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Product category: Intellectual Property Cores
News Release from: Altera Europe | Subject: Nios II
Edited by the Electronicstalk Editorial Team on 9 March 2005

Embedded core gains
multiprocessor debug support

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Altera Corp and Lauterbach have announced immediate multiprocessor debug support for Altera's Nios II soft-core embedded processor

Software engineers can now take advantage of a robust software environment tailored to debugging multiple Nios II processors in an Altera FPGA or Hardcopy series structured ASIC. By implementing multiple soft-core processors in a single FPGA, system designers can achieve a high level of performance with the flexibility to adapt to a dynamic design environment.

'Altera leads the industry in delivering soft-core processor technology to a wide user base, so extending our debugger to support Nios II multiprocessor systems was an easy decision for us', said Norbert Weiss, Manager of International Sales at Lauterbach.

'With Nios II processors, the high-performance Avalon switch fabric, and the SOPC Builder system integration tool, Altera has created a very powerful and easy-to-use solution for creating multiprocessor systems on a programmable chip'.

'We view our debugger as being a natural complement to this technology'.

The Lauterbach multiprocessor debug solution enables the display and control of multiple Nios II processors in the FPGA.

Each Nios II processor can be logically grouped and synchronised, responding to start, step, and break commands simultaneously.

Additionally, cross-breakpoint awareness enables a user to halt the system when a set of processors have all reached their assigned breakpoints.

The solution relies on Lauterbach's Trace32-PowerView debugger software to provide a unified, graphical environment for debugging one or more Nios II processors.

Meanwhile, Lauterbach's Trace32-PowerDebug hardware debug module gives designers a simple hardware connection to their system, operating over a single JTAG connection to the Altera device.

External, time-stamped trace capture is also provided over a high-speed Mictor connector to the Nios II system, providing users 512Mbyte of capture depth at 300MHz.

'Lauterbach's introduction of Nios II multicore debugging support on their Trace32-PowerDebug is another indication of the market momentum behind the Nios II soft-core processor family', said Chris Balough, Director of Software and Nios Marketing at Altera.

'Altera has shipped more than 14,000 development kits around the world to embedded processor customers who are increasingly using multiple Nios cores in their designs, and the introduction of the Lauterbach tool will give them the ability to a accelerate their software development'.

The Lauterbach Trace32-PowerView and Trace32-PowerDebug are available immediately from Lauterbach.

The Nios II processor is available royalty-free, with a perpetual shipper's licence, from Altera as part of development kits featuring the Cyclone and Stratix series of FPGAs.

A downloadable evaluation version of the Nios II processor and development tools (including compiler, debugger, and software libraries) is available from the Altera website.

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