Ability to Add Components from Supplier Search

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Providing a welcome boost to creation of vault components, Altium Designer 15.1 brings the ability to search for one or more real-world parts, courtesy of Supplier Search functionality, and then add those parts into the active Component Library document. This functionality is delivered through a purpose-made extension for the Component Library Editor - the Component From Supplier Search extension. Not only do you get a new component definition entry for each selected part, you get all of its parameters, and any data sheets, leaving you to just organize some domain models, and then release!

The Component From Supplier Search

This feature is only made available, provided the Component From Supplier Search extension is installed as part of your Altium Designer installation. This extension is installed by default when installing the software, but in case of inadvertent uninstall, can be found back on the Purchased tab of the Extensions & Updates page (DXP » Extensions and Updates).


The feature is accessed from the area of the Component Library Editor in which the component definitions themselves are defined. Simply right-click and choose the Operations » Add from Supplier Search command from the region's context menu. Alternatively, click within the definitions area, and use the keyboard shortcut Shift+Ctrl+M.

The command can also be accessed fromm the editor's main Edit menu (Edit » Operations » Add from Supplier Search).

The Add Supplier Links dialog will appear - familiar to anyone who has used the Live Links to Supplier Data feature to add supplier links to a schematic component. Simply search for the required part, then click the OK button.

Access the Add Supplier Links dialog, and search for one or more parts you'd like to bring in to your CmpLib.

You can select multiple parts in the dialog, for simultaneous addition, each will be added as a separate component definition, back in the CmpLib document. Alternatively, perform numerous sequential searches, adding one or more components each time, to build up a library of required components.

After clicking OK, the following will occur:

  • Component entries for each selected part will be created in the definitions area of the CmpLib. Each definition will:
    • Be named using the next available unique Item ID, and in accordance with the defined Component Naming scheme employed by the CmpLib.
    • Have the value for the selected part's Manufacturer Part Number parameter assigned as the value for its Comment system parameter.
    • Have the value for the selected part's Description parameter assigned as the value for its Description system parameter.
  • All parameters defined for a selected part (as visible for it in the dialog) will be added to the Required Models/Parameters list. All will be made visible (associated Show option enabled). This just means a column will be displayed for each, by default, in the definitions area.
  • Parametric entries will also be added for each datasheet available for a selected part (in the form of a ComponentLinknDescription and ComponentLinknURL pairing).
Parameters are imported in accordance with defined Parameter Import Options - configured on the Data Management - Suppliers page of the Preferences dialog.

Example of the resulting definitions, and added parameters, for the two selected parts in the Add Supplier Links dialog from before.

Taking a closer look at the parameters created to accommodate the chosen parts' datasheets.


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