Microcontroller "wearing"

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Hey there !

 

I'm wandering is there any potential harm for a microcontroller and possibly a programmer/debugger of "wearing out" like if i falsh a program very often ?

Last Edited: Tue. Aug 2, 2016 - 09:29 PM
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LightningWalrus wrote:
like if i falsh a program very often ?

What research have you done so far?

 

What does your datasheet say?  Something like this, perhaps?

That would be 100 times per day for 100 days using the same microcontroller each time.

 

Another consideration might be if you use "software breakpoints" and repeatedly single-step.  See e.g.

http://electronics.stackexchange...

http://avr-eclipse.sourceforge.n...

 

[edit] a bit of poking around might indicate that single-stepping is not done using software breakpoints.  So how many times could one set and clear softare breakpoints?  I'd think that patience would wear thin before the flash.

 

 

 

 

 

You can put lipstick on a pig, but it is still a pig.

I've never met a pig I didn't like, as long as you have some salt and pepper.

Last Edited: Tue. Aug 2, 2016 - 08:15 PM
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As the datasheet for any model that uses debugWire for debugging (28 pins or less) say:

 

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I normally wouldn't worry about Flash wearing out (even with a frequent debug cycle), but there are anecdotal reports of people finding they can no longer program their Arduino Due. However, that might be due to NVM bits rather than the main Flash. On some micros the NVM write cycles is rather low, but I've never heard of a problem with AVR.

Bob.

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Years ago a regular here (might have been "Brute" but I forget?) actually did a destructive test on an AVR by having it SPM itself repeatedly until one ore more bits would no longer hold state. I think it was found that it's far, far longer than the 10,000 cycles that Atmel quote but it did eventually show damage after some number of millions of re-writes. (or it could have been the EEPROM - again I forget).

 

Of course Atmel have to quote the "worst case" figure and their 10,000 or 100,000 may mean "in specific environmental conditions such as particularly high/low Vcc, at a particularly high/low temperature or at particularly high/low clock rates" (or other factors?).

 

I imagine the anecdotal test that was performed was probably on a 20..25C bench with a healthy 5.0V Vcc.

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100 reprograms a day for a hundred days: Now THAT's an edit-build-curse cycle!

The largest known prime number: 282589933-1

It's easy to stop breaking the 10th commandment! Break the 8th instead. 

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Ah but how about 100 single-steps in a device with a debugWire interface?

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clawson wrote:
(or it could have been the EEPROM ...
Via a PIC18

Dangerous Prototypes

Dangerous Prototypes

Flash Destroyer

http://dangerousprototypes.com/docs/Flash_Destroyer

... by writing and verifying a common EEPROM chip, rated for 1 million writes, until it burns out.

...

"Dare to be naïve." - Buckminster Fuller