Low-cost tool offers flexible programming and debugging for PPC and
The Cyclone Max, available from Computer Solutions, is a flexible,
low-cost tool for flash programming, debugging and testing of high-end
microprocessors such as the Power PC and ColdFire. It can function either as
a PC-based program loader and debugger or as a stand-alone programmer for
on-chip or off-chip flash.
The new device incorporates serial, USB and Ethernet ports, allowing it to
operate as a fast intelligent interface between the PC and the target
microprocessor . Multiple Cyclone Max units may be linked to an Ethernet
network or connected to a host PC via a mix of different interfaces for
The Cyclone Max can be used in one of three operating modes that coexist and
are transparent to the user: stand-alone programming mode, remote-control
mode and interactive mode.
In stand-alone programming mode, the PC is used to download an image into
the Cyclone Max, which can then be used to program the target
microprocessor. The image contains the data to be programmed, the
programming algorithm, and the steps to be taken during programming and
verification. Once the Cyclone Max is configured with this image, it no
longer needs to be connected to a PC as programming may be initiated via
In the remote-control mode, the user stores a non-volatile image in the
Cyclone Max, which is then used to program the flash memory of the target
microprocessor. Programming may be initiated via built-in pushbuttons or
from one of the communications interfaces, while the image can be stored in
the internal memory or on a removable Compact Flash card. Stand-alone mode
is ideal for programming a significant number of targets with the same
information. A programming and status port provides an additional approach
to initiating and monitoring stand-alone operation, and can be interfaced to
an automated test fixture or a 'bed of nails' tester.
Interactive mode allows PC-based programming and debug of the target
processor, and is ideally suited to the development stages of a project.
Users can assemble and compile their code, download and debug it via the
Cyclone Max, and then return to editing. Support is available from a number
of compiler manufacturers for their debug environments, and a program is
available to enable high-level debugging via the popular Elf/Dwarf linker
The Cyclone Max's 32-bit processor and configurable logic chip are geared
towards streaming information directly from its high-speed memory into the
target processor via the debug connection as fast as possible. The Cyclone
Max carries out in-circuit programming via a simple plug-in header, allowing
a processor and its external flash memory to be programmed while mounted in
the final circuit.
Processors initially supported with full debugging and flash programming
software are members of the ColdFire and PowerPC families. In addition, an
API library is available which allows users to design their own PC
applications to directly control the BDM interface.
The unit is housed in a rugged 2 mm thick plastic case and has transient
voltage suppression built into the debug and communications connectors to
protect against electrostatic discharge and other transient effects.
- ends -
Computer Solutions Ltd. is the UK's premier
supplier of microprocessor development tools. It supplies a wide range of
software and hardware tools that support over 100 different microprocessor
families. Hardware products include: BDM and JTAG interfaced debuggers,
In-circuit emulators , EPROM emulators USB, Ethernet, RS232 & CAN
analysers and device programmers. Software tools include: assemblers,
debuggers, compilers, real-time executives, TCP/IP stacks and other
high-level protocol libraries.
With 25 years' experience, Computer Solutions Ltd. has unrivalled expertise
in embedded tools, consultancy and support.
For further colour photographs, graphics, technical or marketing information,
Contact: Chris Stephens, MD, Computer Solutions Ltd
Press releases are available by email if you wish - send your request to email@example.com.
For more information on the Cyclone Max:
P&E's Web Site