Dead boards can’t talk. Or can they?
As boards come off the production line and appear dead in functional test, the going sure gets tough. Just a small problem in the wrong place and the board won’t boot. After that, you could have a nightmare of manual ‘hands-on’ work trying to revive it. Meanwhile, the boards keep coming off the production line and pretty soon there’s a growing pile of dead boards staring back at you. Not a pretty sight. And, of course, those production deadlines keep coming at you too.
Luckily, in almost all cases there is an onboard processor and a lot of them are from Intel®, which means they have a debug port. And that means BIST, JTAG, IJTAG and other embedded instrumentation technologies may be embedded in the board. The trick becomes how to combine them and put them to good use from a single test and debug environment that can provide answers fast. If not, the time you spend on dead board debug is probably not worth it.
In fact, repairing boards may be the least of your worries. Production has to have feedback on the types of failures that are occurring so the next batch of boards doesn’t have the same problems. You just can’t keep doing the same thing over and over again and expect a different outcome. And the only thing worse than not fixing that pile of dead boards is seeing it growing constantly. Without a clue of what’s causing the different types of failures in the first place.
Get clued in. Download a new eBook and let our expert, Larry Osborn, guide you through the ins and outs of a changing production test environment.
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