Tuesday, January 05, 2010

SwiftX Forth and 8051 and Linux

Maybe 3 other people in the world would probably be interested in hearing that I have gotten the evaluation copy of SwiftX Forth running under Linux (Wine) talking to Silab's USB Toolstick's C8015F931 daughter card.

I had to steal the daughter card UART and re-route it to a separate USB->UART bridge for SwitfX's XTL (programming still works through the Toolstick), but it all works (so far) under both Windows and Linux (Ubuntu!).

I am playing around with 8051s because I am feeling retro and a bit weary of the TI MSP430 family. The C8015F931 has some impressive low power numbers and some neat features to make even a lowly 8051 appealing.

I have to remember to do a post on my newest interest: Augmenting sensors with tiny low power MCUs to make them smarter.


Dan Kegel said...


How does it compare to Dwight Schauer's 2005 howto? Has it gotten easier since then?

Todd Coram said...

Well, I can only speak for the 8051 SwiftX but it pretty much worked "out of the box". I had to do the USB/UART hack in hardware, but as far as linux was concerned I just installed under Wine and added: "dev\ttyUSB0=COM1" to system.reg (just adding COM1 to .wine/dosdevices didn't do the trick).

Leonardo said...


only a question... can you program your uC in Linux using the Toolstick?

If yes, could you give me some instructions to use the Toolstick in Linux?

I'll really appreciate it.

Todd Coram said...

If I remember correctly... I did the initial programming of chip through Toolstick under Windows. SwiftX can then be utilized under Linux through the serial port (via Toolstick).

I've moved on since this post. I am doing Silabs 8051 under Linux but I am not using Toolstick. I use the EC2 serial adapter which works fine under Wine/Linux.

I spin my own boards these days, so I don't use the Toolstick anymore.

So, sorry, but I never got the Toolstick debug/programmer protocol working through Linux.