FPGA Reconfiguration Question

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Hi everyone,

Lets say I have an application that needs the following:

Do a partial RTR ( Run Time Reconfiguration) of a Virtex Device
continuosly through out its life time  at very frequent intervals. And
I can live with the Reconfiguratin delay

Can this be done? Do you see any issues with this?

Any comments?

Are there any tools (API) made using JBITS that currently handle
scheduling of RTR that anyone is aware of?

Thanks in Advance

Re: FPGA Reconfiguration Question
I wanted to give you more information..

I have an application that I can implement on a Virtex device by
Partial Run Time Reconfiguration (RTR). This is part of my work for my
thesis in graduate school.

I have a fixed  logic Block. And one reconfigurable Logic Block.
Fixed Logic Block is a processing engine (PE). The data for that will
be available in the Reconfigurable Logic (RL).  I can either use the
LUTs as distributed RAM or just use BlockRAM to store my data in the
RL Block. My PE will work on the data and when it is finished I will
read the output from the PE. And then, I will load the Reconfigurable
block with the new data to be worked on by the PE. So all I have to do
is change the contents of the LUT/BlockRAM using JBITS and partially
reconfigure the Device for the new data to be worked on by the PE. And
this is all the device does -- load the Data into the Reconfigurable
Logic Block and let the PE(Fixed Logic Block) do the math on it, and
this goes on. I am okay with the reconfiguration delay. Having said
that, I believe the Performance/cost (Savings in terms of Area) would
be improved this way rather than implementing everything in parallel
(if this requires lets say a million PEs to be implemented) across an
array of FPGAs. This ofcourse is not true if all I need is a few PEs.

My goal is to eventually make this a scalable appication with a Big
Virtex Device with multiple PEs all working on the Data which will be
reconfigured using RTR. And finally, develop a platform to have this
done over a huge array of FPGAs

Does anyone know of any work done on this? I would appreciate your
comments and suggestions.

1) Can a Virtex device handle this sort of Partial RTR ? Is there a
thumb rule regarding how often partial RTR can be done and if this can
be done for the life of the device? ( I apologize if this sounds
ignorant, I just want to make sure before I spend more time and
resources )


Re: FPGA Reconfiguration Question
Quoted text here. Click to load it

If you generate the ll file  you can see the bit locations of the rams and
lookup tables that you use. You can do Partial configurations all you want.
The FPGA will last as long as a RAM.


Re: FPGA Reconfiguration Question

"> Lets say I have an application that needs the following:
Quoted text here. Click to load it

This can and has been done.  Xilinx FPGAs use fully reprogrammable SRAM
configuration cells with no wear-out mechanism.

Partial reconfiguration is a bit trickier but not rocket science either.
Here are a few links that might prove useful.

Partial Reconfigurability Frequently Asked Questions

Virtex Series Configuration Architecture User Guide

Two Flows for Partial Reconfiguration: Module Based or Small Bit

Steven K. Knapp
Applications Manager, Xilinx Inc.
Spartan-3/II/IIE FPGAs
Spartan-3:  Make it Your ASIC

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