Right before Christmas 2019, NXP has released a new version of the MCUXpresso IDE, the version 11.1.0. This gave me time to explore it over the Christmas/New-Year break and evaluate it for the next university semester. There are several new features which will make my labs using it easier, so I plan to get the course material updated for it.
After the break you will find the highlights …
Welcome and SDK Download
The V11.1.0 comes with a new ‘Welcome’ screen and system:
The IDE supports the new SDK 2.7 plus includes the V7 configuration tools.
What is new too is the presence of a dedicated Eclipse Plugin to manage the SDKs: instead going to the MCUXpresso SDK website I can use the plugin to filter for board and MCUs and directly load and install the SDKs, plus creating a project for it.
Installed SDK’s view
The above dialogs to download and install the SDKs from the web can be accessed from the Installed SDKs view too. Additionally there are two new tabs to show the available boards and devices:
I’m currently not using the LPC55S69 in my classes. But the IDE comes with the TEE Tool which makes memory configuration for TrustZone secure/non-secure areas easier (it was already part of the previous release). It configures access policies for memory areas and peripherals.
Something I have not used yet but could be useful for the labs: there is the ability to create a custom board SDK: in the labs we use custom boards, and that way we could create a dedicated SDK for it.
Installing the Dark Theme (see “Installing Darkest Theme with MCUXpresso IDE 10.2“) could have negative side effects in Eclipse, that’s why in MCUXpresso IDE it comes with a dedicated built-in theme which is a big plus for all the ‘dark theme lovers’. In this release the views and icons have been updated to show it nicely and dark:
The Image Info view has two now buttons: one to deal with multiple build configurations and one to directly jump to the main symbol:
Flash programming speed using LinkServer connections are now much faster as it compares already existing flash content and only re-programs blocks if they have changed. The log output has been extended with progress information during flash programming:
Code Size Reduction
I observed a code size reduction for some of my SDK projects. The release notes mention that two new options (-fmerge-constants and -fmacro-prefix-map) have been added to the compiler settings:
The combination of the two allows the linker to optimize constant data usage. Depending on SDK and constant usage, this can save a great deal of FLASH memory.
Overall this is a very solid release with new and useful functionality, in addition to the bug fixes. Especially the SDK enhancements will make using it in a classroom environment more powerful, and I’m sure students will love the Dark Theme too. There are more details available in the community article (see links section at the end of this article).
Happy MCUXpressing 🙂
- Download link: http://www.nxp.com/mcuxpresso/ide/download
- Overview of previous version: https://mcuoneclipse.com/2019/09/05/nxp-mcuxpresso-ide-11-0-1-available/
- Community article: https://community.nxp.com/community/mcuxpresso/mcuxpresso-ide/blog/2019/12/20/mcuxpresso-ide-v1110-now-available