New FAT File System in chipKIT-core

microSD cards are supported on several chipKIT boards
microSD cards are supported on several chipKIT boards
Did you know that a robust FAT file system is now available in chipKIT-core? Keith Vogel of Digilent recently ported the file system library by ChaN at elm-chan.org. You can use this library to create and access files on microSD cards, as shown in the photo above.

But wait… what is a FAT file system, anyway?

FAT stands for File Allocation Table. It’s a method of organizing data on disk drives. Designed way back in 1977, FAT was the standard file system used on disk drives for at least two decades. While modern computers now use more sophisticated systems, FAT is still the standard for USB sticks, Flash drives and solid-state memory cards.
DSDVOL example in Arduino IDE
DSDVOL example in Arduino IDE


Several chipKIT boards (such as the FubarinoSD, WF32, Wi-FIRE, and WiFi Shield) include a microSD card slot where a solid-state memory card can be inserted. The new library allows your sketch to create and access files stored on the memory card. Files can be used for serving up web pages, storing large amounts of data collected from sensors, or anything else you can think of.

chipKIT-core combines the FAT file system with improvements to the DSPI and SoftSPI libraries. (DSPI uses the hardware SPI ports, while SoftSPI uses any combination of unused I/O pins to create a virtual SPI port.) When a microSD card is inserted, your sketch can easily mount it as a disk volume to access files. An example sketch is included with chipKIT-core, and appears as DSDVOL under the File:Examples menu item. Here is a snippet of code from DSDVOL:
Mounting a volume using the new FAT file system
Mounting a volume using the new FAT file system
Up to 5 volumes can be mounted and used at the same time. While most chipKIT boards have only one microSD card slot, virtual disk volumes in RAM or MCU Flash will be supported soon.
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chipKIT WF32 Tutorials for Projects in LabVIEW LINX

Connect your LabVIEW™ projects to the real world! LINX from LabVIEW MakerHub is a free, open-source add-on for LabVIEW software. In this series of video tutorials, learn how to use LINX with the Digilent LabVIEW Physical Computing Kit in projects based on the chipKIT WF32™ board.

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Plug and Play Pmods with chipKIT and LabVIEW

Plug and Play Pmods with chipKIT and LabVIEW

Extend the capabilities of chipKIT boards by using Digilent’s series of Pmods™, small I/O peripheral interface module boards. In this Instructable, you’ll learn how to connect these Pmod boards to a chipKIT WF32™ board and program with LabVIEW™ MakerHub LINX.

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chipKIT WF32-based Health and Security Cloud System


Congratulations to Eusebiu Burlacu and Sebastian Pascu from Gheorghe Asachi University of Iasi, Romania, for their tie for first prize in the Digilent Design Contest Europe 2015. Their chipKIT WF32 based Health and Security Cloud System was designed to process a patient’s ECG signal, as well as monitor patient activity, and transmit this information to a doctor via Exosite’s cloud-enabled data platform. Learn more about it on Instructables.

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chipKIT WF32 Control from a Networked Computer

Controlling a chipKIT WF32 from a networked computer

In this blogpost and this Instructable from Digilent, check out how you can control your chipKIT WF32 from a remote computer with internet access. Your chipKIT WF32 must be connected to a network, but other than that, all you need is an SD card for your WF32. Check out the tutorial for all the details to make your chipKIT WF32 a host webserver that allows access to the WF32 pins from a web page.

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chipKIT WF32 Pin Diagram

chipKIT WF32 Pin Diagram
chipKIT WF32 Pin Diagram

Thanks to Jay at Digilent, the chipKIT WF32 now has an awesome and very useful pin diagram. Note that this diagram is no match for the WF32 Reference Manual; however, used in combination, these two files make getting to know your WF32 board a snap! In addition, two other documentation-type resources that provide even more details about your board include the board definition file and the schematic for each board. Check out Digilent’s blogpost for more details!

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