How to debug a user space application with STM32CubeIDE

This article provides guidelines to setup environment for developing and debugging a user space application using STM32CubeIDE.

1 Prerequisites[edit]

Minimum hardware

  • STM32MP15x-based board
  • Linux console
  • Ethernet (or Ethernet over USB) for connection to Linux® Cortex®-A

Minimum software

  • STM32CubeIDE v1.4.2 installed and
    • STM32MP15 project created
    • Yocto SDK installed thanks to "Setup OpenSTLinux" Cortex-A contextual menu

Screenshots, illustrating this article, have been taken using STM32CubeIDE v1.4.2. In same way, examples of paths correspond to STM32CubeIDE v1.4.2.

2 Create a "user space" project[edit]

  • Open new C Project wizard: File -> New -> Project... C Project.
  • In first window, choose OpenSTLinux SDK
New C Project wizard
  • then Next and Advanced settings...
New C Project wizard
  • Setup SDKPATH variable into Project Properties > C/C++ Build > Environment
    • select first the configuration you want to use Debug or Release,
    • then Edit variable > Variables
SDKPATH variable setup
  • If SDK installation is embedded inside STM32CubeIDE then toolchain is located under (e.g. with STM32CubeIDE v1.4.2) :<InstallDir>/plugins/
  • In case SDK is installed on your disk, give its installation path :
SDKPATH setup - local disk
  • To populate this project with "main.c" file, select project, right click: New -> File -> main.c and fill it with some C code.

3 Build[edit]

  • Select your project, right-click and then Build Project.
User space project build

4 Preparing Debug Configuration[edit]

Your target must be Linux booted and network connected. In order to check it, please, start Target Status widget on the bottom right.

Target Status - green

Target Status widget creates MPU SSH in Connections view (Window > Show View > Other… Connections > Connections) to be used in Debug Configuration

MPU SSH connection

5 Debug Configuration[edit]

  • Select your project, right-click Debug as... > Debug Configurations.
  • Then create a C/C++ Remote Application debug configuration, double clicking on it.

5.1 Main tab[edit]

  • Fill a destination directory, for example: /tmp/UserSpaceExe
  • Select a connection: MPU SSH 
Debug configuration - main

5.2 Debugger tab[edit]

Now set-up GDB Client with SDK one

  • For SDK embedded and installed inside STM32CubeIDE (e.g. with STM32CubeIDE v1.4.2) :<Stm32CubeIDEInstallDir>/plugins/
  • For SDK installed on disk : <SdkInstallDir>/sysroots/x86_64-ostl_sdk-linux/usr/bin/arm-ostl-linux-gnueabi/arm-ostl-linux-gnueabi-gdb
Debug configuration - debugger

6 Debug[edit]

Click Debug :

  1. Executable is downloaded to the target,
  2. GDBServer is launched on the target,
  3. GDBClient is launched on the workstation and can exchange via network with GDBServer,
User space debug
Info white.png Information
in case of error; please check if GDBServer is still running on the target.