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How To install WinCE 6R3 to NAND Flash

 

We offer two different types of NAND Flash for our TenByTen family of SBCs and contrepid modules. The SLC version is low density, high speed, while the MLC version is high density by slightly lower speed. A detailed article about the differences of NAND Flash devices can be found here Link

 

The right NAND and file system

To compensate the shortages of MLC NAND against SLC ( mainly reliable ) we encourage you to use a sofiticated Flash File System under Linux, and JFFS2 is not what we have in mind. We suggest the use of YAFFS2 or similar. Do NOT trust NAND Flash without a correct file system. We had a lot of customers complaining about the reliability of NAND Flash in the past, all were using JFFS2 or other unfit solutions. There is a reason why google's android is using YAFFS2 and nothing else! 

Under WinCE the user has a wide choice of ( mostly ) commercial solutions. To help our customers to save money, Hiteg provides SAMSUNG's patentent Whimory Flash File System for MLC NAND. In a nutshell Whimory does in Software ( transparently ) what an USB NAND controller does in Hardware. The downside is that this driver is available under NDA (from SAMSUNG) only, which means that you would need to sign a NDA with SAMSUNG, scan it, send it to Hiteg and Hiteg will  provide the source codes. This unfortunately, renders out most of the hobbyists as SAMSUNG does not sign with none-corperates (as far as we know). However, as it is needed for WinCE only and >99% of the Hobbyists are Linux or android centric, no big harm is done. The good news is that MLC can be bought with densities up to 64GBit. The SD-Card slot is still free and can be used for other purposes.

SD-CardsMicroSD slot as found on the TenByTen and contrepid based SBCs from Hiteg ltd

The contrepid and TenByTen families of SBC feature a microSD Card push push slot ( see picture). Push push means that a small spring helps to easily insert and remove the card.

microSD card from RiDATA, with 32GB capacity and speed grade 10The corresponding card is approx. 10x15x1.2mm and realy fragile if it comes to bending. Please don't do that, never ever bend a card or use force in any way. 

As you can see on the left a picture of one of those cards. Its from RiDATA, it is microSD and High Capacity (HC) with 32GByte capacity and speed grade 10. The speed grade gives a clue about the max. data rate, in this case of 10MBytes/second. Not that bad for MLC and max. 4bit parallel data transfer! There are speed grades of 2,4,6 defined. In comparison the on-board NAND is connected with an 8bit data path. However, speed gaind there is mostly lost by software involved, from SD-Cards data comes via DMA and therefore without Software involvement.

Grade 10 cards are mostly magnitudes more expensive than cards with a lower grade, meaning you pay for speed.

Usign the right card the right way

Which ever grade and capacity you are using for your application, you will need one formated as FAT32, even if the capacity <4GByte. To install WinCE6R3 you need approx. 0.5MByte storage capacity on the card. The rest is free for your application needs.

Hiteg provides a special tool (IROM Fusing Tool) for Windows XP to write the startup program to the SD Card. You will need a SD USB adapter for your computer. As Microsofts eBoot bootloader comes without SD card files system support only the space for eBoot is occupied on the card. You will only need to write this boot loader once onto the card. And its sole purpose is to boot eBoot from SD Card, the rest is done via USB. u-boot for Linux / android do a far better job here, however, u-boot is not able to write WinCE correctly. At this point we'd like to point you to our Orphanage of open source projects.

 

 

 

 


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