Freescale might not have thought about this: how to use Freescale boards and silicon to develop for non-Freescale silicon?
I tinkered around using the FRDM (e.g. FRDM-KL25Z) board as a general purpose programming or debugging device. See the links to the posts at the end of this article. I have used it to program and debug other Freescale ARM processors. It requires board changes and the usage of a different OpenSDA firmware which has its own limitations (no USB CDC serial bridge). But for about $15-20 I have a device to program my own external boards :-).
If you are using Keil tools, then the good news is: With CMSIS-DAP you can debug any other (even non-Freescale) ARM device as long it is supported by the IDE :mgreen:
FRDM-KL25Z debugging the nRF51422-DK (Source: Keith Wakeham)
Microsoft has released the Windows 8.1 Preview. So you can try out the next update of Windows 8. In short: Do NOT use Windows 8.1 Preview if you are using a Freescale FRDM board! Otherwise you will not be able to change the OpenSDA firmware (MSD or debug application).
Well, I have not used it personally: I never use ‘test’ or ‘preview’ versions on my ‘production’ machine. It is ok to try things out on separate ‘scratch’ machines, but not on something I need to have stable for my work. Well, some of the students in my INTRO class were not able to resist and downloaded and installed Windows 8.1 Preview on their machines. With the result that the OpenSDA Bootloader does not work with Windows 8.1 Preview:
It seems that the problem exists as well with the Windows 8.1 ‘final’ release.
In case you have this problem with the FRDM boards: You are using the FRDM bootloader mode (it shows up as BOOTLOADER) or the MSD mode (e.g. it shows up as FRDM-KL25Z) (see OpenSDA on the Freedom KL25Z Board) and it does not respond any more, or does not work as expected, then read on…
This is the third part of a tutorial series how to ‘do-it-yourself’ a tool chain for the Freescale Kinetis microcontroller, with the FRDM-KL25Z as example. The tool chain is using GNU ARM gcc plus Eclipse Kepler release. So far I have the following parts:
So far things are very generic. But with debugging it means different hardware, and different hardware connections. And for this connection we need a GDB Server.
Eclipse CDT features a GNU Debugger (GDB), and this is what I want to use here: debugging my microcontroller with GDB inside Eclipse. In order to debug the microcontroller, I need two other things: a GDB Server and a Debug Probe.
I’m working with a student on building a small autonomous robot platform, based on the FRDM-KL25Z board. We integrated new software modules, compiled and linked, and then downloaded the application to the board. While debugging and stepping through the application startup, I had this:
The Debugger has lost communication on connection
Outsch! That’s not good. Even worse, trying to connect again to the board failed :-(. What happened?
Teaching at a university means to work in a very special environment. What students love is ‘Open Source’: because it allows them to ‘see’ things and learn from the technology. The other thing is: students have a low budgets, so they appreciate if they can use inexpensive or low-cost hardware and software. The FRDM-KL25Z Freedom board for sure meets that low price, and no extra programming device needed.
Now they are building their own boards, and they wish to program and debug it. They can borrow the Segger J-Links and P&E Multilinks we have available at the university. But why not use the Freedom board as ‘hobby’ debug and programming solution? As explored in “Using the Freedom Board as SWD Programmer“, they can use the default factory installed OpenSDA to program another microcontroller of same type. But not to debug it.
While writing the ”Using the Freedom Board as SWD Programmer” article, I was looking into USBDM. USBDM has added in January 2013 support for OpenSDA. But at that time, it was somehow not working for me, and I had not enough time to find out what the problem was. Time to get that fixed. Good news: With help and tips from the USBDM community, I have it finally working
The OpenSDA on the FRDM-KL25Z board is a cool feature: I do not need any external debugging device to program and debug my board :-). But my KL25Z custom board will not have that OpenSDA on it: first because it would add additional costs, and I do not see a way how I could use it for my board, see this forum discussion. I better start using a JTAG debugger for my Freedom board to have everything in place.
What I need to add to the black Freedom board is the JTAG header:
In ‘Device is Secure‘ I had a case where this was a false alarm. But recently there has been a report in the Freescale Forum that this can be a real problem with the Freedom KL25Z board I’m using too. I was not able to reproduce this on my end, so a reader of this blog who sent me a binary file to reproduce it.
Well, I was really scared to try that ‘killer’ file on my board, but well, that board is not that expensive, and I have 5 pieces of silicon at hand from a sample order :-). So I took some risk, and programmed that binary using the simple flash programmer. And indeed, when I wanted to debug it again, I got that dialog with my black Freedom board:
The good thing with many vendors is: they offer development tools free of charge. And the limitations are typically reasonable for many projects. The Eclipse based CodeWarrior for MCU10 is not an exception: it comes in a free (‘Special’) Edition which allows up to 128 KByte of code to download for my ARM/Kinetis projects.
But, when I tried to debug an Example I have downloaded from the web, I get this dialog:
“Download size limit has been exceeded. Please check your license.”