Sunday, July 15, 2018

MSP430f169 LCD development environment

Until now I always developed code for the  Olimex board MSP430F169 LCD using an open source compiler (GNU) and using a parallel port->JTAG adapter to program the board and do some debug.
That requires a computer with parallel port.
The goal of this article is to see if is possible to use an USB->JTAG adapter or using the Spy-by-wire connection.

The Olimex MSP430f169 LCD board can be debugged/handled only using a JTAG interface, i.e. it doesn't support Spi2wire.
The original JTAG interface used is a parallel port based and this is creating limits on the choice of the development machine.

The alternative is to use a USB->JTAG interface.
In that way is possible to use every PC with a USB port free, laptop included.

Exists on the market some USB->JTAG interfaces for the MSP430, but they are quite pricey (70$ to 150$).
Before to buy one of these, this article try to explore the possibility to use a more cheaper USB->JTAG dongle, based on the OpenJTAG project.


The OpenJTAG project is an open source project to handle a USB -> JTAG high speed interface for different microcontroller/microprocessors boards.


The OpenOCD project is an open source project to support on-chip debug capabilities.
IT can be linked to the OpenJTAG project for some processors.

OpenJTAG v.3.1

The hardware is based on a USB->JTAG dongle received with a FriendlyARM board.

Here some data about the hardware I have available and I will try to use.

The dongle basically contains 2 interfaces :
  1. USB -> Serial
  2. USB -> JTAG Parallel (two separate ports)
Here some characteristics of this interface:

  • USB2.0 full-speed interface 
  • use of USB power 
  • Plug and Play

  • IEEE 1149.1 standard 
  • 6Mbits/sec largest rate 
  • 150 times of parallel port JTAG 
  • Multi-ICE 10-pin socket 
  • Multi-ICE 10-pin socket 
  • target system 3.3V

Serial port: 
  • RS232 Standard
  • 7 or 8-bit of data 
  • 2 or 1 bit of stop
  • odd check/dual check / mark / space / no check 
  • 235kbps maximum baud rate

On-line debugging features: 
  • Support for multiple CPU series: ARM7, ARM9, Cortex-M3, XSCALE

Software features:

  • Eclipse integrated development environment installation and course (Linux / Windows version)
  • On-line debugger OpenOCD installation and course (Linux / Windows version)
  • Real-time debugging features: one-step, running at full speed, reset, hardware / software
  • breakpoints, jump etc.
  • CPU registers, memory, variable observation window (dynamic changes in real-time view)
  • support ARM's built-in Cache and MMU function
  • online programming variety of Nor Flash and Nand Flash
  • Driver: support Linux2.4 or later, Windows ME/2000/2003/XP

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