Hardware Breakpoints

A hardware breakpoint is an event whose execution will cause a halt. Hardware breakpoints are implemented with comparison registers built into the target microcontroller. Upon a match with the item being watched, the program halts and control is transferred to the debug executive.

Tools_Options_Embedded.png Hardware Breakpoints in MPLAB® X

Icon Hardware Breakpoint Type
LineBreakpoint.png Line Breakpoint
AddressBreakpoint.png Address Breakpoint
DataBreakpoint.gif Data Breakpoint
EventBreakpoint.gif Event Breakpoint
SequenceBreakpoint.gif Sequence Breakpoint (Complex)
TupleBreakpoint.gif Tuple Breakpoint (Complex)

Available Breakpoints

Hardware breakpoints are limited in number (typically three or four). The actual number depends on the target microcontroller's hardware. The Dashboard window shows the number of available breakpoints by type and also keeps track of the number of breakpoints you have used. You can access this window by going to the top menu and then selecting Window > Dashboard.

MPLAB X IDE will automatically use hardware breakpoints by default.

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Limitations

For limitations on breakpoint operation, including skidding amounts and the general number of hardware breakpoints per device, see the online help file in MPLAB X IDE (Limitations - Emulators and Debuggers section).

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