Table Of Contents

Interacting with Instruments

Last Modified: November 23, 2020

The Digital Pattern Editor automatically connects to open instrument sessions for all available digital pattern instruments defined in the active pin and channel map file for a project when you take any of the following actions:
  • Open a digital pattern project that includes an active pin and channel map file.
  • Edit the active pin and channel map file.
  • Switch to a different active pin and channel map file in the project.
  • Select the Instruments»Connect menu item.

When you switch to a different active pin and channel map file, the editor disconnects any current instrument sessions and connects to existing open instrument sessions associated with the new active pin and channel map file.

When the editor cannot find open instrument sessions, it launches the Connect to Instruments dialog box. Refer to the Related reference section at the end of this topic for a link to more information about this dialog box.

Instruments Menu

Use the following Instruments menu items to manage instrument sessions, synchronize multiple instruments, run and apply TDR measurements, enable or disable sites, configure instrument settings, reset instrument sessions, or display pin or system information.

  • Connect — Specifies to connect to open instrument sessions for all available digital pattern instruments, NI-DCPower instruments, and relay driver modules defined in the active pin and channel map file for the project. When the editor cannot find open instrument sessions, it launches the Connect to Instruments dialog box. This option is dimmed when no project is open.
  • Disconnect — Specifies to disconnect any existing connections to instrument sessions for all digital pattern instruments, NI-DCPower instruments, and relay driver modules defined in the active pin and channel map for the project. By default, the editor disconnects all instrument sessions when you close the project or delete, exclude, or deactivate the active pin and channel map in the project. This option is dimmed when the editor is not actively connected to any instrument sessions. If you created the sessions using the Create New Sessions option in the Connect to Instruments dialog box, using this menu item to disconnect the instruments closes those sessions, and the instruments are no longer in use. If you instead connected to existing open sessions an external application created, using this menu item to disconnect the instruments only disconnects the Digital Pattern Editor from those instruments. The external application that created the sessions keeps the connection to the instruments, and the instruments maintain their state as long as the external application maintains its connection to the instruments.
  • Synchronized — Specifies one of the following synchronization options. When connected to external sessions, this menu displays the synchronization state set by the owner of the external sessions and is dimmed because this can only be changed by the owner of the external sessions. For more information about synchronizing instruments with the NI TestStand Semiconductor Module™, refer to NI-Digital Pattern Instrument Synchronization with TestStand Semiconductor Module™. Visit ni.com/info and enter the Info Code exac4m to access the tutorial.
    • No — Specifies no instrument synchronization of the digital pattern instruments. If multiple instruments from separate single-instrument sessions are currently synchronized, selecting this option prompts you to recreate the sessions to disable the synchronization. You cannot disable the synchronization without recreating the instrument session.
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      Note  

      This option cannot disable the synchronization of instruments within the same group. To disable the synchronization that occurs when you assign digital pattern instruments to the same group, assign a unique Group name to each digital pattern instrument in the Pin Map.

    • Yes — Specifies to synchronize all digital pattern instruments in single-instrument sessions to a single synchronization group per chassis. This is the default value. Select this menu item in the following situations:
      • You want to burst patterns in sync, starting at the same time, across all digital pattern instruments that the active pin and channel map uses
      • A site is shared across multiple instruments
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      Note  

      When the test system includes a PXIe-6674T, the menu item is Yes, using 6674T. When you select Yes to synchronize all digital pattern instruments and a PXIe-6674T in the test system uses a supported version of the NI-Sync driver, the editor opens a session to the PXIe-6674T and enables failure and match propagation with the following considerations:

      • If no digital pattern instruments in the pin map are within a group — The editor synchronizes failure and match propagation across all digital pattern instruments in the same chassis.
      • If some digital pattern instruments are within a group and others are not — The editor enables failure and match propagation according to whether the first instrument listed in the pin map is in a group. For example, if the first instrument listed in the pin map is assigned to a group, the editor applies failure and match propagation only to instruments in that specific group. If the first instrument is not in a group, the editor enables failure and match propagation on all synchronized single-instrument sessions in the chassis. If a single chassis includes multiple groups of digital pattern instruments, the editor only enables failure and match propagation for the first group listed in the pin map.
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      Note  

      When using a multi-chassis system with PXIe-6674T, NI recommends having only one PXIe-6674T per chassis. Failure and match propagation will only be synchronized for digital pattern instruments in the same chassis.

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      Note  

      When the editor is connected to existing open instrument sessions, you cannot select this menu item, and the Synchronized menu item displays N/A. If the external application that created the instrument sessions configured the sessions for synchronization, the instruments maintain synchronization while in use by the Digital Pattern Editor, but the editor cannot alter the synchronization settings for those sessions.

    • Yes, with Timing Absolute Delay enabled — Specifies whether NI-TClk performs fine granularity adjustment of the intermodule skew in the digital pattern instrument timing reference. When Timing Absolute Delay is not enabled, the digital pattern instrument limits the timing adjustment for intermodule skew to a granularity of one master clock period. When Timing Absolute Delay is enabled, the digital pattern instrument adjusts the full extent of the intermodule skew measured by NI-TClk for better timing alignment among synchronized instruments.
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      Note  

      Do not enable Timing Absolute Delay with digital pattern instruments in a Semiconductor Test System (STS). Timing absolute delay conflicts with the adjustment performed during STS timing calibration.

    • N/A — Specifies that instrument synchronization does not apply because the editor is connected to only one digital pattern instrument session.
    • Unknown — Specifies that the instrument synchronization configuration is unknown because the DPE is connected to externally owned sessions. The owners of the external sessions determine the synchronization status of the sessions.
  • Enabled Sites — Launches the Sites dialog box, which you use to enable and disable sites defined in the active pin and channel map. You can disable sites for debugging purposes, such as ignoring sites that return results that are not relevant to the issue you are debugging or disabling a site when a DUT fails a test.

    Use the Pattern Burst column of the Sites dialog box to select sites for bursting patterns, including for Shmoo plots and the digital scope. When you remove the checkmark from the Pattern Burst checkbox of a site in the Sites dialog box, rather than disabling it, you can still view the site in the System View and modify pins in the site in the Pin View or System View pane, but bursting the pattern has no effect on the site.

    Use the Site Enabled column of the Sites dialog box to enable or disable all operations on a site. When you disable a site by removing the checkmark from the Site Enabled checkbox of a site, the Pattern Burst column for that site automatically dims. The digital pattern instrument interacts only with enabled sites. The enabled or disabled setting persists until you close the instrument sessions you created.

    The Sites dialog box displays the current status of all sites. When you connect to existing open instrument sessions, the sites maintain the status the existing sessions specify. All sites for which all instruments are available are enabled by default when you use the Create New Sessions option in the Connect to Instruments dialog box to create a connection to instrument sessions for all available digital pattern instruments, NI-DCPower instruments, and relay driver modules defined in the active pin and channel map file for the project.

  • History RAM and Signal Settings — Displays the Instrument Settings pane, which you use to configure options for logging History RAM results and for routing events to PXI chassis backplane trigger lines.
  • Disconnect All Digital Pins — Specifies to change the state of all Digital pins to Disconnect from another supported state.
  • Reset — Specifies to close and recreate instrument sessions for all available digital pattern instruments and NI-DCPower instruments defined in the active pin and channel map for the project and resets all the settings for the instruments back to default values. This menu item is enabled only when you select the Create New Sessions option in the Connect to Instruments dialog box. You cannot reset instrument sessions an external application owns.
  • Pin View — Displays the Pin View pane, which you can use to interactively view and modify the current state of the pin driver, active load, comparators, PPMU, and NI-DCPower instrument settings for a single pin at a time in the active instrument session.
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    Note  

    You must install the NI-DCPower driver to access NI-DCPower-related functionality in the Digital Pattern Editor.

  • System ViewUse this view to see or edit all the settings and measurements for all the pins and relays in the active pin and channel map connected to a digital pattern instrument, NI-DCPower instrument, or relay driver module and to see a list of patterns currently loaded on the digital instruments. You can also use this view to edit pattern sequencer flags and registers and interactively debug and make changes to the state of your digital pattern instruments, NI-DCPower instruments, or relays.
  • Relay ViewLaunches the System View and scrolls and expands the Relay section as necessary to show the relays. Refer to the Related reference section at the end of this topic for a link to more information about System View.
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    Note  

    You must install the NI-DCPower driver to access NI-DCPower-related functionality in the Digital Pattern Editor.

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    Note  

    You must install the DAQmx driver to access relay driver functionality in the Digital Pattern Editor.


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