The following error message occurs when I initialize a JTAG chain containing an XC3S1200E or XC3S1600E:
Impact 7.1i: "ERROR:IMPACT:447 - The BSDL for device 'unknown' is out of date. Please check your installation."
After I select OK, the device shows up as "unknown" in the chain.
To program an XCS1200E or XCS1600E, you must install the latest BSDL files available at:
Be sure to select "BSDL" as the update type and "Spartan-3E" as the device family after landing on the Download Center page.
You will still receive the error message mentioned above (even after installing the BSDL files). However, now you can assign the bit file to the "unknown" device and proceed with programming the part. If you need to put the part in bypass, you can assign the XC3S1200E BSDL file to the unknown device.
This issue has been fixed in the ISE 8.1i design tools.