Topic: Xilinx tools for Spartan 6

Hi all-

I'm very happily writing this from my Novena, which I intend to use as an FPGA dev board among many other things. However, I've been looking around and can't find an appropriate piece of free (as in beer) Xilinx software which will target the Spartan 6. Does anyone know if such a thing exists? I know there are open source alternatives which claim to be able to generate bitstreams, but I'm wary of those currently, especially since I don't know much about Verilog or FPGAs in general yet.

The free Xilinx SDK I've found so far is ISE WebPack 14.7, which claims to be only able to target three small Artix and Zync chips. Any statements as to the validity of that claim would be really very appreciated!

Re: Xilinx tools for Spartan 6

The ISE WebPack software should be able to target the Spartan 6 on the Novena. There are some components of the ISE web pack that are limited to zynq chips as they are focused on programming the CPU that those chips have, and therefore don't support the Spartan 6 because they lack CPU cores.

Xilinx's website is pretty terrible in some situations, and when you click on links to download ISE webpack it will redirect you to the Vivado webpack. For example, if you go here: … bpack.html and then click on the "Download ISE Webpack" link, it brings you to the page for vivado, so make sure you click the "ISE Design Tools" tab on that page. I don't believe that vivado supports generating bitstreams for Spartan 6 as it is intended only for 7-series and beyond.

Note that these tools are x86 only so you can't really run them on the novena (at least not easily), and are pretty massive.

Re: Xilinx tools for Spartan 6

I found a blog post at hackaday with links to FPGA resources useful (specially links in some of the comments). Remember, this is just to get started (I did some PAL programming, back in those days, but this is different and more powerful, so I need to 'restart' with this again smile ))