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Registered: ‎07-21-2009

Interesting USB Platform Cable + Driver experience

The USB Platform Cable is an essential tool for Xilinx development work.  Unfortunately, the Windows driver for this kit has not been so consistently reliable that it can be taken for granted.  The following personal anecdote may not be useful to anyone in particular, but it may serve as a "data point" for either Xilinx or for other Xilinx customers:


I started out with a Vista x64 design workstation, on which the Xilinx USB Platform Cable worked reliably and flawlessly (even with a USB hub connection).  With great fear and trepidation, I 'upgraded' my development system to Windows 7.  Instead of doing a 'clean' install, I elected to 'in-place upgrade'.


  • At first, the USB Platform Cable did not 'install' correctly, according to Windows 7 Device Manager.
  • 'Update driver' did not seem to help.
  • Uninstall/re-install did not seem to help.
  • Re-running the ISE 14.6 install/setup was my next move (I selected only Lab Tools/Drivers for setup option).
  • After the setup completed, Device Manager indicated that the install (and drivers setup) was successful.  However, iMPACT still could not recognise the 'virtual' USB Platform Cable on a SP601 board.
  • Without rebooting, and after spending an hour or so watching a (American) football game, I connected an actual (non-virtual) USB Platform Cable.  iMPACT then recognised BOTH the USB Platform Cable AND the virtual (SP601-resident) USB Platform cable.

I do not know what to make of this, other than this seems to add to the USB Platform Cable's reputation for mystery and intrigue.


-- Bob Elkind

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1 Reply
Registered: ‎08-14-2007

It's hard to say for sure, but I know that Windows 7 really likes to install device drivers for USB devices at the time it first "discovers" them (first physical plug in).  It's likely that there was some partial update registered for the "virtual" device when you did the system upgrade that left Windows thinking that this device was already discovered, without actually having fully installed the driver.  The discovery of the physical cable caused the correct driver installation.  It's also likely that if you had originally had the physical USB Cable II in the system and upgraded to WIndows 7, you would have had the same problem, and it could have been fixed by connecting the "virtual" USB cable and thus giving Windows 7 a new device to "discover."


All conjecture.  Unlikely that we'll ever figure this one out...

-- Gabor
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