Debug output via highspeed serial port

The FireBee's highspeed serial port can be used to read debug ouput from FireBee on another computer. The debug output shows many details about FireBee hardware initialization, BaS- and FPGA firmware versions and more.
Also MiNT/XaAES boot- and debug messages can be viewed on the remote computer.

Basically you need:
  • A FireBee and a remote computer with a serial port. The following manual is tested on Falcon/CT60 with FreeMiNT, but may work similar on other (030+) Ataris with MiNT or with Linux PCs.

  • A Nullmodem cable with DB-9 female connectors. These can be found in the web for small price, but with basic solder skills you can also configure it yourself. The wire should be shielded, e.g. 10 x 0.14 mm2, type LIYCY (max. length 30 meters).

    DB-9 female | DB-9 female
    Pin Connector A | Pin Connector B
    1+6 (bridge!) | 4
    2 | 3
    3 | 2
    4 | 1+6 (bridge!)
    5 | 5
    7 | 8
    8 | 7
    9 not connected | 9 not connected
  • On the remote computer, a console program is needed which catches the data from the serial port. There is "minicom", available for both Atari/MiNT and Linux PC; of course any other console program on other operating systems will also work.

    In general, the console comm parameters must be set to:
    Speed: 115200 Bps
    Bits: 8
    Parity: none
    Stopbits: 1
    Hardware flow control

    Download minicom (SpareMiNT rpm archive) for Atari here: https://github.com/freemint/s ... 8kmint.rpm

    For LinuxPC, please see your distributions software repository.


1. Connect the nullmodem cable to the FireBee highspeed serial port and to the Falcon's serial port (Modem2).

2. On FireBee, set the serial port speed in fireconf.cpx controlpanel: In section Boot / option Debug, select "115200" and close the cpx with the OK button.
Note: This is not needed if you are running EmuTOS! The FireBee´s Basis System (BaS) sets the serial port speed to "115200" at start and EmuTOS uses this value as default.

Now on Falcon, start minicom in commandline shell.


Minicom is controlled by keyboard, by typing first CTRL+A and then a key for the different options. All options are displayed with CTRL+A, then "Z".

First type CTRL+A and then key "O" to open the minicom configuration menu.


Goto "Serial port setup", press RETURN. In this dialog you first have to set the serial device: Press key "A" and then edit " /dev/aux " here, finish with RETURN.


Next press key "E" for setting the serial port speed:


Type "I" for 115200 and leave the dialog with RETURN.
Close all menues with RETURN key or EXIT entry. That's all.

Now restart your FireBee and you'll see the initialization output in minicom window. For displaying the FreeMiNT debug messages you have to set in FreeMiNT boot menu the options "Debug output device: 8" and "Debug level:" to a value higher than "none".
The output can be logged in a file, too (minicom config/Filenames and paths).

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