I am personally very fond of the PICKIT range. In the past, just getting a system of some sort that offered relatively wide range support for PICs at an affordable price, was virtually impossible for hobbyists.
All ZarDynamix PIC development PCBs are compatible with the PICKIT 2 and PICKIT 3 and recommend this device for hobbyists and semi professional PIC related development.
Then the PICKIT 2 came along sporting its slim, self-powered and portable design at an affordable price. One of my most favorite features of the PICKIt 2 was the Device Auto Detect feature. Why? Well Microchip has so many devices and it takes ages to scroll through a…ll of them just before you reach the one that you want.
The PICKIT 3 was introduced and if you are wondering why you may need to buy one, the answer is that the PICKIT 2 supports the Microchip product offering to a point and thereafter the PICKIT 3 is required. If you are not like me where you buy what’s new just to see how it goes, well then the PICKIT 2 should be fine as your programmer of choice until something changes.
The PICKIT 3 however offers support for the new 16F1xx series devices. If you are extending your expertise into this new arena then, yes. You will need to shell out some money to obtain one.
Getting to the title of the article, for some time there was a “PICKIT 3 Standalone” application. I did not like it was it was basically an extension of the MPLAB IDE – by function. Recently I noticed that Microchip had release the PICKIT 3 scripting tool, so I downloaded it and installed.
The first step was to get the PICKIT 3 out of what microchip calls “MPLAB” mode. You are pointed to a local folder which has the PIKKIT 3 new os hex file. Install it and viola. My PIC auto detect feature is back, not to mention that it does not always prompt to install the ICD data it needs. The PICKIT 3 BETA Scripting tool brings us back to the PICKIT 2 days with a PICKIT 3 programmer.
It also automatically auto detected the PIC16F827 that was installed on the target PCB. Time to get cracking with a 16F1xx device!
If you are looking for your personal download of the software, see the microchip site at www.microchip.com