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PICKIt 3 connecting problem

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xiaofan
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2009/12/28 19:17:15 (permalink)
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PICKIt 3 connecting problem

It seems that I have problems with PICKit 3 to connect with my two PCs.

For my home desktop (Acer M1641, Nvidia chipset, Intel CPU), it boots up with RED status LED and I could not recover from the following error.
PICkit 3 detected
Connecting to PICkit 3...
(hang here).

For my work notebook, this PICKit 3 unit was working under MPLAB 8.30 (after throwing away the faulty original USB cable from Microchip) during my brief test when we got it. And it boots up without the RED status LED. So I was thinking it would be ok. Unfortunately I have to go through quite some steps to get it going.

1) First plug-in
PICkit 3 detected
Connecting to PICkit 3...

(hang here)

2) Second plug-in

Downloaded AP and FS
Connecting to PICkit 3...
And then it keeps connecting forever.

3) 3rd plug-in

Running self test...
Self test passed
Firmware Suite Version...... 01.23.07
Firmware type......................Midrange
Downloading bootloader...
Bootloader download complete

And then it keeps connecting forever.

4) 4th plug-in and choose to power the target and finally it is okay.
PICkit 3 detected
Connecting to PICkit 3...
Firmware Suite Version...... 01.25.10
Firmware type......................PIC18F
PICkit 3 Connected.
Device ID Revision = 00000016

I will try it later with my home desktop. Hopefully it would be okay after this.

BTW, PICkit 2 seems to work for both PCs.


  USB_Links and libusb
#1

28 Replies Related Threads

    xiaofan
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    RE: PICKIt 3 connecting problem 2009/12/28 19:59:09 (permalink)
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    I just tried a few provided lessons with the 44-pin demo board (PIC18F45K20) and it seems to work fine (for the work notebook, 3.5 year old Dell Latitude D610, Intel chipset).

      USB_Links and libusb
    #2
    xiaofan
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    RE: PICKIt 3 connecting problem 2009/12/29 04:10:20 (permalink)
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    ORIGINAL: xiaofan
    I will try it later with my home desktop. Hopefully it would be okay after this.


    Unfortunately not. It still boots up with the red status LED. This is a low end Acer M1641 desktop (NVidia integrated chipset NForce 620 with integrated Geforce 7050) and Windows Vista. BTW, it is recognized by Windows as an HID device without a problem. Strange.

      USB_Links and libusb
    #3
    xiaofan
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    RE: PICKIt 3 connecting problem 2009/12/29 04:16:05 (permalink)
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    Strange, it works (boots without red status led) when connecting to another notebook at home (Compaq notebook with Nforce 630M integrated with Geforce 7150M).

      USB_Links and libusb
    #4
    xiaofan
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    RE: PICKIt 3 connecting problem 2009/12/29 04:29:17 (permalink)
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    Adding an external USB hub seems to solve the issue. It is a powered hub but PICKit 3 works with or without the external supply for the USB hub. Therefore I think there is a potential compatibility problem for PICKit 3 with some computers (like mine).

      USB_Links and libusb
    #5
    miceduan
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    RE: PICKIt 3 connecting problem 2009/12/29 08:54:30 (permalink)
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    It probably is a long-lasting issue with the microchip USB stack software if it is not a silicon design issue.
    #6
    xiaofan
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    RE: PICKIt 3 connecting problem 2009/12/29 20:40:49 (permalink)
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    I am not so sure about this one. I tend to blame Nvidia on the USB issues. I have other device not working as well with Nvidia chipsets. Intel chipsets are better in terms of USB compatibility.

      USB_Links and libusb
    #7
    RLmonitor
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    RE: PICKIt 3 connecting problem 2010/01/04 06:24:53 (permalink)
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    I had the same problem with a Dell Inspiron. Microchip was very helpful in trying to resolve the problem. Another symptom, when I had the problem, was that the USB to PICkit3 connection was behaving differently on the side and back connectors of my laptop.

    Eventually, the problem disappeared - I think when I installed a PIC24 starter kit, installed to try and diagnose the problem.
    After this, I could not reproduce the problem, despite trying to fall back to earlier drivers, MPLAB and PICkit3 firmware.

    We ended up, none the wiser, but without the problem. Most curious !
    #8
    xiaofan
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    RE: PICKIt 3 connecting problem 2010/01/31 20:31:20 (permalink)
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    Yesterday I updated MPLAB to 8.43 and I have to gone through similar process again (close MPLAB 4 times to get it connected). During every step, it will hang with the "Connecting to PICkit 3..." prompt. This is with the home desktop. I've used the powered USB hub. Luckily it did work at the 4th running of MPLAB 8.43.

    PICkit 3 is kind of really broken in my opinion. And for quite some others in the following thread.
    http://www.microchip.com/forums/tm.aspx?m=468826

    Similar issues:
    http://www.microchip.com/forums/tm.aspx?m=471003
    post edited by xiaofan - 2010/01/31 20:48:26

      USB_Links and libusb
    #9
    xiaofan
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    RE: PICKIt 3 connecting problem 2010/01/31 20:45:12 (permalink)
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    And this dreadful "PK3Err0038 Failed to initialize PICkit 3" issue.
    http://www.microchip.com/forums/tm.aspx?m=474582
    http://www.microchip.com/forums/tm.aspx?m=474136

    I will tend to think that there are some serious firmware/software issues with the PICkit 3.

      USB_Links and libusb
    #10
    yerpa58
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    RE: PICKIt 3 connecting problem 2010/02/02 11:59:32 (permalink)
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    I have the same problem, but I found a work-around.  My setup uses the MPLAB 8.30 version that came on the CD with my PICkit3.  It always hangs when trying to connect to the PICkit3.  While it is hung up endlessly trying to connect, if I unplug the USB cable from the PICkit3 then plug it right back in, then MPLAB connects to the PICkit3 every time.  And it will work fine for the rest of the MPLAB session.

    I'm just afraid that I will eventually wear out my USB connector on PICkit3.
    #11
    BearlyRich
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    RE: PICKIt 3 connecting problem 2010/02/05 09:22:56 (permalink)
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    ORIGINAL: RLmonitor

    I had the same problem with a Dell Inspiron. Microchip was very helpful in trying to resolve the problem. Another symptom, when I had the problem, was that the USB to PICkit3 connection was behaving differently on the side and back connectors of my laptop.

    Eventually, the problem disappeared - I think when I installed a PIC24 starter kit, installed to try and diagnose the problem.
    After this, I could not reproduce the problem, despite trying to fall back to earlier drivers, MPLAB and PICkit3 firmware.

    We ended up, none the wiser, but without the problem. Most curious !


    Is there any chance you could share what help Microchip offered you? I am also running an Inspiron (6000) and can not get the pickit3 to connect. I see little hope in getting any kind of repsonse from Microchip. I have tried here, a support ticket, e-mailed devtools@ and even sent e-mails direct to Microchip aksing about rturning the pickit3. NO response top any of them.... If they did in fact help you, I'd sure love to hear what might help as it seems they don't want it returned...

    Thanks,

    Rich...

    #12
    xiaofan
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    RE: PICKIt 3 connecting problem 2010/02/05 17:02:42 (permalink)
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    Where are you located? Typically Microchip support is quite good, at least here in Singapore.

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    BearlyRich
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    RE: PICKIt 3 connecting problem 2010/02/05 21:11:47 (permalink)
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    I'm in the US, New York. I've tried their e-mail addresses and filled out a support ticket. I'm getting the feeling that they have no clue on how to get a pickit3 working either and are just staying quiet? [:-]

    #14
    miceduan
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    RE: PICKIt 3 connecting problem 2010/02/05 22:21:50 (permalink)
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    Let's give the designer(s) more time, especially current PK3 design using some ICD2 approach on high-level software architecture (downloading OS for different Chips). This makes the PK3 software development/test complicate. The major cons is: This design approach secures there will be bugs there no matter how hard the designer worked/tested.

    Plus the Microchip USB stack is still not so compatible with all PCs (after so many years of source code development and accumulation). Every once a while, people will find bugs, but nobody can really figure out what is wrong.

    Especially the well-known "losing OS  (flash memory) and configuration bit" issue, it may exist for another decades. (Even though it is not a highly repeatable issue, it does happens from time to time.)

    If you are designing some seriously USB projects/products, please consider other USB chip supplier. If cost is not an issue, please forget Microchip on USB related projects/products.
    (Consider Microchip cannot make a reliable USB product on its own PIC, how many of the end-user really think you can make better USB products than Microchip development team?)

    It took many years for PK2 to get rid of major bugs (there are still a few rare-happen issues which cannot be understood and cannot be fixed as of now, such as: USB recognizance issue for certain PC, losing OS issue, losing configuration bits issue.), and now the matured PK2 is not recommended anymore on Microchip web(no new chip will be officially supported in the future for both PK2 software and MPLAB).

    ICD2 is dropped too, to get new chip support you need get either PK3 or ICD3. PK3 is not matured, and ICD3 got bugs too. So, the solution we came out is: only using PICs supported by ICD2 or PK2. If higher performance chips needed, find matured alternatives from other vendors.

    A good MCU-programmer makes good "hands and legs" for engineers.
    post edited by miceduan - 2010/02/06 13:57:50
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    xiaofan
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    RE: PICKIt 3 connecting problem 2010/02/06 00:45:54 (permalink)
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    ORIGINAL: miceduan
    If you are designing some seriously USB projects/products, please consider other USB chip supplier. If cost is not an issue, please forget Microchip on USB related projects/products.
    (Consider Microchip cannot make a reliable USB product on its own PIC, how many of the end-user really think you can make better USB products than Microchip development team?)


    Actually you are overstating the bugs. Even if you use other USB chips, there will still be bugs. USB is very complicated, the problems can be with the host, the driver and the device.

    For instances, some USB device will have problem with certain host, the problem may not be with the device, but rather the host USB chipsets, the OS USB Stack and the driver.

    BTW, PICKit 2 is using a cut-down version of the USB 1.x stacks, this can be a problem. I am not so sure about PICkit 3.

      USB_Links and libusb
    #16
    xiaofan
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    RE: PICKIt 3 connecting problem 2010/02/06 00:48:15 (permalink)
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    ORIGINAL: miceduan
    ICD2 is dropped too, to get new chip support you need get either PK3 or ICD3. PK3 is not matured, and ICD3 got bugs too. So, the solution we came out is: only using PICs supported by ICD2 or PK2. If higher performance chips needed, find matured alternatives from other vendors.


    ICD 2 and PICkit 2 are really not good as a debugger for higher end PICs. ICD 3 and Real ICE are much better. Why stick to ICD 2 and PICKit 2 for those better PICs?

      USB_Links and libusb
    #17
    miceduan
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    RE: PICKIt 3 connecting problem 2010/02/06 14:09:30 (permalink)
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    Why stick to ICD 2 and PICKit 2 for those better PICs?

    For reliability purpose. I don't want to have any of my project delayed just because of a broken development tool.
    ICD2 works ok if only I stick with one chip, when no "OS downloading" many times a day, it works fine. Now I only use ICD2 for dsPIC chips.

    ICD 2 and PICkit 2 are really not good as a debugger for higher end PICs.

    I didn't use debugging with ICD2 or PK2. I do occasionally use ICE2000 if debugging is really needed. Unfortunately, ICE2K is dropped by Microchip too.
    What I normally do is: have a flow chart done first (50~60% of time spend), write the program (30%), read the programs for 10~15 times (10~20%), program the chip and verify functions on real board (1~2%). Code durability test will last weeks (but that's another story). This "no debug" approach works ok for me and a few of my team members. Since most of our software written in C, and we reuse most of the proofed-codes for PIC16, dsPICs and PIC18. Debugging is not a big deal if the code isn't totally re-written.

    To me, the best way to verify the code are full speed test on MCU which has identical settings as in the field. And it seems working fine in the past decades.
    #18
    miceduan
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    RE: PICKIt 3 connecting problem 2010/02/06 14:14:19 (permalink)
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    BTW, PICKit 2 is using a cut-down version of the USB 1.x stacks, this can be a problem.

    It may be true for the PK2 bootloader firmware. Actual PK2 application USB code may have implemened some of the firmware hot-fixes before Walter left (Not sure if it is fully done, but it is doable.). There are two PIC18F2550 USB-related code in PK2, one for bootloading, one for application.
    #19
    miceduan
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    RE: PICKIt 3 connecting problem 2010/02/06 14:31:36 (permalink)
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    Actually you are overstating the bugs.

    If I released a USB product based on Microchip PIC, I want to make sure there is no bug there. Or at least, I want to make sure: my clients won't lose the Flash (same as "OS" on PK2) or Configuration bits, either of which will make end-product malfunction.

    Otherwise, we shouldn't call ourselves "engineer" anymore, maybe just "high-school graduate".  The USB bug is hard to fix, but the "never-give-up" spirit should be there. We have been using Microchip PICs for decades, we have found a few bugs got fixed quickly, just don't understand why USB bugs stays here for decades, and it is still there.

    One of the major USA distributor dropped full line of Microchip products, the rumor I heard (from the distributor's representatives) is something related to bugs on Microchip USB products, and Microchip cannot provide any solution for their customer.

    Walter's "self-check+self-fix" patch (for lose OS and configuration bits issue) on PK2 is a smart solution. It does be able to reverse PK2 back to normal, but it still doesn't fix the issue (in a chance of 1/1000) or prevent the issue from happening again and again.
    #20
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