Friday, March 28, 2008

Microprocessor Programming

I have been interested in Microprocessor programming ever since I had it in my curriculum back in 2005 for my B.Sc. Computer Science final year. We had the Intel 8085 in our syllabus and coding on it was real fun. In fact it was a revelation for me to know how exactly were the instructions executed by a processor. It gave me an in depth view of the internal hardware level working of a computer.

Recently I am getting a lot of questions about the simulators and help files for microprocessor programming, not only for 8085, but also for Z80, 68K and 8086. So here is a collection of stuff that I have collected and book-marked over the years on this topic.

Intel 8085

Most of the coding that I did for Intel 8085 was either on paper or on the simulator. The simulator which I used was GNUSim8085. It was an excellent simulator and allowed me to debug and set breakpoints in my code and the ability to trace the program while checking the register values and the memory contents after each instruction execution. I have uploaded for all of you, the program along with a very helpful guide that I downloaded from the Internet. Download GNUSim8085.

The two books that I followed for 8085 were authored by B.Ram and Gaonkar. The Gaonkar book is very popular with students across India and the first book by B.Ram has got some very good codes written. I also recommend the original data sheet of 8085 which is of great help.

Motorola 68000

Recently one of my fellow MSPs asked for help on microprocessor programming on the legendary Motorola 68000, also fondly known as the 68K. I never did any real programming on this one. I have never even seen a kit also. The coding that I did was all on a simulator that I found on the Internet. You can have a look at the 68000 simulator homepage and download the simulator for Windows platform from there.

I also happened to stumble upon this great book called Motorola M68000 Family Programmer’s Reference Manual from Motorola which was of great help in understanding the architecture of 68K. It was a great help to programming too. In fact it was due to this book that I was actually able to help out one of my friends about 68K.

Lastly ...

I guess the above information was useful to you. I wrote this post keeping in mind all the things that I would have liked to know and download when I had started coding with these microprocessors. If you feel like saying a Thank You or need some additional information, post a comment here.

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