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Honored Contributor I

PLDT-2 Trainer--

This subject is probably discussed in many threads and forums but I can't figure out how to search all of them to find out -- so here goes. 

I am attending a community college taking a course in digital fundamentals and they have these boards from RSR Electronics to help learn about programmable logic device. 

The board is a model 01PLDT-2 with an Altera MAX EPM7128SLC84 CPLD. 

I am having quite a problem trying to decide which version of Altera's software I should use on which computer under which OS. 

I am under the impression I need an "actual real parallel printer port" on the PC as opposed to making use of some "converter" cable like those made by Trip Lite (and others) which usually connect to a USB port on the PC and then provide a DB-25S connector on the other end to connect to a printer. 

The PLDT-2 has a DB-25S connector on board and the product comes with a cable to connect it to the printer port of the PC. 


I think this product is from around 2002 or 2003, so it isn't recent and at that time it was common to find people using Win98, Win2000, WinXP and others. 


What I'd like to do is use some free version of Altera's software and run it on one of my PC's under whatever Windows version is best (I have them all, starting from Windows 3). 


What I can't seem to figure out is what software do I need to allow me to transfer the compiled logic design from the PC to the board via the parallel port. 


I think I need a driver type program of something like that but what is it and where do I get it? 


I've heard of "bblpt.exe" but it doesn't seem to come with some of the versions of the software I've been downloading to try. 


I'm well aware the stuff I'm getting into here is all old stuff, but community colleges don't have much money and learning this "old stuff" is the fundamentals and therefore of value. 


I'm wondering if there is anyone who uses this forum who actually has used this board and with what Altera software and what did they use for programming transfer software? 

Thank you; 

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Honored Contributor I

A very credible challenge - I commend you... 


I don't know the answer. However, I hope I can point you in the right direction. 


Goto the Altera's "download center (". Towards the bottom of the page are all the old versions of Quartus you can still download - right back to Version 3.0. From memory, this release is earlier than you're looking for. 


Unfortunately, selecting each of the earlier releases doesn't automatically identify which devices it supports. However, under each version you can read the release notes. These do state which devices and operating system are supported. 


For that board you're also looking for a version of Quartus that supports the ByteBlaster II programming cable. Refer to the "byteblaster ii download cable user guide (". The PLDT-2 board, almost certainly (I can't find a schematic), replicates the circuitry in the ByteBlaster II cable allowing you to connect to it using a standard parallel port cable. 


Use the newest release of Quartus that supports your device and the ByteBlaster II cable. 


Good luck!