Minimal printf() implementation for embedded projects.
I was recently working on an embedded project with a STM32 MCU. The chip had 32kB of flash memory - that's heaps for a microcontroller! How surprised I was when the linker suddelnly failed saying that the program is too big and won't fit! How come?!
It's just some USB, I2C, GPIO, a few timers ... and snprintf() It turned out the memory hog was indeed the glibc's snprintf() - it took nearly 24kB out of my 32kB and left very little for my program.
Now what? I looked around the internet for some stripped down printf() implementations but none I really liked. Then I decided to develop my own minimal snprintf().
Here are some numbers (.bin file size of my STM32 project):
no snprintf(): 10768 bytes mini snprintf(): 11420 bytes (+ 652 bytes) glibc snprintf(): 34860 bytes (+24092 bytes!!)
Why snprintf() and not printf()? Simply because there are so many different ways to print from an embedded system that I can't really make an universal-enough printf().
The way I chose makes printing really easy - use mini_snprintf() to print into a "char buffer" and then output that buffer to your chip's USART, USB or network or whatever other channel you fancy.
As a by-product there's also a mini_vsnprintf() function available.
I didn't implement each and every formatting sequence the glibc does. For now only these are supported:
%% - print '%' %c - character %s - string %d, %u - decimal integer %x, %X - hex integer
The integer formatting also supports 0-padding up to 9 characters wide. (no space-padding or left-aligned padding yet).
The implementation should be compatible with any GCC-based compiler. Tested with native x86-64 gcc, arm-none-eabi-gcc and avr-gcc.
It's completely standalone without any external dependencies.
- Include "mini-printf.h" into your source files.
- Add mini-printf.o to your objects list.
- Use snprintf() as usual in your project.
- Compile, Flash, Test
Written by: Michal Ludvig firstname.lastname@example.org
Project homepage: http://logix.cz/michal/devel/mini-printf
Source download: https://github.com/mludvig/mini-printf
Copyright (c) 2013,2014 Michal Ludvig email@example.com All rights reserved.
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