MPIDE vs MPLAB IDE

MPLAB X IDE Debugging Environment
MPLAB X IDE: In a debugging environment, you can put a breakpoint wherever you want to stop the code from running. On the bottom of the window, you can see the variable tab where you are able to create watch variables. If you create a watch variable, you can see the values change between each step.

If you’re like me, mixing up things that sound alike is not difficult to do. For example, I can easily mix up chipKIT and PICkit, especially if I’m tired and I’m not thinking well. MPIDE and MPLAB IDE are a close second; they just sound too much alike. So it’s not difficult to see that if the names mix you up and you don’t really know that much about either of them, you might wonder what distinguishes the two and why you’d want to use one over the other. For a quick summary of the differences between using MPIDE (Multi-Platform IDE) and MPLAB X IDE check out this MPIDE vs MPLAB IDE blogpost by Digilent.

However, I would like to preface that article with the following points. Since MPIDE was ported from the original Arduino IDE, and since Arduino was meant to be simple and easy to use, there wasn’t a whole lot of functionality built into the IDE from the beginning. It simply works as an editor allowing you to compile your code and program it to your target board (via the bootloader). Debugging was not built into Arduino IDE, but most people use “printf()” statements and the Serial Monitor to help debug their programs/sketches. Microchip’s MPLAB X IDE, however, has always been a debugging environment in addition to being an editor and integrating a compiler.

That being said, good luck not mixing them up now!

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2 thoughts on “MPIDE vs MPLAB IDE”

  1. I got one question on this, I am using UNo32 for controlling quad, actually there was issues in using analogwrite so i wanted to adapt my code to mplabx , I just wanted to know is it possible to create mpide environment in mplab and use the main.cpp (modify the loop and set up inside), include couple of header files and then compile and load the code from, MPLAB X??

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  2. Hello Hasha… Actually there is somebody working right now on a way to build chipKIT sketches in MPLAB X. Initially it will simply connect to the compiler in MPIDE, but eventually will enable the chipKIT toolchain to run natively in MPLAB X. The first phase may be ready in December. In the meantime, we’d like to help solve the problem you encountered with analogwrite(). Have you submitted a post to the support forums? If not, please do since that is the fastest way to find a solution:

    http://www.chipkit.net/forum/

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