Learning from Failure: QFN Package Corner Problem


Every day, there is something new to learn. And having problems is always a good learning opportunity :-). Yesterday we were able to find a strange problem with our tinyK20 prototypes, just before we were about to send the design for manufacturing.

Kinetis K20 on tinyK20 Board

Kinetis K20 on tinyK20 Board

Continue reading

Linking additional Object Files with GNU Linker


Sometimes I need to link an object file (e.g. bootloader.o) to my application, and I do not want to build it, or I do not have the sources to build it. There is a simple way with the GNU ARM Eclipse plugins to link extra object files:

Other Objects for GNU Linker

Other Objects for GNU Linker

Continue reading

Aligning S19 Records to 64-bit Boundaries


Many tool chains and linker are able to produce S19 files, such as with the GNU tools it is the ‘objcopy‘ which does this job (see “Binary (and S19) Files for the mbed Bootloader with Eclipse and GNU ARM Eclipse Plugins“). But these tools usually cannot handle the special cases. For example on the Freescale Kinetis K64F my serial bootloader (see “Serial Bootloader for the Freedom Board with Processor Expert“) had a problem with these lines in the S19 file:

Not aligned S19 file entries

Not aligned S19 file entries

Continue reading

Freescale CMSIS-SVD Register Files with Eclipse MARS and EmbSysRegView


In “How to Add Register Details View in Eclipse” I showed how to add the Register detail support in Eclipse using the EmbSysRegView plugin. This was for Luna/Mars, and for the version v0.2.4 of the plugins.

Since then, there is a new version of Eclipse (MARS, see “Going to Mars: Building a DIY Eclipse IDE for ARM Embedded Microcontrollers“) and the EmbSysRegView plugin has been updated to v2.0.5. Makes everything much simple, so here is an updated post with the details how to add register detail view to Eclipse Mars.

Eclipse Mars

Eclipse Mars

Continue reading

Using FRDM-K64F Board to debug another Kinetis Board


Given all the posts I already have published on a similar topic, this one will be a short one: how to use the Freescale FRDM-K64F board with OpenSDAv2 to debug another board:

FRDM-K64F Board to Debug FRDM-KL25Z Board

FRDM-K64F Board to Debug FRDM-KL25Z Board

Continue reading

Using Precompiled Headers with GNU gcc in Eclipse


Some of my robotics projects take a rather long time do a full build. When I developed applications with Visual C++ on the host, using precompiled headers gave me a big boost in compilation speed. I was looking for the same in similar with GNU and gcc, and as expected: gcc does support precompiled headers too. And indeed, I was able to cut down compilation time by 30% :-). So this post is about how to use gcc with precompiled headers in Eclipse/CDT to give my builds a boost.

using precompiled header

using precompiled header

Continue reading

New in Eclipse Mars: Launchbar


In “Going to Mars: Building a DIY Eclipse IDE for ARM Embedded Microcontrollers” I described how to install an Eclipse based IDE for ARM, based on Eclipse Mars (4.5) and CTD (8.7). There are many great new features in Eclipse Mars which makes that switch worthwhile: the Launchbar:

Launchbar in Eclipse Mars

Launchbar in Eclipse Mars

A dream is are now a reality: a really, really easy way to build, run/debug an application!

Continue reading

Going to Mars: Building a DIY Eclipse IDE for ARM Embedded Microcontrollers


It has been a while since I published my ‘build my own DIY IDE’ (see “DIY Free Toolchain for Kinetis: Part 1 – GNU ARM Build Tools“). I have used that approaches in my classes successfully. Now a new semester is coming up, so time to update the instructions using the latest Eclipse IDE (Mars) and tools (GCC ARM Embedded (launchpad) with GNU ARM Eclipse).

Eclipse Mars Splash Screen

Eclipse Mars Splash Screen

Continue reading

Better Debugging with Eclipse: Step Into Selection


Some might say that Eclipse is too powerful and has too many features. But to me, the many small and somehow hidden gems can make a big difference in my daily life. One of these features is ‘Step Into Selection’ while debugging.

Very often I have a source line with nested function calls like this:

Nested Functions

Nested Function Calls

Continue reading