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Topics - dps

1
Bus Blaster JTAG debugger / Fried, then fixed
The other day, I fried my Bus Blaster.  The 20-pin cable I bought did not have polarizing keys.  I noticed this before I started using the device and figured I'd always be careful about which direction I plugged in the cable.  Bad assumption!

That fateful day I plugged the cable in backwards.  I noticed that the CPLD was getting hot (and perhaps the FTDI chip too).  I quickly unplugged the cable, but unfortunately the Bus Blaster was toast!  I quickly ordered another JTAG pod to keep my work going until I could fix the BB.

I desoldered the CPLD from the BB using my trusty SparkFun Heaterizer XL-3000.  When I plugged the BB into my computer, I was able to connect to the FT2232!  So the FTDI chip seems fine.

Today I received a replacement CPLD (and a new 20-pin cable WITH a polarizing key) from Digi-Key.  I soldered the new CPLD on my BB, compiled urJTAG from source, and loaded the JTAGKey buffer configuration into the CPLD.  I tested my new (if slightly toasted) Bus Blaster on an ARM development board, and I was able to halt and reset the processor!  Success!

Moral of the story: ALWAYS use cables with polarizing keys.  I bought the H3DDH-2006G-ND, which includes both a polarizing key and strain relief.  (Digi-Key shows this and similar cables as "Value Added Items," which means that they prepare these cables on-demand when ordered.  Mine shipped the same day with the rest of my order.)


tl;dr
Use cables with polarizing keys.  Cables without polarizing keys destroy your devices, time, and satisfaction.
3
General discussion / USB VID Block Business?
I understand from reading The Internet that it costs $2000 to buy a USB vendor ID (VID) from the USB folks.

Is it possible (and has anyone tried) to plunk down the $2000 for a VID and then sell VID/PID combinations to small companies and individuals?  I have no idea what sort of legal requirements one would need to satisfy to do this.

Just a random thought I had while trying to fall asleep last night.  :p