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  #1 (permalink)  
Old 05-06-2005, 02:33 PM
Sean Durkin
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Posts: n/a
Default Parallel Cable IV opened in "Compatibility Mode"

Hi folks,

this is starting to drive me nuts:

I use a Xilinx Parallel Cable IV to program some big FPGAs (big as in
V2P70 and the like). Now Impact and Chipscope always open this cable in
"Compatibility Mode", meaning it is used as a Parallel Cable III and
takes FOREVER to download a bitstream. No matter what I do, no matter
what settings for the parallel port I use, it keeps getting detected as
a Parallel Cable III. This is a problem we've been having constantly for
years now... on some machines it works fine, on some it doesn't, and on
some others it sometimes works but sometimes doesn't.

The only certain thing is that it never works on the machine I am
currently working on when I have a lot of testing to do and big bitfiles
to download.

Now, I've googled my eyes out for this, read all the answer records,
tried everything mentioned there and everything I could think of:

- I tried all possible BIOS-settings for the parallel port: ECP, EPP,
bidirectional, different DMA-channels, different IRQs; you name it, I've
tried it

- I tried uninstalling the cable drivers from Xilinx, reinstalling new
ones. I tried uninstalling the entire ISE, making sure there's nothing
left in the Windows-Drivers-Dir, reinstalling ISE. I've tried every
ISE-version from 4.2 to 7.1 without success. I've tried doing a fresh
install on a freshly installed Windows, nothing.

Now we bought one of the new platform cables for USB, works much better,
but those are expensive and we have probably half a dozen "Parallel
Cable IVs" in use.

Any pointers, any hints?

cu,
Sean
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  #2 (permalink)  
Old 05-06-2005, 06:14 PM
Thomas Rudloff
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Posts: n/a
Default Re: Parallel Cable IV opened in "Compatibility Mode"

Sean Durkin wrote:

>Hi folks,
>
>this is starting to drive me nuts:
>
>I use a Xilinx Parallel Cable IV to program some big FPGAs (big as in
>V2P70 and the like). Now Impact and Chipscope always open this cable in
>"Compatibility Mode", meaning it is used as a Parallel Cable III and
>takes FOREVER to download a bitstream. No matter what I do, no matter
>what settings for the parallel port I use, it keeps getting detected as
>a Parallel Cable III. This is a problem we've been having constantly for
>years now... on some machines it works fine, on some it doesn't, and on
>some others it sometimes works but sometimes doesn't.
>
>The only certain thing is that it never works on the machine I am
>currently working on when I have a lot of testing to do and big bitfiles
>to download.
>
>Now, I've googled my eyes out for this, read all the answer records,
>tried everything mentioned there and everything I could think of:
>
>- I tried all possible BIOS-settings for the parallel port: ECP, EPP,
>bidirectional, different DMA-channels, different IRQs; you name it, I've
>tried it
>
>- I tried uninstalling the cable drivers from Xilinx, reinstalling new
>ones. I tried uninstalling the entire ISE, making sure there's nothing
>left in the Windows-Drivers-Dir, reinstalling ISE. I've tried every
>ISE-version from 4.2 to 7.1 without success. I've tried doing a fresh
>install on a freshly installed Windows, nothing.
>
>Now we bought one of the new platform cables for USB, works much better,
>but those are expensive and we have probably half a dozen "Parallel
>Cable IVs" in use.
>
>Any pointers, any hints?
>
>cu,
>Sean
>
>

Once we had problems with "Wigglers" for Motorola processors. It pointed
out that it was related
to cabeling. Use of a good printer cable and keeping the cable between
the Wiggler and the development
board short solved the problem. I bet you did not change the cables
while trying.

Regards,
Thomas
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  #3 (permalink)  
Old 05-06-2005, 06:36 PM
Brannon
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Posts: n/a
Default Re: Parallel Cable IV opened in "Compatibility Mode"

Make sure that your board has proper termination on the JTAG lines.
Scope the voltages on the JTAG plug and make sure they are stable. Use
the mouse PS2 port, not the keyboard one, for the cable power. Make
sure you have updated chipset drivers. The odds are that your parallel
port controller is made by Intel. I wouldn't run any version of ISE
older than 6.2.3. I noticed some fixes in the 6.2 service packs. Make
sure the device manager shows that it is using the ECP driver and set
it to use an interrupt if one is available, which it should be.

If all of the above appear correct, then recognize the truth: there is
no spoon. The fact is that the DMA mode for the parallel IV stuff has
never worked worth a crap for me. The impression I got from support
when I called about it was that they get an aweful lot of calls on the
topic. The fact that they charge $500 for their USB cable is BS. They
do that because they have a monopoly on the item and use the
frustration caused by their parallel cables to drive the market.

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  #4 (permalink)  
Old 05-06-2005, 07:10 PM
Symon
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Posts: n/a
Default Re: Parallel Cable IV opened in "Compatibility Mode"

Hi Sean,
Is there also a dongle on the port?
Syms.


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  #5 (permalink)  
Old 05-07-2005, 05:50 AM
Marc
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Posts: n/a
Default Re: Parallel Cable IV opened in "Compatibility Mode"

I had a similar problem. When I switched to an external power supply
instead of using a PC PS2 port, the problem went away.


Marc.

"Sean Durkin" <[email protected]> wrote in message
news:4[email protected]
> Hi folks,
>
> this is starting to drive me nuts:
>
> I use a Xilinx Parallel Cable IV to program some big FPGAs (big as in
> V2P70 and the like). Now Impact and Chipscope always open this cable in
> "Compatibility Mode", meaning it is used as a Parallel Cable III and
> takes FOREVER to download a bitstream. No matter what I do, no matter
> what settings for the parallel port I use, it keeps getting detected as
> a Parallel Cable III. This is a problem we've been having constantly for
> years now... on some machines it works fine, on some it doesn't, and on
> some others it sometimes works but sometimes doesn't.
>
> The only certain thing is that it never works on the machine I am
> currently working on when I have a lot of testing to do and big bitfiles
> to download.
>
> Now, I've googled my eyes out for this, read all the answer records,
> tried everything mentioned there and everything I could think of:
>
> - I tried all possible BIOS-settings for the parallel port: ECP, EPP,
> bidirectional, different DMA-channels, different IRQs; you name it, I've
> tried it
>
> - I tried uninstalling the cable drivers from Xilinx, reinstalling new
> ones. I tried uninstalling the entire ISE, making sure there's nothing
> left in the Windows-Drivers-Dir, reinstalling ISE. I've tried every
> ISE-version from 4.2 to 7.1 without success. I've tried doing a fresh
> install on a freshly installed Windows, nothing.
>
> Now we bought one of the new platform cables for USB, works much better,
> but those are expensive and we have probably half a dozen "Parallel
> Cable IVs" in use.
>
> Any pointers, any hints?
>
> cu,
> Sean



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  #6 (permalink)  
Old 05-08-2005, 08:21 AM
Nitro
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Default Re: Parallel Cable IV opened in "Compatibility Mode"


Similar comments to Brannon. If you have more than one device in the JTAG
chain make sure you have the appropriate pullups on the paths between
devices. The Flash devices seem to have enough internal . The V2Pro does
not seem to have enough internal pullups on these lines. We have a setup
with 4 V2pros in the chain and we missed the pullups (except on the last
device to the cable.) We added the pullups and went from 7 min in cable II
Compat mode to 20 sec in Cable IV mode. (ECP mode with Int 7 enabled with
both)


On Fri, 06 May 2005 12:33:55 GMT, Sean Durkin wrote:

>
>
>Hi folks,
>
>this is starting to drive me nuts:
>
>I use a Xilinx Parallel Cable IV to program some big FPGAs (big as in
>V2P70 and the like). Now Impact and Chipscope always open this cable in
>"Compatibility Mode", meaning it is used as a Parallel Cable III and
>takes FOREVER to download a bitstream. No matter what I do, no matter
>what settings for the parallel port I use, it keeps getting detected as
>a Parallel Cable III. This is a problem we've been having constantly for
>years now... on some machines it works fine, on some it doesn't, and on
>some others it sometimes works but sometimes doesn't.
>
>The only certain thing is that it never works on the machine I am
>currently working on when I have a lot of testing to do and big bitfiles
>to download.
>
>Now, I've googled my eyes out for this, read all the answer records,
>tried everything mentioned there and everything I could think of:
>
>- I tried all possible BIOS-settings for the parallel port: ECP, EPP,
>bidirectional, different DMA-channels, different IRQs; you name it, I've
>tried it
>
>- I tried uninstalling the cable drivers from Xilinx, reinstalling new
>ones. I tried uninstalling the entire ISE, making sure there's nothing
>left in the Windows-Drivers-Dir, reinstalling ISE. I've tried every
>ISE-version from 4.2 to 7.1 without success. I've tried doing a fresh
>install on a freshly installed Windows, nothing.
>
>Now we bought one of the new platform cables for USB, works much better,
>but those are expensive and we have probably half a dozen "Parallel
>Cable IVs" in use.
>
>Any pointers, any hints?
>
>cu,
>Sean




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  #7 (permalink)  
Old 05-08-2005, 08:38 PM
Sean Durkin
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Default Re: Parallel Cable IV opened in "Compatibility Mode"

Nitro wrote:
> Similar comments to Brannon. If you have more than one device in the JTAG
> chain make sure you have the appropriate pullups on the paths between
> devices. The Flash devices seem to have enough internal . The V2Pro does
> not seem to have enough internal pullups on these lines. We have a setup
> with 4 V2pros in the chain and we missed the pullups (except on the last
> device to the cable.) We added the pullups and went from 7 min in cable II
> Compat mode to 20 sec in Cable IV mode. (ECP mode with Int 7 enabled with
> both)

I don't think this has anything to do with the actual JTAG-connection.
When you start up iMPACT or ChipScope, it opens your cable, and before
it even starts scanning your JTAG-Chain, the cable is openend in
compatibility mode. You don't even have to hook up the cable to any
board at all, the software just detects a cable III on one machine and a
cable IV on another.

Plus, why does everything work perfectly with the exact same Parallel
Cable, with the exact same board, just by hooking it up to a different
PC? And why does it work fine with the USB-cable?

I guess this is just a driver problem....

cu,
Sean
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  #8 (permalink)  
Old 05-10-2005, 03:02 PM
Sean Durkin
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Default Re: Parallel Cable IV opened in "Compatibility Mode"

Did some more research on this...

Obviously the ECP port test fails when iMPACT or ChipScope try to open
the cable. ChipScope 7.1 is more verbose "Expected 00 but read 20",
hence it suspects ECP is not working and uses compatibility mode.

It obviously does not matter what BIOS-Settings or driver settings in
Windows you use...

Xilinx uses Windriver from Jungo to talk to the cable, and this is what
I found on their website:

http://www.jungo.com/support/faq.html#lfc11

"Parallel / Serial Port Issues

I am using WinDriver for communicating peripherals with the parallel
port. In case of ECP mode, some computers work well, but on one computer
this does not work.
This might be a hardware problem, due to BIOS-specific implementations
of parallel port modes on various computers. WinDriver cannot control
this behavior, since it is programmed into the BIOS. We advise you to
follow the brand of computer or BIOS that you have observed works
correctly."

OK, so it's all the BIOS' fault and I'm supposed to only use computer
with compatible ones. That is one hell of an elegant solution.

cu,
Sean
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