Re: CLARIFIED: Request for software interface spec forSofTecMicroUSB-BDM

Started by Liechty Ronald-RAT109 November 11, 2005
Hi Kim,

Just to clarify, Freescale does not have an "apparent interest" in
Metrowerks we (the former Metrowerks) are Freescale. Metrowerks for 7
years was a subsidiary of Motorola, it now has merged into Freescale and
is the Developer Technology Organization within Freescale making
CodeWarrior and other developers tools.

Our mandate is to provide tools early in the development cycle of new
silicon that enables developers to get a jump on the technology as well
as to provide a full solution for those that want that.

I believe that with competition comes both innovation and lower prices
which is best for everyone.

Just one more thing, I've spent 10 years as MW Ron working with
developers. I'm new to embedded and just making contacts within
Freescale. But I believe in the small developer and I believe in making
a corporation a partner in the developer's community and I'm not bashful
about telling anyone at any position that they are wrong. So far my
contact within Freescale has exceeded my expectations they are as eager
to hear this as I am to have changes made.

Oh yeah this probably would have been a proprietary USB-BDM device even
without CodeWarrior involvement.

Ron

--
Ron Liechty
Ombudsman Freescale Developer Technology
ron.liechty@ron....

-----Original Message----- e) I don't like the combination of a) Freescale being in the
semiconductor business, b) Freescale having an apparent interest in
Metrowerks, c) other EVB manufacturers not having a supply of S12X
devices and d) Freescale releasing this product to only use the
Metrowerks software.

If ANY one of those conditions were different, I wouldn't be
complaining.

Let me ask you this: would this board have a proprietary USB-BDM device
if Freescale didn't have an interest in Metrowerks ?


Kim,

Let me clarify some points for you, see below: ----- Original Message -----
From: "Kim Lux" <lux@lux@...>
To: <68HC12@68HC...>
Sent: Friday, November 11, 2005 4:14 PM
Subject: [68HC12] CLARIFIED: Request for software interface spec
forSofTecMicroUSB-BDM >I need to clarify my point here:
>
> a) I knew of the 32K/0.5K limit for S12X/XGATE code when I bought the
> board.
>
> b) It doesn't matter if the software allows unlimited assembly language
> because I've got legacy S12 code in C and I'm not to going to convert it
> to assembly.
>
> c) When I bought the kit, I expected the USB-BDM to run something
> similar to D-BUG12, ie something that had an open interface spec so it
> could be hooked to other software packages.
>
> d) When I bought the kit, I did not know the cost of the "full"
> CodeWarrior compiler. The cost was there to look at, but I didn't look
> at it nor expect it would be anywhere near $2500 per seat.
>
> e) The EVB does have a BDM port for connecting external BDMs.
>
> f) I don't know if the market is aware of this, but Freescale is
> restricting supply of the S12X devices to the general market. I know of
> at least one SBC manufacturer that has a S12X board laid out and tested
> and is waiting for supply of S12X devices to start production.

This is incorrect, Freescale are not "restricting the supply", however it
may be that
demand is exceeding the capacity. Pass on the details of who is suffering
and I will
try to get the issue fixed.

> g) I like the quality/layout of the S12XDP512 EVB board itself. It has
> a built in BDM, which eliminates another box on my desk. I has a
> prototyping area. It has a header pin for every chip signal arranged
> the way they are on the chip. It has I/O built in ! This saves me time
> setting up a debugging board. I can go right to work.
>
> So... the things that irk me are:
>
> a) the BDM has a closed interface, making the on board BDM USELESS for
> any software package other than Code Warrior. The board itself is
> usable with an external BDM.

Because the s/w interface may change from time to time, Freescale restricts
the number of
partners who have access due to the resource available to support.

There is an open source BDM cable available, tBDMl, ok it is slightly slower
than the
pro tools but it is free and is fast enough for plenty pro developers that I
know. If you
insist on using the UF32, why not port the open source tBDML over to the
UF32.

ohh, and TB has ported it to Linux for GCC/GDB support.

> b) the Code Warrior software is useless unless one wants to spend a
> further $2500.
>
> c) No devices for other EVB manufacturers. I am fast tracking a S12
> project to the S12X and buying this board was the only way to get
> development going quickly.

Let me know more details and I will see if I can fix.

> d) the apparent move by Freescale away from the old "here is our
> hardware and here are some software tools with source" to make it work.
> Think BUFFALO for the 68hc11 EVB. If Freescale was living with its old
> mantra, they'd supply the source code for their monitors or at least
> give us a way to reflash the USB-BDM on the S12X EVB.

Reasons as above.

> e) I don't like the combination of a) Freescale being in the
> semiconductor business, b) Freescale having an apparent interest in
> Metrowerks,

Metrowerks doesn't exist any more, its just part of freescale.

c) other EVB manufacturers not having a supply of S12X
> devices and

You make this sound like some devious plan, they should have got their
orders on earlier,
but as I said I will see if I can fix the issue.

d) Freescale releasing this product to only use the
> Metrowerks software.

Again you make it seem like a cunning plan, CW and Cosmic are the only ones
with
a C compiler today for the Xgate, what other X gate debugger do you plan to
use.

>
> If ANY one of those conditions were different, I wouldn't be
> complaining.
>
> Let me ask you this: would this board have a proprietary USB-BDM device
> if Freescale didn't have an interest in Metrowerks ?

Yes, it has nothing to do with it, its a support issue as explained above.

>
> End of irks.
>
> Start of rant.
>
> I DO applaud Freescale's stated objective of being involved with
> Metrowerks as a means of supplying the market with development tools
> early in the device release timeline.
>
> HOWEVER, the market generally has enough capable companies providing
> development tools that timely release of said tools is virtually
> guaranteed. If Freescale was really interested in providing the market
> with tools, it would have made the interface spec on the USB-BDM open so
> that OTHER vendors could hook into the EVB as well.
>
> I must also mention open source development tools. I understand that
> for profit tool companies are a vital part of our industry and that
> profit isn't a bad thing. But I don't understand how what is essentially
> a simple compiler can have a cost of $2500 a seat.
>
> On one hand I can't justify spending $2500 to write an in house
> compiler. On the other hand, paying $2500 for a compiler for every TYPE
> of device being used and every seat gets VERY expensive in a hurry. Not
> only is it expensive, but one quickly gets on the "we need to update
> this tool" treadmill, which in and of itself is a pain.
>
> If Freescale was really interested in providing tools to the industry, I
> suggest they should provide some manpower to the gnu tool chain. Of
> course some vendors would shout discrimination at that action and maybe
> rightfully so, but as we have mentioned previously there are customers
> that want to pay $2500 a seat for a supported commercial compiler and
> there are those that don't. Lets let the market decide.
>
> Providing a gcc compiler for a new device would give everyone an option
> to get started using a device at a minimal cost.
>
> For those that aren't aware, gcc was/is used extensively with other
> devices and has become the industry standard for some. The 68000
> processors come to mind.
>
> While we are discussing tools, for those that aren't aware, a new
> industry standard IDE is evolving. It is called Eclipse and it is open
> source. (www.eclipse.org)
>
> It presently supports a whole variety of languages and is easily
> extended to others. At present it appears to be very competitive in the
> Java market and is spreading to other languages at a rapid rate.
>
> I think there is a LOT of value for development companies to be able to
> standardize on ONE high quality IDE. I would love to see development
> tool companies focus on developing their tools to be eclipse plug ins,
> be they open source or not. Eclipse is capable of using just about any
> command line compiler and a plug in could easily be created to interface
> with a custom debugger.
>
> I hope this clarifies things. > --
> Kim Lux, Diesel Research Inc. >
> Yahoo! Groups Links


jimstuart@jims... wrote this message on Fri, Nov 11, 2005 at 17:39 -0000:
> > a) the BDM has a closed interface, making the on board BDM USELESS for
> > any software package other than Code Warrior. The board itself is
> > usable with an external BDM.
>
> Because the s/w interface may change from time to time, Freescale restricts
> the number of
> partners who have access due to the resource available to support.

[...]

> d) Freescale releasing this product to only use the
> > Metrowerks software.
>
> Again you make it seem like a cunning plan, CW and Cosmic are the only ones
> with
> a C compiler today for the Xgate, what other X gate debugger do you plan to
> use.

[...]

> > Let me ask you this: would this board have a proprietary USB-BDM device
> > if Freescale didn't have an interest in Metrowerks ?
>
> Yes, it has nothing to do with it, its a support issue as explained above.

If it really isn't a problem with restricting access, then why don't
they give it out to some specific person to be able to integrate
with gcc, or such? Saying you have to be a partner, or some such, *IS*
a plan on Freescale's part to restrict who can use the hardware...
Saying they keep it closed because things might change is just a cop
out on their part...

Does that mean one of us will have to create a business to get the
specs out of Freescale to continue to use free software with their
products?

As far as I'm concerned, this is a plan by Freescale to ensure that
only expensive comercial tools are available for their chips, which
IMO is very bad.. I'm using the NE64 for my design partly due to
the fact that gcc is available for it... If it wasn't, I'd probably
end up using another chip...

Freescale's refusal to release interface specs for the BDM means to
me that Freescale is no longer interested in the hobbiest/educational
user...

--
John-Mark Gurney Voice: +1 415 225 5579

"All that I will do, has been done, All that I have, has not."



On Fri, 2005-11-11 at 10:01 -0800, John-Mark Gurney wrote:
> Freescale's refusal to release interface specs for the BDM means to
> me that Freescale is no longer interested in the hobbiest/educational
> user...

It isn't just the hobbiest/educational people.

Right now, every time a new device is released we go through this
purchase/install/learn cycle for tools. New IDE/compiler/linker. New
pod. Another software box and disks to store somewhere. Another
hardware interface device to sit on the shelf (old one). Another IDE to
learn. Another debugger to learn. Another application to take up room
on the harddrive. Another application to have to upgrade. Another piece
of non upgradable proprietary hardware.

It gets sickening after a while.

Realistically, the upgrade from S12 to S12X devices needed the
following:

- a new XGATE compiler and linker, ie command line exes.
- updates to the S12 monitor firmware to handle xgate BDM commands
- a new debugger stub to interface with the upgraded monitor
- a new EVB

We didn't need:
- to purchase yet another IDE
- to learn another IDE
- to purchase another BDM
- to get another set of CDROMs.
- to install another IDE on the hard drive

Have you guys ever had to resurrect an old project for enhancements ?
You have to dig up the old IDE, install it, relearn its quirks, etc.
The way the industry deals with development tools right now is lunacy.
Every time a new device comes out it is the same song and dance.

And then things get outdated and vendors stop supporting them. I've got
a certain old IDE/compiler that I still use from time to time that only
runs on DOS. Yeah, I should update it. I don't know if that is even
possible anymore. I only need to change a few lines of code every
second year.

Here is what I think: Freescale is a semiconductor manufacturer. Stick
with that. You are good at that. The 9S12X is going to ROCK. Great
device.

Stay out of the tools business, especially the IDE business. At least
make every stitch of code involved with any EVB you supply OPEN SOURCE
so that we can all do what we want/need with it.

Here is how I would have liked the S12X situation to go:

a) buy a Freescale EVB kit
b) someone develops/sells a command line compiler/linker that outputs
object code in a non proprietary format. Make it multi platform. It
doesn't have a UI, so that should be easy.
c) I plug said compiler/linker into the IDE I have on my development
computer now. Eclipse would be a good start. We all have our
favorites.
d) I update the BDM with the open source monitor code provided in the
EVB kit.
e) I update the debugger to use the new BDM interface.
f) I start developing.

If you really want to get fancy, build all the debugging pods to a
standard interface. That would be revolutionary.

I don't need to install/learn a new IDE.
I don't need to buy/install/learn another BDM.
I don't need any CDROMs or posters.
I don't need to pay $2500 per seat to upgrade the software component of
my development system.
I don't have to get into an upgrade agreement with the software
supplier.
I don't have to worry about yet another IDE going stale or becoming
unsupported. In my career, I have developed for the following devices:
8051(variants), 6811, 8096(variants), 68000, 80x86, S12 and now S12X.

Not ONCE have I ever reused the software component of a development
tool. Every time it has been a different IDE. A code editor is a code
editor. A compiler is a compiler, just with a different target. And
yet every time there is this "come see our new XYZ development "system"
that does everything you can imagine". Until the next device comes out.
Then it is time to pony up do the purchase/install/learn cycle again.

I think it is time the tool vendors stopped each trying to pull us in
their individual directions and started working on making things that
work TOGETHER instead of purposely making things that don't work
together.

Sorry to vent. This has been a bee in my bonnet for a long time.

I feel better now. Flamesuit on.

--
Kim Lux, Diesel Research Inc.


Kim Lux wrote this message on Fri, Nov 11, 2005 at 12:14 -0700:
> Not ONCE have I ever reused the software component of a development
> tool. Every time it has been a different IDE. A code editor is a code
> editor. A compiler is a compiler, just with a different target. And
> yet every time there is this "come see our new XYZ development "system"
> that does everything you can imagine". Until the next device comes out.
> Then it is time to pony up do the purchase/install/learn cycle again.

This is the reason I like gcc... My IDE is screen + nvi + make...
I know this will work on any/most platforms that I need to target..
It works for me on x86, sparc64, powerpc, arm and 9S12... (oh, besides
the fact that I can run my IDE on almost any/all the other platforms
for a fully cross-hosted environment, obviously I don't run my IDE on
9S12, yet :) )...

--
John-Mark Gurney Voice: +1 415 225 5579

"All that I will do, has been done, All that I have, has not."



John,

> Freescale's refusal to release interface specs for the BDM means to
> me that Freescale is no longer interested in the hobbiest/educational
> user...

TBDML is completely open source, it can be built for under $10, is has been
released specifically to support the hobbiest/educational user.

It works with CW, GCC/GDB, ICC/noICE, I am porting it to the JB16 so that it
works
twice as fast (i.e. NE64 support), what more do you want!

Best Regards
Jim
www.freegeeks.net


"John-Mark Gurney" wrote:

> Freescale's refusal to release interface specs for the BDM means to
> me that Freescale is no longer interested in the hobbiest/educational
> user...

See chapter 18.
http://www.freescale.com/files/microcontrollers/doc/data_sheet/MC9S12XDP512_V2.pdf

Similar information is available also for all sorts of S12 and HC12. BDM
specs were always open. Edward


I meant on the USB side, ie where the PC connects. On Fri, 2005-11-11 at 23:24 +0200, Edward Karpicz wrote:
> "John-Mark Gurney" wrote:
>
> > Freescale's refusal to release interface specs for the BDM means to
> > me that Freescale is no longer interested in the hobbiest/educational
> > user...
>
> See chapter 18.
> http://www.freescale.com/files/microcontrollers/doc/data_sheet/MC9S12XDP512_V2.pdf
>
> Similar information is available also for all sorts of S12 and HC12. BDM
> specs were always open. > Edward > Yahoo! Groups Links >
--
Kim Lux, Diesel Research Inc.


--- In 68HC12@68HC..., <jimstuart@f...> wrote:
> You make this sound like some devious plan, they should have
> got their orders on earlier,
> but as I said I will see if I can fix the issue.
>
> d) Freescale releasing this product to only use the
> > Metrowerks software.
>
> Again you make it seem like a cunning plan,
> CW and Cosmic are the only ones with
> a C compiler today for the Xgate, what other
> X gate debugger do you plan to
> use.

Oh gee, Freescale... I wonder how you got your Freescale orders in
before everyone else?

What are you going for... the ultimate monopoly or whatever it's
called that Microsoft also was guilty of? Isn't it illegal? Freescale
better be careful. And I don't call that "early access". I call that
"late product" because you can simply hold onto it until your IDE is
also ready.


Edward Karpicz wrote this message on Fri, Nov 11, 2005 at 23:24 +0200:
> "John-Mark Gurney" wrote:
>
> > Freescale's refusal to release interface specs for the BDM means to
> > me that Freescale is no longer interested in the hobbiest/educational
> > user...
>
> See chapter 18.
> http://www.freescale.com/files/microcontrollers/doc/data_sheet/MC9S12XDP512_V2.pdf
>
> Similar information is available also for all sorts of S12 and HC12. BDM
> specs were always open.

I know that the BDM spec is open, I'm talking about the BDM pod on the
dev board in the above statement... No one (that I know of) has
complained about the BDM spec it self being closed, but the fact that
the included interface to the 9S12X's BDM interface on the dev boards
is unavailable...

--
John-Mark Gurney Voice: +1 415 225 5579

"All that I will do, has been done, All that I have, has not."