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Arm Assembly Language


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Table of Contents


Authors An Overview of Computing Systems Introduction History of RISC ARM Begins The Creation of ARM Ltd ARM Today The Cortex Family The Computing Device Number Systems Representations of Numbers and Characters Integer Representations Floating-Point Representations Character Representations Translating Bits to Commands The Tools Open Source Tools Keil (ARM) Code Composer Studio Useful Documentation Exercises The Programmer's Model Introduction Data Types ARM7TDMI Processor Modes Registers The Vector Table Cortex-M4 Processor Modes Registers The Vector Table Exercises Introduction to Instruction Sets: v4T and v7-M Introduction ARM, Thumb, and Thumb-2 Instructions Program 1: Shifting Data Running the Code Examining Register and Memory Contents Program 2: Factorial Calculation Program 3: Swapping Register Contents Program 4: Playing with Floating-Point Numbers Program 5: Moving Values between Integer and Floating-Point Registers Programming Guidelines Exercises Assembler Rules and Directives Introduction Structure of Assembly Language Modules Predefined Register Names Frequently Used Directives Defining a Block of Data or Code Register Name Definition Equating a Symbol to a Numeric Constant Declaring an Entry Point Allocating Memory and Specifying Contents Aligning Data or Code to Appropriate Boundaries Reserving a Block of Memory Assigning Literal Pool Origins Ending a Source File Macros Miscellaneous Assembler Features Assembler Operators Math Functions in CCS Exercises Loads, Stores, and Addressing Introduction Memory Loads and Stores: The Instructions Operand Addressing Pre-Indexed Addressing Post-Indexed Addressing Endianness Changing Endianness Defining Memory Areas Bit-Banded Memory Memory Considerations Exercises Constants and Literal Pools Introduction The ARM Rotation Scheme Loading Constants into Registers Loading Constants with MOVW, MOVT Loading Addresses into Registers Exercises Integer Logic and Arithmetic Introduction Flags and Their Use The N Flag The V Flag The Z Flag The C Flag Comparison Instructions Data Processing Operations Boolean Operations Shifts and Rotates Addition/Subtraction Saturated Math Operations Multiplication Multiplication by a Constant Division DSP Extensions Bit Manipulation Instructions Fractional Notation Exercises Branches and Loops Introduction Branching Branching (ARM7TDMI) Version 7-M Branches Looping While Loops For Loops Do-While Loops Conditional Execution v4T Conditional Execution v7-M Conditional Execution: The IT Block Straight-Line Coding Exercises Introduction to Floating-Point: Basics, Data Types, and Data Transfer Introduction A Brief History of Floating-Point in Computing The Contribution of Floating-Point to the Embedded Processor Floating-Point Data Types The Space of Floating-Point Representable Values Floating-Point Representable Values Normal Values Subnormal Values Zeros Infinities Not-a-Numbers (NaNs) The Floating-Point Register File of the Cortex-M4 FPU Control Registers The Floating-Point Status and Control Register, FPSCR The Coprocessor Access Control Register, CPACR Loading Data into Floating-Point Registers Floating-Point Loads and Stores: The Instructions The VMOV instruction Conversions between Half-Precision and Single-Precision Conversions to Non-Floating-Point Formats Conversions between Integer and Floating-Point Conversions between Fixed-Point and Floating-Point Exercises Introduction to Floating-Point: Rounding and Exceptions Introduction Rounding Introduction to Rounding Modes in the IEEE 754-2008 Specification The roundTiesToEven (RNE) Rounding Mode The Directed Rounding Modes Rounding Mode Summary Exceptions Introduction to Floating-Point Exceptions Exception Handling Division by Zero Invalid Operation Overflow Underflow Inexact Result Algebraic Laws and Floating-Point Normalization and Cancelation Exercises Floating-Point Data-Processing Instructions Introduction Floating-Point Data-Processing Instruction Syntax Instruction Summary Flags and Their Use Comparison Instructions The N Flag The Z Flag The C Flag The V Flag Predicated Instructions, or the Use of the Flags A Word about the IT Instruction Two Special Modes Flush-to-Zero Mode Default NaN Non-Arithmetic Instructions Absolute Value Negate Arithmetic Instructions Addition/Subtraction Multiplication and Multiply-Accumulate Division and Square Root Putting It All Together: A Coding Example Exercises Tables Introduction Integer Lookup Tables Floating-Point Lookup Tables Binary Searches Exercises Subroutines and Stacks Introduction The Stack LDM/STM Instructions PUSH and POP Full/Empty Ascending/Descending Stacks Subroutines Passing Parameters to Subroutines Passing Parameters in Registers Passing Parameters by Reference Passing Parameters on the Stack The ARM APCS Exercises Exception Handling: ARM7TDMI Introduction Interrupts Error Conditions Processor Exception Sequence The Vector Table Exception Handlers Exception Priorities Procedures for Handling Exceptions Reset Exceptions Undefined Instructions Interrupts Aborts SVCs Exercises Exception Handling: v7-M Introduction Operation Modes and Privilege Levels The Vector Table Stack Pointers Processor Exception Sequence Entry Exit Exception Types Interrupts Exercises Memory-Mapped Peripherals Introduction The LPC2104 The UART The Memory Map Configuring the UART Writing the Data to the UART Putting the Code Together Running the Code The LPC2132 The D/A Converter The Memory Map Configuring the D/A Converter Generating a Sine Wave Putting the Code Together Running the Code The Tiva Launchpad General-Purpose I/O The Memory Map Configuring the GPIO Pins Turning on the LEDs Putting the Code Together Running the Code Exercises ARM, Thumb and Thumb-2 Instructions Introduction ARM and 16-Bit Thumb Instructions Differences between ARM and 16-Bit Thumb Thumb Implementation 32-Bit Thumb Instructions Switching between ARM and Thumb States How to Compile for Thumb Exercises Mixing C and Assembly Introduction Inline Assembler Inline Assembly Syntax Restrictions on Inline Assembly Operations Embedded Assembler Embedded Assembly Syntax Restrictions on Embedded Assembly Operations Calling between C and Assembly Exercises Appendix A: Running Code Composer Studio Appendix B: Running Keil Tools Appendix C: ASCII Character Codes Appendix D Glossary References Index

About the Author

William Hohl held the position of worldwide university relations manager for ARM, based in Austin, Texas, for 10 years. In total, he was with ARM for nearly 15 years and began as a principal design engineer to help build the ARM1020 microprocessor. His travel and university lectures have taken him to over 40 countries on 5 continents, and he continues to lecture on low-power microcontrollers and assembly language programming. In addition to his engineering duties, he also held an adjunct faculty position in Austin from 1998 to 2004, teaching undergraduate mathematics. Before joining ARM, he worked at Motorola (now Freescale Semiconductor) in the ColdFire and 68040 design groups and at Texas Instruments as an applications engineer. He holds MSEE and BSEE degrees from Texas A&M University as well as six patents in the field of debug architectures. Christopher Hinds has worked in the microprocessor design field for over 25 years, holding design positions at Motorola (now Freescale Semiconductor), AMD, and ARM. While at ARM, he was the primary author of the ARM VFP floating-point architecture and led the design of the ARM10 VFP, the first hardware implementation of the new architecture. He recently joined the Patents Group in ARM, identifying patentable inventions within the company and assisting in patent litigation. He holds BSEE and MSEE degrees from Texas A&M University and an M.Div from Oral Roberts University, where he worked to establish the School of Engineering, creating and teaching the first digital logic and microprocessor courses. He has numerous published papers and presentations on the floating-point architecture of ARM processors, and is a named inventor on over 30 US patents in the areas of floating-point implementation, instruction set design, and circuit design.


"Relaxed and informal, almost conversational, this writing style makes for comfortable reading that should appeal to everyone while breaking the tension of diving into the complexities of a modern multi-purpose microcontroller."
-Andrew Mason, Michigan State University, East Lansing, USA

"The authors are obviously authorities on the subject, and this shows clearly. The text is clearly written and easy to follow, with examples and analogies used to make understanding easier. Using Keil and the Tiva Launchpad should make it pretty easy to get the examples up and running on an actual Cortex-M as well as using a simulator."
-Craig A. Evans, University of Leeds, UK

"This book fills a void in the computer science literature."
-Don Evans, Southern Methodist University, Dallas, Texas, USA

"This text retains the ease of using the ARM7TDMI while moving the student [or reader] into the more capable Cortex-M4. ...The addition of the Cortex-M4 makes this a much stronger text."
-Ralph Tanner, Western Michigan University, Kalamazoo, USA

"Assembly language programming is still the best way to learn about the internals of processors and this is one of a very few books that teaches that skill for ARM processors. It covers the necessary material in a well-organized manner. Updated for newer versions of ARM processors, it adds good material on floating-point arithmetic that was missing from the first edition."
-Ronald W. Mehler, California State University, Northridge, USA

"In general, this book contains most of the content that I generally cover in my introduction to computer organization course. It contains very nice exercises at the end of each chapter, and that is a plus when generating questions to help students grasp the concepts. ...I look forward to a second edition, because I plan to continue using this book."
-Rose M. Lowe, Clemson University, South Carolina, USA

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