PEmicro FAQ ID 230

Why do I see the Power Dialog warning when trying to debug or flash program my chip in PROG, ICD, UNIT, or 3rd party software like Codewarrior? How can I prevent this from happening?

The affected architectures are HCS08, RS08, and CFV1. Most customers that face this problem are using Multilink [FX] or USB-ML-12 (discontinued) hardware interfaces on a blank HCS08 target. Also users that have the Multilink FX, Cyclone [LC/FX] Universal, or Cyclone PRO (discontinued) may also see this dialog if they disabled the option to provide power to target.

The reason why you are getting the power dialog is because the PEmicro interface is facing difficulty entering debug mode. Typically the issue is due to factors in the following order:

1) You are trying to connect to a chip with no code written in flash, and as the chip boots up it gets stuck in a reset state forever. Typically this happens to users trying to program a fresh chip from the factory, or the chip has been recently erased and the chip was power toggled.

2) The chip has no dedicated RESET line so the PEmicro interface cannot prevent the chip from entering the reset state. Some chips have the RESET line shared with a GPIO pin and out of reset the GPIO may have priority. If the chip did have a dedicated RESET line, the PEmicro interface would be able to enter debug mode by using a software RESET while toggling the BKGD line.

3) Your PEmicro hardware interface does not have the ability, or is set to not have the ability, to provide power to your target. If the PEmicro interface was able to power cycle the chip, it would attempt to hold BKGD line low and use a hard RESET by power cycling the chip into power-on-reset (POR). This prevents the chip from entering the reset state. Users that have the multilink universal FX, cyclone pro, cyclone universal, or cyclone universal FX should enable the option to provide power to target to prevent this problem from happening.

When the power dialog shows up, the PEmicro interface is holding down the BKGD line and wants the user to manually power cycle the board which should prevent the chip to boot into the reset state. Even if all the factors are taken care of, the user may still see the power dialog if the first attempt to enter debug mode failed. This could be due to problems in hardware, software, or firmware. Please check your connections and make sure your software and firmware supports the chip you are trying to debug.

The power dialog can slow down your production line or the hassle to manually power cycle the board may be something you want to avoid. The first two factors is something that cannot be prevented. Fresh chips from the factory will always have this issue. The third factor could be avoided if you had the right hardware and set it up to provide power to target. Especially for users with Multilinks trying to flash program on a production line, it would be ideal to switch to a Cyclone hardware interface to not only get around this issue but to also remove the need of a computer due to the Cyclone's stand-alone programming ability. Read more about the Cyclone [LC/FX] Universal here:

Related downloads to this FAQ

User Manual for Cyclone FX Programmers
User manual for Cyclone FX ARM and Cyclone FX Universal. PDF v.3.4, updated May 2024.
User Manual for Cyclone LC Programmers
User manual for Cyclone LC ARM and Cyclone LC Universal. PDF v.3.4 updated May 2024.

This FAQ applies to the following


HCS08 RS08 ColdFire V1


Development Board Interface Hardware/Cable IDE - Integrated Development Environment Debugger Flash Programming Software Development Kit / Package