Tasking's ARM Cortex-M embedded development tools run on Mac

October 03, 2014 // By Graham Prophet
Altium has released the Tasking VX-toolset for ARM Cortex-M for Apple Mac computers running OS X.

Traditionally, embedded software development tools have been available exclusively for the Windows operating system and Altium has a long history in providing its Tasking cross compilers and debuggers for running on Windows, including its VX-toolset for ARM Cortex-M. With ARM Cortex-M based microcontrollers becoming popular in broad market consumer applications, especially with wearable electronics and electronic systems that can be controlled from the iPhone, it is apparent that embedded a number of software engineers want to use the Mac as their development platform.

To serve this development community, Altium has developed a native OS X port of release v5.1r1 of its Tasking VX-toolset for ARM Cortex-M, bringing its C compiler suite with Eclipse based IDE and debugger to Mac computers.

Previously, embedded-application developers that preferred Mac computers relied on virtual machines hosting the Windows operating system within OS X in order to run an embedded cross compiler. This led to an inefficient workflow and a variety of challenges, including problems connecting a debug probe reliably to the debugger running inside the virtual machine. The native port to OS X of the Tasking compiler breaks down the barriers for developing embedded applications for Mac users, while allowing them to work efficiently in their platform of choice. Cooperation with STMicroelectronics made it possible to offer in-circuit debug capabilities with the Eclipse integrated Tasking debugger, using the USB port on the Mac to connect to the ST-LINK/V2 debug probe.

Tasking's Viper compiler technology used in the ARM compiler ensures platform compatibility for developers on OS X and their colleagues using Windows, allowing for easy migration and collaboration. The Viper technology is known to generate efficient and robust code for automotive applications such as power train, body control, chassis control and safety critical applications, benefiting developments for broad market and industrial applications.

The Tasking VX-toolset for ARM Cortex-M for Mac OS X is an Eclipse based IDE with integrated compiler and debugger, with support