I decided to start experimenting with Embedded devices and my choice for the device is the ESP32 + Arduino
Since my C++ skills are quite rusty, my first step is to get a good development environment that includes a working debug system. After several hours of work, I could get a decent configuration that can debug the Blink example, but it is not perfect and I would appreciate some advices to improve the development experience (see my issues at the bottom). Here is my configuration:
- ESP32 DEV KIT (V1)
- FT232H (Single channel) Module
- MacBook Pro 13 (BigSur OS)
- Arduino IDE
- VS Code
- OpenOCD v0.10.0-esp32-20200709
My debug board is a cheap one, it has non standard FTDI product id (0x6014 instead of 6x010) but I had no issues with macOS BigSur, which does not load any driver for it yet it is recognised by openOCD, only I had to run it with:
openocd -f board/esp32-wrover-kit-3.3v.cfg -c 'ftdi_vid_pid 0x0403 0x6014'
Next, I could make GDB run with the following launch.json file in VS Code:
“gdbpath” : “/Users/simone/.espressif/tools/xtensa-esp32-elf/esp-2020r3-8.4.0/xtensa-esp32-elf/bin/xtensa-esp32-elf-gdb”,
“target remote localhost:3333”,
So here are the issues I have that I would like to fix:
When I start the debug, I can see the value of local variables if I hover the mouse over it, but I cannot see them listed in the left Variables panel of VS Code (which also means I cannot change the value). Any idea why they are not showing up?
in launch.json I’m supposed to enter the target elf file, I installed the Arduino extension for VS Code which seems to call Arduino behind scenes to build my sketch. The problem is that I have no idea where the elf file is after each compilation. The best I could do is to show detailed build output in arduino IDE, build there, look at where the elf file is generated and put it in launch.json. This works but each time I build the path of the elf file changes (it contains a folder that changes with the build number or something) which forces me to reopen Arduino ide each time I need to rebuild, and edit the launch.json to update the target pat: not ideal!
Any suggestions on how to get autocomplete for arduino libraries in VS Code? Is there any pre-filled file with paths to include or something that I can just put in my .vscode folder?
Please feel free to suggest any improvements to the launch.json or any other advice to increase productivity is very welcome!
Adding my own first improvement here:
Open VS Code settings and change change the setting of the C++ extension as below to get rid of the “symbol undefined” red underline for standard arduino functions like pinMode and digitalWrite!
"C_Cpp.intelliSenseEngine": "Tag Parser"