Segger's SystemView: maximum insight with free real-time analysis tool

November 08, 2015 // By Graham Prophet
Segger (Hilden, Germany) has released SystemView, a free tool enabling the visual analysis of any embedded system. SystemView gives complete insight into the behaviour of a program, with minimal side effects on the observed embedded system.

SystemView offers cycle accurate tracing of interrupts and task start stop as well as task activation and API calls when an RTOS is used. It visualises and analyses CPU load by task and interrupts and scheduler. Test setups with LED and oscilloscope are a thing of the past.

Using Segger's J-Link debug probe with SystemView gives the ultimate advantage of streaming data transfer: Unlimited recording capacity and analysis in real-time, working as a live software oscilloscope. This is a great means to gain a deep understanding of the runtime behaviour of an application. Real-time analysis is particularly beneficial when developing and working in complex systems with multiple threads and events, and also in bare-metal systems without any RTOS.

In order to ensure real-time delivery of data and minimal intrusiveness on the system - that means less than 1 µsec overhead per call on a 200 MHz Cortex-M System - SystemView makes use of Segger's unique Real-Time Transfer (RTT) technology. RTT enables up to 2 Mbyte per second data transfer for continuous extraction of real-time data, requiring no hardware but a J-Link and the standard debug interface.

SystemView records the data retrieved from the target and visualises the result in different ways. Data recordings can also be saved for later documentation and analysis. Evaluating a system this way is extremely helpful in finding and eliminating problems or simply optimising the system. It is an essential part of quality management in any professional software development.

SystemView interacts seamlessly with Segger's RTOS embOS, which already includes the instrumentation to call the recording functions. SystemView does not require any OS at all.

Segger Microcontroller; where the tool can be downloaded.