8051 Microcontroller – Programming Tutorials, Simulators, Compilers and Programmers

Every now and again we take a look around at the 8051 microcontroller to select the best tutorials, simulators, compilers, programmers and present them to you in a brief overview. The choice is enormous, so the time you need to find all these resources is usually the time you should be investing in your current projects. We search for them, and we find them, so you can have it in one place.

8051 is not just a random number; it’s the name of one of the most frequently used microcontroller in robotics. This single chip microcontroller is a very small black piece where are stored functions like CPU, RAM, ROM, Timer, Serial Communication Interface, I/O ports, etc. The first version was presented in the 1980s, and since then the microcontroller has been embedded in a large variety of robotics projects.

The 8051 microcontroller is a small computer based on an architecture with support for embedded applications. This is the biggest difference between a microcontroller and microprocessor. A microprocessor is used in personal computers while a microcontroller is used for embedded systems, especially in robotics.

8051 Microcontroller

8051 Microcontroller

8051 Microcontroller Programming Tutorials

Beginners or advanced users can read these tutorials and learn how to program an 8051 microcontroller, or in the case of advanced users, can use them for inspiration.


Useful development tools compatible with the 8051 microcontroller.

  • Raisonance – application simulator for 8051 microcontrollers;
  • JSIM51 – one of the most popular simulators with comprehensive documentation to learn how to use the 8051 microcontroller;
  • Micro C 8051 – C de programare Embedded – seria de articole pentru 8051 microcontroler;
  • C51 Software – a simulator tool for classic and extended 8051 microcontrollers;
  • Proteus VSM for 8051 – complete tools to develop and test programming line for all series of 8051 microcontrollers;
  • Crossware 8051 – a simulation tool that creates a virtual clone of 8051 microcontrollers that runs on computers;
  • EdSim51 – one of the most popular simulator tool for 8051 series with interface for virtual peripherals and keyboard, ADC, or DAC;
  • Tiny 8051 Microcontroller Simulator 0.6.1 – designed for educational purposes, Tiny is a simulator written in C# language to simulate and debug the 8051 microcontroller;


The list with C or C++ compilers that support the 8051 microcontroller series.

  • SDCC – a C language compiler for a wide series of microcontrollers including the 8051 models;
  • mikroC PRO for 8051 – a C compiler with friendly interface and support for Atmel and Silicon Labs microcontrollers;
  • Keil – a powerful and efficient C simulator for 8051;
  • TASKING – the compiler compatible with 8, 16 and 32-bit microcontrollers;
  • IAR Embedded Workbench for 8051 – a C and C++ compiler for 8051;
  • 8051 C Compiler – based on ANSI standard, the Crossware 8051 C compiler is designed for 8051 microcontroller series;
  • 8051 C++ Compiler – a C++ simulator with support for object oriented programs;
  • Ceibo 8051 C++ – a C++ compiler with support for Object Oriented Programming and used to debug and maintain the code;
  • 8051 C-Compiler uC51 – a friendly interface tool based on ANSI C standard;


In this section, we did a list of hardware devices called programmer. These devices are used to write in the 8051 microcontroller memory the machine language code.

8051 Microcontroller Instructions Set

For a precise control, the microcontrollers may operate under instructions. These instructions are commands written for microcontroller and divided into various categories including arithmetic, logic, data transfer, Boolean variables, and machine control instructions.

24 comments » Write a comment

  1. I was hoping you can help me with a project i would like to make. I am a dyi guy and have very limited skills with the programming and coding and other smart stuff you talk about. I can do all the wiring, soldering and building. What i would like to do is make a digital scoreboard for playing the game cornhole. I would like to make the 7 segment displays out of LED strips and possibly power it with battery power for yard use. I also found a 17 segment 2.5 tall that might work. It would need a button for increase, decrease and reset. There are 2 sides each having a possible score of 0-21. I hope you can help me get going in the right direction on this project. I could send a drawing of what it might look like. Also can you give me a general idea of what this might cost me. Thanks for any help.


    • Hello Adrian,

      First I want to thank you for the trust to solve the project. About your project, I have to be honest that I don’t have time to solve such a project currently.

      Best Regards,

      • Hi. first of all thanks for this great website. its very helpfull for electronics and computer students. i have a homework that i have to find couple of 8051 Microcontroller application which is written in assembly language and simulated in a simulator such as edsim51 . i use a macbook so i coudnt download it to see if i can do some simulation. do you have any examples for this. which is simulated and written in assembly language. thanks a lot.

  2. hello,
    I’m rupakumari b.tech 3’rd year by ece.
    i want to know that ,application of level 2 or 3 in embedded system

  3. hello
    sir i have to perform programs on dyna-51 microcontroller kit, please tellme steps how to execute program on dyna-51 kit, thanks

  4. hello sir
    I am an undergraduate student of electrical engineering.The problem is my department do not offer course of programming the microcontroller and embedded for this degree. My question is is there any need of microcontroller prog for me? if yes then please tell how to start on my own.
    Please reply soon

    • Hello,

      You can start working with microcontrollers from this article where are available from simple to advanced methods for programming.

  5. hi. really i love this site very much friends. i want to learn how to programing 8051. i have no skils in programing. what s the minimum knowledge to program this chip.? i have some knowledge in electronics. irepairing tv, and electronic based items..plz help me any ones how to approach my dream friends…

    • Hello,

      You should have C or assembly language programming skills to start programming microcontrollers such as 8051. For many more information you can use all the tutorials available in this article.

  6. I am beginner;
    But i am interested to have a deep knowledge concerning 8051 microcontroller programming.

    Thank you for your consideration!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • C programming language is more common than assembly is, at least for educational purposes

  7. sir, i ve learn some program in 8051 keilc for my career… so, shall u give example to my mail id…

  8. I am a computer science and engineering student. I have just done with microprocessors and computer architecture in college. But we never had any programming or anything related to microcontrollers.I have immense interest in microprocessors and its programming and want to make a career in something related to this field. Will learning microcontrollers and its programming help me in future? What should I learn more apart from this as I don’t wanna get into software??

    • Programming microcontrollers are a good start for beginners and it could help you to dig into robotics. You can start by understanding how these works, how to program one of this, and how to control a simple component like a sensor.

  9. I am an undergraduate student of electronics.i want the program(basic) like addition of 2 byte number and display the given string and basic programming

  10. This writing provides facilities of rapid transformation from a dedicated professional into influential leader which provide optimal performance, fortify human relations and reach one`s to the top profession.

  11. Thank you this article was very helpful! Actually, A major portion of advanced courses on modern day Electronics is made up by the study of Processor chips. And to put it into a nutshell for Tech newbies,a Microcontroller is just a type of integrated circuit consisting of basic logic gates in a complex calculation. diagrams on Electrodiction also explains it in a simple way.

  12. This detailed article is quite helpful. However, I request that you update this info and give a comparison of features on the trainers so as to help teachers to choose one. The MC unit must be self-sufficient with simulated inputs and measuring output decvices with minimum programming to conduct simulated 12 to 14 experiments covering the key concepts of MCs.

  13. Start the Edsim51 simulator.
    2. Using the source code window type the following program
    ORG 0000H
    MOV A, #07H
    CPL A
    ADD A, #01
    MOV R0, A
    MOV A, #FH
    ADD A, R0

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