OpenBLT 1.12.0 release notes

The OpenBLT 1.12.0 release was made earlier today, after another half year of development work. 18 tickets were processed, which resulted in 45 commits. Feel free to download the new version of the OpenBLT bootloader and give it a try. This release is on track with the standard release cycle. This article describes in more detail what you can expect from the new OpenBLT release.

Roadmap overview of the OpenBLT version 1.12.0 release. It shows that the release is on time and that 18 tickets were processed.

“Shiny new things and some spring cleaning” describes this new OpenBLT stable release the best. A few highlights:

  • LibOpenBLT now features C# bindings, for those that plan on developing their own firmware update tool in C#.
  • A new port for the ST STM32L5 microcontroller family was developed, including Nucleo-L552ZE demo programs.
  • New demo programs for the popular Nucleo-F429ZI board were developed, replacing the Olimex STM32-E407 demo programs.
  • Demo programs for the Keil MDK IDE were added for all supported ST STM32 boards.
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Develop your own firmware update tool in C# with LibOpenBLT

Did you know that the OpenBLT bootloader includes a shared library, allowing you to quickly develop your own firmware update tool? This library is called LibOpenBLT. Recently, I developed LibOpenBLT bindings for the C# programming language. It’s basically a wrapper class for easily accessing the functionality inside LibOpenBLT. This article explains how to get started with the C# bindings for LibOpenBLT. Together we’ll build a firmware update tool in the C# programming language.

Screenshot of the C# console application in Visual Studio that uses the LibOpenBLT C# bindings.
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Install STM32CubeIDE on Linux as a Flatpak

This tutorial shows you how to install STM32CubeIDE as a Flatpak on Linux. STM32CubeIDE is an Eclipse based C/C++ integrated development environment for STM32 microcontrollers. Besides functionality for compiling, linking and debugging your STM32 firmware, STM32CubeIDE also integrates the CubeMX tool. CubeMX makes it quick and easy to configure your STM32 microcontroller. STMicroelectronics develops and maintains STM32CubeIDE and they decided to offer STM32CubeIDE to your at no cost.

Decorative image for the article about how to install STM32CubeIDE on Linux as a Flatpak.

STM32CubeIDE is truly cross-platform. You can use it on Windows 10, Linux and macOS. Personally, I find this feature the most appealing, since I prefer Linux for my development work. The ST website offers download links and installation information for Linux. What most users don’t realize is that you can also install the STM32CubeIDE as a Flatpak on your Linux system. For this reason I dedicated this article to the topic of installing STM32CubeIDE on Linux as a Flatpak.

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OpenBLT 1.11.0 release notes

The OpenBLT 1.11.0 release was made earlier today, after another half year of development work. 12 tickets were processed, which resulted in 39 commits. Feel free to download the new version of the OpenBLT bootloader and give it a try. This release is on track with the standard release cycle. This article describes in more detail what you can expect from the new OpenBLT release.

Picture of the OpenBLT version 1.11.0 roadmap. It shows that the release is on schedule and that 12 issue tickets were resolved.

“All about ST and the CubeIDE” describes this new OpenBLT stable release the best. With ever more embedded developers switching to the STM32CubeIDE development environment, it was about time that OpenBLT followed suit. This new OpenBLT release features full support of STM32CubeIDE for all the included STM32 demo programs. On top of that, the OpenBLT bootloader now support the STM32H7 microcontroller family.

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Import TrueSTUDIO projects into STM32CubeIDE

A future release of the OpenBLT bootloader will feature full support of the relatively new STM32CubeIDE. For those that would like to use STM32CubeIDE sooner, there is the TrueSTUDIO project import feature. So you can take the already existing OpenBLT demo programs for TrueSTUDIO and import them in STM32CubeIDE. The goal of this article is to show you step-by-step how to import OpenBLT demo programs, which are configured for TrueSTUDIO, into STM32CubeIDE.

Screenshot of the STM32CubeIDE about dialog to show the version of the IDE that is used for importing the TrueSTUDIOprojects.
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OpenBLT 1.10.0 release notes

The OpenBLT 1.10.0 release was made earlier today, after another half year of development work. 20 tickets were processed, which resulted in 57 commits. Feel free to download the new version of the OpenBLT bootloader and give it a try. This release is on track with the standard release cycle. This article describes in more detail what you can expect from the new OpenBLT release.

Image that shows the progress of the OpenBLT 1.10.0 release, based on the tickets that were worked on.
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CANopen bootloader based on OpenBLT

CANopen is a popular higher-layer protocol for a CAN based embedded distributed network. It provides a ready-to-use and proven blueprint for application data exchange between multiple nodes on a CAN network. Furthermore, CANopen includes network management functionality and pretty much everything else you need to get a CAN system up-and-running. Unfortunately, the CANopen protocol specification does not specify how a CANopen bootloader should behave. This article explains how you can make use of the OpenBLT bootloader in your CANopen network and rely on it for making firmware updates on your CAN nodes.

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NXP S32K support in the OpenBLT bootloader

Over the past year requests started to trickle in for being able to run the OpenBLT bootloader on S32K11 and S32K14 microcontrollers. As a reaction to these requests, support for the entire NXP S32K microcontroller range was developed in the OpenBLT bootloader. The goal of this article is to describe in more detail how this support was realized and to point you in the right direction in case you want to start evaluating this bootloader solution for your NXP S32K based product. It is targeted towards those who are involved with developing hardware based on a NXP S32K microcontroller and looking for a flexible, reliable and readily available solution for performing firmware updates.

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Adjusting OpenBLT for your microcontroller system

The OpenBLT bootloader ships with multiple demo programs for readily available and low cost microcontroller boards. These are great for familiarizing yourself with and evaluating the OpenBLT bootloader. But how do you get the OpenBLT bootloader running on your own microcontroller system? The goal of this article is to answer exactly this question.

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Memory requirements of the OpenBLT add-on modules

When deciding on a bootloader solution, it is important to know how much of your microcontroller’s flash memory needs to be reserved for the bootloader. For the basic OpenBLT bootloader this is fairly easy to determine, as there are many demo programs available. You can simply rebuild a demo bootloader that is configured for a similar microcontroller. To get the bootloader size as small as possible, you could even follow the steps outlined in this blog article.

But what if you want to make use of one of the OpenBLT bootloader add-on modules that Feaser offers? These modules are not open source and only sold in combination with an OpenBLT commercial license. This article aims to answer exactly this question.

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