A newbie's way to access the SN8F2288 microcontroller through USB

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EmilotMargus
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A newbie's way to access the SN8F2288 microcontroller through USB

Post by EmilotMargus » Sun Mar 04, 2018 3:54 pm

Good day everyone, hope I'm posting in the right place with my question.

So recently I decided to try and move away from C# and Windows and lean more towards Python on Linux, and for a while now I've had a project in mind, but I honestly don't even know where to start with it.
I have a keyboard with a small 96k on-board memory for storing macros. ( G800V ) Since I don't really like using them at all, I wanted to try and actually access the chip inside this thing and put whatever I want there. So far I've taken the keyboard apart to see which chip it is. It's the SN8F2288 and with that I also got it's datasheet, but here I'm completely stuck.
So basically my question is, where should I go from here? What should I learn, or what should I experience with to even touch whatever is on this chip?
Thanks for all the help in advance!

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jimallyn
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Re: A newbie's way to access the SN8F2288 microcontroller through USB

Post by jimallyn » Sun Mar 04, 2018 7:24 pm

Good day, and welcome to the Linux Mint forums, EmilotMargus! That looks like a nice little microcontroller. Lots of useful peripherals. I'm guessing that the 96k storage you mention is a flash chip attached to the microcontroller? The SN8F2288 only has 12k of on chip storage. There is no operating system on a chip like that! In order to make the chip do something other than what it is currently programmed to do, you would have to learn to program in assembly/machine language for that chip. The instruction set is on page 151 of the manual. There is a manual for the assembler here:

www.sonix.com.tw/files/1/44B04598AA3B01 ... 7F01002549

It looks like the assembler is designed to run on Windows, but it might run in Wine, or perhaps in Windows or ReactOS in VirtualBox. I didn't look through the manuals enough to determine if you can program the chip easily over a USB connection, or if some sort of adapter is needed.
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EmilotMargus
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Re: A newbie's way to access the SN8F2288 microcontroller through USB

Post by EmilotMargus » Mon Mar 05, 2018 3:33 am

Ahh alright, so it seems like I'll probably need to re-install windows on a secondary HDD, and time to study a bit more Assembly, this should be fun. And thanks for that PDF, for some reason I didn't find it before. Thanks for the reply!

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Re: A newbie's way to access the SN8F2288 microcontroller through USB

Post by jimallyn » Mon Mar 05, 2018 5:12 am

EmilotMargus wrote:
Mon Mar 05, 2018 3:33 am
this should be fun.
It most certainly will be! I haven't done much programming at all in recent years, but I used to do a lot of assembly language programming, on a variety of processors: 6502, 680x, Z80, 8080, 8085, F8, probably others I'm not thinking of at the moment. Did you have a look at the instruction set? When you look at what the processor will actually do, things like logical AND or OR of two 8 bit bytes, or add two 8 bit bytes (and set the carry flag if the result is larger than will fit in one byte), or set or clear a bit in memory, you think: how the heck can I do anything at all with just these few instructions? And I only have 512 bytes of RAM? Not megabytes, not even kilobytes, 512 bytes of RAM.

I did a little more looking around their website, and it looks like they do have a C compiler for it, so you could do that instead of assembly language. But where's the fun in that?
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