MPLAB® Harmony v3 Configurator Overview

This tutorial shows instructions with MHC as the GUI tool. MPLAB Harmony v3 is now configurable through MPLAB Code Configurator (MCC). Click here to visit the same tutorial page with instructions using MCC as the GUI tool

This page will show you how to install the MPLAB® Harmony 3 Launcher plugin and how to download the MPLAB Harmony framework. It also provides a brief overview of the MPLAB® Harmony Configurator (MHC) user interface.

MPLAB Harmony 3 Launcher includes the MPLAB Harmony 3 Content Manager and MHC. The content manager is used to download and update the Harmony 3 framework on your local machine. You should install MPLAB Harmony 3 Launcher before downloading the framework.

  1. Install MPLAB Harmony 3 Launcher
  2. Download MPLAB Harmony Framework

MPLAB Harmony Configurator (MHC) is a graphical user interface for the MPLAB Harmony framework. It dramatically simplifies 32-bit (SAM and PIC32) core and peripheral configuration. It also allows you to enable and configure any of the specific Harmony framework libraries (e.g., device drivers, system services, USB, TCP/IP, graphics, etc.) you may need for your project.

MHC is available as a plugin extension to the MPLAB® X IDE. It is also available as a standalone Java application for use with other tool suites (see "Getting started with MPLAB® Harmony 3 on the SAMA5D2" for details).

You must install the following tools to use MPLAB Harmony 3 Launcher with the MPLAB® X IDE:

Install MPLAB Harmony 3 Launcher


Open the MPLAB X IDE and select Tools > Plugins.



The Plugins window will open. Click on the Available Plugins tab, check the MPLAB® Harmony 3 Launcher box, and click the Install button.

Note: Be careful to not select MPLAB® Harmony Configurator as this is a different plugin used with the previous version of Harmony (version 2).



Click Next, accept the license terms, and click Install.


Click Finish to restart the IDE.


Select Tools > Embedded to verify that MHC and the content manager are displayed in the list.


Download MPLAB Harmony Framework

MPLAB Harmony 3 Launcher includes the MPLAB Harmony Content Manager (MHCM) tool. This tool includes a downloader that reads the MPLAB Harmony GitHub repository to create a list of available packages. You choose which packages you want to download from this list.


In the MPLAB X IDE, select Tools > Embedded > MPLAB Harmony 3 Content Manager.

If you don't see this option, you haven't installed MPLAB Harmony 3 Launcher. See above for details.

After downloading the framework once, you'll be able to run the content manager with a standalone Java application (without starting the MPLAB X IDE first).

  • Open a command prompt window.
  • Open the contentmanager folder from your previous download.
  • Execute the downloader, harmony-content-manager.jar.


Choose a folder in which to download the Harmony framework. You can browse to an existing Harmony framework folder or create a new one. Click Next.



Wait while the content manager tool queries the repository and generates a list of all available packages. If this is your first time using this tool, or if you've selected a new folder to download the framework into, the content manager window will look like the following image.


Note the Local Packages list is empty (you haven't downloaded any yet), and the Remote Packages list shows all packages found on the MPLAB Harmony GitHub site. Also, note that three packages are selected for download by default as these are required for all Harmony projects.

Package Name Description
mhc Contains the implementation of the MHC tool.
dev_packs Describes all peripherals, memory, etc… of each supported 32-bit device.
csp Chip support package: includes the Peripheral Libraries (PLIB).

Check the boxes beside all packages you want to download, then click Download Selected (top left corner). You may want to check the Select All box (top left corner) so you can access all the demonstration applications included in the Harmony framework. After accepting the license agreements, the download will start.

If you've previously downloaded packages into the folder you specified, the content manager will show those packages in the Local Packages list. The Remote Packages list will show the following:

  • All packages not found in the folder you specified.
  • All packages that have an update available.

Create a New, or Open an Existing MPLAB Harmony Project

Your computer is ready to use the MPLAB Harmony framework. You can create a new Harmony project from scratch, or open one of the many demonstration application projects that are included in the Harmony framework (see the apps folder in each repository). For more details on how to create or open a project, see the links below:

MPLAB Harmony Configurator Overview

MHC window name Description
Active Components Displays activated/instantiated components.
Available Components Components shown are based on the framework libraries you included in your project. The list of available peripherals is based on the target device you selected for the project.
Project Graph Shows the instantiated components. You can instantiate available components by double-clicking on the component. After successful component instantiation, you can see the instantiated components under Active Components panel.
MHC Plugins Consists of AFEC, DMA, MPU, NVIC, Clock and Pin configuration plugins. To open any of these plugins, go to MHC > Tools and select above mentioned available plugins.
Configuration Options Displays the tree view of the selected component under Project Graph Area. You can do the component configuration from here.
Console Displays the MHC operation results.

The MHC User's Guide Wiki provides details on:

  • The Graphical User Interface (GUI)
  • How to use MHC to generate code
  • How to merge this code with your project
  • How to use these MHC tools:
    • Clock Configuration
    • DMA Configuration
    • Nested Vectored Interrupts Configuration
    • Pin Configuration
    • Event System Configuration
    • MPU Configuration

To learn more, visit the "Github Microchip-MPLAB-Harmony/mhc" page.

Click image to enlarge.
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