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How to Use the XS Boards How to Use the XS Boards


1. Install the XILINX M1 package: M1 is XILINX's programming environment for the XC9500 CPLDs and XC4000 FPGAs. You need a Wintel PC with 32 MB of memory and 100 MB of hard disk space.

2. Power the XS Board: You can use the XS Board in a stand-alone mode or in a protoboard. You can power it directly from a 5V or 3.3V DC supply, but the XS Board also has voltage regulators to convert 9V DC to the required voltages. The XS Board can supply power to external components when it is inserted in a breadboard.

3. Connect the PC to the XS Board: You connect the XS Board to the parallel port of a PC through a standard 6' cable. Circuit configurations are loaded into the XC9500 CPLD or XC4000 FPGA through this cable. Object code for the 8031 microcontroller is downloaded into the 32 Kbytes RAM using the same cable. A "back-end" interface is also provided so you can cascade multiple XS Boards and build even larger circuits.

4. Compile designs for the XS Board: You create logic designs for the CPLD or FPGA on the XS Board using the ABEL hardware description language or schematic editor provided in Foundation. The Prentice-Hall lab manual and CDROM provide you with a range of examples that have already been tested. The M1 tools usually compile your designs in several minutes. You can create 8031 object-code using the MetaLink 8031 Cross Assembler included with the XS Boards, or you can use your existing development tools as long as they output a standard Intel .HEX file.

5. Simulate your design: You can use M1's simulator to specify test patterns and check the logic waveforms or numerical values that are output by your design. In the same way, an 8031 simulator can be used to check your microcontroller code.

6. Program the XS Board: You can download the compiled CPLD or FPGA configuration bitstream and 8031 object-code files into the XS Board through the parallel port cable. Both the CPLD/FPGA configuration and the 8031 object-code are stored in RAM or FLASH so you can quickly change your design as often as you like.

7. Debug your design: You can inject signals into your design through the parallel port cable and observe the results on the LED digit provided on the XS Board. Or you can transfer results back through the parallel port for display on the PC. You can use JTAG testing utilities for more detailed debugging. Or you can use standard logic probes, oscilloscopes, and logic analyzers. If you find an error, just go back and edit your ABEL or schematic files, recompile, download again to the XS Board, and repeat the test.

8. Interface with other chips: You can insert the XS Board into a standard breadboard and hook it to other chips with standard 24--26 gauge hookup wire. All the pins of the CPLD/FPGA, 8031, and RAM are easily accessible through two rows of 0.1"-spaced pins.


See also:


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