Getting Started

The work flow when programming microprocessors consists of three stages:

  1. Writing the program
  2. Compiling the program
  3. Uploading the hex file to the microcontroller

In order to simplify these steps it is convenient to use an Integrated Design Environment (IDE). In this course we will use the AVR Studio 5 IDE, which integrates a code editor for both C and Assembly and the AVR specific complier or assembler. It also includes a simulator that lets you observe the state of the internal registers as you step through the complied code to debug your programs. The Arduino hardware evaluation board that we will use in this course has a USB interface that allows for the programming of the microcontroller and serial communication via USB. To program the microcontroller we will use the open source programmer AVRdude that comes with the arduino IDE.

AVR Studio 5 is an integrated development environment (IDE) for the Atmel microcontroller range. It includes:

  • A code editor for C, C++ and assembly with syntax based formatting and code completion
  • A complier and an assembler, with error checking
  • A simulator that allows you to inspect the contents of the internal registers and data memory
  • Uploading tools to load the firmware onto the microcontroller

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