Versal Prime Series VMK180 Evaluation Kit

This is a starting resource for the Versal Prime Series VMK180 Evaluation Kit it does not replace the official documentation of the Versal Prime Series VMK180 Evaluation Kit that is on

Table of Contents


VMK180 is the first Versal™ Prime series evaluation kit, enabling designers to develop solutions targeting a broad range of applications requiring both performance and flexibility such as storage acceleration, optical networking, and 5G xHaul. The VMK180 kit features the VM1802 Versal Prime series ACAP, which provides a diverse set of compute engines, next generation I/O, and integrated DDR controllers enabling low latency acceleration across a wide range of workloads.

Getting Started

This section provides the pre-work, board setup and files needed to boot and run a couple of designs on the VMK180 board. You will need to down load files and applications to interface to the boards but will need no installation or knowledge of the Xilinx tools to run these on the VMK180.

Prep Work

You will need a terminal interface like Tera Term or PuTTY to interface to the UART to boot the VMK180 board. Please download your choice before getting started.

The next step is to down the the PetaLinux BSP at from the Linux Prebuilt Images wiki page. The PetaLinux BSP will give you a pre-build image that will allow you to boot Linux and interact via a terminal to run some examples.

For the PetaLinux BSP Prebuilt image go to the xilinx-vmk180-2020.2/prebuilt/images directory. There are 3 files to copy to the SD card.


  • boot.scr

  • image.ub

Copy these files to the SD card.

The SD card needs to be partitioned into 2 sections and the first 3 files go on the fat32 partition and the rootfs.cpio goes on the ext4 parition. Since this is a .cpio compressed file and un-compressing the file directly to the SD card is recommended. Once you have mounted the SD card and changed to that directory the command to un-compress the file is

  • cpio -idv -V <path to file>/rootfs.cpio

You might need to do this with a sudo or sudo cpio -idv -V <path to file>/rootfs.cpio

For either method once this is done put the SD card into the Versal uSD card slot in the Board Setup Diagram.

Board Setup

Board setup is quick and easy, the following are the instructions and diagrams for setup.

Running a design

For the designs that you have download via the PetaLinux BSP for the VMK180 board here are the instructions to run them once you have prepared the SD card.

Set up a terminal session between a PC COM port and the serial port on the evaluation board. See below. Determine which COM to use to access the USB serial port on the VMK180 board. Make sure that the VMK180 board is powered on and a micro micro USB cable is connected between VMK180 board and host PC. This ensures that the USB-to-serial bridge is enumerated by the PC host.

Using Tera Term connect to the first Serial Connection, below is an example

Click OK and and the Tera Term window will pop up. In the Setup change the serial port speed to 115200, this will match the speed of the UART on the VMK180.

Power up the board you will see the boot messages from the Versal ACAP 1910.2 and you will see a Linux Prompt in the Terminal Window. Log in with root as the user and the password.


Developer Resources


The following is a list of popular documentation for the VMK180 Evaluation Kit. You can also find additional information at VMK180 Documentation

Versal Example Designs

Listing and links to the many available example designs showcasing particular IP, Silicon features or tool flows targeting Versal ACAP devices.


Prebuilt Images and PetaLinux BSPs are provided for production boards.

Pre Built Images

The VMK180 prebuilt images are on the Linux Prebuilt Images wiki page.

PetaLinux Board Support Packages (BSP)

PetaLinux Board Support Packages (BSP) includes pre built images, a design and all the necessary instructions to rebuild the pre-built images from scratch. With PetaLinux, developers can have their Xilinx-based hardware booted and running within about 5 minutes after installation; ready for application, library and driver development. The base design that is include can be used as a starting point for hardware developers while the instructions on how to rebuild the Linux image can be used as a starting point by the embedded software engineering to create a custom Linux image. The PetaLinux BSP can be download Linux Prebuilt Images wiki page.

Board evaluation and management (BEAM) tool

The Board evaluation and management (BEAM) tool is the main menu of the System Controller. It primarily serves as a launcher for demos and designs, running the board interface test and to set/change/read board parameters. Make sure that you have the pre-programmed micro SD card plugged into the SD slot (SysCtrl) before running any test or set/change/read board parameters.

The BEAM tool is currently in OPEN BETA, please follow the instructions provided in the link below to proceed with the tool.

BEAM Tool for VMK180 Evaluation Kit

Xilinx Tools

The Xilinx tools provide all required tool chains to compile and link applications for Xilinx supported platforms, create and configure hardware designs, and create bitstreams.

Installing the Xilinx Tools

Related Links