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Visitor
Visitor
5,807 Views
Registered: ‎01-31-2012

Programming with USB to Parallel cable

Hi all,

 

Unfortunately, I got a Spartan 3 starter board from the university, which has to be programmed with a parallel to JTAG cable. My laptop doesn't have a parallel port. 

 

Therefore, I was wondering if it should be possible to program the FPGA with an USB to Parallel cable, connected to the parallel/JTAG cable. What do you think?

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Instructor
Instructor
5,804 Views
Registered: ‎07-21-2009

Re: Programming with USB to Parallel cable

Unfortunately, I got a Spartan 3 starter board from the university, which has to be programmed with a parallel to JTAG cable.

 

Unless you are using custom, non-Xilinx software on the PC side, you are mistaken.  None of the Xilinx supported JTAG programming interfaces require a *parallel to JTAG* cable.  A USB-to-JTAG cable is the "normal" fixture supported by the Xilinx toolset.

 

My laptop doesn't have a parallel port.

 

Most modern laptops don't have a parallel port.

 

Therefore, I was wondering if it should be possible to program the FPGA with an USB to Parallel cable, connected to the parallel/JTAG cable. What do you think?

 

No, a USB <=> Parallel bridge cable or device followed by a Parallel <=> JTAG cable will not work with the Xilinx tools.  Suggest you obtain a USB <=> JTAG cable.  If the University doesn't have one, they should purchase some.  You can search the user forums, you will find plenty of references.  You can review the Xilinx product by searching the Xilinx website for "USB Platform Cable".

 

-- Bob Elkind

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Visitor
Visitor
5,801 Views
Registered: ‎01-31-2012

Re: Programming with USB to Parallel cable

Thanks for your reaction. This is the cable I got with the FPGA: http://shop.trenz-electronic.de/catalog/images/products/Z-JTAG3_t1.jpg

 

New plan: right now, I only have a bitfile for the FPGA. Is it possible to transform this bitfile into an mcs file, so I can program the PROM? That way, I only have to program the FPGA once at the university and can work with it via the serial cable at home.

 

I am using a spartan-3 starter board with XC3S400.

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Instructor
Instructor
5,798 Views
Registered: ‎07-21-2009

Re: Programming with USB to Parallel cable

There is an assortment of programming cable solutions which will work with this board, which do not require a parallel port.  Read the board user guide, UG130, Chapter 11.

 

Xilinx solution:  USB Platform cable

 

Digilent programming cables.  The preferred cable is probably this one.

 

-- Bob Elkind

SIGNATURE:
README for newbies is here: http://forums.xilinx.com/t5/New-Users-Forum/README-first-Help-for-new-users/td-p/219369

Summary:
1. Read the manual or user guide. Have you read the manual? Can you find the manual?
2. Search the forums (and search the web) for similar topics.
3. Do not post the same question on multiple forums.
4. Do not post a new topic or question on someone else's thread, start a new thread!
5. Students: Copying code is not the same as learning to design.
6 "It does not work" is not a question which can be answered. Provide useful details (with webpage, datasheet links, please).
7. You are not charged extra fees for comments in your code.
8. I am not paid for forum posts. If I write a good post, then I have been good for nothing.
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Advisor
Advisor
5,784 Views
Registered: ‎10-05-2010

Re: Programming with USB to Parallel cable


New plan: right now, I only have a bitfile for the FPGA. Is it possible to transform this bitfile into an mcs file, so I can program the PROM? That way, I only have to program the FPGA once at the university and can work with it via the serial cable at home.


Yes, you can use iMPACT for this. First hit on Google was a tutorial written by Digilent, MCS File Creation with Xilinx ISE Tutorial.

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