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'[PIC] Suitable ICSP programmer for PIC18FXX'
2006\04\04@055530 by WebSales

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I am looking for either a third party or published design for a ICSP
programmer to program mainly PIC18F252 and PIC18F6720 micros.

The target applications all run on 3.3V so it needs to be suitable for
this voltage.

Also as a preference but not essential is an application that I can call
from VB.NET that provides the lower level programming commands.

I looked at the WISP628 but was a bit confused with the reference to
Python (never heard of this before), it also mentioned DOS commands so
maybe I could use shell commands from VB.NET to execute the various
commands available.


Thanks in advance.

Regards

David

2006\04\04@062424 by Wouter van Ooijen

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> I looked at the WISP628 but was a bit confused with the reference to
> Python (never heard of this before), it also mentioned DOS
> commands so
> maybe I could use shell commands from VB.NET to execute the various
> commands available.

Wisp628 does not work at 3.3V.

Wouter van Ooijen

-- -------------------------------------------
Van Ooijen Technische Informatica: http://www.voti.nl
consultancy, development, PICmicro products
docent Hogeschool van Utrecht: http://www.voti.nl/hvu


2006\04\04@062712 by Alan B. Pearce

face picon face
>I am looking for either a third party or published
>design for a ICSP programmer to program mainly
>PIC18F252 and PIC18F6720 micros.

Olins Easyprog would be a candidate. His code is orientated towards batch
programming from scripts AIUI. He also has the interface publicly available
so you could do your own code at http://www.embedinc.com/picprg/sw.htm

>The target applications all run on 3.3V so it needs
>to be suitable for this voltage.

You are aware that some programming functions require 4.5 to 5.5V - such as
Bulk Erase? You may need to have some way of having the micro powered from
the programmer without zapping the rest of the circuit to do this.

>Also as a preference but not essential is an application
>that I can call from VB.NET that provides the
>lower level programming commands.
>
>I looked at the WISP628 but was a bit confused with
>the reference to Python (never heard of this before),
>it also mentioned DOS commands so maybe I could use
>shell commands from VB.NET to execute the various
>commands available.

Python is an interpreter that executes script commands, rather like Java
does. As an alternative look at the compiled code that Rob Hamerling
provides at http://www.robh.nl/ for the Wisp628. I don't know if he provides
the source. ISTR that Rob or maybe Jan-Eric was adapting this code to also
work with Olins Easyprog.


2006\04\04@082733 by olin piclist

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WebSales wrote:
> I am looking for either a third party or published design for a ICSP
> programmer to program mainly PIC18F252 and PIC18F6720 micros.
>
> The target applications all run on 3.3V so it needs to be suitable for
> this voltage.
>
> Also as a preference but not essential is an application that I can call
> from VB.NET that provides the lower level programming commands.

Check out my EasyProg and ProProg PIC programmers at
http://www.embedinc.com.  These programmers have variable Vdd, but note that
most PICs require 4.5 to 5.5 volts for some programming operations like bulk
erase.  Your circuit needs to be designed with this in mind.  See my ICSP
writeup at http://www.embedinc.com/picprg/icsp.htm for a discussion of these
issues.


******************************************************************
Embed Inc, Littleton Massachusetts, (978) 742-9014.  #1 PIC
consultant in 2004 program year.  http://www.embedinc.com/products

2006\04\04@083704 by olin piclist

face picon face
Olin Lathrop wrote:
> Check out my EasyProg and ProProg PIC programmers at
> http://www.embedinc.com.

Oops, that should have been http://www.embedinc.com/products

******************************************************************
Embed Inc, Littleton Massachusetts, (978) 742-9014.  #1 PIC
consultant in 2004 program year.  http://www.embedinc.com/products

2006\04\04@183552 by WebSales

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face
Thanks for the info.

I may be able to use the EasyProg. I could leave Vdd disconnected as the
target is powered (to date I have used ICD2 with power from Target).
PGC and PGD on the target applications are all dedicated to ICSP only.

If these could tolerate 5V when Vdd is 3.3V then it would work as-is,
otherwise I would need to put level shifting circuitry in place.

Regards

David

Alan B. Pearce wrote:
{Quote hidden}

2006\04\04@184008 by WebSales

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face
A bit of a pain though. I tried to contact Embedinc by email and have
received reply stating the email has been disabled and I must ring them.


Olin Lathrop wrote:
> Olin Lathrop wrote:
>> Check out my EasyProg and ProProg PIC programmers at
>> http://www.embedinc.com.
>
> Oops, that should have been http://www.embedinc.com/products
>
> ******************************************************************
> Embed Inc, Littleton Massachusetts, (978) 742-9014.  #1 PIC
> consultant in 2004 program year.  http://www.embedinc.com/products

2006\04\04@190235 by olin piclist

face picon face
WebSales wrote:
> I may be able to use the EasyProg. I could leave Vdd disconnected as
> the target is powered (to date I have used ICD2 with power from
> Target).
> PGC and PGD on the target applications are all dedicated to ICSP only.
>
> If these could tolerate 5V when Vdd is 3.3V then it would work as-is,
> otherwise I would need to put level shifting circuitry in place.

This won't work.  The EasyProg expects to control Vdd.  If you do not
connect Vdd and leave it powered yourself, then some PICs can't be
programmed because they require a specific order between Vpp and Vdd.  Also,
the EasyProg always starts by doing a bulk erase, which won't work if Vdd is
3.3V.

These issues and other are discussed in my ICSP writeup at
http://www.embedinc.com/picprg/icsp.htm.


******************************************************************
Embed Inc, Littleton Massachusetts, (978) 742-9014.  #1 PIC
consultant in 2004 program year.  http://www.embedinc.com/products

2006\04\04@190433 by olin piclist

face picon face
WebSales wrote:
> A bit of a pain though. I tried to contact Embedinc by email and have
> received reply stating the email has been disabled and I must ring
> them.

Yup.  We got 100s of spams a day on the INFO address and a legitimate
inquiry every week or two.  It wasn't worth it.  However, you've got my
email address via this list, so you can contact me directly.


******************************************************************
Embed Inc, Littleton Massachusetts, (978) 742-9014.  #1 PIC
consultant in 2004 program year.  http://www.embedinc.com/products

2006\04\04@195407 by WebSales

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face
Can the code be changed so bulk erase is not necessary ?

I can regulate Vdd so it is still controlled by EasyProg.

The situation is that I have a variety of 3.3V applications that have
all been programmed via ICD2 debugger in circuit.

I do not want to change the hardware. Most of my applications have
serial ports and use a bootloader to upload new code as mods are made
but a couple of the applications do not have the bootloader so I want to
be able to supply a low cost programmer alternative to ICD2 to the end
users.
As long as the protection bits are not set, I am able to re-program the
target applications with ICD2 no problem.

It is a shame the PICs cannot bulk erase at lower Vdd as this means
having to add a "redundant" 5V power supply just to program them.

If the supply is not on board then there has to be provision to isolate
all the 3V circuitry during programming (for applications with size
constraints it is a pain top find room for additional headers or jumpers
that are simple enough and safe enough for end users to access.

Olin Lathrop wrote:
{Quote hidden}

2006\04\05@075213 by olin piclist

face picon face
WebSales wrote:
> Can the code be changed so bulk erase is not necessary ?

Most PICs have different erase and write algorithms available that work at
lower voltages.  These can not perform all operations and can not recover
from a PIC in an arbitrary state.  They could be used in theory if you are
careful never to set code protection, and perhaps some other settings.

The code *could* be changed for this special case.  However that would
require significant work and testing, and is something I would not do unless
there was serious $$ attached to it.  For example, if someone offered NRE or
ordered 50 ProProgs with the stipulation they can work at low Vdd only I
would probably agree to do it.

In the mean time, all I can say is that the host source and EasyProg
firmware are open and available at http://www.embedinc.com/picprg/sw.htm for
anyone that wants to attempt this themselves.

> I do not want to change the hardware.

ICSP is not hard to accomodate if considered during the design, but if not
it can lead to situations exactly like this.  Unfortunately Microchip
doesn't point this out up front.  On the other hand, most people don't look
until they're ready to go to production.  Once it's too late, there is no
good answer.

> If the supply is not on board then there has to be provision to isolate
> all the 3V circuitry during programming (for applications with size
> constraints it is a pain top find room for additional headers or jumpers
> that are simple enough and safe enough for end users to access.

Usually an extra schottky diode or two is all that's required.  Sometimes
less depending on how the power supply works.


******************************************************************
Embed Inc, Littleton Massachusetts, (978) 742-9014.  #1 PIC
consultant in 2004 program year.  http://www.embedinc.com/products

2006\04\05@084543 by Bob Axtell

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Olin Lathrop wrote:

{Quote hidden}

This is the reason that companies get into trouble when they seperate
firmware development
from hardware development. Before you design something, you need to hire
Olin or somebody
else who can study your design and make sure you can accomplish your
goals. This is not a criticism
of YOUR company, I've seen this repeatedly all over. Its a kind of
mismanagement, and MicroChip
isn't very helpful, either.

Except for simple projects, all future embedded designs will including
at least minimal HV ICSP
programming, with most updates being done by "bootloading" part of the
firmware. Frankly, I
have NEVER understood the need for  LVP, but I thought maybe I'd
overlooked something.

>>If the supply is not on board then there has to be provision to isolate
>>all the 3V circuitry during programming (for applications with size
>>constraints it is a pain top find room for additional headers or jumpers
>>that are simple enough and safe enough for end users to access.
>>    
>>
>
>  
>
sometimes it is a matter of re-specifying the components so that they
can tolerate 5V
during HV programming.

--Bob

{Quote hidden}

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2006\04\05@145106 by Peter

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On Tue, 4 Apr 2006, Olin Lathrop wrote:

> WebSales wrote:
>> A bit of a pain though. I tried to contact Embedinc by email and have
>> received reply stating the email has been disabled and I must ring
>> them.
>
> Yup.  We got 100s of spams a day on the INFO address and a legitimate
> inquiry every week or two.  It wasn't worth it.  However, you've got my
> email address via this list, so you can contact me directly.

Normal people have *two* published addresses and *one* of them accepts
email from users. The other is harvested by spammers together with the
first one and feeds the spam filter which marks everything that appears
in both mailboxes as spam. I have had my email address on my website for
ten years now and my spam filter achieves 99.5% efficiency. It requires
zero maintenance effort. Nowadays I use another filter but the old one
still works.

Peter

2006\04\06@093931 by Dave Lag

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Peter wrote:
{Quote hidden}

Having an email address appear as graphic only  .jpg etc. must be fairly
effective (harvester proof), no?

D

2006\04\06@135151 by Peter

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On Thu, 6 Apr 2006, Dave Lag wrote:

> Having an email address appear as graphic only  .jpg etc. must be fairly
> effective (harvester proof), no?

I don't know. I use the two-address approach to train my spam eater ;-)

Peter

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