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Forum: ARM programming with GCC/GNU tools AT91SAM7X256 + TFT + Ethernet Board


Author: rain (Guest)
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Hello everybody!

I'm thinking about buying the Olimex AT91SAM7X256 + TFT + Ethernet Board
from the microcontroller.net shop.

Therefore i have a few questions about this board:

-) Is there a suitable GNU ARM Toolchain available for this Controller
(AT91SAM7X256). Where can i found out if there is a Toolchain? The tool
should be available for windows OS.

-) Does anybody own this board? What about the olimex demo applications?
The source code looks a little bit confusing to me. There is a
AT91SAM7S256.h file which holds the registers of the AR91SAM7 but not of
the AT91SAM7X256. They always include the file "ioat91sam7x256.h" but i
cant find it in there source code package. Without this file there are
no register definitions for the Ethernet Mac unit and so on that makes
these µC so interesting.

-) Is this the only sample code for this Board/µC. How to get starting
with the Ethernet module?

-) How does debugging work?

-) I read a view threads about the AT91SAM7 and its very slow and
complicated programming methods.

-) Which Adapter do i need to program and debug this device via JTAG?
Can i do this adapter at home?

Thanks a lot for your answers.

Greetings

Author: rain (Guest)
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Hello again!

I read a lots of documents and readme's today. I found a few toolchains
for the ARM processors like WINARM, YAGARTO. (i want to use a windows
based solution)

I have no idea where to get the Header files, linker skripts, make files
and startup code for the SAM7X.

Is everyone using the AT91SAM7X256 from olimex with a Free Toolchain
like WinArm or Yagarto?

How do you debug the device? Do i need the olimex JTAG_ARM Connector or
can i use my Spartan3 Starter kit's parallel-Jtag cable?

There is a lot of pheripheral on this board. Has anybody experience with
interfacing with ethernet module, or the tft display?


Thanks a lot for your reply's.

Greetings
rain

Author: Martin Thomas (Guest)
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rain wrote:
> Hello everybody!
>
> I'm thinking about buying the Olimex AT91SAM7X256 + TFT + Ethernet Board
> from the microcontroller.net shop.
>
> Therefore i have a few questions about this board:
>
> -) Is there a suitable GNU ARM Toolchain available for this Controller
> (AT91SAM7X256). Where can i found out if there is a Toolchain? The tool
> should be available for windows OS.

Any toolchain which supports ARM7TDMI. For Windows there are several
precompiled toolchains available (Codesourcery ARM, Yagarto, Rowley,
DevkitPro, GNUARM and WinARM and maybe more)

> -) Does anybody own this board?

Not me. (Maybe someday).

> What about the olimex demo applications?
> The source code looks a little bit confusing to me. There is a
> AT91SAM7S256.h file which holds the registers of the AR91SAM7 but not of
> the AT91SAM7X256. They always include the file "ioat91sam7x256.h" but i
> cant find it in there source code package. Without this file there are
> no register definitions for the Ethernet Mac unit and so on that makes
> these µC so interesting.

IRC ioAT91* is for IAR EW. Check if the code is made for the IAR
toolchain. If yes the inclue-file is part of the IAR installation. The
file should be available in examples for the X256 from at91.com too.

> -) Is this the only sample code for this Board/µC. How to get starting
> with the Ethernet module?

I think there is an example for the Atmel X256 Demo-Board in FreeRTOS.
Maybe the code for the PHY has to be adapted - check if both board use
the same PHY. Another commercial RTOS vendor recently announced a port
of it's RTOS to the OLX-board - search the AT91 yahoo group or the
at91.com forum.

> -) How does debugging work?

AT91SAMs have a JTAG interface. So you can use a JTAG adapter and
debugging-software which can "talk" to this adapter.

> -) I read a view threads about the AT91SAM7 and its very slow and
> complicated programming methods.

"Complicated" maybe when using SAM-BA but with a connection to the
JTAG-interface it's 'another story'.

> -) Which Adapter do i need to program and debug this device via JTAG?
> Can i do this adapter at home?

A simple hardware design is a so-called Wiggler. Schematics available in
the net and Wigglers are supported by OpenOCD. Rather easy to build "at
home".

But since you order the board anyway you you could order the
"Wiggler-clone" or the FT2232-based interface too.

Martin Thomas

Author: Liam (Guest)
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rain wrote:
> Hello again!
>
> I read a lots of documents and readme's today. I found a few toolchains
> for the ARM processors like WINARM, YAGARTO. (i want to use a windows
> based solution)

I use Crossworks from Rowley.
Works great. AT91SAM7X256 support out of the box.
For JTAG the Olimex Wiggler works great. Again supported by Crossworks.

>
> I have no idea where to get the Header files, linker skripts, make files
> and startup code for the SAM7X.

You can build on the ones in James Lynch's awesome app note.
I built my own, bit by bit, adding one peripheral at a time to the
header.

>
> Is everyone using the AT91SAM7X256 from olimex with a Free Toolchain
> like WinArm or Yagarto?
>
> How do you debug the device? Do i need the olimex JTAG_ARM Connector or
> can i use my Spartan3 Starter kit's parallel-Jtag cable?

OLimex JTAG wiggler works fine.

>
> There is a lot of pheripheral on this board. Has anybody experience with
> interfacing with ethernet module, or the tft display?

I own the board. It works very well.
However.
WARNING.
Lots of nice peripherals etc but Olimex documentation is PATHETIC.
You are completely on your own.
Their "code" is a help but is simply a collection of routines that they
port across all their ARM boards.
Comment lines virtually non-existent.

I have been trying for a month to get an answer on what the LCD on the
board is.
There's no spec, no detail, no nothing so it's impossible to do anything
other than run their limited code.

I would check the quality of the doc very carefully before buying their
board.
Rgs. Liam.

Author: Madhu Surisetty (Guest)
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Liam wrote:
> rain wrote:
>> Hello again!
>>
>> I read a lots of documents and readme's today. I found a few toolchains
>> for the ARM processors like WINARM, YAGARTO. (i want to use a windows
>> based solution)
>
> I use Crossworks from Rowley.
> Works great. AT91SAM7X256 support out of the box.
> For JTAG the Olimex Wiggler works great. Again supported by Crossworks.
>
>>
>> I have no idea where to get the Header files, linker skripts, make files
>> and startup code for the SAM7X.
>
> You can build on the ones in James Lynch's awesome app note.
> I built my own, bit by bit, adding one peripheral at a time to the
> header.
>
>>
>> Is everyone using the AT91SAM7X256 from olimex with a Free Toolchain
>> like WinArm or Yagarto?
>>
>> How do you debug the device? Do i need the olimex JTAG_ARM Connector or
>> can i use my Spartan3 Starter kit's parallel-Jtag cable?
>
> OLimex JTAG wiggler works fine.
>
>>
>> There is a lot of pheripheral on this board. Has anybody experience with
>> interfacing with ethernet module, or the tft display?
>
> I own the board. It works very well.
> However.
> WARNING.
> Lots of nice peripherals etc but Olimex documentation is PATHETIC.
> You are completely on your own.
> Their "code" is a help but is simply a collection of routines that they
> port across all their ARM boards.
> Comment lines virtually non-existent.
>
> I have been trying for a month to get an answer on what the LCD on the
> board is.
> There's no spec, no detail, no nothing so it's impossible to do anything
> other than run their limited code.
>
> I would check the quality of the doc very carefully before buying their
> board.
> Rgs. Liam.

Hi Dear Liam,

I recently bought the AT91SAM7X256 board from Olimex, and as you said,
literally there is no support from data sheets or other details point of
view. I am entirely new to ARM and am in full dialemma where to start.
Too many peripherals are a bit confusing me. Before that, i wanted to
make a debugger my self. Will you please suggest me where can i get the
circuit diagram of the JTAG or USB wiggler which can support our board.
I will be very happy if you give still more details or ur experiences
with the olimex board.

Thanks a lot
Regards
Madhu Bhaskar

Author: Giovanni Di sirio (gdisirio)
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Hello,

You can use WinARM, YAGARTO or CodeSourcery toolchains without problems,
the debug is possible by using Eclipse+GDB+OpenOCD+Zylin (the first
setup is a bit tricky).

About the board, in the project linked in my signature there is a web
server demo for that board that runs out of the box.
The demo includes the RTOS, the uIP TCP/IP stack and the required device
drivers.

regards,
Giovanni
---
ChibiOS/RT http://chibios.sourceforge.net

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