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timothyheider last won the day on December 9 2014

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  1. Thanks for pointing me in the right direction. It's in the manual for Nexys 3. I guess you have to set J8 and then it can self program on startup from an on board flash memory. Looks like the default is volatile mode and then you have to transfer the .BIT file on each start.
  2. I am able to program my Nexys 3 board but it seems like when I power cycle it the program is lost and it goes back to the pre-loaded configuration that says "pass" on the 7 segment display. I can then load the program again and it works. What is the expected behavior? Does the FPGA have to programmed every time it starts? Is this a jumper setting I need to change to get it to maintain its state after power cycle? Thanks.
  3. I just managed to download one of the demos to my Nexys 3 with my OS X laptop using Ubuntu Desktop in Virtual Box. Took me about a week to figure this out with some help from people on this forum. OS X is not supported by Xilinx for the design tools and you need to run the Adept utilities by command line in Linux. I was never able to use Adept on Windows but it worked great with my VirtualBox Linux platform. The first thing I suggest is to get Xilinx ISE running. This alone took me several hours. You need to get a free license for it. Definitely look at the demo projects here: http://digilentinc.com/Products/Detail.cfm?NavPath=2,400,897&Prod=NEXYS2 If you don't want to use an emulator I think you'll need to get a Windows machine or set up a dedicated Linux box (which I may do now that I know it works).
  4. I wish I'd had your great reply 3 days ago. That's not to say I'm not having a little fun figuring things out. :-) Thanks for taking the time to post it. Hey Digilent: take the above exactly as it is, print it out and stick it in the box when you send a board to non-academic customers that do not have the benefit of a professor telling them exactly the steps to do something with your board. The Nexys manual explains the board interfaces well (e.g. three detailed pages on how to make a VGA interface) but nothing that says "hey newbie: here's how you get an LED to light up from an AND gate" step by step regardless of platform. Awesome product but it suffers from too much documentation on the web some of which is outdated and confusing. I think a quick start sheet and a clear architecture overview (like the above offers) would help get the ball rolling.
  5. Today after much swimming upstream I have Xilinx ISE running in a Linux VirtualBox emulator on my Mac OSX laptop and managed to get the Linux USB utilities to recognize the device.
  6. Thanks for your reply. I will install Xilinx ISE and generate a BIT file as my next step. Thanks for the instructional link. I have Adept installed on Ubuntu desktop now but I'm not able to run it so far. When I execute the main file in bin64 it seems to do nothing: theider@theider:~/digilent.adept.runtime_2.16.1-x86_64$ ./bin64/dftdrvdtch theider@theider:~/digilent.adept.runtime_2.16.1-x86_64$ I am running the latest Ubuntu desktop 14.
  7. timothyheider

    Nexys 4 Information

    My experience with Nexys 3 is similar. I'm confused where to begin.
  8. I just got a Nexys 3 board and I'm very excited to get started working with it! Seems like a wonderful device. Sadly I have not gotten off to a good start due to software and documentation problems. I am very familiar with digital logic and electronics and have been a professional software developer for over 20 years. I have not worked with an FPGA before but I understand what it is. The board powers up and self tests connected to USB on my Windows 7 device. It's not clear which software I'm supposed to use to configure and test it. My understanding from reading the docs is that the board is programmed with a demo.bit that can interact with the PC application. When I connect to the Adept 2 software (the latest stable version on the web site) it recognizes the board is connected but says "Unable to get configuration" etc. I was never able to get the tabs to open on the software. I'm a little stuck. Any pointers on how I can move forward with working with the device? Are other people having a different experience? Took it out of the box and everything worked great? Is this a Windows issue? What tools are people using to actually download designs to the board? It seems like you have to get something from Xylinx to do actual circuit design but I'm not clear about that either. Thanks for any help you can provide!