which can be found in the left part of the dialog box. You can
add the characters you need to use in the character map. This can be done in the program settings menu on the
"Others" tab.
by entering the character from the Windows default character map (Start-Programs-Accessories-System tools-
Character map).

Some characters may be displayed as a square. This is because these characters are not available in the selected font. Select another font. We recommend for
instance the "Lucida Sans Unicode" font.
Bill of material and netlist
You can generate the netlist from the File - Netlist menu.

Before the netlist generation the program automatically checks the types of all symbols for correctness. Every symbol must have a type defined and this type
must be unique in the whole document. The type can be set up in the dialog box, which can be called out by double clicking on the symbol. If the program
finds any errors in the symbols, the list of these errors is generated instead of the netlist.

The netlist format is RACAL REDAC. Every single line of the netlist represents one node. Each node consists of a list of symbols and their outlets (a space is
used as a separator). For instance the node R1 1 T3 2 means a connection between the first outlet of the R1 resistor with the second outlet of the T3 transistor.

Symbol outlets are numbered automatically based on the order in which they were created in the symbol editor. To see the outlet numbers, switch the outlet
number displaying on (View - Show outlet numbers).

The decision whether a wire and an outlet represent a conductive link is based on whether they have exactly the same position. It is therefore necessary to
draw links only when all the symbols have been drawn. Be careful not to move the symbol by 0.1mm accidentally when using the cursor keys. Such small
position change is not noticeable and the concerned links in the diagram will therefore not be conductive.

When you have generated the netlist, switch on the outlet number displaying (View - Show outlet numbers) and check the correctness of the diagram.

Example of a netlist

For this diagram

the program generated the following netlist:

and the following bill of material:

It is not necessary for the symbol types to be unique in the diagram for generating the bill of material.

When you insert the netlist or the bill of material in a file, they become normal texts, which can freely be modified. When you change the diagram (links
between parts) do not forget to generate a new netlist/list of symbols.
list of wires
List of wires can be generated by command File - List of wires. Each row in the table lists a wire and both components connected by the wire (in format
component:outlet number).
line styles
Program ProfiCAD uses predefined line styles in the LIN format which is also used in some CAD systems. Line style definitions are stored in files with "lin"
extension which are located in the _LIN folder in the library. There can be multiple lin files there - in such case the line definitions are merged (i.e styles from
all files are then available).

In the Properties panel you can set select a style of a line using this dialog:

LIN Format:

It is a text file. Each line style definition has two lines. The first line starts with character * followed by the name of the style, then a description separated by

The second line starts with A followed by a row of comma separated numbers.

The first number means the length of a line segment. The following number is a length of a space. The following number is length of a line segment and so on.
The unit is inch. Number 0 denotes a dot.


*dash dot dot (2x), ____ . ____ . ____ . ___


First line denotes the name of the style

1.0 segment of length 1"

0.5 space 0.5"

0 means dot

0.5 space 0.5"

then it all goes on.

For better understanding it is recommended to study file lines.lin in the _LIN folder.
groups of symbols
The symbols are organized in PPD files in groups (directories). Symbol group names must not
contain restricted characters \ / : * ? " < > | and must not start with the _ character.
If you need to reorganize the groups, you can use any file manager, such as Windows Commander,
Total Commander, Windows Explorer, etc.

Creating a group

Create a directory in the library.

Renaming a group

Rename a directory in the library.

Deleting a group

Delete a directory in the library..

drawing electrical symbols
creating a symbol

Use command File - New symbol. A new document is created. Draw the graphics elements (lines,
rectangles) that make up the symbol. Completed symbol must be saved in the library - the directory
that is set in the program settings in the "path" dialog.
The symbols are stored in files with "pps" extension (normal symbols) or "picd" extension
(integrated circuits).
Start editing a symbol by double clicking it in the Symbols pane.
When creating a symbol, graphical shapes needs to be placed in a symmetric way, so that the symbol
is symmetric to axes of the working screen.

Correct Incorrect

Renaming a symbol

Carry out the renaming by renaming the file of the symbol.

Moving symbol to a different group

Move the file to a different folder.

Deleting a symbol or IC

Delete the file.

For organizing the files you can use any file manager, such as Windows Commander, Total
Commander, Windows Explorer, etc.
properties of the symbols
Each symbol contains a number, default type, default value and a comment. When the symbol is
being edited, you can set up these properties in File - Options - Document - Symbol

Number represents the name of the standard, in which the symbol is defined and the number of the
symbol used in this standard. This parameter is optional and may not be specified for all symbols. If
specified it is used in the standard: number format, e.g. EN 60617: 04-01-01
The default type stands for the symbol type. R for resistor, C for capacitor, T for transistor, etc.
The default value defines electric properties of the symbol, e.g. resistance in O, capacity in pF,
transistor type, etc. This value will be used as the implicit value in the diagram and you can adjust it
any time. If the value is not specified, no symbol type and values will be displayed in the diagram.
Comment - here, you can specify a comment.
For a resistor you add "R" for the type and "10K" for the value (this is done in the symbol Symbol
Editor). When you insert resistors in the Diagram Editor, the first one will be "R1", "10K", the
second one "R2", "10K" etc. The symbol types will be numbered automatically. symbol type and
value will be displayed in the diagram. You can then adjust the values based on your actual need.
For earthing symbols you select the "earth" type and do not specify any value. When you paste the
earth (mass) symbols in the Diagram Editor, the first will be named "Earth1", the second "Earth2",
etc. The symbol types will be numbered automatically. Symbol type nor value will not be displayed
as the value was not entered.
If you think you might forget to replace the implicit value by the real one, enter "XX", "?", etc..
Otherwise use the most frequently used value in your diagrams.
Rotating graphical shapes
Graphical objects can be rotated by menu command Edit - Rotate. A dialog box appears, where you
can specify the how many degrees the objects should rotate and around which point. In the previous
versions the rotating feature was available only in the symbols editor (it was designed for drawing
rotary machines). Now rotating is available also in other editors, it is necessary set up the center
point of rotating correctly.
There are two types of rotating:
1. type (lines, polylines and bezier curves) - each point of the object is rotated by given angle.
2. type (other objects) - only the mid-point of the object is rotated by given angle.

Let us illustrate rotating in an example, drawing a three phase machine:

step 1

Create the first branch of the machine. It is made up of two lines, three bezier curves and an outlet.
step 2

Select all objects with the mouse pointer and save them to the clipboard by Ctrl+C. Then invoke
menu command Edit - Rotate. Enter 120° degrees in the dialog box and hit the OK button.

step 3

Insert the original branch by Ctrl+V. Select the branch with the mouse and turn the objects by -120°.
step 4

Insert the original branch again. Symbol is done.

upgrading from version 4
Before version 5 there was just one hard wired non-editable TB in ProfiCAD. In verson 5 this hard
wired TB was replaced with a TB named "standard4.ptb" which lookes exactly the same. Use
"standard4.ptb" if you want your document to look the exactly the same as in version 4.
If you used a TB made up of lines and texts, you can create a real TB in version 5 using the Ctrl+C
Ctrl+V operations. Transfer only the lines and rectangles. Do not transfer the texts. Create them
anew, because they would not work correctly.

For newly created documents it is recommended to use TB "standard.ptb" which was created
according to the norm EN ISO 7200 (June 2008). This TB contains place for the logo of your
editing title blocks
Title blocks (TB) are created by command File - New Title Block.
You can edit existing TB by opening (File - Open) a file with .ptb extension. These files should be
in the _TB folder in the symbols library.
TB is made up of graphical objects - lines, rectangles texts etc. It is possible to insert an image (for
example with the comapny's logo). TB should be created symmetrically by the drawing area axis,
similarly as symbols.

correct incorrect

Texts can contain a placeholder part, which is replaced with the actual data from the document from
the summary info. The placeholder part is demarcated by symbols { and }.
For example in text
Created by: {author}
the placeholder area will be replaced with the "author" item from the summary info.
inserting a title block
Insert a TB into the drawing using command Options - Document - Title Block. Use the "Change"
button to open the dialog window where you can select the TB you indend to use. TBs are located in
the _TB folder in the symbols library.
Check "Show Title Block" on the top of the window to make the TB visible. You can remove a TB
from the document using the "Remove" button.
You can adjust the distance of the TB from the borders of the document. Check "Turn by 90°" to
turn the TB to get for example a landscape oriented drawing with a TB on the shorter side.
summary info
For the TBs to work properly, every document should contain summary info. You can enter
summaryy info in Options - Document - Summary.
You can use any names for the items. The only two exceptions to this rule are items "author" and
"date", because they are prefilled automatically by ProfiCAD.
Names of the items must not contain spaces.

According to the norm EN ISO 7200 (June 2008) TBs should contain these data fields:
name explanation number of mandatory?
name of the legal owner of the document,
legal owner unspecified yes
company name or logo
identification should be unique — at least within the
16 yes
number organization of the legal owner
various combinations of letters or figures (AA,
revision index 2 no
AB, A1 etc.)
date on which the document is officially
date of issue 10 yes
released for the first time
identifies the segment or sheet 4 yes
number of
number of segments or sheets 4 no
language code language code - based on ISO 639 4 no
refers to the content of the document -
title 25 yes
should not contain abbreviations
supplementary title 25 no
name or code for the organizational unit
responsible for the contents and maintenance 10 no
of the document
name of the person having sufficient
technical reference knowledge of the technical contents of the 20 no
name of the person who approved the
approval person 20 yes
creator or person who has prepared or
creator 20 yes
revised the document
document type field indicates the role of the
document type document with respect to its content of 30 yes
information and representation format
classification/key the text or code to categorize the contents of
unspecified no
words the document used for retrieval
for example “In preparation”, “Under
document status 20 no
approval”, “Released” and “Withdrawn” etc.
page number 4 no
number of pages 4 no
paper size for example A4 4 no
Working environment setting
The following commands are available in the "View" menu


Toggles the auxiliary grid on/off.

Background colour

Sets the working environment background colour.

Show outlet numbers

Toggles the symbols' outlet numbers display on/off. Very useful for checking of the generated netlists.

...more about the Netlist

Switch to background

Use this command to switch to background working mode.

Objects (symbols, labels, graphical shapes, images, etc.) can be drawn in the background so that they do not interfere with the electrical diagrams. This
function can be used for instance to draw a ground plan of a house in the background while the electrical wiring of the house can be drawn in the normal

When in the background you can only move the objects drawn in the background. Click on the switch to background button again to toggle the background
mode off.

When in the normal drawing mode the objects drawn in the background cannot be moved.

How do I know which layer is active?

Command View - Switch to background mode. If the menu command is checked, the background layer is active.

How do I move an object to the background?

Select the object and use command Object - Object on bankground.

How do I know in which layer an object is?

If an object is not in the active object, it cannot be selected.

more information about working environment:


A list of values for working environment scale setting (zoom) is available in the main toolbar.


The program uses tenths of mm units for line thickness, label positions, etc. setting.

Raster and working environment

The raster makes it easier to align labels and draw wires. The grid span can be adjusted in the "Program setting" dialog box.
Program settings
When you run the "File" - "Settings..." menu commands, a dialog box will be displayed, where you can set the program parameters.

You can make the following settings in this dialog box:

Symbols library

Set the main path (root directory), where all symbols are stored (PPD and PICD files).


The UNDO/REDO function allows you to cancel the last action. In this dialog box you can disable the undo/redo function (for instance if your computer is not
fast enough and has problems running with this functionality on).

Enable active wiring

Allows you to activate/deactivate the active wiring functionality. When you move a symbol, all wires attached to the symbol stay attached.

Number of steps on zoom change

The scale is being changed steplessly to prevent eye fatigue. This tab allows you to set the number of redrawing steps when the scale is changed. If your
computer is fast enough, you can set up higher values (such as 20-30) so that the scale change is more smooth. If your computer is not so fast, set up lower
values. If you set number 1, scale changes will be performed immediately without any intermediary steps.

Enable auto scrolling

When you move the mouse pointer to the edge of your working area, the drawing scrolls in the appropriate direction.

Confirmation when deleting

Activates/deactivates the message "Delete selected objects?" when deleting objects.


Enables save documents automatically. Auto-Save saves only documents that have been saved manually before.

Option "Create backup copy" creates a backup copy of the document on every save. The backup copy replaces the previous backup copy. The backup copies
have extension BAK and they are saved to the same folder as the document.

Renumbering symbols on copying

Here you can set what will happen with the "type" value (e.g. index - for example for the R10 type the index is number 10) when copying one or more parts.

The first option "Do not renumber" does not change the index value when copying (duplicate index will be created).

The second option "Assign the nearest value" the copied symbol will be assigned the nearest possible index value.
The third option "Add this value" means that the index of the copied symbol will be increased by the value you specified. In this last case, there is no duplicity

Working area in Symbol Editor

If you draw larger symbols you can set up a higher value.

Character map

You can set up the characters you would like to add in the character map, which is displayed when entering texts in a document. The characters may be
entered using Alt+numeric code (if you know the code) or via the standard Windows character map.


This setting allows to change the language of the program.

Check for updates at program start

At program start ProfiCAD checks whether a newer version is avalable. If yes, it is downloaded and installed. In such case, you will be prompted to save your
work, because the program will need to restart.

It is recommended to leave this setting on, so you always have the latest version. If you do not have permanent internet connection, please check for updates
occasionaly using Windows menu Start - Program Files - ProfiCAD - Check for updates.
Log levels

Logging allows recording software failures that occured during running the program. This information is useful for correcting possible program errors and for
improving the program. The information level stored in the log file can be set up to one of the following values:

Info - the highest level. All information, warnings and errors is saved.

Warnings and errors - warnings and errors are saved.

Errors - only errors are stored. Recommended setting.

Deactivate - select if you do not want the logs to be generated.

The "Log size" field specifies the log size. If no information is stored in the log, it shows 0 B.

If the log file takes up too much space you can delete it by "Delete log" command.

Use the "Test log" button to check whether the log generating works.


If the program crashes due to a software error, an error log, containing information necessary for error fixing is generated. The "Crashtest" buttons is used to
check whether this functionality works on the computer the program is installed on.

Activates/Deactivates the frame around the diagram and the title block.


This is the print scale. It was used to adjust the printed drawing if it was not printed correctly by the printer. This setting was needed with some of the older
printers that did not print correctly.

Number of pages

Sets up the number of pages of the drawing.

Page orientation

Set the landscape or portrait orientation.

Page size correction

The same as for scale, this setting was only needed with old printers, which printed out of the defined area. With some printers the drawing may not be printed
completely - a small part is missing. In such cases set up the correction for example 1mm right and 1 mm bottom.

The font settings you make here are only initial settings, which can freely be modified any time. It is possible to select a font and color for each lettering and
text. Fonts for types and values of symbols can also be set here. In this case, your setting will apply for the whole document.
Show types and values

You can activate/deactivate displaying of all types and values (so you do not need to activate/deactivate every individual value and type).


The raster facilitates alignment of the symbols and other objects.


Place for description of the construction.

Title block

Here you can insert TB into the drawing. More info here.
Summary info

Here enter the data fields for the title block.