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Getting Started

We first discuss the Carfield's project structure, its dependencies, and how to build it.

Repository structure

The project is structured as follows:

Directory Description Documentation
doc Documentation Home
hw Hardware sources as SystemVerilog RTL Architecture
sw Software stack, build setup, and tests Software Stack
target Simulation, FPGA, and ASIC target setups Targets
utils Utility scripts
scripts Some helper scripts for env setup


To build Carfield, you will need:

  • GNU Make >= 3.82
  • Python >= 3.6
  • Bender >= 0.27.1
  • RISCV GCC >= 11.2.0
  • Python packages in requirements.txt

We use Bender for hardware IP and dependency management; for more information on using Bender, please see its documentation. You can install Bender directly through the Rust package manager Cargo:

cargo install bender

Depending on your desired target, additional dependencies may be needed.

Building Carfield

To build different parts of Carfield, the run make followed by these targets:

  • car-hw-init: generated hardware, including IPs and boot ROM
  • car-sim-init(†): scripts and external models for simulation
  • car-sw-build (‡): bare-metal software running on the hardware

car-sim-init will download externally provided peripheral simulation models, some proprietary and with non-free license terms, from their publically accessible sources. By running car-sim-init, you accept this.

car-sw-build requires RV64 and RV32 toolchains. See the Software Stack for more details.

To run all build targets above (†)(‡):

make car-init-all

Running car-init-all is required at least once to correctly configure IPs we depend on. On reconfiguring any generated hardware or changing IP versions, car-init-all should be rerun.

The following additional targets are not invoked by the above, but also available:

  • chs-bootrom-all - rebuilds Cheshire's boot ROM. This is not done by default as reproducible builds (as checked by CI) can only be guaranteed for fixed compiler versions.
  • car-nonfree-init - clones our internal repository with nonfree resources we cannot release, including our internal CI or technology-specific standard cells, scripts and tools. This is not necessary to use Carfield.


Carfield uses Cheshire as main dependency. Compared to the other dependencies, Cheshire provides most of the HW/SW infrastructure used by Carfield. All Cheshire's make targets, described in the dedicated documentation, are available in Carfield through the inclusion of the makefrag in


A target is an end use for Carfield. Each target requires different steps from here; read the page for your desired target in the following Targets chapter.