Magic VLSI Layout Tool Version 8.2 *


LEF-format input and output


lef option

where option may be one of the following:
read [filename]
Read a LEF file named filename[.lef]
read [filename] -import
Read a LEF file. Import standard cells from .mag files
read [filename] -annotate
Read a LEF file. Use any macros defined in the LEF file to annotate existing layouts, and ignore all other macros.
write [cell] [-tech] [-hide [distance]] [-toplayer] [-nomaster]
Write LEF for the current or indicated cell.
Option -tech writes the technology information (layer mapping and rules) to the same file as the cell macro.
Option -hide generates an abstract view that has all interior detail removed, leaving only pins and obstruction layers covering the entire cell with cut-out areas for the pins. Option -hide may take an additional value argument distance which will hide the central part of a cell starting a distance distance from the edge. The distance value is in units of lambda by default, but like other distance measurements changes with respect to the snap command setting, and can take a suffix such as "um" to specify a physical distance relative to the current CIF/GDS output scale.
Option -toplayer outputs pin geometry only for the topmost layer belonging to the pin; all connected layers underneath will be output as obstructions.
Option -nomaster will prevent the generation of output geometry on layers defined as MASTERSLICE.
writeall [-tech] [-hide [distance]] [-notop] [-toplayer] [-nomaster]
Write all cells including the top-level cell. This might be appropriate if the top-level cell is a compendium of standard cells.
With option -notop: Write all subcells of the top-level cell, but not the top-level cell itself. This is appropriate for generating a LEF library from a layout, for which the layout itself would be written to a DEF file.
Options -hide, -tech, and -toplayer are the same as for the lef write command.
datestamp [value|default]
Force all cell definitions generated from LEF macros to have the datestamp (timestamp) of value. This can be used to ensure that the timestamps of abstract views match the timestamps of the equivalent full views, so that switching between abstract and full views does not cause timestamp mismatch handling. The string default cancels any fixed timestamps.
Print help information


The lef command writes LEF-format files, which are files containing technology information and information about the content of standard cells. It is used in conjunction with the def command to read databases of routed digital standard-cell layouts. The .lef file shares some information with the technology file in magic. At a minimum, to read .lef files from third-party sources, the technology file should have a lef section that maps magic layers to layer names that are found in the .lef and .def files. Without this information, magic will attempt to make an educated guess about the routing layers, which normally will be named in an obvious manner such as "metal1", "metal2", etc. The technology file section may be necessary to handle more complicated input such as obstruction layers. Most other aspects of a technology will be contained within the .lef file. When writing .lef files, magic will use internal layer names for the routing layers if no other information is present in the lef section of the technology file.

Because the lef format allows standard cells to be minimally defined (for purposes of protecting intellectual property), often the .lef file contains no actual layout information for the standard cells. magic provides a command option "-import". When specified, for each macro cell in the input .lef file, magic will look for a .mag file of the same name. If found, it will be loaded and used in preference to the definition in the lef file.

Magic uses the port mechanism for labels to determine what are the standard cells in a design. All cells containing port labels will be considered standard cells when writing a .lef file. Ports retain various bits of information used by the LEF/DEF definition, including the port use and direction. See the port documentation for more information.

Macro cell properties common to the LEF/DEF definition but that have no corresponding database interpretation in magic are retained using the cell property method in magic. There are specific property names associated with the LEF format. These are as follows:

Corresponds to the value of SHAPE for a macro cell in the LEF format.
Corresponds to the value of USE for a macro cell in the LEF format.
Corresponds to the value of CLASS for a macro cell in the LEF format.
Corresponds to the value of SOURCE for a macro cell in the LEF format.
Corresponds to the value of SYMMETRY for a macro cell in the LEF format.
Corresponds to the value of SITE for a macro cell in the LEF format.
Corresponds to the value of PROPERTY for a macro cell in the LEF format. LEF properties should be specified in a single cell property, in key:value pairs and space-separated. Like all properties containing spaces, the entire property string should be enclosed in quotes. When writing output, each of the space-separated entries will be output on its own PROPERTY line in the LEF file.
Normally, when importing a LEF/DEF layout into magic, one will first execute a lef read command followed by a def read command. Likewise, when writing a layout, one will first execute a lef writeall -notop command followed by a def write command.

If a LEF file of macro definitions is read when the same cells as named in the macros already exist in the magic database, then the LEF file macros will be used to annotate the existing layout. This includes setting pin properties (see above), extending the area of labels to cover an entire port, and setting a bounding box on the cell corresponding to the LEF origin and size.

Implementation Notes:

lef is implemented as a built-in command in magic. Only the critical portion of the LEF syntax has been implemented. In particular, simulation-specific properties of the technology and of macro cells are not implemented.

See Also:


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Last updated: June 28, 2021 at 12:28pm