IAR ARM v6.7 comes with improved Processor Expert Support

This week I saw on the IAR website that they have released the new IAR Embedded Workbench v6.7 for ARM. I was still on 6.5 using the free code size limited ‘Kickstart’ version), so I thought it would be a good time to upgrade to the v6.7. And there are good reasons as the connection to Processor Expert makes things much easier now.

Download and Installation

The download worked fine. During installation I decided that I want to keep my v6.5 and installed v6.7 into a different directory.

❗ IAR v6.7 uses a new format for project files. As soon as I open a v6.5 project with v6.7, I cannot open it any more with a previous version (no backward compatibility)!

License Renewal or Not?

So far, so good. It only complained in the license manager that I have a (free) v6.5 license and that I need renew my license. Which makes sense. So I selected the menu License > Check for License Renewal. But it returned only with an error. Network connection problem maybe? I checked many things, still only errors. Ok, then decided to uninstall v6.5 (maybe that was not a good thing to keep it). Still the license renewal only returned an error. What now? Uninstalled v6.7 and re-installed it again. Still no license renewal. Hmm. Finally decided to uninstall it again. Downloaded it again from the IAR web site, installed it again, and now I have found the trick: I need to register first, to get the free activation code for my code size limited version. Aha! Next time maybe I remember if I read my post again 😉

Processor Expert Driver Suite

I’m using Processor Expert Driver Suite 10.2 as explained in this post to create a project for the FRDM-KL25Z.

Project Connection in IAR

In IAR I need to connect to the Processor Expert project. This means that the IAR tool chain is reading a XML file generated by Processor Expert which has all the needed settings in it.

First, I make sure that ‘Enable Project connections is enabled’ in IAR (menu Tools > Options):

Enabled Project Connections in IAR

Enabled Project Connections in IAR

Then I create a new empty project in IAR using the menu Project > Create New Project:

New Empty Project in IAR

New Empty Project in IAR

I save that project in the same project folder I have created with Processor Expert Driver suite above.

Now I make the project connection. For this I use the menu Project > Add Project Connection where I select ‘Freescale Processor Expert‘:

Project Connection to Freescale Processor Expert

Project Connection to Freescale Processor Expert

Then I select the ProjectInfo.xml file inside the Processor Expert project.

So far it is the same as with IAR v6.5. But from here things are much easier, because the microcontroller used is automatically imported by IAR :-):

Device already configured

Device already configured

The same way, the linker file is already set up 🙂 :

Linker File already configured

Linker File already configured

And finally, the include search paths have been included correctly too :-):

Include Paths

Include Paths

Debugger Settings

As the Processor Expert project does not configure the debugger settings, this still needs to be managed within the IAR tool chain. Please refer to the end of this post.

Adding/Removing Components

In the previous IAR version, when I added or removed a component, then the IAR IDE was not checking the changes of the Processor Expert XML file. Now things are working finally the way it should: the IAR IDE detects the changes and removes or adds the new files to the project automatically :-):

Added new component files

Added new component files

Summary

The new IAR Embedded Workbench IDE v6.7 works now very seamless with Processor Expert:

  1. it automatically detects the microcontroller use
  2. it is using automatically the Processor Expert linker file
  3. it updates the paths
  4. and it detects if files get removed or added

It is still not as seamless as if everything would be in a single IDE. But the above improvements made in v6.7 makes it much easier to use with Processor Expert.

Happy IARing 🙂

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6 thoughts on “IAR ARM v6.7 comes with improved Processor Expert Support

  1. Are there any advanges of this over CW 10.5? Does one need any other hardware to use this IDE or can it connect straight to a KL25Z and KL46Z via a USB cable?

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    • The advantage is that it is using GDB. With this, the Wittenstein FreeRTOS plugins work with this debugger. Otherwise, if you are developing as well for NXP or STMicroelectronics, you do not need a separate IDE, as it supports non-Freescale devices.
      You do not need another hardware to debug the FRDM boards, if you load the Segger OpenSDA firmware on it. Otherwise for Freescale devices, you need to buy a Segger J-Link.

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