–Creating .HEX file from C code



In this post we shall see how to create the .HEX file ,which is finally fused on to the PIC microcontroller.

To start with create a new folder , say PICTEST inside , D:\ drive

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Inside this folder you can organize all your PIC projects.Create another folder inside this , say LEDBLINK , which is our first project.

Open the MPLAB IDE .

Click on Project Wizard under Project.


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Select the PIC controller IC you’ve picked up for the project.Here it is PIC16F877A from the dropdown menu. Click Next.


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Next window is selection of Language suite.We’ve already installed HITECH C separately on C:\ drive.Now MPLAB IDE detects it automatically & displays under drop down list of Active Toolsuite.

Select HITECH Universal Toolsuite  & its location is automatically displayed.

Click on Next.


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Click on Browse & locate the project folder you created earlier in D:\ drive.


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Provide a name (without any extension) for your project & Save it under the project folder.


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Click Next


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Next window is to add any existing files to the project.For this test project , nothing to be added .So click Next.

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Final Summary of your project will be displayed , with IC selected ,location of project & the Tool Suite used.

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Click Finish to see the Project window of MPLAB , where you see you project with .mcp extension.


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To write your C code you need to open the built in  Text editor of MPLAB IDE by clicking


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An untitled text editor window opens.


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Before typing into your C code save the file  by clicking File –> Save As & then provide a name to your code file .Ensure that the file has an extension .c


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Now inside the project folder  you can see the .c file along with other 3 files created automatically by the MPLAB IDE.  The file with .mcp extension is the project file , the one with .mcw is the Workspace file & .mcs is Make file.

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Type in your C code .Your C code should comply with syntax of HITECH C Compiler.Learn to use the #include header files & Define statements from the help file of HITECH C Compiler.


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After typing in the C code press ctrl+s to save the file.Now the * mark over blinkled.c disappears indicating the file is saved.

Right click Source Files & select Add Files..

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Browse to the location where you stored the .c file & select Open.


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The blinkled.c file will appear under Source Files.

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Build the project by pressing F10  or by selecting BUILD under Project.


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If there is no error in your C code the BUILD will be Successful & .HEX file is generated along with other support files.

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Open the project folder in D:\ drive to see the .HEX file

This is the file we’re going to fuse on to the target PIC controller IC.

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Watch this video on creating the .HEX file :


Creating .HEX File


Continue to the next post “Hands on Hardware “