Intel® Quartus® Prime Standard Edition User Guide: PCB Design Tools

ID 683619
Date 9/24/2018
Document Table of Contents

3.2.3. Transferring I/O Assignments

You can transfer Intel® Quartus® Prime signal and pin assignments contained in .pin and .fx files into an I/O Designer database. Use the I/O Designer Database Wizard to create a new database incorporating the .fx and .pin files. You can also create a new, empty database and manually add the assignment information. If there is no available signal or pin assignment information, you can create an empty database containing only a selection of the target device. This technique is useful if you know the signals in your design and the pins you want to assign. You can subsequently transfer this information to the Intel® Quartus® Prime software for placement and routing.

You may create a very simple I/O Designer database that includes only the .pin or .fx file information. However, when using only a .pin, you cannot import I/O assignment changes from I/O Designer back into the Intel® Quartus® Prime software without also generating an .fx. If your I/O Designer database includes only .fx file information, the database may not contain all the available I/O assignment information. The Intel® Quartus® Prime .fx file only lists assigned pins. The .pin lists all assigned and unassigned device pins. Use both the .pin and the .fx to produce the most complete set of I/O Designer database information.

To create a new I/O Designer database using the Database wizard, follow these steps;

  1. Start the I/O Designer software. The Welcome to I/O Designer dialog box appears. Select Wizard to create new database and click OK.
    If the Welcome to I/O Designer dialog box does not appear, you can access the wizard through the menu. To access the wizard, click File > Database Wizard.
  2. Click Next. The Define HDL source file page appears
    If no HDL files are available, or if the .fx contains your signal and pin assignments, you can skip Step 3 and proceed to Step 4.
  3. If your design includes a Verilog HDL or VHDL file, you can add a top-level Verilog HDL or VHDL file in the I/O Designer software. Adding a file allows you to create functional blocks or get signal names from your design. You must create all physical pin assignments in I/O Designer if you are not using an .fx or a .pin. Click Next. The Database Name page appears.
  4. In the Database Name page, type your database file name. Click Next. The Database Location window appears.
  5. Add a path to the new or an existing database in the Location field, or browse to a database location. Click Next. The FPGA flow page appears.
  6. In the Vendor menu, click Altera.
  7. In the Tool/Library menu, click Intel® Quartus® Prime <version> to select your version of the Intel® Quartus® Prime software.
    Note: The Intel® Quartus® Prime software version listed may not match your actual software version. If your version is not listed, select the latest version. If your target device is not available, the device may not yet be supported by the I/O Designer software.
  8. Select the appropriate device family, device, package, and speed (if applicable), from the corresponding menus. Click Next. The Place and route page appears.
  9. In the FPGAX file name field, type or browse to the backup copy of the .fx generated by the Intel® Quartus® Prime software.
  10. In the Pin report file name field, type or browse to the .pin generated by the Intel® Quartus® Prime software. Click Next.
    You can also select a .qsf for update. The I/O Designer software can update the pin assignment information in the .qsf without affecting any other information in the file.
    Note: You can import a .pin without importing an .fx. The I/O Designer software does not generate a .pin. To transfer assignment information to the Intel® Quartus® Prime software, select an additional file and file type. Intel recommends selecting an .fx in addition to a .pin for transferring all the assignment information in the .fx and .pin files. In some versions of the I/O Designer software, the standard file picker may incorrectly look for a .pin instead of an .fx. In this case, select All Files (*.*) from the Save as type list and select the file from the list.
  11. On the Synthesis page, specify an external synthesis tool and a synthesis constraints file for use with the tool. If you do not use an external synthesis tool, click Next.
  12. On the PCB Flow page, you can select an existing schematic project or create a new project as a symbol information destination.
    • To select an existing project, select Choose existing project and click Browse after the Project Path field. The Select project dialog box appears. Select the project.
    • To create a new project, in the Select project dialog box, select Create new empty project. Type the project file name in the Name field and browse to the location where you want to save the file. Click OK.
  13. If you have not specified a design tool to which you can send symbol information in the I/O Designer software, click Advanced in the PCB Flow page and select your design tool. If you select the DxDesigner software, you have the option to specify a Hierarchical Occurrence Attributes (.oat) file to import into the I/O Designer software. Click Next and then click Finish to create the database.Updating

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