Getting Xilinx Running

[Tips and commentary contributed by a student in CMPT 250 02-1.]

Here are some things to keep in mind regarding Xilinx:

Finally, keep in mind there is NO SUPPORT for Xilinx. I wanted to know one simple thing: Can I do waveforms (ie. simulations) and calling the main Xilinx office yielded me with no answers. While the gentleman on the phone was extremely nice, he emphasized that NO help whatsoever could be found at Xilinx because they weren't kept abreast of Student Editions. He instructed me on how to submit a question at a Xilinx university forum, which I did. The forum was full of people having the same problems I was having, and there was no one answering any questions, except me who answered one or two since I had jumped those hurdles in the hours prior.

I used the submit request link there, and my response was emailed back 2 days later, "sorry, there is no support for Xilinx student edition except by Prentice Hall."

At that point, I chuckled in disgust, as I had already installed and completed the assignment using Simili. Xilinx is not an easy-to-use piece of software by any means. It is an industrial-strength design tool, [That's a bit charitable; Synopsys is the industry standard. -Greg] not meant for the faint of heart. It is difficult to install, run (yes, this is a separate item because of the licensing headaches I had), and the VHDL editor is something a CMPT 212 student could write. Not that CMPT 212 students aren't great =) but that a Win32/MFC novice could outdo it easily.

Copyright © Greg Baker, last modified 2003-06-26.