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0.0.1 • Public • Published

Xilt - Command Line Tools for Xilinx Toolchain

Xilt is a command line tool for building Xilinx FPGA projects from the command line.


Xilt assumes Xilinx ISE WebPack 14.7 is installed and only works on 64-bit Linux systems (this is a deliberate design decision since the ISE isn't officially supported on current versions of Windows).

Xilt can be used to:

  • Build VHDL, Verilog and mixed mode FPGA projects.
  • Runs xst, ngdbuild, map, par and bitgen all from one command invocation.
  • Filters output to show errors and warnings while suppressing all other messages (these can be reviewed later in log if necessary).
  • Launch common Xilinx GUI tools (ISE, CoreGen and License Manager) without having to explicitly setup ISE environment paths.
  • Build places all intermediate files into a separate folder to keep your source folders clean.


Install with:

npm install -g xilt

(Requires Node 8 or later)

Building with Xilt

To build a project, run xilt build or xilt rebuild specifying the following options (most optional) and a list of vhdl, verilog files (and one .ucf file)

  • --device:val set the Xilinx device name (required)
  • --intDir:val set the intermediate build directory (default: ./build)
  • --outDir:val set the output folder for .bit file (default: intermediate directory)
  • --projectName:val set the name of the project (default: folder name)
  • --topModule:val set the name of the top module (default: project name)


xilt build --device:xc6slx9-2-tqg144 myproj.vhd myproj.ucf

You can also use xilt clean to delete the intermediate output files and the final .bit file.

Passing Arguments to Xilinx Toolchain

To pass arguments to the underlying tools invoked by xilt, specify those options by prefixing them with the tool name:

  • --xst_<name>[:val] sets additional arguments to pass to xst
  • --ngcbuild_<name>[:val] sets additional arguments to pass to ngdbuild
  • --map_<name>[:val] sets additional arguments to pass to map
  • --par_<name>[:val] sets additional arguments to pass to par
  • --bitgen_<name>[:val] sets additional arguments to pass to bitgen

For example to invoke bitgen with -g StartupClk:CCLK use:


Launching Xilinx GUI Tools

To launch Xilinx GUI Tools, use xilt <toolname>.

  • xilt coregen launch Xilinx Core Generator
  • xilt ise launch Xilinx ISE
  • xilt xlcm launch Xilinx license manager


Other command line options include:

  • --debug Logs file dependency checks
  • --verbose Displays lots of output and disables default output filtering
  • --help Displays help



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