USB Questions

I 'm wanting to develop an application that will read these USB memory sticks into an embedded controller. I'm assuming that the "memory sticks" are formatted in FAT16 or FAT 32. What would be a good host controller to interface with say PIC microcontroller? I want to read/write text files to the memory stick.

Thanks in advance.


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None, really. USB was designed with the idea that the USB Host at the top of the chain is a powerful PC, not a simplistic embedded device. You can't interface it to a PIC using just a controller/interface circuit.

Nowadays, some embedded devices do manage to play the role of USB master successfully (search this newsgroup to find some mentioned), but something as small as a PIC most probably won't do. About the minimum you need is an upper-class 8051 device (Cygnal) or even a

16-bit controller. Interfacing one of those to a PIC would be a case of the tail wagging the dog.
Hans-Bernhard Broeker (
Even if all the snow were burnt, ashes would remain.
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Hans-Bernhard Broeker

There are embedded host-side solutions for USB. Try Cypress semiconductor at

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Look for USB host controllers. Many of their USB chips have a RISC type 8-bit CPU that you could use, or use the host controller as an interface to your PIC. I think Philips also has simmilar solutions, but I'm not as familiar with them.

Implementing a USB host isn't exactly trivial, but a USB memory stick is proabably a really good place to start with it's simple and standard function. I don't know what format the USB stick data is in, but FAT is a good guess since most hosts can use them without any special drivers. Good luck.


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Microchip 16C765 or 16C745 with usb built in.

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