LabVIEW 2013 FPGA IP Builder Readme

Version 13.0.0

June 2013

This file contains important information about the LabVIEW 2013 FPGA IP Builder.

New Features and Changes
System Requirements
Supported FPGA Targets
Installation Instructions
Activation Instructions
Upgrade and Compatibility Issues
Known Issues
Bug Fixes
Accessing the Help
Finding Examples
Automating the Installation of NI Products
NI Software Support for Microsoft Windows Vista, Windows XP, and Windows Server 2003


The FPGA IP Builder enables you to create FPGA algorithms, interactively optimize the algorithms according to specific application requirements, and automatically generate efficient LabVIEW FPGA code.

You must have the LabVIEW FPGA Module, the necessary Xilinx compilation tools, and NI-RIO installed on the local computer to use the FPGA IP Builder. Refer to the FPGA Module installation options on the LabVIEW Platform DVD, or your original media, for instructions on installing the FPGA Module and Xilinx compilation tools for LabVIEW. Refer to the NI Device Drivers DVD for instructions on installing NI-RIO.

After you install the FPGA IP Builder, an IP Builder project item automatically appears when you add an FPGA target to a LabVIEW project. The FPGA IP Builder supports only a limited number of FPGA targets.

New Features and Changes

The 2013 release of the FPGA IP Builder includes the following new features and changes:

  • Improved FPGA IP generation, leading to higher performance and lower resource usage
  • Improved Directives Properties dialog box
    • Context help for each directive
    • Quick estimate and Thorough estimate options for estimating device utilization and timing performance
  • Support for single-precision floating-point data type
    • A limited number of functions
    • New floating-point constants
  • Support for integers, fixed-point numbers, and single-precision numbers as inputs for the Array Subset function and the Build Array function
  • New Numeric functions:
    • Divide
    • Square Root

System Requirements

In addition to the system requirements for the LabVIEW Development System, the FPGA IP Builder has the following requirements:

  • 2 GB free disk space, with 2 GB additional disk space for virtual memory
  • LabVIEW 2013 Full or Professional Development System (32-bit)
  • LabVIEW 2013 FPGA Module
  • NI-RIO Device Drivers - August 2013
  • Compilation Tools for FPGA Devices other than Virtex-II

Note  The FPGA IP Builder does not support Windows 8.

Refer to the LabVIEW Readme, LabVIEW FPGA Module Release and Upgrade Notes, and NI-RIO Device Drivers Readme for additional system requirements and supported operating systems.

Supported FPGA Targets

The FPGA IP Builder supports the following FPGA targets:

Device Type Target
CompactRIO cRIO-9081
Ethernet RIO** NI 9146
FlexRIO PXI-795xR
IF Transceivers* PXIe-5641R
MXIe-RIO Chassis NI 9157
NI 9159
R Series PCIe, PXI-784xR
PCIe, PXI-785xR
Real-Time CompactRIO** cRIO-9075
Real-Time Single-Board RIO** sbRIO-9605
Vector Signal Transceiver (VST)*** PXIe-5644R
* Appears only if you install the NI-5640R instrument driver.
** Appears only if you add a top-level target in a project. Requires the LabVIEW Real-Time Module.
*** Appears only if you install the NI PXIe-5644R instrument driver.

Installation Instructions

Double-click the setup.exe file in the root directory of the FPGA IP Builder installer and follow the instructions on the screen to install this product.

Activation Instructions

Complete the following steps to activate the FPGA IP Builder.

  1. Install the FPGA IP Builder—Refer to the Installation Instructions section of this readme for information about installing the FPGA IP Builder.
  2. Locate your Serial Number—Your serial number uniquely identifies your purchase of NI software. You can find your serial number on the Certificate of Ownership included in your software kit. If your software kit does not include a Certificate of Ownership, you can find your serial number on the product packing slip or on the shipping label. For more information about finding serial numbers, visit and enter the Info Code SerialNumbers_en.

    If you have a previous version of the application installed, you can find the serial number by selecting your product within NI License Manager (Start»All Programs»National Instruments»NI License Manager). You can also contact your local National Instruments branch. Refer to for branch office contact information.

    Note  This release of the LabVIEW FPGA IP Builder is provided under a perpetual license, subject to earlier termination as provided in the license agreement for the software. If you are upgrading to this release from a previous release of the LabVIEW FPGA IP Builder software that you have licensed under a one-year or other limited term license, send an email to to receive assistance in switching to the perpetual license.
  3. Launch the NI Activation Wizard—The NI Activation Wizard guides you through the activation process. If you installed the FPGA IP Builder for the first time, the installer may launch the NI Activation Wizard for you. Otherwise, launch your software and choose to activate when prompted. If you are not prompted, perform the following steps:
    1. Launch NI License Manager by selecting Start»All Programs»National Instruments»NI License Manager.
    2. Select the FPGA IP Builder product name in the NI License Manager tree and click Activate on the toolbar.
    3. Follow the on-screen instructions to activate the FPGA IP Builder using the NI Activation Wizard.
    Note  If you encounter any difficulties when activating the FPGA IP Builder, send an email to to receive support.
  4. Save your Activation Code for Future Use (optional)—NI Activation Wizard provides you with the option to receive an email confirmation of your activation code. If you reinstall your software on the same computer, the same activation code will work. To apply this activation code in the future, launch the NI Activation Wizard and select Apply one or more 20-character activation codes previously acquired for this computer.

Installing and Activating Software Upgrades

If you are upgrading or moving between software packages, in most cases you do not have to install additional software, as follows:

  • Upgrading from an Evaluation Version to a Paid Version—If you are upgrading from an evaluation version to a paid version, you do not need to reinstall your software, even if the evaluation period has expired. Follow the prompts that appear when you launch your application or use NI License Manager to activate the software.

For information on how to use NI License Manager to activate software, refer to the NI License Manager Help, which you can access from the Help»Contents menu item in NI License Manager.

Product Registration

During activation, you may be prompted for your user ID and password in order to register your product. NI uses the contact information that you provide to ensure access to your service benefits, including technical support, software upgrades, and updates. If you are not prompted to register, you can visit, click the Product Registration link, and enter your registration information manually.

License Limitation

National Instruments only permits you to use each FPGA IP Builder license on a single computer. Refer to the software end-user license agreement in the installer, the NI License Manager Help, or for more information.

Moving Software after Activation

Activation codes for the FPGA IP Builder are unique to each computer. To transfer your software to another computer, you will need a new activation code. To receive a new activation code when moving the software to another new computer, send an email to

Privacy Policy

National Instruments respects your privacy. For more information about the National Instruments activation information privacy policy, go to


activation code A 20-character code that enables NI software to run on your computer, based on your serial number and computer ID. You receive and apply an activation code by completing the activation process.
computer ID A 16-character ID that uniquely identifies your computer, generated during the activation process. To find your computer ID, launch NI License Manager and click the Display Computer Information button.
serial number An alphanumeric string that uniquely identifies your purchase of a single copy of software, included in your software kit on your Certificate of Ownership, on the product packing slip, or on the shipping label.

National Instruments uses activation to better support evaluation of our software, to enable additional software features, and to support license management in large organizations. To find out more about National Instruments software licensing, visit for frequently asked questions, resources, and technical support.

Upgrade and Compatibility Issues

After you upgrade the FPGA IP Builder from version 2012 to version 2013, you might encounter the following compatibility issue:

  • For the same directive configuration, the estimation and build reports that you obtained in version 2013 might be different from those you obtained in version 2012.

Known Issues

You can access the software and documentation known issues list online. Refer to the National Instruments website for an up-to-date list of known issues in the FPGA IP Builder.

Bug Fixes

The following items are the IDs and titles of a subset of issues fixed in the FPGA IP Builder. This is not an exhaustive list of issues fixed in the current version of the FPGA IP Builder. If you have a CAR ID, you can search this list to confirm that the issue has been fixed.

ID Fixed Issue
344412 FPGA IP Builder converts some terminals to numeric controls and indicators
353425 FPGA IP Builder might fail to apply the "Number of pipeline stages" directive
362036 An estimation error occurs if the second-level subVI has unwired array controls

Accessing the Help

Refer to the LabVIEW Help, accessible by selecting Help»LabVIEW Help from LabVIEW, for more information about the FPGA IP Builder.

Finding Examples

Select Help»Find Examples from LabVIEW to launch the NI Example Finder. LabVIEW examples for the FPGA IP Builder are located in the labview\examples\FPGAIPBuilder directory. You can modify an example VI to fit an application, or you can copy and paste from one or more examples into a VI that you create.

Automating the Installation of NI Products

You can automate the installation of most NI products using command-line arguments to suppress some or all of the installer user interface and dialog boxes. However, starting with the August 2012 releases (products using NI Installers version 3.1 or later), you may need to perform additional steps before or during a silent installation of NI software.

If the NI product you are installing uses Microsoft .NET 4.0, the .NET installer may run before any NI software installs and may require a reboot before the installation of NI software begins. To avoid a .NET reboot, install .NET 4.0 separately before you install NI software.

For more information, refer to the following KnowledgeBase articles:

NI LabVIEW FPGA IP Builder Drops Support for Microsoft Windows Vista, Windows XP, and Windows Server 2003 in 2016

National Instruments LabVIEW FPGA IP Builder will drop support for Microsoft Windows Vista, Windows XP, and Windows Server 2003 as of July 1, 2016. Versions of the FPGA IP Builder that ship after July 1, 2016 will not install or run on Windows Vista, Windows XP, or Windows Server 2003. For detailed information about NI application software product life cycles, visit and enter one of the following Info Codes:

Product Info Code
NI LabVIEWlifecycle
NI LabWindows™/CVI™cvi_lifecycle
NI Measurement Studiomstudiolifecycle
NI TestStandtslcp
NI DIAdemddlcp
NI SignalExpressselcp
NI VeriStandnivslifecycle

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