IC Tester HELP - Program section
ictester program

Ictester is command line program for working with IC Tester device.
Here is syntax and explanations of options for program version 0.0.6:
Note: options from version 0.0.5 didn't change so you can use this explanations for program v0.0.5 also.

ictester -[p port_no] -[a[ do]dfhilrst[o]v] -[w <data>] -[ca <file>] [IC_number]
IC_number : root number from tested IC, eq. 7400
This will search for IC_number in database and if found, perform testing IC.
From version 0.0.6 there is database file which contains (as test data files) test data but in binary form. Therefore database is smaller and excellent for use on computers with small amount of space (eq.: from floppy disks).
This IC_number is root number of tested IC, which you can write under -a option also, now here is similar approach, difference is that you can't write file name only root number. E.q.: ictester 7404
And that's it, program will now search default database /usr/local/share/ictester/default.tdf or /usr/local/share/ictester/data/default.tdf for entry where 7404 test data is (if exists of course).
If it can't find test data here in those database(s), it will be search all databases whatever named in /usr/local/share/ictester/ and /usr/local/share/ictester/data/ directory.
If program didn't find test data in all databases, then it will be search for test data file named 7404.adf under earlier mentioned directories.
This last search for test data file is identical as using -a option, see details below for -a option.
After that if it find test data, it will perform test on IC which is in test socket at IC Tester device.
-a <file> : check ic from analyze file, analyze tested IC.
This option read <file> and analyze tested IC with it. In that file are test data which can tell you does tested IC working and if it's not what the problem is.
E.g.: You have IC SN7400 (4 x NOTAND with 2 inputs) which may be damaged but you don't know that for sure.
Put that IC in test socked and run program (ictester -a 7400), after that program will use analyze file 7400.adf and test IC.
Then it will report what is damaged, e.q. There is problem with gate 1 at output pin 3, GATE 1 DON'T WORK !
So there's only one error which is reported and now you know that IC is damaged at gate 1 (input pins at 1 and 2, output pin 3), but there isn't report on other gates, so you can use this IC for something else, because other gates working fine.
Yes I know that IC is cheap, but if I need only one NOTAND gate to make some device and have this damaged IC, I'll not spent half hour to get in store for new IC.
-ad : DIODE test, with auto detect.
This option is using Diode/OCR addon, so it must be place on test socket at IC Tester device. Connect testing diode on pin 1 and 3 at test socket of addon device and follow instruction from program.
Currently you can test only regular (standard) diodes and LED diodes, other like capacitance diode, photo diode, etc. can't be tested here.
Program will report if tested diode working and what pinout is.
-ao : OCR test (triac and thyristor), with auto detect.
This option is using Diode/OCR addon, so it must be place on test socket at IC Tester device. Connect test OCR element on three pins at addon device and follow instruction from program.
Program will report if tested OCR element works, is it triac or thyristor and it will display pinout.
Note: pinout for triacs aren't complete, because addon device can with 100% secure distinct which pin is A1 or G.
-c <file> : check IC from dump file, compare with data from file.
This option read <file> and compare it with data from tested IC. Do not use dump files for testing ICs, because valid data are only for simply ICs with gates like NOTAND (7400), NOTOR (7402), etc. When you try to dump complex ICs like counters (7490, 7493, etc.), each time you scan it, data will be different.
This option is used to determine if unknown tested IC is simply IC (like 7400, 7402, 7404, etc.) or complex IC.
Dump files can be very big, from 2 to 4 Mbytes.
-d : dump IC, use for quick test and finding type of IC.
This option creates dump files, of course finding type is not included in program yet.
After you start program with this option (ictester -d) there will be several questions for creating dump file.
First you must enter information for number of pins at IC which you dumping.
Next you must enter which pin is +5 volts power pin, after that enter which pin is GND pin.
You are now complete hardware form, next type your first and second name (optional), that we know who is author of dump file.
You can type and e-mail address (optional) if you want that people can contact you.
And on the end retype what is written on IC which you dump.
You are now completed information form, next type file name where you want to save dumped data.
-f : measure working frequency.
You can use this option to measure how fast your computer can send and receive data from IC Tester device.
There are two measurements, read speed and write (set) speed. Writing (setting data to test socket) is about 37% slower than reading.
Speed depends mostly on hardware speed of parallel port controller, but processor speed have also influence in total speed.
-h : display this usage information.
This option is used to display short description of each option that you may use with program.
-l : lock write on ictester and reset device (safe mode).
This is very important option. Use this option first, before you connect power to ictester device. Program with this option resets port and send reset and lock signal to ictester device.
After using this option, IC2 to IC5 will be disabled and all data which may be set on SOC1 (test socket) are set to NC (Not Connected).
There is possibility, after you connect power to ictester device, that on parallel port are some garbage data which may cause short circuit on IC Tester device. This is very dangerous because longer exposure to this state can destroy transistors on IC Tester device.
So connect IC Tester device to cable, use program with this option (ictester -l) and power up device.
NOTE: If LED1 (green led) is light up and LED2 (yellow led) isn't on or LED3 (red led) is on, there's short circuit somewhere in device, DISONNECT EXTERNAL POWER INSTANTLY, then use program with this option and do powering again.
-p <port> : set communication to port <port>, default 888 (0x378).
This option is used to set new port for communication with device.
By default first parallel port is used, on address 888 (hex 0x378) or LPT1. Other available ports on standard PC are 632 (hex 0x278) and 956 (hex 0x3bc). So if you have configured parallel port to other address, use this option.
NOTE: Use this option always as first option in program.
-R : rapidly read data from device and report errors.
This is useful option if you must recheck how tested element responds. Eq. if there is short circuit at tested element, data on IC Tester device can variant from second to second and you can in different times got different results, then use this option to see what's go in on.
On other hand you can test some counter ICs which have internal oscillator installed, when you power it up they will start counting and data at IC Tester will be changing from time to time.
In those cases you will find that this option as very useful to see what is happening on test socket.
-r : read data from test socket on IC tester device.
This option shows state of each pin at test socket on IC Tester device.
Selected port is: 0x378, status at test socket on ictester:
  .--. .--. .--. .--. .--. .--. .--. .--.
  | 1| | 1| | 1| | 0| | 1| | 1| | 0| | 1|
|  16   15   14   13   12   11   10    9  |
 )		TEST SOCKET		  |
| * 1    2    3    4    5    6    7    8  |
  | 1| | 1| | 0| | 1| | 1| | 0| | 0| | 1|
  `--' `--' `--' `--' `--' `--' `--' `--'
This output is state of powered IC sn7400 (+5 V on pin 16 and GND at 7, pins 8 and 9 aren't connected because sn7400 have only 14 pins).
Something about reading from device, if on pin at test socket is set HIGH (+5 volts) or NC (not connected) reading will be always 1 (HIGH).
Only if on pin at test socket is set LOW (GND) then reading will be 0 (LOW).
When you creating analyze test file, this is useful option to see what's going on at test socket.
-s : create list of data files in supported.html file.
Use this option to scan all databases and test analyze files and display list of all test files for ICs.
Program first read and display data from database files and then from analyze test files. If test entry is repeating it will be not shown double in supported.html file. Eq. if you have in database test entry 7400 and also analyze test file named 7400.adf, there will be shown only entry from database.
-t : test functionality of IC Tester device.
Use this option when testing IC Tester device accuracy, this is most useful option for new build device to see if everything working o.k. and if there's error, where is it.
This option serves as self test of device, program can tell you on which part at IC Tester device is error.
For detailed description of how to use this option read Testing ICT device section.
-to : test functionality of OCR add-on on IC Tester device.
Similar as -t option, this option test functionality of Diode/OCR addon device. If there is error on device, program will be display exact location or error at addon device.
For detailed description of using this option, read Testing OCR addon section.
-v : print the program version number.
This option print current version of software with copyright and license notice.
-w <data> : write (set) <data> to test socket.
Use this to set data on test socket at IC Tester device.
Data which will be set are written after this option and contains 16 characters which represent each pin on test socket (SOC1).
Note: if you do not write all 16 characters, program will be fill up rest of with NC character (=).
You can use only this characters:
  • 1 - sets +5 volts on pin.
  • 0 - sets 0 volts (GND) on pin.
  • = - sets NC (not connected) on pin.
If you write any other character it will be considered as NC (not connected). If you don't write any characters, by default all will be set to NC.
So if you want powered IC sn7400, you must set +5 volts to its 14 pin and GND at pin 7. To do so manually with this option, write:
ictester -w ======0========1
And you can read status with -r option. Now you see that +5 volts is set to pin 16 on test socket, that's because IC have 14 pins and 1 pin is in pin 1 at test socket, pin 2 at pin 2, ..., pin 7 at pin 7, pin 8 now at pin 10 at test socket, pin 9 at pin 11, etc.
Always place tested IC in test socket that pin 1 from tested IC match with pin 1 at test socket on IC Tester device.
NOTE: When setting data on test socket at device, make sure that you do not make short circuit on tested IC.
How it can be? Easy, for example you test IC sn7400, input pins at first NOTAND gates are 1 and 2, output pin is 3, so you set at first three pins 0 or GND (0 volts), when on input pins is GND, IC will respond and set to output pin 1 or HIGH (+5 volts).
Then there's the problem because on output pin 3 from tested IC coming +5 volts and we send thru test socket GND and that's short circuit.
IC Tester device have ability to adapt in this situations to avoid damage of tested IC, but some older CMOS ICs which don't have protective diode may burn out.
So be careful.

All right, that's for options, you can now take a look at Database section to see how you can build your own test files and find information how test files looks like.

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