PIC Compiler choice / problem with debug

Discussion in 'Embedded Systems and Microcontrollers' started by ROWIFI, Sep 13, 2012.


    Thread Starter New Member

    Mar 15, 2009
    I'm looking for a rapid start to compile and modify some code, so some quick questions for help please.
    CCS compiler ( with the IDE )- does it work with the cheap Pickit 2 or 3 for debug?

    MPLAB or CCS ? looking for a free / low cost toolchain for PIC 18 series.

    On a first attempted compile and debug with a loaned CCS environment, the compile worked fine, but trying to start debug the tools required a recompile with 'debug enabled' or something - then the compile failed with a 'no space for variables' error.
    Coming from the AVR environment - a compile is a compile - and debug simply runs that code - there is no change needed to the code to get the debugger to work - so what goes on with the PIC and this memory problem?
    Any clues would help.
  2. t06afre

    AAC Fanatic!

    May 11, 2009
  3. ErnieM

    AAC Fanatic!

    Apr 24, 2011
    You can't beat the price for the XC8 compiler as it's completely free to download.Plus it works within MPLAB along with your PICkit for in circuit debugging.

    Not every device is supported by either PICkit, I actually have one here that worked with fewer restrictions with a PICkit 2 over the 3 (I have both), so do check which may be better.

    PICs need a different build for debugging and release as the debug version inserts a bit of code and a few variables to support debugging. You can't debug a release version and you can't run a debug version (at least not without a debugger attached).

    Doing in circuit debugging on a PIC18 is a very nice experience. Very few "gotcha's" when up and running.