# PIC Programming Inquiry

#### BR-549

Joined Sep 22, 2013
4,938
I am not familiar with the PIC products or the company. I am considering buying this board.

This board uses a "cloud" IDE. My question is that if I like this board and want to pursue it........will the PICkit 3 be able to program this board locally?

2nd question.......I am interested in playing with a microchip 8 bit product. I liked the specs on this chip. However the online IDE makes me nervous.

Would anyone care to recommend a different broad? If they make a curiosity board for that chip (or something close)......would that be the better way to go?

#### WBahn

Joined Mar 31, 2012
25,918
Based on that info sheet, it sounds like you can use at least some of their other tool chains in addition to the cloud-based one (notice that it says, "The MPLAB Xpress Evaluation Board offers seamless integration with our software tool chain, including the MPLAB Xpress Cloud-Based IDE."

#### DanW

Joined Jul 3, 2014
1
The bottom half of the board is likely a stripped down version of a PicKit anyway. You could probably fit your own, but you would need to hand wire to each pin. I think the board would be a bit limiting after a while, especially if you accidentally blow up the chip.

If you own a PicKit 3 already, it may just be worth getting a DM164120 instead. It isn't the chip you like, but it can act as a programmer for similarly sized PIC's. And you can replace the existing chip cheaply if you blow it.

Hooking up a PIC to a PicKit is fairly easy. It may just be worth putting one on a breadboard and hard wire the connections in.
The programmer will power the board for you as long as you keep your experiments low power.

If you google "ICSP connection", you get lots of examples on how to hook a PIC up to a programmer.

Joined Jul 18, 2013
20,911
If you want some flexibility then there are the Picdem 2 Plus boards that allow 18, 28 and 40pin IC's. Software included in Assy and C.
You would need a Pickit 2 or 3 to go with it.
Max.

#### ErnieM

Joined Apr 24, 2011
8,046
You should be able to use the standard non cloud version of MPLAB to program this.

Also, there are 5 resistor jumpers between the programmer portion and the PIC side remove these and any PIC programmer will work.

Personally I try to choose PICs with aDIP package style for bread boarding. Though I can handle flat packs and such via adaptor boards.

#### Travm

Joined Aug 16, 2016
315
I am not familiar with the PIC products or the company. I am considering buying this board.

This board uses a "cloud" IDE. My question is that if I like this board and want to pursue it........will the PICkit 3 be able to program this board locally?

2nd question.......I am interested in playing with a microchip 8 bit product. I liked the specs on this chip. However the online IDE makes me nervous.

Would anyone care to recommend a different broad? If they make a curiosity board for that chip (or something close)......would that be the better way to go?
I'm not sure what exactly makes this dev board "ideally suited for MPlab Xpress",
but i think this;
is what you want.
I believe they use the same chip. The curiosity board will also accept a whole host of other chips in its built in dip socket. I have the smaller board, and as a launch point for learning about PIC, its excellent.
Only gripe was i outgrew it really really fast.
Equally good option would be to grab a Pickit 3, then whatever chip you want, and go to town on a breadboard.

#### Travm

Joined Aug 16, 2016
315
Although i will say, about MPLAB Xpress, its pretty cool. Being tied to the cloud isnt my thing, but it looks like pretty excellent software.

#### be80be

Joined Jul 5, 2008
2,047
"Programming the MPLAB Xpress Evaluation Board is quick and easy. We’ve integrated a unique drag-and-drop programmer for compatibility with almost any USB-connected PC, laptop, or tablet. The MPLAB Xpress Evaluation board connects to your PC as a USB Flash drive, so no drivers are needed. Programming of the target device is completed in microseconds, with no waiting."

It has built in programmer

#### Travm

Joined Aug 16, 2016
315
"Programming the MPLAB Xpress Evaluation Board is quick and easy. We’ve integrated a unique drag-and-drop programmer for compatibility with almost any USB-connected PC, laptop, or tablet. The MPLAB Xpress Evaluation board connects to your PC as a USB Flash drive, so no drivers are needed. Programming of the target device is completed in microseconds, with no waiting."

It has built in programmer
So does the curiosity.
The only advantage to either of these boards imo, is you don't have to troubleshoot your circuit before you start learning programming.

#### ErnieM

Joined Apr 24, 2011
8,046
So does the curiosity.
The only advantage to either of these boards imo, is you don't have to troubleshoot your circuit before you start learning programming.
I have stated over and over that when starting out you need known good hardware, programmer, and software. This means buying a pretested development board, a pretested programmer, and some sort of tutorial written for that board. Loose any leg of that chair and it falls to the ground leaving you guessing why the circuit is a brick.

Once you gain some experience then you can mix and match and write new code for hardware you built... just keep that known good programmer there so you at least know something is good.

#### BR-549

Joined Sep 22, 2013
4,938
Thank you all gentlemen.

I ordered the curiosity HPC board.

#### BR-549

Joined Sep 22, 2013
4,938
I received the board today. But I am having no luck with the software.

I don't understand WHAT software to download or how to install it.

I would like a mplab ide with c and assembly capability. Don't need all the new 32 wing dingys.

But there is some kind of error about needing mplab 8 and a usb switcher??????

And it says it can find no compiler?????

So if someone would take mercy and get me started.............am running win10 and FF.

Thanks.

Never had problems with TI or STM software.

#### Travm

Joined Aug 16, 2016
315
I received the board today. But I am having no luck with the software.

I don't understand WHAT software to download or how to install it.

I would like a mplab ide with c and assembly capability. Don't need all the new 32 wing dingys.

But there is some kind of error about needing mplab 8 and a usb switcher??????

And it says it can find no compiler?????

So if someone would take mercy and get me started.............am running win10 and FF.

Thanks.

Never had problems with TI or STM software.
I don't have my mplabx laptop here, I will expand on this when I get home.
You need to download xc8 from the microchip website, then select that as you start a new project.
You should also download the plugin MCC from the plugin manager, as that will have you running custom code in no time.
Microchips website has huge amounts of relevant documentation under the developer help section you should dip your toes in as well.
Will post more direct answers later.

#### BR-549

Joined Sep 22, 2013
4,938
ok....de-stalled all microchip software.

installed xc8-v1.41-full install.

standing by.

Edit: and when I installed it....I put path names in path.

#### Travm

Joined Aug 16, 2016
315
you dont need to unstall MplabX, just install XC8 along with it. By default all you get is the Assembly compiler, which as you specified C as your programming language, you will need.

Try following this document, it will get you going.
That is the user guide for the board you are playing with,
I personally hate this term, but a little RTFM never hurt anyone

#### BR-549

Joined Sep 22, 2013
4,938
Travm..................that is the doc that I was trying to follow......that led me here to post.

That doc assumes that I have the software installed.

"Connect the Curiosity HPC Board to the computer using the on-board micro-USB
connector.
2. Open MPLAB X and either create a new project or open an existing one.
3. Click on the Project Properties icon located in the project’s Dashboard window
(as seen in Figure 2-1). Alternatively, the Project Properties window can be
opened by clicking on File > Project Properties, or by right-clicking on the project
name in the Projects window and clicking Properties."

What does......RTFM mean?

#### Travm

Joined Aug 16, 2016
315
RTFM is a acronym, regularly used in computer programming context,
It means Read The $#@$ing Manual.

You have installed mplabx and xc8 now?
Also what version of mplabx?
I am horribly slow upgrading software unless I have a reason. I maybe a couple versions behind you.

Did installing xc8 help? Or what are you stuck on now?

#### BR-549

Joined Sep 22, 2013
4,938
I installed xc8-v1.41.....................then I installed mplab x v3.55. Selected the xc8 compiler.

I am now connected to the board.........but the chip is wrong.......has the same number.....but it's a square surface mount, not my dip.

And I can not get a selection of what board I am using. Only a general curiosity board.

Again.......the instructions in the pdf doc.......do not match the mplab interface.

#### Travm

Joined Aug 16, 2016
315
When i get home, (1 or 2 hours) i'll post some screenshots.
You have a chip installed in the Dip sockets right?
The square SMD chip you can ignore, that is for the programmer (PKOB, or PicKit On Board).
Your chip should be installed in the dip socket.
I dont have the HPC board, but the process should be identical for the smaller board that I have.