Schematic entry and PCB design software: * "CadSoft Eagle":http://www.cadsoftusa.com/index.htm.en - free version for 80x100 mm available * "Target 3001":http://www.ibfriedrich.com/ - free version available * "Kicad":http://www.lis.inpg.fr/realise_au_lis/kicad/ - free, GPL * "ExpressPCB":http://www.expresspcb.com/ExpressPCBHtm/Free_cad_software.htm - free, but you have to order your boards from them Tutorials and articles: * You can often find lots of practical information about PCB design on the websites of the software vendors (see above). * "PCB Design Tutorial":http://www.alternatezone.com/electronics/pcbdesign.htm * "A Practical Guide to High-Speed Printed-Circuit-Board Layout":http://www.analog.com/library/analogDialogue/archives/39-09/layout.html * "PCB Design Guidelines For Reduced EMI":http://focus.ti.com/lit/an/szza009/szza009.pdf To be continued. If you want to suggest any additions, please reply below.
Can I add DipTrace (http://www.diptrace.com/) to your list. I have been using it and it is excellent. It has a schematic and PCB IDE and also includes a component editor. The library of components and footprints are huge and easily searchable. A freeware version with a 250 pin limit is also available on a non profit licence. The PCB layout allows you to save all the gerber and drill and artwork files needed for PCB manufacture and the freeware version allows you to create a pcb with up to 2 layers.
http://www.pcb-pool.com offers a free full version of Target3001, but you have to order your boards from them. http://www.pcb-pool.com/ppuk/service_downloads.html
There are another tools: - DesignSpark PCB - http://www.designspark.com/pcb - they write that "most powerful free PCB Design tool available, and gives all design engineers access to powerful, professional-standard software at no cost". But then one can find "non-crippled and modified version of Easy-PC; a low end CAD tool from Number One Systems" - gEDA Tools - http://www.gpleda.org/index.html - I am using this regularly. Nothing convinced me to leave gEDA Tools and start to use something else. There are some things which can be better. But IMHO it is everywhere.
You can check if your Gerber files are created correctly by using the software called GC-prevue. This is a free Gerber viewer that can be downloaded from the following website:http://www.graphicode.com/GC-Prevue