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'[PIC]: How does ICD communicate?'
2001\04\17@204312 by Jeff Mann

Oops, forgot the [PIC] tag, sorry...

-------- Original Message --------
Subject: How does ICD communicate?
Date: Tue, 17 Apr 2001 20:32:24 -0400
From: Jeff Mann <>

Hi all -

I'm wondering if anyone can give me any specifics about the MPLAB-ICD's
serial communications format/protocol. Is there anything that would
prevent it from working with a Windows emulator? Is it doing strange
things with the UART hardware?

I'm going abroad and I need to be able to use it with my Powerbook. I
have Virtual PC 4 windows emulator, which works fine with PicStart Plus,
but the ICD is so much nicer... The Microchip FAE said "it won't work"
but couldn't explain why not.

The error message I get when trying to enable the ICD is:
ICD communications failed (4) cmd <6301:1>
ICD communications failed (4) cmd <7F00:1>

I am wondering whether the ICD relies on some unusual use of the DTR,
RTS, or CTS lines; or whether it requires some very precise timing which
can't be handled by the Windows emulator.

Since the Macintosh does not have an RTS line, I have tied it to DTR,
or, I have also tried tying it to the V+ of the max232 chip on the
module, either seems to work. Otherwise, I was getting the error message:
ICD cannot establish communication - port <0> baud <0> echos <-1:-1:-1>
I also get that message if either the TD or RD lines are not connected.

Using an RS-232 breakout box, with RTS tied to DTR, I start MPLAB; the
DTR line is high and the LED on the module is flashing. Then I enable
ICD development mode in MPLAB. The DTR line drops briefly, and the LED
on the module flickers then stays on. CTS goes high briefly, and there
is some data on the TD and RD lines. Then CTS drops and I receive the
above error message:
ICD communications failed (4) cmd <6301:1>
ICD communications failed (4) cmd <7F00:1>
When I dismiss the error message dialog boxes, the LED begins flashing again.

It doesn't seem to make any difference whether CTS is connected to the
computer or not, or whether it is tied high or low.

Thanks <Jeff Mann
----  o.o___.

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