Xiv Layout Viewer
IC Design Software for Unix/Linux and Windows
Whiteley Research Inc., 456 Flora Vista Avenue, Sunnyvale CA 94086    wrcad.com
The Xiv Layout Viewer and File Manipulator
Whiteley Research Inc.,     wrcad.com

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Xiv  is a layout file viewer, and a lot more. As a feature set of Xic, it retains the feature set of XicII, but does not provide geometry editing capability. However, is is much more capable than a simple layout viewer.

Like the other programs, Xiv has the ability to read any GDSII, CIF, OASIS, or other supported file format (memory limitations permitting) and display the layout. No a-priori knowlege of the file is necessary, internal layers are created as needed. One can define colors and fill patterns for the layers found in the file, and create a new technology file, so that these attributes can be preserved for future sessions. All or the physical viewing modes supported by Xic are available.

Although Xiv does not provide geometry editing, it does provide the complete file and cell manipulation capabilities of Xic. Therefor, like Xic, Xiv is a powerful tool for working with layout files.

These features include:

  • Format conversion among the supported formats.
  • Extraction of cell hierarchies or individual cells from a layout file.
  • Windowing and flattening operations, with or without clipping.
  • Empty cell removal.
  • Layer/datatype filtering and aliasing.
  • Cell name modification.
  • Cell replacement.
  • Layout file merging and top cell creation.
  • Obtaining information about a hierarchy and its cells, layers, etc.

Like Xic, Xiv provides the Cell Hierarchy Digest (CHD) capability. This enables operations such as those listed above, plus layout viewing, to be applied to files that are much too large to fit into memory. With Xiv, one can work with huge files, even with a modest computer.

The CHD is a very compact representation of a layout cell hierarchy obtained from a layout file. It contains no geometry information, and requires only a small fraction of the memory that would be required to load the file into the normal database. Through the CHD, the program can obtain the information that it needs for processing, by reading only small parts of the file when needed.

Xiv provides script execution capability, but does not provide a User menu or a debugger (this may change, stay tuned!). Nevertheless, it is possible for operations, such as the layout file manipulations, to be automated via scripts. The library of script functions available is a major subset of those available in Xic.

Presently, Xiv can not instantiate parameterized cells or create sub-masters, but can view layouts containing parameterized cells if the sub-masters are available. There is no problem viewing, e.g., GDSII files produced in Cadence Virtuoso, as the file will contain the sub-masters.

The layout diagnostic tools found in Xic are all available (however it is not possible to alter geometry). For example, coincident cells or objects, badly-formed polygons, etc. can be detected and listed. Layouts can be compared and differences listed. Information can be displayed about individual objects and subcell placements, and properties listed.

The user interface to Xiv is similar to that of XicII and Xic, however the side menu (which contains geometry editing command buttons) is absent. The File, View, Attributes, Convert, and Help menus are available, with substantially the same commands and features as found in the other programs.

Copyright © Whiteley Research Inc. 2014