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Utility to reflash firmware / obtain installer plf with ease

Problems of AR Drone 2.0, Freeflight 2, Flight Recorder GPS, Qgroundcontrol... etc.
thamind
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Utility to reflash firmware / obtain installer plf with ease

Post by thamind » 24 Feb 2011, 10:51

Dummy proof batch script to reflash your firmware if you are having problems with OTA update via iphone/android and have "bricked" your drone.

Made for windows OS to be used with USB connection to port.

DISCLAIMER: I am not responsible for anything that happens to your AR Drone, this may void your warranty to Parrot, and is intended for reference purposes.

Included in this package are the following:

firmware-reset.exe
usb_flash (thx scorpion2k)
plf_inst_extract (thx scorpion2k)
zlib-1.2.3 (thx scorpion2k)
current ARDrone firmware from site: ardrone_update.plf (build 2011-01-08 2:30)
ardrone_usb_bootloader.bin file taken from AR Drone Flasher v1.00.08

The files included within this ZIP file are from Google code page ardrone-tool
Reference: http://code.google.com/p/ardrone-tool/

download utility here: (in .ZIP format) 8.90MB

http://www.jonbianco.com/firmware-reset.zip
Last edited by thamind on 24 Feb 2011, 11:58, edited 1 time in total.

scorpion2k
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Re: Utility to reflash firmware / obtain installer plf with

Post by scorpion2k » 24 Feb 2011, 11:30

Good work, thamind.

Just two things:
1. To comply with the GPLv3, you should either refer to the source code of the tools (http://code.google.com/p/ardrone-tool" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;) or add the source code directly to the zip file.
2. You should add a disclaimer that using these tools will probably void warranty.

Nevertheless nice idea to provide an easy way to recover bricked drones.

Best regards

thamind
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Getting USB connected

Post by thamind » 24 Feb 2011, 11:47

A lot of people are having trouble making a USB cable for the purpose of reflashing your drone so I thought i would post a bunch of pictures of my method so you will have the easiest possible experience.

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First things first, you need a USB cable. it can pretty much be any cable, as long as the connecter to the computer is working. You can goto the dollar store and buy a USB printer cable for $1 and cut the wire with about 2-3' length. Splice the wire and you will then be presented with 4 smaller wires: red, white, green and black. You may also see some metal strands and fibers surrounding the wires when you splice them, you can just cut those off or push them to the side.

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The second piece you will need is not easy to find, it will adapt the wires you spliced from the usb cable to the mainboard of the AR Drone securely. I just happend to have a Foxconn pata 2.5 hard drive to dell laptop adapter that coincidently fit the hole pattern of the male usb connector on the drone mainboard, so i used this. I was also considering pulling a bunch of hard drive/cd drive jumpers and using those to connect each individual wire if you have them available, they should fit.

Image
Image
The wiring pinout is displayed here for reference, and shows where to attach each of the wires to. The 1 on the top left indicated the location for the RED wire, the white to the right of it (3), then the green (5), then the black (7). The 3 pins on the bottom (2, 4, and 6) are for other purposes and not necessary to attach any wires to.

Image
The adapter i had was so long i had to remove the mainboard cover to fit it on, and i did not solder the contacts properly, just kindof stuck the wires in and bent them up. this is highly NOT recommended because you can risk the contacts touching each other and may cause short. It worked, and connected tho :shock:

Image
So once you connect the usb adapter to the drone, and are confident all the contacts are properly attached, go ahead and plug the usb cable into your computer WITHOUT the battery connected. Then, plug the battery in and the find driver dialong should pop up. Use the drivers located in the drivers directory of the usb_flash program (or with the firnware-reset package i put together) and make sure the driver installs sucessfully. You are ready to flash.

If you want to download everything needed to flash the firmware, point to this download and run firmware-reset.exe

http://www.jonbianco.com/firmware-reset.zip

Symon
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Re: Utility to reflash firmware / obtain installer plf with

Post by Symon » 24 Feb 2011, 13:43

Oooo errrrr. I have seen some horrid wiring in my time and this one is up there with those.

I love that it works.

ShellDude
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Re: Utility to reflash firmware / obtain installer plf with

Post by ShellDude » 24 Feb 2011, 14:21

We truly are a remarkable community. I've been in quite a few over the years and this one has something that is often times missed!

I ordered 20 molex connectors and usb a connectors from digikey last night and will be rigging them for free distribution here. They'll likely be ready for delivery Monday.


Sent from my GT-I9000 using Tapatalk

shep75xe
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Re: Utility to reflash firmware / obtain installer plf with

Post by shep75xe » 24 Feb 2011, 15:31

guys i tryed telnet all of the stuff on this fourm... No JOY :(


my drone would not update...
this is the only one that worked for me :) thank u all for your help :)


Paul

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Re: Utility to reflash firmware / obtain installer plf with

Post by nuroo » 24 Feb 2011, 17:25

ShellDude wrote:We truly are a remarkable community. I've been in quite a few over the years and this one has something that is often times missed!

I ordered 20 molex connectors and usb a connectors from digikey last night and will be rigging them for free distribution here. They'll likely be ready for delivery Monday.


Sent from my GT-I9000 using Tapatalk
PLZ make me a USB cord. I bought 2 drones and never got to fly them because of firmware 1.3.3 to 1.5.1 issue. I never want to be in that position again. If u can I'll pm my info. I'll cover shipping and extra for your time and materials.

thamind
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Re: Utility to reflash firmware / obtain installer plf with

Post by thamind » 24 Feb 2011, 18:58

Again, sorry for the really crappy wiring connection :oops:

I figured it was just a one time link up and i wanted to salvage the connector afterwards for its original intended use, so i made no perm changes.

Also if your impatient and cannot wait to get it working you could always try my other wacky idea and take 4 jumper pins from a hard drive or CD rom drive:

Image

Affix the wire to one side of the jumper (or the jumpers with exposed contacts on top will work easier) and connect the other side to the pins of the drone..

another ghetto yet quick fix to make it work heh.. good luck guys.

gabhart
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Re: Utility to reflash firmware / obtain installer plf with

Post by gabhart » 25 Feb 2011, 02:36

Shelldude, I would love one of those cables!

Thamind, great job! Thank you!

maddog42
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Re: Utility to reflash firmware / obtain installer plf with

Post by maddog42 » 26 Feb 2011, 08:21

This post has been very helpful I downloaded the utility and made my USB cable. But I can't figure out how to use the utility to fix my bricked drone :( I haven't even got to fly it yet. I think my first problem is I can't figure out how to install the USB drives any way someone help please!!!!!!! Lol

namith
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Re: Utility to reflash firmware / obtain installer plf with

Post by namith » 06 Jul 2011, 01:47

The guide on making the cable was very helpful. However, I am unable to use the flashing tool. I was never prompted to do anything with the drivers, so I attempted to use the tool. firmware-reset.exe opens a command prompt and closes it again too quickly for me to see anything, and usb-flash.exe says it is missing libusb0.dll. I found some files of that name, but I don't know what they are or which to use. Thanks for your help.

MAPGPS
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Re: Utility to reflash firmware / obtain installer plf with

Post by MAPGPS » 06 Jul 2011, 04:36

namith,

For your reference, here is what I did:

Download and extract the AR.Drone usb_flash tool package onto your PC:
http://ardroneme.googlecode.com/file....1.0-win32.zip" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

Download and extract the AR.Drone firmware file ardrone_update.plf into the directory of the tool:
http://www.ardrone-flyers.com/wiki/Main_Page" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

AR.Drone USB Flash steps:
1) Unplug the battery of AR.Drone
2) Connect AR.Drone and PC with the home made USB cable (At this point, four motors with light on)
3) Plug the battery of AR.Drone (At this point, the motherboard with light on)
4) Follow the prompts to install the "P6 USB Stage1" driver (Only when you do the first USB Flash)
5) Run usb_flash
6) When see the prompt of the discovery of new USB "Gadget Serial v2.4", re-install the USB driver (Only when you do the first USB Flash)
7) After flashing finished, unplug the AR.Drone battery, unplug the USB cable
8) Plug the battery of AR.Drone, after a moment the green light on and you can connect WiFi ...

namith
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Re: Utility to reflash firmware / obtain installer plf with

Post by namith » 06 Jul 2011, 18:49

I have now gotten things working a little better. I got the drivers installed, but I am still stuck during usb_flash. I get to

*** BOOTLOADER INSTALLATION ***
Try [00/10] to connect to VID: 0x19cf PID: 0x1000
Try [01/10] to connect to VID: 0x19cf PID: 0x1000
Try [02/10] to connect to VID: 0x19cf PID: 0x1000
Try [03/10] to connect to VID: 0x19cf PID: 0x1000
Try [04/10] to connect to VID: 0x19cf PID: 0x1000
Try [05/10] to connect to VID: 0x19cf PID: 0x1000
Try [06/10] to connect to VID: 0x19cf PID: 0x1000
Try [07/10] to connect to VID: 0x19cf PID: 0x1000
Try [08/10] to connect to VID: 0x19cf PID: 0x1000
Try [09/10] to connect to VID: 0x19cf PID: 0x1000
!!!Unable to install USB device!
*** INSTALLATION FAILED ***


And the program terminates. I am attempting this with firmware 1.6.6.

nJoi
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Re: Utility to reflash firmware / obtain installer plf with

Post by nJoi » 25 Jul 2011, 21:29

namith wrote:I have now gotten things working a little better. I got the drivers installed, but I am still stuck during usb_flash. I get to

*** BOOTLOADER INSTALLATION ***
Try [00/10] to connect to VID: 0x19cf PID: 0x1000
Try [01/10] to connect to VID: 0x19cf PID: 0x1000
Try [02/10] to connect to VID: 0x19cf PID: 0x1000
Try [03/10] to connect to VID: 0x19cf PID: 0x1000
Try [04/10] to connect to VID: 0x19cf PID: 0x1000
Try [05/10] to connect to VID: 0x19cf PID: 0x1000
Try [06/10] to connect to VID: 0x19cf PID: 0x1000
Try [07/10] to connect to VID: 0x19cf PID: 0x1000
Try [08/10] to connect to VID: 0x19cf PID: 0x1000
Try [09/10] to connect to VID: 0x19cf PID: 0x1000
!!!Unable to install USB device!
*** INSTALLATION FAILED ***


And the program terminates. I am attempting this with firmware 1.6.6.
my P6 USB Stage1 is connected, but my wings dont light up until i connect battery, but when I run usb_flash i never get Gadget Serial v2.4, and i get the

*** INSTALLER INSTALLATION ***
Closing usb connection...
Try [00/10] to connect to VID: 0x19cf PID: 0x1000

I am using 1.6.6 also...

absolutelj
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Re: Utility to reflash firmware / obtain installer plf with

Post by absolutelj » 26 Jul 2011, 21:03

I followed the instructions and made a USB cable to update the firmware on the drone. The issue is that it is not recognizing the usb connection once it is plugged in. As soon as I plug it in, the 4 motor lights illuminate (red) and the board light (red) comes on. As soon I connect the battery, the board light goes off while the motor lights stay on. Despite this, it did not bring up a driver install notification on my PC. The cable seems fine as I did some continuity tests to verify that. Any tips on how to get this issue resolve would be appreciated. Thanks! :)

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