Boardview files containing information about printed circuit boards, their components, used signals, test points and more (popular in laptop/pc service). These files may have following extensions: .asc, .bdv, .brd, .bv, .cad, .cst, .gr, .f2b, .fz. and others.

  1. I want to generate such file and maybe use some open source software to display them. For example there is software called Openboardview. https://openboardview.org/. I want to generate file for that software, preferably in open source pcb suite, maybe Kicad?

  2. There is software, like openboardview for example, that reads many formats of these files. So it's not so complicated. What is the format of these files? Maybe there exists scripts, third party tools that can generate such files from circuit, pcb, and BOM file?

Simply, I want to generate files about pcb/circuit/elements for service and be able to use simple viewer like openboardview to display them. I don't want to use whole pcb suite to look at board. Sorry for my english, it's not my native language.

I'm familiar with pcb suites like: Eagle, Kicad, Diptrace, but they don't have options to generate a file for (for example) openboardview.

If software i want is very expensive, maybe exist simple program which can read images of circuit and pcb, and read part list, and i can manually annotate images?



  • 2
    \$\begingroup\$ Simple? As simple as a full-blown PCB design suit. \$\endgroup\$
    – Eugene Sh.
    Jan 2, 2019 at 16:46
  • \$\begingroup\$ You can usually operate the full suites in a "free" mode that allows you to look at the PCB and schematic, but not edit. Good for techs and service folk. \$\endgroup\$ Jan 9, 2019 at 13:51
  • \$\begingroup\$ Why do you want to use a program when you don't even know what it's meant to display? It seems very customized to support a format for programs that does not even exist. (At least you can't even find any hits on google when searching for it) \$\endgroup\$
    – pipe
    Jan 9, 2019 at 13:57
  • \$\begingroup\$ It appears that someone has written an exporter for KiCAD that will generate .brd2 files for OpenBoardView. \$\endgroup\$
    – JRE
    Jan 9, 2019 at 14:40

1 Answer 1


I use Eagle CAD software.


You can cram a lot of stuff on a 80x100mm 2 sided board. I've upgraded to the Pro License as I do much larger boards for sale and for hire.

  • \$\begingroup\$ Is IT really possibile? Any link to docs? \$\endgroup\$
    – Martin
    Jan 2, 2019 at 18:02
  • \$\begingroup\$ Is what possible? Or did you mean IT in some other way? What kinds of documents? Sparkfun.com has online Eagle tutorials that were quite helpful. I keep getting messages from Eagle folks too with useful tips & stuff since I downloaded the free version to troubleshoot a footprint problem for someone else. \$\endgroup\$
    – CrossRoads
    Jan 2, 2019 at 18:31
  • \$\begingroup\$ Is it possible to generate file in Eagle suitable for Openboardview? \$\endgroup\$
    – Martin
    Jan 3, 2019 at 8:51
  • \$\begingroup\$ I don't know that any of the companies do that - Eagle, Kicad, ExpressPCB,Altium, Fritzing, easyEDA.com, the tools at Digikey digikey.com/en/resources/design-tools/design-tools They all store the file information their own way and can't be shared across tools. Maybe some will export in such a way that another could import it. I don't have the time to see what is compatible with what. In the Arduino family (Arduino, Sparkfun, Adafruit) Eagle seems to be the choice, and that's what I use for my 328, 1284, 2560, etc. designs. It outputs Gerber files for the board manufacturers. \$\endgroup\$
    – CrossRoads
    Jan 3, 2019 at 12:37

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