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Help with DE0 Nano and EPCS Programming

Honored Contributor II

Hi All, 


I know this has come up before because I've looked through many posts in the forum regarding this topic. I am currently working on a nios II based design using the DE0-Nano board and the on board 32Mb sdram. I am at the point where I want to load the hardware design and software onto the EPCS so the board can operate in a standalone situation. I can easily get the hardware design loaded into the flash but I have failed at every attempt to load the software. There's a lot of outdated documentation and conflicting forum posts about this process so I was hoping someone could lend me some guidance. My system is as follows: 


Quartus v15.0 


Qsys system: 


50Mhz system Clock 


System and SDRAM Clocks for DE-Series boards 




nios2_gen2_0: niosII/e During Development the reset and exception vectors have been set to the SDRAM 


nios_custom_instruction: floating point custom instruction 


performance counter 


SDRAM Controller 




ADC controller 


i2c controller 






I am using a lot of HAL libraries and am not using the small c option. I mention this because the method of programming a bootable system in the de0 nano literature (initializing on-chip memory with program code) is not an option due to the size of my code.  


If I understand correctly, what I need to do is convert my .sof and.elf files and then concatenate them together and load them to the flash chip. I then need to point the reset vector to the starting address of the code in flash. When I look in qsys I have the following options: 


Legacy EPCS/EPCQx1 Flash Controller 


Altera Serial Flash Controller : this one gives me the option to choose my specific device EPCS64. 


Which should I use what other hardware is required? I have read in various posts that you need to use a tristate conduit or a pll for a slower clock, but then other posts don't mention any of this. Again, if anyone could provide some guidance I would greatly appreciate it. Thanks.
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2 Replies
Honored Contributor II

Hi Valueduser 


I have been trying to do the same thing with you using the same board. 

The problem is that there are various information on the internet. I have tried all of them but still fail to make the software to be bootable. 

I am very confuse now. Have you already done?
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Honored Contributor II

I have finally solved the problem. By changing to Windows 7 and Qusrtus 13.1. Thanks Altera!!!

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