Using Parity on the PIC 18F26K22 UART

I have been working on the next article for this weekend while I recover from my week long backpacking trip. My muscles are feeling great but I took a couple good hits from sharp boulders while doing some Class 2-3 scrambling. It was well worth it of course.

A view of the lake I stayed on after a bit of a scramble up the hill.
A view of the lake I stayed on after a bit of a scramble up the hill.

In the article I’m working on I used parity on a UART. I wanted to share this snippet with you in case you ran into the same thing. I’ve never used parity with the PICs and was a little surprised to find no built in parity checking function; it’s not that big of a deal of course.. I haven’t even ever really looked. At least they allow for a 9-bit mode so you can perform your own software parity checking. No bit-banging for me this weekend. In the code below I am transmitting at a crawl.. 2,400 baud 8E1 (You’ll find out why in a while if you follow I’ll drop the receiving code here but the transmitting side uses the same code.. except I did it on a 16F1509 but the parity function is exactly the same. I feel a little embarrassed I pulled this parity function itself from the internet and forgot where I sourced it; everything else is mine. I had kept the FireFox window open to grab the URL for reference but forgot to grab it before a Windows Update restart. Regardless it was just snippet on a forum somewhere; there are a couple different versions of the same thing or lookup tables.. I felt this was the most elegant method.


The biggest change to normal UART use was  enabling 9 bit mode. Both on the RX and the TX side… In this case for the RX micro I didn’t need to set the TXSTA1bits.TX9 because I’m only doing one way communication but I felt it was good for consistency.

TXSTA1bits.TX9=1; // select 9 data bits for TX

RCSTA1bits.RX9=1; // select 9 data bits for RX

One of the benefits to this particular parity code is it’s none destructive. I’ve seen more code that decimates the original variable than doesn’t. Not a big deal if you’re like me and your micros are always loafing around.

You can take this code and drop it on a TAUTIC 18F26K22 development board.. RA0 is the onboard LED.

Finally, the complete RX code:

 * File:   main.c
 * Author: Charles M Douvier
 * Contact at:
 * Created on Sept 1 2014, 12:12 PM
 * Target Device:
 * 18F26K22 TAUTIC dev board
 * Project:
 * Version:
 * 1.0
#ifndef _XTAL_FREQ
#define _XTAL_FREQ 4000000 //4Mhz FRC internal osc
#define __delay_us(x) _delay((unsigned long)((x)*(_XTAL_FREQ/4000000.0)))
#define __delay_ms(x) _delay((unsigned long)((x)*(_XTAL_FREQ/4000.0)))


//config bits


#define _XTAL_FREQ 4000000 //defined for delay

    char    buf[10];            //buff for iota
    char    parity_rx, rx_data;

    volatile unsigned int uart_data, parity;    // use 'volatile' qualifer as this is changed in ISR
void interrupt ISR() {

    if (PIR1bits.RCIF)          // see if interrupt caused by incoming data
        parity_rx = RCSTA1bits.RX9D;  //grab parity bit first
        uart_data = RCREG;     // read the incoming data
        PIR1bits.RCIF = 0;      // clear interrupt flag


void init_io(void) {
    TRISAbits.TRISA0 = 0; // output
    TRISAbits.TRISA1 = 0; // output
    TRISAbits.TRISA2 = 0; // output
    TRISAbits.TRISA3 = 0; // output
    TRISAbits.TRISA4 = 0; // output
    TRISAbits.TRISA5 = 0; // output

    ANSELA = 0x00; // all port A pins are digital I/O

    TRISBbits.TRISB4 = 0; // RB4 = nc
    TRISBbits.TRISB5 = 1; // RB5 = nc
    TRISBbits.TRISB6 = 0; // RB6 = nc
    TRISBbits.TRISB7 = 0; // RB7 = nc

    ANSELB = 0b00001000;     //RB3, AN9

    TRISCbits.TRISC0 = 0; // output
    TRISCbits.TRISC1 = 0; // output
    TRISCbits.TRISC2 = 0; // P1A PWM output
    TRISCbits.TRISC3 = 0; // output
    TRISCbits.TRISC4 = 0; // output
    TRISCbits.TRISC5 = 0; // output
    TRISCbits.TRISC6 = 1; // input
    TRISCbits.TRISC7 = 1; // input
    ANSELC = 0x00; // all port B pins are digital I/O

//not of my code.. 
unsigned char calculateparity(unsigned char scancode)
	unsigned char parity = 0;

	while(scancode > 0)          // if it is 0 there are no more 1's to count
		if(scancode & 0x01)    //see if LSB is 1
			parity++;                // why yes it is
		scancode = scancode >> 1; //shift to next bit

	return (parity & 0x01);  // only need the low bit to determine odd / even }

void uart_xmit(unsigned int mydata_byte) {

    while(!TXSTA1bits.TRMT);    // make sure buffer full bit is high before transmitting
    TXREG = mydata_byte;       // transmit data

void serial_init(void)
    //2400 8E1
    // calculate values of SPBRGL and SPBRGH based on the desired baud rate
    // For 8 bit Async mode with BRGH=0: Desired Baud rate = Fosc/64([SPBRGH:SPBRGL]+1)
    // For 8 bit Async mode with BRGH=1: Desired Baud rate = Fosc/16([SPBRGH:SPBRGL]+1)

    TXSTA1bits.BRGH=1;       // select low speed Baud Rate (see baud rate calcs below)
    TXSTA1bits.TX9=1;        // select 9 data bits
    TXSTA1bits.TXEN = 1;     // enable transmit

    RCSTA1bits.SPEN=1;       // serial port is enabled
    RCSTA1bits.RX9=1;        // select 9 data bits
    RCSTA1bits.CREN=1;       // receive enabled

     *bit 2 FERR: Framing Error bit
     *1 = Framing error (can be updated by reading RCREGx register and receive next valid byte)
     *0 = No framing error
     *bit 1 OERR: Overrun Error bit
     *1 = Overrun error (can be cleared by clearing bit CREN)
     *0 = No overrun error
     *bit 0 RX9D: Ninth bit of Received Data
     *This can be address/data bit or a parity bit and must be calculated by user firmware.

    SPBRG1=103;  // here is calculated value of SPBRGH and SPBRGL

    PIR1bits.RCIF=0;        // make sure receive interrupt flag is clear
    PIE1bits.RCIE=1;        // enable UART Receive interrupt
    INTCONbits.PEIE = 1;    // Enable peripheral interrupt
    INTCONbits.GIE = 1;     // enable global interrupt

         __delay_ms(50);        // give time for voltage levels on board to settle


int main(void) {


    // set up oscillator control register, using internal OSC at 4MHz.
    OSCCONbits.IRCF = 0x05; //set OSCCON IRCF bits to select OSC frequency 4MHz
    OSCCONbits.SCS = 0x02; //set the SCS bits to select internal oscillator block

    while (1) {
        PORTAbits.RA0 = 0;
        if (uart_data) {

            if (RCSTA1bits.FERR) {  // Frame Error, next read will reset
                uart_data = NULL;

            if (RCSTA1bits.OERR) {  // Overrun Error
                RCSTA1bits.CREN=0;       // receive disabled
                RCSTA1bits.CREN=1;       // receive enabled
                uart_data = NULL;

            parity = calculateparity(uart_data);
            if (parity_rx == parity) {

                rx_data = uart_data;
                if (rx_data == 'a') {
                    PORTAbits.RA0 = 1;
                    PORTAbits.RA0 = 0;

            uart_data = NULL;   //Done

 //       PORTAbits.RA0 = 1;
 //       __delay_ms(40);
 //       PORTAbits.RA0 = 0;
 //       __delay_ms(40);

    return (EXIT_SUCCESS);

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