» Support » Software » Search » BSP-XPE-VRTX-R2.00 » ReadMe

ReadMe: BSP-XPE-VRTX-R2.00

Microsoft Windows XP Embedded (XPe) Board Support Package (BSP) for the DMP Vortex Platform

Boards Supported Newt (VL-EPIC-17)
Tomcat (VL-EPM-16)
Expansion Modules Supported EPM-NET-100
OS Version Windows XP Embedded Version 2002 (SP2)
OS Build Version 2600.xpsp.050301-1521 (SP2)
IDE/Platform Windows Embedded Studio (SP2) + SP2FeaturePack2007
Target Designer Version 2.0.1024.0
BSP Version 2.00
Quick Login Instructions
Login administrator
Password password


  1. Legal Disclaimer
  2. Purpose
  3. Package Contents
  4. Prerequisites
  5. Build Instructions
  6. USB Boot
  7. Expansion Modules
  8. Headless Operation
  9. PageFile Support
  10. Important Notes
  11. References


VersaLogic is making no claims of usability, efficacy or warranty. Information in this document is provided in connection with VersaLogic products. No license, express or implied, by estoppel or otherwise, to any intellectual property rights is granted by this document. VersaLogic assumes no liability whatsoever, and VersaLogic disclaims any express or implied warranty relating to the sale and/or use of VersaLogic products, including liability or warranties relating to fitness for a particular purpose, merchantability or infringement of any patent, copyright or other intellectual property right. VersaLogic products are not intended for use in life-saving or life-sustaining applications.

VersaLogic disclaims all warranties and liabilities for the use of this document and the information contained herein, and assumes no responsibility for any errors which may appear in this document, nor does VersaLogic make a commitment to update the information contained herein. VersaLogic reserves the right to make changes to this document at any time without notice.


This package contains Windows XPe support files for VersaLogic's Vortex-based embedded single board computers (SBCs). Please note that this package does not contain the actual XPe image which you can copy to your target device for booting. You will need to build the image yourself in your own development environment (Windows Embedded Studio).


NoteWe are assuming (and it is highly recommended) that you have installed the XPe development tools at their default location as specified by the setup program:

C:\Program Files\Windows Embedded

If this is not the case, you will need to substitute the proper path as per your customized setup.

The zip file contains the following items:

  1. C:\Windows Embedded Data\Vortex\TapFiles
    This folder contains the TAP file for the boards supported by this package:
    NoteThe above tap file can be used on Newt (VL-EPIC-17) and Tomcat (VL-EPM-16) boards. See the Important Notes section for additional details.
  2. C:\Windows Embedded Data\Vortex\Drivers
    This folder contains drivers for the on-board components like video, Ethernet, audio, USB client, etc.
  3. C:\Windows Embedded Data\Vortex\ProjectFiles
    This folder contains an unsupported project file called Vortex.slx that can be loaded into the target designer to generate XPe embedded images that can be copied to the target device.
  4. C:\Windows Embedded Data\3rdParty\Drivers
    This folder contains drivers for the expansion modules that this BSP supports.
  5. C:\Windows Embedded Data\3rdParty\Utilities
    This folder contains a batch script called netset.bat and other files which are useful in assigning a static IP address to your computer if you are running a headless system. Please see the Headless Operation section for more details.
  6. C:\Windows Embedded Data\Vortex\README_BSP-XPE-VRTX-R2.00.txt
    Text version of this page/file.
  7. C:\Windows Embedded Data\Vortex\CHANGELOG_BSP-XPE-VRTX.txt
    A brief history and summary of the version releases for this package.


Host (Development Machine)

  1. Windows XP
  2. 256 MB RAM (min.)
  3. Microsoft Windows Embedded Studio (SP2) + FeaturePack2007 installed
  4. 1 GB of free space (min.)

Target (Vortex-based Board)

  1. Keyboard and Mouse
    1. PS/2 (recommended)
    2. -- or --

    3. USB
  2. Boot Media (1 GB min.)
    1. PATA device - Hard drive or CompactFlash
    2. -- or --

    3. USB device - Hard drive or Jump drive
  3. Display Device
    1. VGA monitor
    2. -- or --

    3. Flat Panel Display (FPD)


Following is an overview of the steps required to build a successful XPe image from the contents of this package:

  1. Importing Drivers
    The first step is to import the drivers into the Component Database Manager (CDM). You can launch the CDM from Start→Programs→Microsoft Windows Embedded Studio→Component Database Manager. Now click on the Import button and browse to the SLD (*.sld) file in the driver folder and then click Import. You will need to import the SLD file from each of the device driver folders, namely Ethernet, Video, UsbClient and Audio, separately. In short, make sure that you import all of the SLD files from the following folder:

    C:\Windows Embedded Data\Vortex\Drivers

    NoteIn you are using our supplied sample project SLX file, all of the driver components that get imported from the SLD files are already added, so you should not be required to add these components again. Just importing SLD files into the component database manager should be sufficient.

  2. Create a New Project
    The next step is to create a new project in the Target Designer. You can launch the Target Designer from Start→Programs→Microsoft Windows Embedded Studio→Target Designer. Go to File→New and give a name in the Configuration Name field. Leave the default value in the Choose Platform field, which is generally set to Windows XP Embedded Client (x86).
  3. Importing Target Analyzer Probe (TAP) File
    The next step is to import the TAP file (*.pmq) into your project for the board that you are using. To import a TAP file, go to File→Import, browse to the TAP file supplied in this package, click Open, and then click Start. This process may take a few minutes, depending on the speed of your machine. We have supplied a TAP file as a sample but recommend that users create their own file to support any additional devices that may have been added to the embedded system, such as video cards.
  4. Configure Image
    Now you can start adding/removing components as per your image requirements. Refer to [1] for more details.

    NoteIf you are not sure how to configure your image, you can use our sample project file (*.slx) to build your image. If you use our project file, make sure that you format your device with a single NTFS partition and make it an active partition. However, we do not officially support this project file.

  5. Build Image
    Once you are done configuring your image, go to Configuration→Build Target Image... and click the Build button. By default, your image will be placed in the following folder:

    C:\Windows Embedded Images\

  6. Format Target Storage Device
    We recommend using the steps outlined at Microsoft Developer Network (MSDN) - see Preparing the Target Computer at [2], or you can follow the steps from the VersaLogic KnowledgeBase article [3].
  7. Test the Image
    Transfer the contents of the above folder (C:\Windows Embedded Images\) to your storage media (hard drive, CompactFlash, etc.). Make sure that your storage media is formatted with NTFS or FAT partition, depending upon the file-system that you selected while configuring your image (Step 5d). The partition should be marked as Active.
  8. XPe Login
    After the First Boot Agent (FBA) completes, the user will get the XPe login screen:

    User = Administrator
    Do not type anything in the password field

    Hit Enter and you should be in the XPe desktop.


This BSP supports booting from USB devices like flash drives, thumb drives, hard drives, etc. For more details on how to boot from USB, please refer to the VersaLogic KnowledgeBase article [4]. If your USB drive has a different bootloader (such as GRUB, LILO, QNX, etc.), then you may need to boot from a DOS 6.22 floppy with your USB drive attached to the system and give the following command:

A:/>fdisk /mbr

For more details on resolving boot issues, see [5].


NoteFor your convenience, we are supplying a new macro component called VersaLogic Add-on Cards which, upon adding, will pull in the driver components required by the expansion modules listed below. You can find this component at:

C:\Windows Embedded Data\3rdParty\Drivers

You can individually exclude the components by going to the Settings properties of the VersaLogic Add-on Cards component and un-checking the sub-components listed there.


The default XPe component database has the driver for this card. Simply add the following component to your SLX file:

AMD PCNET Family PCI Ethernet Adapter

By default, the supplied project configuration SLX file comes with the driver component added, but disabled.


The default XPe component database does not have the driver for this card. You first need to import the SLD file from:

C:\Windows Embedded Data\3rdParty\Drivers\Video\EPM-VID-3\sld

into your Component Database Manager. After that, add the following component to your SLX file:

ATI RAGE Mobility (EPM-VID-3)

By default, the supplied project configuration SLX file comes with the driver component added, but disabled.


The default XPe component database has the driver for this card. Simply add the following component to your SLX file:

Texas Instruments PCI-1420 CardBus Controller

By default, the supplied project configuration SLX file comes with the driver component added, but disabled.


The PCM-3640 expansion board provides an embedded system with four additional ISA-based serial ports. Following is an example of how to get eight serial ports working on the Newt (VL-EPIC-17) or Tomcat (VL-EPM-16) (four on-board serial ports) with the PCM-3640 (four additional serial ports) attached.

NoteThe following is just an example of suggested settings – there may be other ways to configure the serial ports.

Board Configuration

In order to enable and use all four serial ports on the PCM-3640, make sure you set the IRQ jumpers so that the serial ports have the following IRQ assignments:


You also need to configure the port addresses in such a way that the first serial port on the PCM-3640 gets base address 0x210, the second serial port gets 0x218, and so on . . . In order to do that, you need to configure the DIP switches as follows:

A3DIP Switch 1ON
A4DIP Switch 2OFF
A5DIP Switch 3ON
A6DIP Switch 4ON
A7DIP Switch 5ON
A8DIP Switch 6ON
ModeDip Switch 7OFF

NoteON means the switch is towards the board; OFF means the switch is away from the board.

For more information on configuring the PCM-3640, refer to the manual [6].

CMOS Configuration

You need to forward the above I/O ranges to ISA [7] and enable ISA IRQs 5 and 7 [8] in the CMOS.

OS Configuration

You need to manually add the serial ports from the Windows Add Hardware Wizard utility in the Control Panel. After adding the serial ports, you need to assign the following I/O Base Address and IRQ resources to the respective ports and then reboot Windows:

NameIOBASEIRQModes Tested


The default XPe component database does not have the driver for this card. You first need to import the SLD file from:

C:\Windows Embedded Data\3rdParty\Drivers\Ethernet\KSZ8841\sld

into your Component Database Manager. After that, add the following component to your SLX file:

Micrel KSZ8841 PCI Ethernet Adapter

By default, the supplied project configuration SLX file comes with the driver component added, but disabled.

NoteIf you are using the VL-EPIC-17B model of the Newt, then you need to enable this component. Otherwise, your on-board Ethernet device won't work.


The default XPe component database does not have the driver for this card. You first need to import the SLD file from:

C:\Windows Embedded Data\3rdParty\Drivers\Video\EPM-V4E\sld

into your Component Database Manager. After that, add the following component to your SLX file:

XGI Volari Z9-Z9s-Z9M v1.14.04 (EPM-V4E)

By default, the supplied project configuration SLX file comes with the driver component added, but disabled.


The Newt (VL-EPIC-17) and Tomcat (VL-EPM-16) boards do not come with a native on-board video controller. Therefore, you will either have to install an additional EPM-VID-3 or VL-EPM-V4 card (or any other 3rd party PCI-based video card) to see any output on your monitor. If you decide NOT to install a video card, you can still access the system using the Remote Desktop Protocol utility. The following changes are required in order to Remote Desktop into the XP Embedded Image running on the target board:

  1. RDP requires that the user has a password set. For this we added the Administrator Account component and set the following login credentials [9]:
    Login administrator
    Password password
    You will use the above login information whenever you connect with the XP Embedded image running on the target device through RDP.
  2. Adding the Administrative Account component also requires you to add the Automatic Logon component (although not a dependency) and set the administrator user to auto login upon boot. If you don't do this, you won't be able to connect through RDP unless you log in as administrator once at the physical console after your XP Embedded image boots for the first time.
  3. In order to use RDP, you need to know the IP address of the target machine. If you have a VGA card, you can always check the IP address once the system boots at the physical console and then RDP into it. However, in the case where you are operating truly headless, you have the following alternatives:
    1. Ask your network administrator to assign a specific IP address to the target board's Ethernet MAC address. This way, even if the XP Embedded networking services are set to use DHCP (by default), your DHCP server will always assign the (static) IP address that you have mapped with the MAC address of the target board.
    2. Alternatively, you can import the Commslog Netsetup component which runs a script called netset.bat upon system boot and sets the IP address specified within it [10]. We have included this component in this BSP but disabled it in the project file. Please see the sub-section Running scripts automatically on boot below for more details on how to execute this script.

      NoteIf you decide to use this component, then you need to modify the netset.bat file located at:

      C:\Windows Embedded Data\3rdParty\Utilities\Netsetup\rep

      to enter the proper values (IP Address, Subnet Mask, Default Gateway, etc.) for your LAN setup.

  4. Lastly, you need to add either the Headless VGA Driver and/or Terminal Services Core components to your image [11].
  5. (Optional) It is a good idea to suppress the message/dialog box that might appear as the Windows desktop loads [12].

Running scripts automatically on boot

There are many ways to run a batch (.bat) file automatically when your XP Embedded system boots. Following are some of the methods:

  1. AutoExNT [13]

    This method works if you would like to run a script any time after the user logs in for the first time after XP Embedded finishes its FBA. However, if you want to run a script even before the user logs in for the first time, then this method won't work. For example, if you have a headless system and you want your system to get a static IP address so that you can Remote Desktop into it, this method won't work because there is no way a user can log in on a physical console on a headless system. In short, this method requires that a user log in at least once before this script auto executes (even before the user logs in) every time the system boots.

  2. Group Policy Editor [14]

    This method works, but requires a lot of additional steps (like adding the Group Policy components) and then adding registry entries which tell the XP Embedded system to auto execute the batch file every time the system starts up.

  3. Startup Folder (Recommended)

    This method is by far the easiest and best tested method of batch file auto execution. Simply make sure that your batch file gets copied to the following location:

    C:\Documents and Settings\All Users\Start Menu\Programs\Startup\

    and add the Automatic Logon component to your image. If you look at the component Commslog Netstup (supplied with this BSP) in the Component Designer (see the Package Contents section), you will notice that we copy the script netset.bat to the above location so that it gets executed automatically after the user logs in.


NoteThis section is applicable if you are using 128 MB RAM on your target system i.e. VL-EPM-16S and VL-EPM-16E.

If your target board has just 128 MB of RAM, then you will likely see warnings and error messages related to low system memory during the FBA process. In order to overcome this issue, you need to enable Paging support in XP Embedded by enabling the Pagefile support in the Standard PC component. A 256 MB Pagefile should be sufficient to install XP Embedded on the VL-EPM-16S and VL-EPM-16E. The project file Vortex.slx supplied in this BSP has Pagefile support (256 MB min. / 1024 MB max.) enabled by default.

NoteUSB devices do not support use of the PageFile mechanism in XP Embedded [15]. So, if you run FBA on a USB device attached to a system with 128 MB of RAM, you will likely see the low system memory error.


  1. The following VGA driver components are included in the project file Vortex.slx to cover a variety of usage scenarios:
    1. ATI Rage Mobility (EPM-VID-3)
      For VersaLogic's EPM-VID-3 PCI-based video card. Included in the supplied PMQ file.
    2. XGI Volari Z9-Z9s-Z9M v1.14.04 (VL-EPM-V4)
      For VersaLogic's VL-EPM-V4 PCI-based video card. Included in the supplied PMQ file.
    3. Standard VGA 640x480
      For any generic PCI-based video card.
    4. Headless VGA Driver
      If you are operating headless (no video card attached). See the Headless Operation section for more details.
    Unfortunately, the EPM-VID-3 card has reached End of Life (EOL) status and is not recommended for new designs. We recommend that users use the VL-EPM-V4 or any other 3rd party PCI-based video card which works under Windows XP for their XP Embedded image designs on the Vortex platform.
  2. It takes about 25–30 minutes for FBA to run if you build an image using our supplied project file.
  3. You might not be able to run your XP Embedded image from a USB device if your target board has only 128 MB of RAM. See the PageFile Support section for more details.
  4. When importing the supplied PMQ file VortexDX-SoC.pmq, the component Micrel KSZ8841 PCI Ethernet Adapter, which supports the on-board Micrel Ethernet port on the Vl-EPIC-17B, does not get included automatically in the Target Designer. You will have to manually add the component to your project configuration file. However, if you use the supplied project file Vortex.slx, you don't need to add this component as it is already included.


  1. Developing a Windows XP Embedded Image
  3. How to Load a Bootable Windows XP Embedded Image
  4. How to Load a Bootable Windows XP Embedded Image
  5. Can't Boot from CompactFlash
  7. EPM-16 (Tomcat) CMOS Setup Reference#PCIPnP
  8. EPM-16 (Tomcat) CMOS Setup Reference#IRQx

Copyright © 2012 VersaLogic Corp. All rights reserved.