Setting up Flowcode to work with your CHIPINO

In order to get your Flowcode to work with your CHIPINO you’ll need to make a couple of adjustments to the project options and Chip settings in Flowcode.  This is really easy to do and will only take a moment at the beginning of each project.  If you do what I do, you usually open an existing project and save it as a new one and your setup is already done.  But still, you need to do this the first time as well as know how to change the settings in the event you want a different chip in your CHIPINO.  Yes!  You can change out the chip that comes with it and exchange for another Microchip 28ld PDIP.   That’s one of the really cool things about working with both CHIPINO and Flowcode, everythings is pretty darn simple and flexible.

Your CHIPINO comes out of the box with a PIC16f886 on board and has a 16Mhz crystal.  We’ll need to tell Flowcode this information.  With your flow code open code to the top menu and select VIEW>PROJECT OPTIONS.  A box will appear that says Project Options in the upper left.  In this box you need to indicat what chip your using.  The CHIPINO comes with a PIC16F886 so slect the pull down button on the box that says Target and find the PIC16F886.  If you’re going to use a different chip then you can make that selection here.

Flowcode Project Options Menu

Right below that box is the Clock speed (Hz) box.  Select the pull down and select 16000000.  If you don’t see that option you can type it in.  Your completed Project options should like this…

Flowcode Project Options


Note that I don’t use the Watchdog Timer, but if you do, you might want to consider check the box that indicates Auto Clear Watchdog.

Next, we’ll head on over to the Chip setup.  On the top menu go to CHIP>CONFIGURE.  You may notice that it indicates the wrong chip!  Well, have no fear because we’re going to go ahead and select Switch to Expert Config Screen.  See that!  You’re an expert already!

Flowcode Chip Configuration Menu

On this screen you’ll see that the device you selected during the project options is the one it shows in the upper right corner.  So no worries here.  Flowcode knows what device you’re goint to use.  The other fields you’ll see are the different configurations options that are available for the particular PIC you’ve selected.  These could be different for you if you’re decided to use a different PIC than the one that came with your CHIPINO.

We’re going to make a couple changes here than what comes in the default configuration screen.  First off, we’re going to change the oscillator setting to reflect that we have a 16Mhz crystal on our board.  So, on the first line change the oscillator to HS.  Next, we’re going to set the Master Clear Enable to external (It may already be this way by default).  This is because this is available to us on the CHIPINO board through a reset button.  Next, you need to make sure the Low Voltage Programming box indicates Disabled.  Finally, we’re going to change the Brown Out Detect to BOD and SBOREN to disabled as well.   You can play a little with these settings and modify them depending on your project but this is what I use as default.

Flowcode Chip Configuration

Ok, with that done, you’re ready to rock with you’re CHIPINO!  uh, well maybe not.  You see, at this point I really need to know what you’re going to use to program the target device.  Will it be the PICKit 2, PICKit 3, ICD, or one of the many alternatives that are out there.  That’s another wonderful thing about the CHIPINO.  We’re not stuck like the Arduino folks are.  We have all sorts of alternatives out there to choose from.  Personally, I like to use the PICKit 2.  It’s small, rugged, and reliable and plays nice with Flocode.  I’m going to save that setup for a different post so that it can be referred to in other tutorials.   When it’s available I’ll place a link here.

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