DFU on custom board, memory problem

Hello,

Currently, I'm trying to flash my custom board that has nRF52832 with an uart application that I integrated buttonless DFU. I'm running into a problem where when I try to flash my hex file that has the following combination :

  • Softdevice
  • Bootloader
  • Application
  • Bootloader setting

I got the following error :

"ERROR: The file specified is not a valid hex file, has data outside valid areas"

"ERROR: or does not have data in valid areas."

From what I understand, it is an error on the memory side where my program might have passed its limit. But I don't know how to fix it. I'm not sure the type of model of my nRF52832, but on nRF Connect, it says that it is NRF52832_xxAB_REV1, Core RAM: 32KiB and Core ROM: 256KiB in pages of 4KiB. I'm using SES with SDK 16.0.0

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  • With the following configurations, the bootloader used up about 35.4kB of RAM, which does not leave me enough space for my application :

    FLASH_PH_START=0x0 
    FLASH_PH_SIZE=0x40000
    RAM_PH_START=0x20000000
    RAM_PH_SIZE=0x10000
    FLASH_START=0x31000
    FLASH_SIZE=0x6000
    RAM_START=0x20005968
    RAM_SIZE=0xa698

    Flash placement : 

    3326.flash_placement.xml
    <!DOCTYPE Linker_Placement_File>
    <Root name="Flash Section Placement">
      <MemorySegment name="FLASH" start="$(FLASH_PH_START)" size="$(FLASH_PH_SIZE)">
        <ProgramSection load="no" name=".reserved_flash" start="$(FLASH_PH_START)" size="$(FLASH_START)-$(FLASH_PH_START)" />
        <ProgramSection alignment="0x100" load="Yes" name=".vectors" start="$(FLASH_START)" />
        <ProgramSection alignment="4" load="Yes" name=".init" />
        <ProgramSection alignment="4" load="Yes" name=".init_rodata" />
        <ProgramSection alignment="4" load="Yes" name=".text" />
        <ProgramSection alignment="4" keep="Yes" load="Yes" name=".crypto_data" inputsections="*(SORT(.crypto_data*))" address_symbol="__start_crypto_data" end_symbol="__stop_crypto_data" />
        <ProgramSection alignment="4" keep="Yes" load="Yes" name=".nrf_queue" inputsections="*(.nrf_queue*)" address_symbol="__start_nrf_queue" end_symbol="__stop_nrf_queue" />
        <ProgramSection alignment="4" keep="Yes" load="Yes" name=".dfu_trans" inputsections="*(SORT(.dfu_trans*))" address_symbol="__start_dfu_trans" end_symbol="__stop_dfu_trans" />
        <ProgramSection alignment="4" keep="Yes" load="Yes" name=".svc_data" inputsections="*(.svc_data*)" address_symbol="__start_svc_data" end_symbol="__stop_svc_data" />
        <ProgramSection alignment="4" keep="Yes" load="Yes" name=".log_const_data" inputsections="*(SORT(.log_const_data*))" address_symbol="__start_log_const_data" end_symbol="__stop_log_const_data" />
        <ProgramSection alignment="4" keep="Yes" load="Yes" name=".nrf_balloc" inputsections="*(.nrf_balloc*)" address_symbol="__start_nrf_balloc" end_symbol="__stop_nrf_balloc" />
        <ProgramSection alignment="4" keep="Yes" load="Yes" name=".log_backends" inputsections="*(SORT(.log_backends*))" address_symbol="__start_log_backends" end_symbol="__stop_log_backends" />
        <ProgramSection alignment="4" keep="Yes" load="Yes" name=".sdh_ble_observers" inputsections="*(SORT(.sdh_ble_observers*))" address_symbol="__start_sdh_ble_observers" end_symbol="__stop_sdh_ble_observers" />
        <ProgramSection alignment="4" keep="Yes" load="Yes" name=".sdh_state_observers" inputsections="*(SORT(.sdh_state_observers*))" address_symbol="__start_sdh_state_observers" end_symbol="__stop_sdh_state_observers" />
        <ProgramSection alignment="4" keep="Yes" load="Yes" name=".sdh_stack_observers" inputsections="*(SORT(.sdh_stack_observers*))" address_symbol="__start_sdh_stack_observers" end_symbol="__stop_sdh_stack_observers" />
        <ProgramSection alignment="4" keep="Yes" load="Yes" name=".sdh_req_observers" inputsections="*(SORT(.sdh_req_observers*))" address_symbol="__start_sdh_req_observers" end_symbol="__stop_sdh_req_observers" />
        <ProgramSection alignment="4" keep="Yes" load="Yes" name=".sdh_soc_observers" inputsections="*(SORT(.sdh_soc_observers*))" address_symbol="__start_sdh_soc_observers" end_symbol="__stop_sdh_soc_observers" />
        <ProgramSection alignment="4" keep="Yes" load="No" name=".nrf_sections" address_symbol="__start_nrf_sections" />
        <ProgramSection alignment="4" keep="Yes" load="Yes" name=".log_dynamic_data"  inputsections="*(SORT(.log_dynamic_data*))" runin=".log_dynamic_data_run"/>
        <ProgramSection alignment="4" keep="Yes" load="Yes" name=".log_filter_data"  inputsections="*(SORT(.log_filter_data*))" runin=".log_filter_data_run"/>
        <ProgramSection alignment="4" keep="Yes" load="Yes" name=".fs_data"  inputsections="*(.fs_data*)" runin=".fs_data_run"/>
        <ProgramSection alignment="4" load="Yes" name=".dtors" />
        <ProgramSection alignment="4" load="Yes" name=".ctors" />
        <ProgramSection alignment="4" load="Yes" name=".rodata" />
        <ProgramSection alignment="4" load="Yes" name=".ARM.exidx" address_symbol="__exidx_start" end_symbol="__exidx_end" />
        <ProgramSection alignment="4" load="Yes" runin=".fast_run" name=".fast" />
        <ProgramSection alignment="4" load="Yes" runin=".data_run" name=".data" />
        <ProgramSection alignment="4" load="Yes" runin=".tdata_run" name=".tdata" />
      </MemorySegment>
      <MemorySegment name="RAM" start="$(RAM_PH_START)" size="$(RAM_PH_SIZE)">
        <ProgramSection load="no" name=".reserved_ram" start="$(RAM_PH_START)" size="$(RAM_START)-$(RAM_PH_START)" />
        <ProgramSection alignment="0x100" load="No" name=".vectors_ram" start="$(RAM_START)" address_symbol="__app_ram_start__"/>
        <ProgramSection alignment="4" keep="Yes" load="No" name=".nrf_sections_run" address_symbol="__start_nrf_sections_run" />
        <ProgramSection alignment="4" keep="Yes" load="No" name=".log_dynamic_data_run" address_symbol="__start_log_dynamic_data" end_symbol="__stop_log_dynamic_data" />
        <ProgramSection alignment="4" keep="Yes" load="No" name=".log_filter_data_run" address_symbol="__start_log_filter_data" end_symbol="__stop_log_filter_data" />
        <ProgramSection alignment="4" keep="Yes" load="No" name=".fs_data_run" address_symbol="__start_fs_data" end_symbol="__stop_fs_data" />
        <ProgramSection alignment="4" keep="Yes" load="No" name=".nrf_sections_run_end" address_symbol="__end_nrf_sections_run" />
        <ProgramSection alignment="4" load="No" name=".fast_run" />
        <ProgramSection alignment="4" load="No" name=".data_run" />
        <ProgramSection alignment="4" load="No" name=".tdata_run" />
        <ProgramSection alignment="4" load="No" name=".bss" />
        <ProgramSection alignment="4" load="No" name=".tbss" />
        <ProgramSection alignment="4" load="No" name=".non_init" />
        <ProgramSection alignment="4" size="__HEAPSIZE__" load="No" name=".heap" />
        <ProgramSection alignment="8" size="__STACKSIZE__" load="No" place_from_segment_end="Yes" name=".stack"  address_symbol="__StackLimit" end_symbol="__StackTop"/>
        <ProgramSection alignment="8" size="__STACKSIZE_PROCESS__" load="No" name=".stack_process" />
      </MemorySegment>
      <MemorySegment name="mbr_params_page" start="0x0003E000" size="0x1000">
        <ProgramSection alignment="4" keep="Yes" load="No" name=".mbr_params_page" address_symbol="__start_mbr_params_page" end_symbol="__stop_mbr_params_page" start = "0x0003E000" size="0x1000" />
      </MemorySegment>
      <MemorySegment name="bootloader_settings_page" start="0x0003F000" size="0x1000">
        <ProgramSection alignment="4" keep="Yes" load="No" name=".bootloader_settings_page" address_symbol="__start_bootloader_settings_page" end_symbol="__stop_bootloader_settings_page" start = "0x0003F000" size="0x1000" />
      </MemorySegment>
      <MemorySegment name="uicr_bootloader_start_address" start="0x10001014" size="0x4">
        <ProgramSection alignment="4" keep="Yes" load="Yes" name=".uicr_bootloader_start_address" address_symbol="__start_uicr_bootloader_start_address" end_symbol="__stop_uicr_bootloader_start_address" start = "0x10001014" size="0x4" />
      </MemorySegment>
      <MemorySegment name="uicr_mbr_params_page" start="0x10001018" size="0x4">
        <ProgramSection alignment="4" keep="Yes" load="Yes" name=".uicr_mbr_params_page" address_symbol="__start_uicr_mbr_params_page" end_symbol="__stop_uicr_mbr_params_page" start = "0x10001018" size="0x4" />
      </MemorySegment>
    </Root>
    

    Before any changes were made, it only uses, as you said, 20kB of RAM. Is it because due to the changing of softdevice that causes it to increase? 

  • try running this on a DK with full flash and RAM

    I ran the original bootloader (PCA10040E S112 debug) on my nRF52832 DK and it was working well. Though I am not sure what you mean by full flash and RAM but here is what the memory layout looks like : 

     What trouble are you actually having?

    I flashed the PCA10040E debug version that I modified to use S132 on my DK and this is the memory layout : 

    It seems to me that there is not enough space for my main application. Here is what I got when I tried to DFU my main application : 

    <info> app: Inside main
    <debug> app: In nrf_bootloader_init
    <debug> nrf_dfu_settings: Calling nrf_dfu_settings_init()...
    <debug> nrf_dfu_flash: Initializing nrf_fstorage_nvmc backend.
    <warning> nrf_dfu_settings: Resetting bootloader settings since neither the settings page nor the backup are valid (CRC error).
    <debug> nrf_dfu_settings: Writing settings...
    <debug> nrf_dfu_settings: Erasing old settings at: 0x0003F000
    <debug> nrf_dfu_flash: nrf_fstorage_erase(addr=0x0x0003F000, lending 0
    ding 0
    <info> nrf_dfu_settings: Backing up settings page to address 0x3E000.
    <debug> nrf_dfu_settings: Writing settings...
    <debug> nrf_dfu_settings: Erasing old settings at: 0x0003E000
    <debug> nrf_dfu_flash: nrf_fstorage_erase(addr=0x0x0003E000, len=1 pages), queue usage: 1
    <debug> nrf_dfu_flash: Flash erase success: addr=0x0003E000, pending 0
    <debug> nrf_dfu_flash: nrf_fstorage_write(addr=0x0003E000, src=0x20007ACC, len=896 bytes), queue usage: 1
    ding 0
    <info> app: Entering DFU mode.
    <debug> app: Initializing transports (found: 1)
    <debug> nrf_dfu_ble: Initializing BLE DFU transport
    <debug> nrf_dfu_ble: Setting up vector table: 0x00031000
    <debug> nrf_dfu_ble: Enabling SoftDevice.
    <debug> nrf_dfu_ble: Configuring BLE stack.
    <debug> nrf_dfu_ble: Enabling the BLE stack.
    <debug> nrf_dfu_ble: No advertising name found
    <debug> nrf_dfu_ble: Using default advertising name
    <debug> nrf_dfu_ble: Advertising...
    <debug> app: Enter main loop
    <debug> nrf_dfu_ble: Connected
    <debug> nrf_dfu_ble: Received BLE_GAP_EVT_CONN_PARAM_UPDATE
    <debug> nrf_dfu_ble: max_conn_interval: 12
    <debug> nrf_dfu_ble: min_conn_interval: 12
    <debug> nrf_dfu_ble: slave_latency: 0
    <debug> nrf_dfu_ble: conn_sup_timeout: 600
    <debug> nrf_dfu_ble: Received BLE_GAP_EVT_CONN_PARAM_UPDATE
    <debug> nrf_dfu_ble: max_conn_interval: 6
    <debug> nrf_dfu_ble: min_conn_interval: 6
    <debug> nrf_dfu_ble: slave_latency: 0
    <debug> nrf_dfu_ble: conn_sup_timeout: 500
    <debug> nrf_dfu_ble: Received BLE_GAP_EVT_CONN_PARAM_UPDATE
    <debug> nrf_dfu_ble: max_conn_interval: 12
    <debug> nrf_dfu_ble: min_conn_interval: 12
    <debug> nrf_dfu_ble: slave_latency: 0
    <debug> nrf_dfu_ble: conn_sup_timeout: 600
    <debug> nrf_dfu_ble: Received BLE_GATTS_EVT_EXCHANGE_MTU_REQUEST (request: 517, reply: 247).
    <debug> nrf_dfu_ble: Received BLE_GAP_EVT_DATA_LENGTH_UPDATE_REQUEST.
    <debug> nrf_dfu_ble: Received BLE_GAP_EVT_DATA_LENGTH_UPDATE (251, max_rx_time 2120).
    <debug> nrf_dfu_req_handler: Handle NRF_DFU_OP_OBJECT_SELECT (command)
    <debug> nrf_dfu_req_handler: Request handling complete. Result: 0x1
    <debug> nrf_dfu_ble: Set receipt notif
    <debug> nrf_dfu_req_handler: Handle NRF_DFU_OP_RECEIPT_NOTIF_SET
    <debug> nrf_dfu_req_handler: Request handling complete. Result: 0x1
    <debug> app: Shutting down transports (found: 1)
    <debug> nrf_dfu_req_handler: Handle NRF_DFU_OP_OBJECT_CREATE (command)
    <debug> app: timer_stop (0x20005984)
    <debug> app: timer_activate (0x20005984)
    <debug> nrf_dfu_req_handler: Request handling complete. Result: 0x1
    <debug> nrf_dfu_ble: Buffer 0x200066B0 acquired, len 141 (244)
    <debug> nrf_dfu_req_handler: Handle NRF_DFU_OP_OBJECT_WRITE (command)
    <debug> nrf_dfu_ble: Freeing buffer 0x200066B0
    <debug> nrf_dfu_req_handler: Request handling complete. Result: 0x1
    <debug> nrf_dfu_req_handler: Handle NRF_DFU_OP_CRC_GET (command)
    <debug> nrf_dfu_req_handler: Request handling complete. Result: 0x1
    <debug> nrf_dfu_req_handler: Handle NRF_DFU_OP_OBJECT_EXECUTE (command)
    <debug> nrf_dfu_validation: PB: Init packet data len: 64
    <info> nrf_dfu_validation: Signature required. Checking signature.
    <info> nrf_dfu_validation: Calculating hash (len: 64)
    <info> nrf_dfu_validation: Verify signature
    <info> nrf_dfu_validation: Image verified
    <debug> app: Enter nrf_dfu_cache_prepare()
    <debug> app: required_size: 0x9268.
    <debug> app: single_bank: false.
    <debug> app: keep_app: false.
    <debug> app: pass: 0.
    <debug> app: cache_address: 0x26000.
    <debug> app: cache_too_small: true.
    <debug> app: keep_firmware: false.
    <debug> app: delete_more: true.
    <debug> app: pass: 1.
    <debug> app: cache_address: 0x26000.
    <debug> app: cache_too_small: true.
    <debug> app: keep_firmware: true.
    0x4
    <warning> nrf_dfu_ble: DFU request 4 failed with error: 0x4
    <debug> nrf_dfu_ble: Received BLE_GAP_EVT_CONN_PARAM_UPDATE
    <debug> nrf_dfu_ble: max_conn_interval: 6
    <debug> nrf_dfu_ble: min_conn_interval: 6
    <debug> nrf_dfu_ble: slave_latency: 0
    <debug> nrf_dfu_ble: conn_sup_timeout: 500
    <debug> nrf_dfu_ble: Received BLE_GAP_EVT_CONN_PARAM_UPDATE
    <debug> nrf_dfu_ble: max_conn_interval: 12
    <debug> nrf_dfu_ble: min_conn_interval: 12
    <debug> nrf_dfu_ble: slave_latency: 0
    <debug> nrf_dfu_ble: conn_sup_timeout: 600

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