Noral tells users cheaper tools will match flash programmers

Noral tells users cheaper tools will match flash programmersRichard Ball Noral Micrologics is asking its customers to think twice about buying expensive flash memory programmers, when cheaper development tools can do the same job. “We’ve seen quite a lot of our realtime development tools moving down into the production environment,” said Phil Meek, general manager of Noral. Most of Motorola’s microcontrollers, such as the 68HC12, have a background debug mode (BDM) port. “Half of the family has on-board flash which can be programmed through the debug interface,” said Meek. Once the product goes into production, the debug tools that were used in development can be used to programme and verify the flash. Because the debug tool connects to the board via a simple connector, programming is easier than with many of the complex EPROM/Flash programmers on the market. “It all goes in through a single connector – not clipping over the processor,” Meek said. “We can take it a step further and use the BDM interface to test LEDs and I/Os on the board,” he said. And the latest tools can be hot-plugged into a live board to do tests after a long burn-in or soak test.
Noral can be found this week at the Embedded Systems Show at Olympia.

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