Working with ASDB and AWC files in Active-HDL


Active-HDL stores simulation data into a simulation database (ASDB) file. This file contains the history of values of specific signals and hierarchies of the design that were traced during simulation. The default output file is defined by the $waveformoutput variable. In order to view the contents of the simulation database, a waveform configuration (AWC) file is connected to an ASDB file. The AWC file contains information regarding the list of objects that are displayed, the color, radix, order in which they are displayed and many other properties. You can associate many different AWC files with a single ASDB file. Similarly, you can also associate a single AWC file with many different ASDB files as long as the objects in the AWC file are tracked in the ASDB files and follow the same hierarchy.

Figure 1. ASDB and AWC file associations

The use of the simulation databases and the Accelerated Waveform Viewer introduces a number of benefits and improvements. One of the major enhancements implemented into the simulator and the Accelerated Waveform Viewer over the Standard Waveform Viewer/Editor is its performance. Additionally, when this waveform is selected as the default viewer, the stimulators can be specified not only in the form of a testbench or applied by using the force macro command but they can also be applied directly in the Stimulators dialog box.

Generating Simulation Database (ASDB) file

  • The $waveformoutput variable can be set to specify the default ASDB output file. To change this, you may set the variable on the console: Set $waveformoutput c:\AHDL_Demo\src\my_wave.asdb

  • In scripts, the ASDB output file can also be changed in the ASIM command. To do this, add the –asdb switch followed by the output file name: asim AHDL_Demo -asdb my_wave.asdb

  • In GUI, the ASDB file can also be saved after simulation together with the AWC file. After running the simulation and logging the signals in the waveform viewer, click File|Save As. A dialog box will then open asking you if you want to create a copy of the simulation database, click yes.

  • Rename the AWC file and the ASDB file in the next window, then click Save

Note: Ensure that all of the signals of interest is logged prior to running the simulation. If the signals are not logged in the ASDB file, the waveform viewer will show no data once the AWC file is connected to it.

Generating Waveform Configuration (AWC) file

  • In the GUI, an AWC can be created by initializing the simulation, creating a new waveform file, logging the signals required, setting desired signal display parameters and saving the file.

  • In script, AWC file can be generated using the wave command. Please refer to help manual for details in using the wave command.

Connecting an AWC file into a different ASDB file

  1. Open up the AWC file

  2. Right click on any signal in the waveform viewer

  3. Select Connect To|Simulation Database

  4. Locate ASDB file, then click open.

Note: If there are mismatched signals between the AWC and the ASDB file, you may see the error below. To fix this, ensure that the hierarchy between the AWC file and the ASDB file are matching.

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