Using Design Manager

Jack Meador, Madhu Parameswaran and Russ Radke 
Washington State University, Pullman WA.

David M. Zar,
Washington University, St. Louis MO. 3-5-96

Minor modifications have been made at the University of Wisconsin, Madison in Spring 1999 & Spring 2001 for CS755.

To invoke Design Manager , follow these steps:

  • Change directory to mgc.
  • Type dmgr at the shell prompt. This command starts up Design Manager .



    The left half of the window shows the available tools. The right half shows your Mentor directory(navigator window) which is where you should store all of your Mentor designs. Your directory will probably be empty as you have not, as yet, created any designs.

    The main Design Manager window(session window) or the inside windows may be moved, resized, minimized or closed in the same way other windows are manipulated. You must first click on the window to be manipulated however.

    Before going any further, let's take a look at some Mentor Graphics basics. In Design Manager , and most other tools, the left mouse button is used to click on (or select) items. The right mouse button is used to bring out pop-up menus. The pop-up menus are context sensitive. That is to say that, depending on where your mouse pointer is when you right-click, a different menu may appear. Try this now by first selecting the left tools window and then using the right mouse button to bring up the pop-up menu. You must click in the window, not on the title bar or window border. Notice how the menu's title is ``TOOL OPERATIONS'' Now do the same for the right window. Here, the pop-up menu is different and is context sensitive.

    To begin our tour of Design Manager , start by using the maximize button in the upper right corner of the window frame to make the window as large as possible. The window should now fill the entire screen. You will notice that the inner windows got larger but their contents don't fill the new areas. To clean up your windows, use the right mouse button to bring out the pop-up menu in the Tools window and select Update Window . Now, the whole area of the window will be better used. You can now see many of the tools that Mentor provides for your use. These will be described in detail in their respective tutorials, but we will use one, the Editor, for this exercise.

    Let's start by invoking Editor from the Tools menu. Simply double click on the editor icon to bring up an editor window. Follow the instructions below to create a file, save it and view it in the navigator window.

    1. Notice how the border of the editor window is a cyan color. This shows you that the editor window is currently active. If it is not active, simply click anywhere in the editor window to make it active.
    2. To enter text, simply start typing. Type your name or anything else you like.
    3. When you are finished typing, save this file by using the menu. Select File -> Save to save it.
    4. Since this is a new document, you will be prompted for a filename. Use the name tutorial. After you have entered the name, you should see that the top line of your editor window displays the filename including the path.
    5. Close the file. To do this, simply close the editor window by using the upper left button of the window. To do this, select it so the pull-down window appears and drag down to (or select) Quit.
    6. Now look in the navigator window. Do you see the file you just created? The reason you do not is that the Design Manager does not know you created it. You need to update the navigator window. To do this, just as before, select Update Window from the pop-up menu in the navigator window. Now you should see the file object called tutorial.
    7. You can rename the file by selecting the object, using the left mouse button, and then using the pop-up menu item Edit -> Change -> Name.
    8. When the dialog box appears, enter a new name for the object. Just hit return or click on the OK button to accept the name. Notice how the name was changed in the navigator window. You don't have to use the update window command when Design Manager performs a task since Design Manager knows about the task performed. The editor, however, was not a Design Manager command, but an external program.
    Now, let's look at how the navigator window works. The bottom of the navigator window has five buttons with arrows. These are described below: Let's use the navigator's buttons to move around the system.
    1. First, select your file if it is not already selected. Note how the right arrow becomes ungrayed.
    2. Select the right arrow to view information about the file. The window is empty. This is because a text file has no links in the Mentor database. When you create schematics, however, they will have objects that do have links to other objects, such as library components.
    3. Move back by using the left arrow.
    4. Move up to your home directory by using the up arrow. Notice how the contents of the navigator window now show your home directory. The folders are subdirectories, and the plain rectangles are files that Mentor does not recognize.
    5. Move back into the Mentor directory by selecting the Mentor folder icon and using the down arrow, or by double clicking on the Mentor folder.
    6. Use the arrows button to go to the temporary directory. Click on the arrows button (the ``go to'' button). A dialog box appears.
    7. This dialog box has a list of the last five directories that you have been to during this session. You can either choose one of these or enter another path. You should type in /tmp and hit carriage return.
    8. Now, you have moved to the temporary directory. There may be files here, but you can ignore them. Move back to your Mentor directory by using the go to button and highlighting the Mentor directory ($HOME/mgc) in the path list and clicking on OK.
    You now know how to navigate using Design Manager . You can also view parts of your designs using the navigator, and you can do maintenance on your database files, such as copying them, deleting them, and renaming them by using the pop-up menus as discussed above. Select the appropriate operation and you will be prompted for any information needed to complete the desired operation.

    Now let's start designing.  The next tutorial will demonstrated how to compile and simulate a VHDL model.