Arm DesignStart provides access to popular Arm IP to start a custom SoC Design or to explore and learn about custom SoC development. The Cortex-M0 and Cortex-M3 are currently available for instant access. There are numerous technical resources to learn about the Armv6-M and Armv7-M architectures and the AMBA 3 AHB protocol. DesignStart is also a wonderful way to learn about logic simulation and embedded software development.
One of the fun things about DesignStart is that anybody can learn and experiment with real hardware simulation and software development. EDA partners such as Cadence and Mentor are even offering access to tools which can be used with DesignStart. The DesignStart blog contains a number of articles and the forum has many helpful questions and answers.
For a practical example of how to ensure embedded software is fully exercised and tested, let’s create rudimentary instruction coverage and source line coverage for software running on the Cortex-M3 DesignStart eval package. Code coverage is a valuable tool to identify code which is untested or could be removed.
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