Freescale counterfeit CPU'S

Erwin Rol mailinglists at
Fri Apr 7 21:55:55 UTC 2006

Hey all,

My last RTEMS project has been a while back, but it came back to hunt
me :-) Even though this has little to do with RTEMS it self, there might
be people here with Freescale MPC860T experience, that could explain
this problem.

The product is a MPC860T based board, with SDRAM, FLASH, 100Mbit
Ethernet PHY and some logic to connect it to a base board. The design is
like 5 years old. The software hasn't been changed for more than a year.
The system to flash the initial image is also about 5 years old and
never changed. Now the following is happening of a batch of 50 boards 35
have problems. First thing i thought was, bad production, until it was
found out all those boards fail in the same way, and with bad soldering
one would expect the board to have random errors, like bad RAM, bad
FLASH, bad CPU (so completely broken), etc. The (only) error seems that
all communication ports are broken, with a BDM debugger a boot loader is
loaded in RAM that than loads the main image via Ethernet and flashes
that, but Ethernet is not working, nor is RS485, or anything connected
to the CPM. It seems the CPM never generates a IRQ at the core, but
since the software is the same for years, this can't be a programming
error, cause the same software (binary the same, so same image) is
working in 100's of units. 

Now I found the following warning on the Freescale site;

Which warns for counterfeit Freescale parts, the warning is from January
the year, which seems to match the time frame our problems started. 

Is there anybody out that that has seen similar problems or has heard
about CPU problems that could not be explained, or knows about "fake"
CPU's that caused problems. Any information is welcome since until now
we really have no acceptable explanation for the failures.



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