New Horizons

Welcome to my blog

My name is Sven Andersson and I
work as a consultant in embedded
system design, implemented in ASIC
and FPGA.
In my spare time I write this blog
and I hope it will inspire others to
learn more about this fantastic field.
I live in Stockholm Sweden and have
my own company


You are welcome to contact me
and ask questions or make comments
about my blog.


New Horizons
What's new
Starting a blog
Writing a blog
Using an RSS reader

Zynq Design From Scratch
Started February 2014
Changes and updates
Zynq-7000 All Programmable SoC
ZedBoard and other boards
Computer platform and VirtualBox
Installing Ubuntu
Fixing Ubuntu
Installing Vivado
Starting Vivado
Using Vivado
Lab 1. Create a Zynq project
Lab 1. Build a hardware platform
Lab 1. Create a software application
Lab 1. Connect to ZedBoard
Lab 1. Run a software application
Lab 1. Benchmarking ARM Cortex-A9
Lab 2. Adding a GPIO peripheral
Lab 2. Create a custom HDL module
Lab 2. Connect package pins and implement
Lab 2. Create a software application and configure the PL
Lab 2. Debugging a software application
Running Linux from SD card
Installing PetaLinux
Booting PetaLinux
Connect to ZedBoad via ethernet
Rebuilding the PetaLinux kernel image
Running a DHCP server on the host
Running a TFTP server on the host
PetaLinux boot via U-boot
PetaLinux application development
Fixing the host computer
Running NFS servers
VirtualBox seamless mode
Mounting guest file system using sshfs
PetaLinux. Setting up a web server
PetaLinux. Using cgi scripts
PetaLinux. Web enabled application
Convert from VirtualBox to VMware
Running Linaro Ubuntu on ZedBoard
Running Android on ZedBoard
Lab2. Booting from SD card and SPI flash
Lab2. PetaLinux board bringup
Lab2. Writing userspace IO device driver
Lab2. Hardware debugging
MicroZed quick start
Installing Vivado 2014.1
Lab3. Adding push buttons to our Zynq system
Lab3. Adding an interrupt service routine
Installing Ubuntu 14.04
Installing Vivado and Petalinux 2014.2

Chipotle Verification System

EE Times Retrospective Series
It all started more than 40 years ago
My first job as an electrical engineer
The Memory (R)evolution
The Microprocessor (R)evolution

Four soft-core processors
Started January 2012
Table of contents
OpenRISC 1200
Nios II

Using the Spartan-6 LX9 MicroBoard
Started August 2011
Table of contents
Problems, fixes and solutions

FPGA Design From Scratch
Started December 2006
Table of contents
Acronyms and abbreviations

Actel FPGA design
Designing with an Actel FPGA. Part 1
Designing with an Actel FPGA. Part 2
Designing with an Actel FPGA. Part 3
Designing with an Actel FPGA. Part 4
Designing with an Actel FPGA. Part 5

A hardware designer's best friend
Zoo Design Platform

Installing Cobra Command Tool
A processor benchmark

Porting a Unix program to Mac OS X
Fixing a HyperTerminal in Mac OS X
A dream come true

The New York City Marathon

Kittelfjall Lappland

Tour skating in Sweden and around the world
Wild skating
Tour day
Safety equipment
A look at the equipment you need
Skate maintenance
Books, photos, films and videos
Weather forecasts

38000 feet above see level
A trip to Spain
Florida the sunshine state

Photo Albums
Seaside Florida
Ronda Spain
Sevilla Spain
Cordoba Spain
Alhambra Spain
Kittelfjäll Lapland
Landsort Art Walk
Skating on thin ice

100 Power Tips for FPGA Designers

Adventures in ASIC
Computer History Museum
Design & Reuse
d9 Tech Blog
EDA Cafe
EDA DesignLine
Eli's tech Blog
FPGA Arcade
FPGA Central
FPGA developer
FPGA Journal
FPGA World
Lesley Shannon Courses
Mac 2 Ubuntu
Programmable Logic DesignLine
World of ASIC

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Tuesday, March 04, 2014
Zynq design from scratch. Part 20.
Debugging a software application

When we use SDK to debug applications, the steps are similar to those for running an application, except we create a debug configuration instead of a run configuration. A collection of windows (views) provides a complete debugging environment. This debug perspective should be familiar to those who have used Eclipse-based IDEs, and includes a debug window showing the state of the session with a call stack, source viewers, disassembly, memory, register, other views, and console. We can set breakpoints and control execution with familiar debugger commands.

SDK Debugger

New in SDK Xilinx introduces System Debugger, based on the Eclipse Target Communications Framework (TCF), System Debugger delivers true multi-processor SoC design and debug. For example, in a Zynq-based design, System Debugger displays both ARM CPUs and multiple MicroBlaze soft-processors, in the same debug session, through a single JTAG cable; for an uprecedented level of insight between the hardened processing system, and any additional processing that we have added to the programmable logic.

  • Based on the Eclipse Target Communication Framework (TCF)
  • Homogenous and heterogeneous multi-processor support
  • New in 2013.3 Linux application debug on the target
  • Hierarchical Profiling
  • Bare-metal and Linux development
  • Supporting both SMP and AMP designs
  • Associate hardware and software breakpoints per core
  • NEON™ library support

Starting a debug session

To start a debug session right-click the application name in the Project Explorer and select:
Debug As->Debug Configuration

Click Debug.

We will change to the debug perspective in Eclipse. Click Yes.

This is our first exposure to the debugger. Here we can step through our code, watch variables, set breakpoints and even modify registers and memory. In the Variables window we can see the four variables we created in our application. Keep an eye on these as we step through the code.

1. In the editor window, turn on the line numbers by right-clicking in the light blue space to the right of the pane and select: Show Line Numbers.

2. Set a breakpoint at the print statement that displays the brightness selected. Double-click the space immediately to the left of this line. If set correctly a breakpoint icon will appear on this line as shown here.

3. Start the program. The blue arrow shows where the current program counter is located.

Click the Resume button to start program execution.

                                                         Resume   Terminate               Step Over                         

5. The program will wait for console input and then stop at the breakpoint.

6. Let's take a look a the variables.

7. Run through the loop a few more times by selecting Resume. Experiment with setting breakpoints and looking at variables. When done clear all breakpoints by viewing the breakpoint tab and unchecking any breakpoint we added.

8. Terminate the running process by clicking on the Terminate button.

9. Return to the C/C++ perspective by selecting it from the icon in the upper right corner.


After finishing lab1 and lab2 we now know how to build a processing system including our own hardware blocks. With this knowledge we can start building much more complex systems and writing much smarter application programs. I wish you good luck.

In my next blog session I will return to the processing system and install Linux and run it on the ARM Cortex-A9 processor.

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Posted at 08:53 by svenand

June 24, 2014   06:29 AM PDT
Hi Arvind,
Yes you can use the PS directly to control the LEDs. You have to change the pin mapping and use the GPIO PS software driver.
June 22, 2014   11:39 PM PDT

Thanks for the tutorial. One thing I didn't understand was why the AXI gpio peripheral is needed to access the LEDs on the carrier card. couldn't they have been accessed directly via the PS?

If I need to access them via the PS system what changes would I need to make.


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