Tigard Board Takes FT2232H-Based USB Serial Adapters and Debuggers to the Next Level

With immediate support in most X232H-compatible software, Tigard offers a wealth of features above and beyond a simple serial adapter.

Gareth Halfacree
8 months ago β€’ Debugging

Portland-based SecuringHardware.com is preparing a crowdfunding campaign for an FTDI FT223H-based tool for those who need something a little more flexible than your average USB-to-UART debugging tool: the Tigard.

"Tigard is an open source FT2232H-based multi-protocol, multi-voltage tool for hardware hacking," the company explains. "By incorporating commonly used pinouts, a labelled wiring harness, onboard level-shifting, and a logic analyzer connection, it is designed specifically for attaching to and communicating with low-speed interfaces on reverse engineered hardware targets."

The board, made available under the permissive Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 license, comes with a USB Type-C connector and dual serial interfaces: The primary interface is a dedicated UART and includes access to all flow control signals, while the secondary port is shared among headers offering single-wire debug (SWD), JTAG, SPI, and I2C.

The design also incorporates bi-directional level shifters allowing for 1.8-5.5V operation, with an on-board power supplier switchable between 1,.8V, 3.3V, and 5V. A second switch enables the user to choose between SPI/JTAG and I2C/SWD operation, and a logic analyzer port provides immediate access to device-level signals β€” while indicator lights aid debugging.

Tigard is designed to work with a range of tools which support FTDI's X232H family, including USB-serial drivers, OpenOCD, UrJTAG, Flashrom, PyFtdi, PySpiFlash, PyI2CFlash, and LibMPSSE, with SecuringHardware.com suggesting it could be used as a simple serial console, an SPI flash chip dumper, JTAG debugger, or OLED display driver and analyzer.

To be notified when the campaign goes live, sign up on the Crowd Supply page; the design files for Tigard, meanwhile, can be found on the project's GitHub repository.

Gareth Halfacree
Freelance journalist, technical author, hacker, tinkerer, erstwhile sysadmin. For hire: freelance@halfacree.co.uk.
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