AR# 64000


Vivado Simulator - Understanding Waveform Database file (WDB) and Wave Configuration File (WCFG)


A live simulation in Vivado Simulator consists of the following:
  • A waveform database file (WDB), which contains all simulation data.
  • A wave configuration file (WCFG), which contains the order and settings associated with objects in the wave configuration.

What is the difference between these two types of files and what is their relationship?


Wave Configuration File (.wcfg)
A wave configuration refers to the customization of lists of waveforms.

It is made up of the following:
  • A list of signals and buses
  • Their properties, such as color, name style and radix value
  • Other wave objects, such as dividers, groups and markers

You can completely customize a wave configuration by adding or removing signals and other wave objects, and use the wave configuration to examine the simulation results.

A WCFG file is the saved form of a wave configuration on disk.

A wave configuration can have a name or be untitled.

The name shows on the title bar of the wave window.

When you launch simulation in Vivado GUI, it creates a Default.wcfg file.

Waveforms for an object show only from the simulation time when the object was added to the window.

Changes to the waveform configuration, including creating the waveform configuration or adding HDL objects, do not become permanent until you save the WCFG file.
To save a wave configuration to a WCFG file, select File > Save Waveform Configuration As, and type a name for the waveform configuration.

You can also use the following Tcl command:
save_wave_config <waveform_name>

Waveform Database File (.wdb)
The waveform database (WDB) file contains the waveform activity of the displayed HDL objects.

If you add objects to the Wave window and run the simulation, the design hierarchy for the complete design and the transitions for the added objects are automatically saved to the WDB file.

You can open a previously saved WDB file to display simulation results.

In a simulation session you can create and use multiple wave configurations, each in its own waveform window.

There can be multiple WCFG files for a single WDB file.

When you Open Static Simulation by selecting a WDB file, you can view the HDL design hierarchy for the complete design.

You must create a new waveform configuration or open an existing WCFG file to display waveforms.
Note: When you open a WCFG file that contains references to HDL objects that are not present in a static simulation HDL design hierarchy, Vivado simulator ignores those HDL objects and omits them from the loaded waveform configuration.

For more information on the wave configuration and waveform database, please refer to (UG900) Vivado Design Suite User Guide: Logic Simulation.

Linked Answer Records

Master Answer Records

Answer Number Answer Title Version Found Version Resolved
58880 Xilinx Simulation Solution Center - Design Assistant - Vivado Simulator - Waveform Database (.wcfg,.wdb etc). N/A N/A
AR# 64000
Date 04/08/2015
Status Active
Type General Article
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