Palm is making a big splash in the mobile world with its upcoming Pre. A Palm Pre emulator can be downloaded from the Palm developer site as part of the Mojo SDK. You need to register to download the SDK, which is available for Windows, Linux, and Mac. It is reliant on Java 6 and Virtual Box (Sun’s virtual machine software) being installed, links to both of which are provided on the download page. Again, be aware of the download size – Virtual Box is over 60MB and the Mojo SDK is around 176MB. Remember check this out there’s a huge number of BlackBerry device simulators available – in fact, there’s one for just about every BlackBerry there is.
Then there is simulation, this is not the real system in any shape or form but has the potential to create an environment where the novice can practice different skills in a ‘safe enclosure’. Flight simulators, are clearly not the real thing but offer an affordance that can prepare pilots and spotty teens for the real experience. Whereas, emulation is a system that acts exactly like something else and abides by all of the rules of the system being emulated. It’s like duplicating every aspect of the original device’s behavior. The rules are permanently fixed, and cannot be changed or the system fails.
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Figure 2 maps the timeline to becoming a simulation expert. Technological differences between simulators and emulators aren’t insignificant. From a user perspective, an emulator is a more complex tool than a simulator to learn and deploy since the user must master four technological domains. hardware emulation system sits on four technological pillars—the hardware, the compiler, the run-time and DUT debug environment, and supporting verification intellectual properties . If the emulator is using a custom-made reprogrammable device, the pillars become five.
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Stimulus creation is a topic that could be discussed on its own. It should be noted that simulators don’t have the processing power to execute and validate embedded software. Their deployment is confined to verifying the design hardware. At the bottom sits the analog simulator that mimics accurately the electrical behavior of transistors in the DUT. Part 2 of this two-part series on designing and using a modern hardware emulation platform highlights how to become an expert in using a modern hardware emulator vis-à-vis a hardware-description-language simulator.
Have a look at the xilinx design tool release notes, you will notice the supported simulators for xilinx devices and tools. HDL simulators are good for hardware debug in the early stages of the design cycle, when the design is focused at the block level. Easy to use, quick to setup and blazingly fast to compile a design, they are exceptionally flexible to debug a hardware design. They may indeed support several design iterations per day… as long as the design size is reasonable. They become problematic at the level of several tens of million gates, which today is typical of system-level design verification.
As described above, they are of no use for embedded software validation. For processing typical testbenches, one or a few milliseconds of simulation may suffice, which would cut the execution time to a day or less when run on a state-of-the-art PC configured with lots of memory. By the end of the 1990s, it evolved into a register transfer level simulator supporting Verilog and VHDL, the two popular hardware description languages . It took more than a decade for the vendors, now called EDA to support both languages in the same tool.
- These simulators and emulators are based on different technologies.
- If you are studying networking, I would suggest you use one of those two.
- As mentioned before, Emulation systems focus on SoC verification, whereas FPGA-prototypes focus on validation tasks such as hardware validation and hw/sw integration and extend to software development and debug.
- Emulation is complementary to prototyping as each technology is solving a different problem; in fact many of our customers utilize both emulation and prototyping in their SoC development process today.
Today, all three major EDA players offer their own HDL simulators with each one roughly holding one third of the market. Close to 40 years ago, the first commercial digital simulator brought to market by Comprehensive Computing Systems and Services Inc. was called TEGAS — for test generation and simulation system. Developed by a small team of experts, it operated at the gate level — analog simulators operated at the transistor level and preceded this development. It was used solely for test program generation of digital designs. Back then, design verification was still carried out via prototyping boards.
In today’s time hardware emulation has become one of the popular tools for the verification. Deployment of an emulator requires knowledge in four distinctive technological domains. To become an expert in emulation takes at least four times longer than mastering an RTL simulator and, in the process, demands more concentration and intellect. The duration of a basic online tutorial may be approximately one week, long enough to teach an engineer to use a modern simulator even without live support. Once the user acquires the basic knowledge, his or her attention can be directed to learn the UVM methodology and, in parallel, continue to use the simulator.
RIM are right on the ball when it comes to releasing them – the Storm simulator was available long before the device was. Use this powerful resource for testing and you won’t go far wrong. If you are running Windows on a virtual machine, the emulator may fail to start and the system will show an error message like “xde.exe has stopped working”. At the time of this writing, VirtualBox does not support nested virtualization. Unlike trying to deploy an application on a real iPhone/iPad, running on the simulator does not require a paid developer account or provisioning certificate.