top of page

Group

Public·15 members
James Lewis
James Lewis

How to Optimize Your Code with MPLAB XC8 Compiler Pro Options



What is XC8 Compiler and Why You Need a Pro Key License?




If you are a developer of embedded systems using PIC microcontrollers, you might have heard of XC8 compiler. It is a cross-platform C compiler that supports all 8-bit PIC devices, from the smallest PIC10F to the most advanced PIC18F. It is designed to be easy to use, yet powerful and flexible enough to meet your specific needs.




xc8 compiler pro key license



In this article, we will explain what XC8 compiler is, what are its features and benefits, and why you need a pro key license to unlock its full potential. We will also show you how to install and license XC8 compiler, how to use it in MPLAB X IDE, and how to optimize your code with its pro features. By the end of this article, you will have a clear understanding of how XC8 compiler can help you create high-quality and efficient applications for your PIC microcontrollers.


Introduction




What is XC8 compiler and what are its features?




XC8 compiler is a C compiler that supports all 8-bit PIC microcontrollers. It is part of the MPLAB X Integrated Development Environment (IDE), which is a comprehensive software suite for developing embedded applications using Microchip products. XC8 compiler can also be used as a standalone tool or integrated with other IDEs.


XC8 compiler has many features that make it a powerful and versatile tool for PIC development. Some of these features are:


  • Support for all 8-bit PIC devices, including PIC10F, PIC12F, PIC16F, PIC18F, PIC18F-K, PIC18F-J, PIC18-LF, PIC18-HF, Enhanced Mid-range Core (EMC), Baseline Core (BC), Mid-range Core (MC), Extended Mid-range Core (XMC), Enhanced Core (EC), and Enhanced Core with Peripheral Select (ECP).



  • Support for C standards such as ANSI C89/C90, ISO C99/C11, Embedded C (EC), Embedded C++ (EC++), and GNU extensions.



  • Support for Microchip-specific extensions such as inline assembly, device configuration bits, interrupt service routines (ISRs), memory access qualifiers, bit fields, bit variables, bit arrays, packed structures, fixed-point arithmetic, fractional types, circular buffers, etc.



  • Support for various data types such as char, short, int, long, long long, float, double, long double, _Bool, _Complex, _Imaginary, etc.



  • Support for various data models such as small (default), medium (extended), large (banked), huge (far), etc.



  • Support for various memory models such as default (generic pointers), near (near pointers), far (far pointers), etc.



What are the benefits of using XC8 compiler for PIC microcontrollers?




Using XC8 compiler for PIC microcontrollers has many benefits that can improve your productivity and performance. Some of these benefits are:


  • Compatibility: XC8 compiler is compatible with all 8-bit PIC devices, so you can use the same compiler for different projects and platforms. You can also easily migrate your code from one device to another, or from one IDE to another, without much hassle.



  • Flexibility: XC8 compiler gives you the flexibility to choose the best data type, data model, memory model, and memory space for your application. You can also customize the compiler options and settings to suit your preferences and requirements.



  • Efficiency: XC8 compiler produces efficient and compact code that can fit into the limited memory and resources of PIC microcontrollers. You can also use the code optimization features to reduce the code size and improve the execution speed.



  • Reliability: XC8 compiler generates reliable and error-free code that conforms to the C standards and Microchip specifications. You can also use the code analysis and profiling tools to detect and fix any bugs or issues in your code.



  • Support: XC8 compiler is supported by Microchip, the leading manufacturer of PIC microcontrollers. You can access the online documentation, tutorials, examples, forums, and technical support from Microchip to help you with your development process.



What are the differences between free and pro versions of XC8 compiler?




XC8 compiler has two versions: free and pro. The free version is available for download from Microchip website without any cost or registration. The pro version requires a pro key license that you can purchase from Microchip or its authorized distributors.


The main difference between the free and pro versions of XC8 compiler is the level of code optimization. The free version has a limited code optimization level (O1), which only performs basic optimizations such as constant folding, dead code elimination, common subexpression elimination, etc. The pro version has four code optimization levels (O1, O2, O3, O4), which perform advanced optimizations such as loop unrolling, function inlining, instruction scheduling, register allocation, etc.


The pro version also has some additional features that are not available in the free version. These features include:


  • High Priority Access (HPA) subscription: This is a service that gives you priority access to technical support, software updates, bug fixes, and new features from Microchip.



  • Code analysis tools: These are tools that help you analyze your code for potential errors, warnings, violations, inefficiencies, etc. They include CodeGuard Security Analyzer (CGSA), Code Coverage Analyzer (CCA), Data Flow Analyzer (DFA), etc.



  • Code profiling tools: These are tools that help you measure and improve the performance of your code. They include MPLAB REAL ICE In-Circuit Emulator (ICE), MPLAB ICD 4 In-Circuit Debugger (ICD), MPLAB PICkit 4 In-Circuit Debugger/Programmer (PICkit), etc.



  • Code generation features: These are features that help you generate code automatically or semi-automatically for certain tasks or functions. They include Peripheral Library Generator (PLIB), Code Configurator (MCC), Code Snippets Generator (CSG), etc.



  • Code library features: These are features that help you access and use various libraries of pre-written code for common or complex functions. They include Standard C Library (SCL), Math Library (MLIB), Floating Point Library (FLIB), DSP Library (DSPLIB), etc.



How to Install and License XC8 Compiler




How to download and install XC8 compiler on your workstation or network




To download and install XC8 compiler on your workstation or network, you need to follow these steps:


  • Go to Microchip website and navigate to Products > Compilers > MPLAB XC Compilers > MPLAB XC8 Compiler.



  • Select the Download tab and choose the appropriate installer for your operating system (Windows, Linux, or Mac OS X).



  • Run the installer and follow the instructions on the screen. You can choose to install XC8 compiler as a standalone tool or as a plugin for MPLAB X IDE or other IDEs.



compiler and the license file.


  • After the installation is complete, you can launch XC8 compiler from the Start menu (Windows), the Applications folder (Mac OS X), or the command line (Linux).



How to activate your pro key license online or offline




To activate your pro key license online or offline, you need to follow these steps:


  • Go to Microchip website and navigate to My Account > My Software Licenses.



  • Select the MPLAB XC8 Compiler tab and click on the Activate button next to your pro key license.



  • If you have an internet connection, you can activate your pro key license online by entering your email address and password. You will receive a confirmation message and an activation code.



  • If you do not have an internet connection, you can activate your pro key license offline by entering your host ID and generating a request code. You will need to copy the request code and paste it into another device that has an internet connection. You will then receive an activation code that you need to copy and paste back into your original device.



  • Enter the activation code into XC8 compiler and click on the Activate button. You will see a message that your pro key license has been activated successfully.



How to renew or apply your high priority access (HPA) subscription




To renew or apply your high priority access (HPA) subscription, you need to follow these steps:


  • Go to Microchip website and navigate to My Account > My Software Licenses.



  • Select the MPLAB XC8 Compiler tab and click on the Renew button next to your pro key license.



  • You will see a list of available HPA subscription options, such as 1 year, 2 years, 3 years, etc. Choose the option that suits your needs and click on the Buy Now button.



  • You will be redirected to a secure payment page where you can enter your credit card details and complete the transaction.



  • You will receive a confirmation email and a receipt for your purchase. Your HPA subscription will be updated automatically and you will be able to access the latest software updates, bug fixes, and new features from Microchip.



How to Use XC8 Compiler in MPLAB X IDE




How to create a new project with XC8 compiler in MPLAB X IDE




To create a new project with XC8 compiler in MPLAB X IDE, you need to follow these steps:


  • Launch MPLAB X IDE from the Start menu (Windows), the Applications folder (Mac OS X), or the command line (Linux).



  • Select File > New Project from the menu bar or click on the New Project icon on the toolbar.



  • In the New Project wizard, select Microchip Embedded > Standalone Project as the project type and click on Next.



  • Select your PIC device from the list of available devices and click on Next.



  • Select MPLAB XC8 C Compiler as the compiler toolchain and click on Next.



  • Select your hardware tool from the list of available tools and click on Next. If you do not have a hardware tool connected, you can select Simulator as the tool.



  • Enter a name and a location for your project and click on Finish. Your project will be created and opened in MPLAB X IDE.



How to configure the compiler options and settings




To configure the compiler options and settings, you need to follow these steps:


  • Select Project > Properties from the menu bar or right-click on your project name in the Projects window and select Properties.



  • In the Project Properties dialog, select Conf: [default] > XC8 Global Options from the Categories tree.



You will see a list of compiler options and settings that you can modify according to your needs. Some of these options are:


  • Optimization level: This option allows you to choose the level of code optimization that XC8 compiler will perform. You can choose from O1 (free version), O2, O3, or O4 (pro version).



  • Data model: This option allows you to choose the data model that XC8 compiler will use for your application. You can choose from small (default), medium (extended), large (banked), or huge (far).



(generic pointers), near (near pointers), or far (far pointers).


  • Memory space: This option allows you to choose the memory space that XC8 compiler will use for your application. You can choose from data memory (RAM), program memory (ROM/Flash), EEPROM memory (EEPROM/Flash), or configuration memory (configuration bits).



  • Other options: These are other options that you can enable or disable for your application, such as warnings, messages, debug information, linker script, etc.



  • After you have modified the compiler options and settings, click on OK to save the changes and close the dialog.



How to build, debug, and program your PIC microcontroller with XC8 compiler




To build, debug, and program your PIC microcontroller with XC8 compiler, you need to follow these steps:


  • Select Project > Build Project from the menu bar or click on the Build Project icon on the toolbar. This will compile your source code and generate an output file (.hex) that can be loaded into your PIC microcontroller.



  • Select Debug > Debug Project from the menu bar or click on the Debug Project icon on the toolbar. This will launch the debugger and connect it to your hardware tool or simulator.



  • In the debugger window, you can use various commands and tools to control and monitor the execution of your application. You can set breakpoints, watch variables, view registers, modify memory, etc.



  • To program your PIC microcontroller with the output file (.hex), you can select Run > Program Device from the menu bar or click on the Program Device icon on the toolbar. This will load the output file into your PIC microcontroller and verify it.



  • To exit the debugger and stop the execution of your application, you can select Debug > Finish Debugger Session from the menu bar or click on the Finish Debugger Session icon on the toolbar.



How to Optimize Your Code with XC8 Compiler Pro Features




How to use the code optimization levels and options




To use the code optimization levels and options, you need to follow these steps:


  • Select Project > Properties from the menu bar or right-click on your project name in the Projects window and select Properties.



  • In the Project Properties dialog, select Conf: [default] > XC8 Global Options from the Categories tree.



  • In the Optimization level drop-down list, choose one of the four levels: O1 (free version), O2, O3, or O4 (pro version). The higher the level, the more aggressive the optimization.



In the Optimization options section, check or uncheck the options that you want to enable or disable for your application. Some of these options are:


  • Optimize for speed: This option enables optimizations that improve the execution speed of your application.



  • Optimize for size: This option enables optimizations that reduce the code size of your application.



  • Optimize global variables: This option enables optimizations that reduce the number and size of global variables in your application.



the number and size of function calls in your application.


  • Optimize loops: This option enables optimizations that improve the performance of loops in your application.



  • Optimize inline functions: This option enables optimizations that replace function calls with inline code in your application.



  • Optimize constant literals: This option enables optimizations that reduce the number and size of constant literals in your application.



  • Optimize arithmetic operations: This option enables optimizations that simplify or replace arithmetic operations in your application.



  • After you have modified the optimization level and options, click on OK to save the changes and close the dialog.



How to use the code analysis and profiling tools




To use the code analysis and profiling tools, you need to follow these steps:


  • Select Project > Properties from the menu bar or right-click on your project name in the Projects window and select Properties.



  • In the Project Properties dialog, select Conf: [default] > XC8 Compiler > Code Analysis from the Categories tree.



In the Code Analysis section, check or uncheck the tools that you want to enable or disable for your application. Some of these tools are:


  • CodeGuard Security Analyzer (CGSA): This tool analyzes your code for potential security vulnerabilities, such as buffer overflows, format string attacks, integer overflows, etc. It generates a report with the severity, location, and description of each vulnerability.



  • Code Coverage Analyzer (CCA): This tool measures how much of your code is executed during a debugging session. It generates a report with the percentage, line number, and color code of each source code statement.



  • Data Flow Analyzer (DFA): This tool tracks how data flows through your code during a debugging session. It generates a report with the source, destination, and value of each data element.



  • After you have modified the code analysis tools, click on OK to save the changes and close the dialog.



  • To run the code analysis tools, you need to build and debug your project as usual. The reports will be generated and displayed in the Output window or in separate windows.



How to use the code generation and library features




To use the code generation and library features, you need to follow these steps:


  • Select Tools > Embedded > Peripheral Library Generator (PLIB) from the menu bar or click on the Peripheral Library Generator icon on the toolbar. This will launch the PLIB wizard that helps you generate code for using various peripherals of your PIC device, such as timers, UARTs, ADCs, etc.



  • Select Tools > Embedded > MPLAB Code Configurator (MCC) from the menu bar or click on the MPLAB Code Configurator icon on the toolbar. This will launch the MCC wizard that helps you generate code for configuring various aspects of your PIC device, such as clock sources, power modes, pin assignments, etc.



  • Select Tools > Embedded > Code Snippets Generator (CSG) from the menu bar or click on the Code Snippets Generator icon on the toolbar. This will launch the CSG wizard that helps you generate code snippets for common or complex tasks or functions, such as LCD display, keypad input, PWM output, etc.



  • Select Tools > Embedded > Library Manager from the menu bar or click on the Library Manager icon on the toolbar. This will launch the Library Manager that helps you access and use various libraries of pre-written code for common or complex functions, such as Standard C Library (SCL), Math Library (MLIB), Floating Point Library (FLIB), DSP Library (DSPLIB), etc.



  • Follow the instructions on the screen to select, configure, and generate the code or library that you want to use in your application.



  • The generated code or library will be added to your project and you can use it in your source code as usual.



Conclusion




In this article, we have explained what XC8 compiler is, what are its features and benefits, and why you need a pro key license to unlock its full potential. We have also shown you how to install and license XC8 compiler, how to use it in MPLAB X IDE, and how to optimize your code with its pro features. By following this article, you will be able to create high-quality and efficient applications for your PIC microcontrollers using XC8 compiler.


If you are interested in purchasing or trying out XC8 compiler pro key license, you can visit Microchip website and find out more information and details. You can also download a free trial version of XC8 compiler and test its features and performance for yourself. XC8 compiler is a powerful and versatile tool that can help you develop embedded systems using PIC microcontrollers with ease and confidence.


FAQs




What is the price of XC8 compiler pro key license?




The price of XC8 compiler pro key license depends on the duration of the license and the number of seats. The license duration can be 1 year, 2 years, 3 years, or perpetual. The number of seats can be 1 seat, 5 seats, 10 seats, or unlimited. The price ranges from $495 to $2995 per seat per year. You can check the exact price and discounts on Microchip website.


How can I upgrade from free to pro version of XC8 compiler?




To upgrade from free to pro version of XC8 compiler, you need to purchase a pro key license from Microchip or its authorized distributors. You will receive a license file (.lic) that you need to activate online or offline u


About

Welcome to the group! You can connect with other members, ge...

Members

Group Page: Groups_SingleGroup
bottom of page