Embedded system developers are typically very skilled and knowledgeable in their field. They may be an expert in secure authentication, routing, wireless applications, etc.—whatever is needed for their application. But typically their understanding of JTAG is minimal. This is a technology that is vital for debugging and testing an embedded application. With an appreciation of how JTAG works, the number of setup details may be minimized, which leads to an easier and faster transition to the goal of designing, developing, and differentiating a product. This paper explains the issues and concepts that require a JTAG connection and how it provides much needed visibility and control of a modern processor core-based system.

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