µFlash FAQs Table of Contents
No, the µFlash Driver software will only work with target chips which have been preprogrammed with the µFlash bootstrap loader. If however you want to include µFlash technology in your own product we can supply 16F876 PICS with preprogrammed bootstrap loaders, or you can purchase a license to reproduce the loader yourself, please contact us for details.
Unlike most other products based on small microcontrollers the µFlash does not run interpreted code out of serial EEPROM, µFlash programs are native PIC object code which runs from the PICs internal FLASH memory at full speed. The µF876 is driven by a 20MHz crystal resulting in a peak execution speed of 5 MIPS (Million Instructions per Second).
The bootstrap loader uses 272 Words of the 8K Word program space from locations 0x1ef0 to 0x1fff.
While it is running the bootstrap loader uses 6 bytes (0x7a-0x7f) of RAM, however this RAM is available for use by the user program as soon as the loader is finished so effectively all the on chip RAM is available for the user program.
The PIC16F876 is currently rated for at least 1000 programming cycles. Microchip are working on increasing this number on their FLASH parts, improved versions of the chip will be used on the µF876 as they become available.
No, it is not possible to use the 16F876's self programming ability to program the configuration fuses.
The program and RAM memory of the µFlash is fixed by the specification of the PIC16F876 so this cannot be changed. The µF876 also has 8KBytes of data memory implemented using a 24C64 serial EEPROM, this chip can be replaced by pin equivalent versions of up to 32KBytes.
Yes, we are currently working on an application note to show just how to do this.
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