NoICE Debugger


Supported Compilers and Assemblers



Legacy Monitor

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The Texas Instruments MSP430 is a 16-bit microprocessor available in a wide variety of configurations.

Features include:

  • A very nice instruction set that permits C compilers to generate efficient code but also allows for pleasant assembly programming.
  • Most variants are very low power and well suited for battery operation.
  • Built-in debugging support via JTAG
  • On-chip Flash in most parts.
  • Two to eight hardware breakpoints, depending on the chip.

NoICE for the MSP430 is available for download from However, development of this program was funded by Imagecraft, and the registered version may only be purchased from them.

JTAG / Spy-bi-wire Debugging

Probably the best way to use NoICE with the MSP430 is with JTAG. This requires the use of a JTAG pod, but allows in-circuit debugging of programs in Flash with little or no interference to the user program being debugged.

NoICE supports the JTAG and Spy-bi-wire interface to the MSP430 family using

  • TI MSP-FET430UIF connected to a USB port
  • TI MSP-FETP430 (or equivalent, including Olimex) JTAG interface connected to the PC's parallel port
  • SoftBaugh USBP JTAG interface connected to a USB port

Setup and use of JTAG is described in a separate document.

MSP430 Simulator

Instruction set simulation is quite straightforward. However, simulating the UARTs, timers, and other peripherals found on current microprocessors is a very complex task - at least if you want a good (i.e., useful) simulation. The cycle-by-cycle operation of these peripherals is seldom publicly documented, and anything less than a cycle-by-cycle simulation will mask problems which occur in real systems.

NoICE's MSP430 simulator provides simulation of instruction execution and a "simulated UART" so that you can use printf etc. The simulator does not do cycle-accurate simulation of a UART or simulate other peripherals such as timers or interrupts.

That said, the simulator can be very useful in debugging algorithms and becoming familiar with a processor without investing in any hardware.

More information here.

Legacy NoICE Monitor

Because the legacy monitor assumes that code is in RAM and cannot use hardware breakpoints, we recommend that most people use JTAG. However, serial monitor support is possible, though the target monitor has not yet been ported. If you are interested in using the serial monitor, please contact us, detailing your intended use.

General Information is available about customizing target monitors

NoICE Debugger Copyright 2010 by John Hartman Revised 31 July 2010