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Readback Protection and Recovery of NRF52
Robbie B. Sep 18, 2020 at 11:51 AM (11:51 hours)
Staff: Mika I.

  • We are considering using the Cyclone FX for production programming of NRF52 microcontrollers.  We currently use Nordic's NRFJPROG command line for programming.  When doing this, we use "nrfjprog --rbp ALL" to enable readback protection, preventing readback of the internal flash.  After this operation, the only way to re-program a controller is to use the "nrfjprog --recover" option to recover (erase all flash).

    Before we try to use the Cyclone FX, I would like to confirm the following:
    1) Does the Cyclone FX have a way to enable the readback protection of the NRF52?
    2) Does the Cyclone FX have a way to "Recover"? I would like to ensure that I can re-program a board with the Cyclone. I have seen a few Forum questions relating to error code $0007, which I assume is because the "ERASE IF NOT BLANK" command isn't able to "Recover" a previously readback protected board.


  • Hi Robbie,

    Thanks for reaching out.

    Yes, our algorithm for the nRF52 family includes a Secure Device (SD) command, which will include readback protection. If you try to reconnect to a secured device in PROGACMP or Cyclone standalone mode, you will be able to recover the device, by performing a mass erase.

    The Erase if not Blank command is not the same as a mass erase to recover the device. The recovering process is done automatically in standalone mode, and is prompted upon connection in PROGACMP.

    I hope that answers your questions!

    Best Regards,

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