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Compiler Reference Guide

Preface Arm Compiler Tools Overview armclang Reference armlink Reference fromelf Reference armar Reference armasm Legacy Assembler Reference armasm Command-line Options --16 --32 --apcs=qualifier…qualifier --arm --arm_only --bi --bigend --brief_diagnostics, --no_brief_diagnostics --checkreglist --cpreproc --cpreproc_opts=option[,option,…] --cpu=list (armasm) --cpu=name (armasm) --debug --depend=dependfile --depend_format=string --diag_error=tag[,tag,…] (armasm) --diag_remark=tag[,tag,…] (armasm) --diag_style={arm|ide|gnu} (armasm) --diag_suppress=tag[,tag,…] (armasm) --diag_warning=tag[,tag,…] (armasm) --dllexport_all --dwarf2 --dwarf3 --errors=errorfile --exceptions, --no_exceptions --exceptions_unwind, --no_exceptions_unwind --execstack, --no_execstack --execute_only --fpmode=model --fpu=list (armasm) --fpu=name (armasm) -g (armasm) --help (armasm) -idir[,dir, …] --keep (armasm) --length=n --li --library_type=lib --list=file --list= --littleend -m (armasm) --maxcache=n --md --no_code_gen --no_esc --no_hide_all --no_regs --no_terse --no_warn -o filename (armasm) --pd --predefine "directive" --reduce_paths, --no_reduce_paths --regnames --report-if-not-wysiwyg --show_cmdline (armasm) --thumb --unaligned_access, --no_unaligned_access --unsafe --untyped_local_labels --version_number (armasm) --via=filename (armasm) --vsn (armasm) --width=n --xref Structure of armasm Assembly Language Modules Syntax of source lines in armasm syntax assembly l Literals ELF sections and the AREA directive An example armasm syntax assembly language module Writing A32/T32 Instructions in armasm Syntax Asse About the Unified Assembler Language Syntax differences between UAL and A64 assembly la Register usage in subroutine calls Load immediate values Load immediate values using MOV and MVN Load immediate values using MOV32 Load immediate values using LDR Rd, =const Literal pools Load addresses into registers Load addresses to a register using ADR Load addresses to a register using ADRL Load addresses to a register using LDR Rd, =label Other ways to load and store registers Load and store multiple register instructions Load and store multiple register instructions in A Stack implementation using LDM and STM Stack operations for nested subroutines Block copy with LDM and STM Memory accesses The Read-Modify-Write operation Optional hash with immediate constants Use of macros Test-and-branch macro example Unsigned integer division macro example Instruction and directive relocations Symbol versions Frame directives Exception tables and Unwind tables Using armasm armasm command-line syntax Specify command-line options with an environment v Using stdin to input source code to the assembler Built-in variables and constants Identifying versions of armasm in source code Diagnostic messages Interlocks diagnostics Automatic IT block generation in T32 code T32 branch target alignment T32 code size diagnostics A32 and T32 instruction portability diagnostics T32 instruction width diagnostics Two pass assembler diagnostics Using the C preprocessor Address alignment in A32/T32 code Address alignment in A64 code Instruction width selection in T32 code Symbols, Literals, Expressions, and Operators in a Symbol naming rules Variables Numeric constants Assembly time substitution of variables Register-relative and PC-relative expressions Labels Labels for PC-relative addresses Labels for register-relative addresses Labels for absolute addresses Numeric local labels Syntax of numeric local labels String expressions String literals Numeric expressions Syntax of numeric literals Syntax of floating-point literals Logical expressions Logical literals Unary operators Binary operators Multiplicative operators String manipulation operators Shift operators Addition, subtraction, and logical operators Relational operators Boolean operators Operator precedence Difference between operator precedence in assembly armasm Directives Reference Alphabetical list of directives armasm assembly la About armasm assembly language control directives About frame directives Directives that can be omitted in pass 2 of the as ALIAS ALIGN AREA ARM or CODE32 directive ASSERT ATTR CN CODE16 directive COMMON CP DATA DCB DCD and DCDU DCDO DCFD and DCFDU DCFS and DCFSU DCI DCQ and DCQU DCW and DCWU END ENDFUNC or ENDP ENTRY EQU EXPORT or GLOBAL EXPORTAS FIELD FRAME ADDRESS FRAME POP FRAME PUSH FRAME REGISTER FRAME RESTORE FRAME RETURN ADDRESS FRAME SAVE FRAME STATE REMEMBER FRAME STATE RESTORE FRAME UNWIND ON FRAME UNWIND OFF FUNCTION or PROC GBLA, GBLL, and GBLS GET or INCLUDE IF, ELSE, ENDIF, and ELIF IMPORT and EXTERN INCBIN INFO KEEP LCLA, LCLL, and LCLS LTORG MACRO and MEND MAP MEXIT NOFP OPT QN, DN, and SN RELOC REQUIRE REQUIRE8 and PRESERVE8 RLIST RN ROUT SETA, SETL, and SETS SPACE or FILL THUMB directive TTL and SUBT WHILE and WEND WN and XN armasm-Specific A32 and T32 Instruction Set Featur armasm support for the CSDB instruction A32 and T32 pseudo-instruction summary ADRL pseudo-instruction CPY pseudo-instruction LDR pseudo-instruction MOV32 pseudo-instruction NEG pseudo-instruction UND pseudo-instruction Appendixes

Literal pools

F3.8 Literal pools

The assembler uses literal pools to store some constant data in code sections. You can use the LTORG directive to ensure a literal pool is within range.

The assembler places a literal pool at the end of each section. The end of a section is defined either by the END directive at the end of the assembly or by the AREA directive at the start of the following section. The END directive at the end of an included file does not signal the end of a section.

In large sections the default literal pool can be out of range of one or more LDR instructions. The offset from the PC to the constant must be:

  • Less than 4KB in A32 or T32 code when the 32-bit LDR instruction is available, but can be in either direction.
  • Forward and less than 1KB when only the 16-bit T32 LDR instruction is available.

When an LDR Rd,=const pseudo-instruction requires the immediate value to be placed in a literal pool, the assembler:

  • Checks if the value is available and addressable in any previous literal pools. If so, it addresses the existing constant.
  • Attempts to place the value in the next literal pool if it is not already available.

If the next literal pool is out of range, the assembler generates an error message. In this case you must use the LTORG directive to place an additional literal pool in the code. Place the LTORG directive after the failed LDR pseudo-instruction, and within the valid range for an LDR instruction.

You must place literal pools where the processor does not attempt to execute them as instructions. Place them after unconditional branch instructions, or after the return instruction at the end of a subroutine.

Example of placing literal pools

The following example shows the placement of literal pools. The instructions listed as comments are the A32 instructions generated by the assembler.

        AREA     Loadcon, CODE, READONLY
        ENTRY                      ; Mark first instruction to execute
        BL       func1             ; Branch to first subroutine
        BL       func2             ; Branch to second subroutine
        MOV      r0, #0x18         ; angel_SWIreason_ReportException
        LDR      r1, =0x20026      ; ADP_Stopped_ApplicationExit
        SVC      #0x123456         ; AArch32 semihosting (formerly SWI)
        LDR      r0, =42           ; => MOV R0, #42
        LDR      r1, =0x55555555   ; => LDR R1, [PC, #offset to
                                   ; Literal Pool 1]
        LDR      r2, =0xFFFFFFFF   ; => MVN R2, #0
        BX       lr
        LTORG                      ; Literal Pool 1 contains
                                   ; literal Ox55555555
        LDR      r3, =0x55555555   ; => LDR R3, [PC, #offset to
                                   ; Literal Pool 1]
        ; LDR r4, =0x66666666      ; If this is uncommented it
                                   ; fails, because Literal Pool 2
                                   ; is out of reach
        BX       lr
        SPACE    4200              ; Starting at the current location,
                                   ; clears a 4200 byte area of memory
                                   ; to zero
        END                        ; Literal Pool 2 is inserted here, 
                                   ; but is out of range of the LDR
                                   ; pseudo-instruction that needs it
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