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AT91SAM7S Boot Assistant (SAM-BA)

Posted: Tue Apr 26, 2005 10:33 pm
by pfilippi
Dear All,

You will be able to find the latest version of SAM-BA now in the Flash Programming Section:

www/phpBB2_mirror/viewforum.php4?f=18


everybody is waiting for the Sam Boot Assistant (SAM-BA) because you have found discussions about it on other forums or you have heard about it from your Local ATMEL FAE or whatever.

The SAM-BA Package (User uide, exe file etc..) has been put on the AT91SAM7S Yahoo! Group two weeks ago but not under control of ATMEL, but now deleted.
The release of this was to soon since we are in the process to update the datasheet of the AT91SAM7S devices with information that are not and could not be described somewhere else.
This will be on-line (ATMEL Website and www.at91.com) soon.

If you do not check both sites regularly, you can register to the AT91 News Letter www/newsletters/index.php4 to be informed as soon as the release will be done.

For those who do not know what is SAM-BA, SAM-BA is a Flash Downloader Tool running on an Windows PC with a Friendly GUI. It will allow you to download your binary file into the flash memory via USB port or RS232 port.
SAM-BA features scripting capabilities to automate repetitive tasks.

Hope you will enjoy it !

The AT91 Support Team.

Posted: Wed Apr 27, 2005 6:47 am
by jeffs555
Does the loader work with the USARTS, or is it just for the debug port?

Posted: Wed Apr 27, 2005 10:58 am
by pfilippi
Actually I did not specify it. This will be through the DBGU port, not trhough USARTs.

Regards,

protocol documentation

Posted: Wed Apr 27, 2005 8:16 pm
by pjs
Has Atmel released communication protocol information for the boot loader? Or is it already on-line somewhere and I simply missed it?

Most other vendors document their bootloader communication protocols. Philips, for example, fully documents theirs for the LPC2100 series chips. I am the author of one of the linux-based tools for using that particular bootloader:

http://www.pjrc.com/arm/lpc2k_pgm/

If I can get the docs (without NDA that prevents releasing GPL'd code) and a sample of a newer 'G' chip (the one on my board has a letter 'E')... I'll probably write a pretty nice linux-based one for the SAM7s.


Paul

Posted: Sat Apr 30, 2005 3:58 am
by jimbotko
Can full SAM-BA functionality be programmed in to older "engineering sample" versions of the chips over JTAG, or does it only support the G revision and newer?

Posted: Tue May 03, 2005 11:22 am
by pfilippi
Hi,

JPS, the commands available through SAM-BA will be released at the time of the full release. The Download via the Serial debug port (simple TX/RX UART) will use the Xmodem protocol. Actually it would be fine to have it for Linux.
The Rev E of the AT91SAM7S64 parts, have the SAM-BA on chip.
SAM-BA commands will be someting like read/write a byte, read/write half word, read/write a word, send/receive a file, go, display version
Can full SAM-BA functionality be programmed in to older "engineering sample" versions of the chips over JTAG
Yes it can, but will be one-time usable for "old engineering parts". Only Rev G are sampled from now. The best would be to contact your local ATMEL FAE/ ATMEL Distributor to have samples of Rev G.

Regards,

Posted: Wed May 04, 2005 8:14 am
by jimbotko
pfilippi wrote: Yes it can, but will be one-time usable for "old engineering parts". Only Rev G are sampled from now. The best would be to contact your local ATMEL FAE/ ATMEL Distributor to have samples of Rev G.
Why will it only be one time usable for ES chips?? After extreme efforts we have finally only been able to get ES parts for prototyping and we will be relying on SAM-BA. Is there any way to enable its use for multiple trials? Local US Atmel reps have unable to help us locate any samples and we've had to just ask high-quantity developers for hand-outs. :(

Posted: Wed May 04, 2005 10:47 am
by pfilippi
Hi,

actually, finding S64 samples is not easy today due to a very big demand.
But, I checked with the customer service dept and you can request rev G samples from ATMEL website. At this time, samples are limited to two.

Go to http://www.atmel.com/forms/Samples.asp?family_id=605

Regards,

Posted: Wed May 04, 2005 11:06 am
by jimbotko
pfilippi wrote:Hi,

actually, finding S64 samples is not easy today due to a very big demand.
But, I checked with the customer service dept and you can request rev G samples from ATMEL website. At this time, samples are limited to two.

Go to http://www.atmel.com/forms/Samples.asp?family_id=605

Regards,
Thanks for the reply. However is samples are so limited due to demand, why is Atmel limiting SAM-BA use to only the newest samples? Isn't this hurting development for those who are currently in testing with previous samples? I don't understand why Atmel would do this. Clearly when products are finalized and shipped they will be using production chips anyway, so why not let them use SAM-BA in development?

Posted: Wed May 04, 2005 11:28 am
by pfilippi
SAM-BA is available since Rev E parts. Since Rev E had bugs fixed, we are now at the Rev G. That's not a question of limiting SAM-BA.

Regards,

Posted: Thu May 05, 2005 1:43 am
by jimbotko
pfilippi wrote:SAM-BA is available since Rev E parts. Since Rev E had bugs fixed, we are now at the Rev G. That's not a question of limiting SAM-BA.

Regards,
Ah, I understand. Can SAM-BA be configured to load programs in to volatile memory instead of flash?

Posted: Thu May 05, 2005 2:55 pm
by JPMORENO
Hi,

yes. SAM-BA allows you to downlaod application in on-chip SRAM as well.

Rgds
JP

SAM-BA software?>

Posted: Sat May 07, 2005 1:27 am
by henkvisser
Where is this SAM-BA software?>

-Henk

Posted: Sat May 07, 2005 5:41 pm
by pjs
pfilippi wrote: the commands available through SAM-BA will be released at the time of the full release.
Ok, fair enough. Good to hear it'll be fully documented.

One quick question... when the processor comes out of reset and starts running, what determines whether it'll run my code in flash or the boot agent? (I have the s64, version "E"... will get some "G" chips soon)

So far, I don't think I've run the boot agent by mistake. Seems to always run my code from flash. But I'm still fiddling with the eval board, not my own board yet. Just wondering if I'll bump into the boot agent by mistake if I leave pins floating or it it'll accidentally run it instead if I have activity on the debug rxd line, or something strange on the usb pins? Or does it always run very briefly (that I've just not noticed) and somehow know to jump to my program instead of wait for communication from the PC?

Re: AT91SAM7S Boot Assistant (SAM-BA)

Posted: Tue May 10, 2005 6:30 pm
by henkvisser
pfilippi wrote:Dear All,

The SAM-BA Package (User uide, exe file etc..) has been put on the AT91SAM7S Yahoo! Group two weeks ago but not under control of ATMEL, but now deleted.
The release of this was to soon since we are in the process to update the datasheet of the AT91SAM7S devices with information that are not and could not be described somewhere else.
This will be on-line (ATMEL Website and www.at91.com) soon.
How soon is *soon* ? :)

-Henk