Write Temporary FPGA Image to USRP RIO

Updated Dec 6, 2019

Reported In

Hardware

  • USRP-2940
  • USRP-2942
  • USRP-2943
  • USRP-2944
  • USRP-2945
  • USRP-2950
  • USRP-2952
  • USRP-2953
  • USRP-2954
  • USRP-2955

Other

Ettus USRP X310

Issue Details

I want to write an FPGA image to my USRP RIO device. I don't know how can I do it.

Solution

 The FPGA image for the USRP devices are stored in the device internal memory. You can program the device over the network to update or change the FPGA image bu using NI-USRP Configuration Utility, NI MAX and Digilent Adept. There are two kinds of USRP RIO which is distinguished by which environment you are using it, NI USRP RIO and Ettus USRP X310. 
 
  •  Using NI-USRP Configuration Utility

  1.  Ensure the PC has installed LabVIEW and NI-USRP driver.
  2. Connect USRP RIO's eth0 port to PC through Ethernet cable. The left LED of eth0 will turn green
  3. Open Internet and Sharing Center of PC and change the IPv4 address to be 192.168.10.1.
  4. Select Start»All Programs»National Instruments»NI-USRP»NI-USRP Configuration Utilityto open the NI-USRP Configuration Utility.
  5. Select the N2xx/NI-292x Image Updater tab. The utility should automatically populate the Firmware Image and FPGA Image fields with the paths to the default firmware and FPGA image files.
 
 
  1. Select the device to update from the device list, and verify that you selected the correct device. Then click the Browse button next to the file you want to change, and navigate to the file you want to use. The image files are sored in C:\Program Files (x86)\National Instruments\NI-USRP\images
  2. Verify that the version of the FPGA image file matches the board revision for the device you are updating. The file with file name of .bit is the FPGA image for open source environment while the file with .lvbit is for National Instruments environment.
 
 
  1. To update the device, click the WRITE IMAGES button. A confirmation  and a warning dialog box display. Confirm your selections, and click OK to continue.
 
 
  1. A progress bar indicates the status of the update. During this time, the right LED of eth0 will turn amber and the Utility software will appear "no response". Just ignore it and keep waiting. Note: This process is very important and please keep the device powered on and stable connection with PC. 
  2. When the update completes, a dialog box prompts you to reset the device. A device reset applies the new images to the device. Click OK to reset the device.
 
 
  1. Close the utility and reboot the USRP device.
  • Using NI MAX

  1. Ensure the host PC has been already installed LabVIEW and NI-USRP driver.
  2. Connect USRP device to the host computer via MXIe x4 as this article said.
  3. Open NI MAX (Mesurement & Automation Explorer) and find USRP RIO device through My System >> Device and Interface.
  4. Click the Update Firmware button and select the file you want to use. The image files are sored in C:\Program Files (x86)\National Instruments\NI-USRP\images. Note: The NI MAX software will automatically filter the .bit file, so this method is only used for those who want to use USRP RIO under LabVIEW environment. 
  • Using Digilent Adept

  1. This is a method only for thos who want to use USRP RIO under open source environment.
  2. To know the full process of this method, you can refer to this article.