Updating firmware on USBASP from eBay

I got a USBASP off of ebay over christmas, but when trying to use it, avrdude and arduino would complain about the sclock not being able to be set. After a while of looking it up online, I found out that the issue was with an old firmware, so after a little research, this is what I discovered and what I had to do to update it.

This guide is for linux, if you want a guide for windows, here’s one that is the equivalent of it:

First, install the megaisp sketch on an arduino, then hook the arduino to usbasp by connecting the arduino’s pins, to the 10 pin header on the usbasp programmer, using this diagram to hook it up:

My connections were
 Arduino    USBASP
 5V ———– 2
 GND ——– 10
 13 ———— 7
 12 ———- 9 (MISO)
 11 ———- 1 (MOSI)
 10 ———  5 (RESET) 

Just make sure to have it unplugged from the usb port while doing all of this. Also, you’ll need to short the program pin, on mine, it was pin 2 but you may need to check yours to see what yours is. I used a piece of wire on mine shortly to short them together, just by putting the wire through the holes and wrapping the wire around the whole USBASP programmer.

Then try to use this command in the command prompt, if everything goes correctly, it’ll say something like “AVR: ready to accept commands” or something like that:

avrdude -c avrisp -P /dev/ttyACM0 -b 19200 -p m8 -v

If it complains about “AVR: not found” or something like that, then check your wiring, or check your programmer’s chip to make sure it has the ATMEGA8, and if not, change the “m8” to whatever chip is used.

If everything works fine and it is ready to accept the commands, you can download the updated firmware from the site. Here’s the link: http://www.fischl.de/usbasp/

Just download, extract, and use this command to update the firmware:

avrdude -c avrisp -P /dev/ttyACM0 -b 19200 -p m8 -U flash:w:usbasp.atmega8.2011-05-28.hex

If everything went according to plan, you should be able to just unplug the USBASP from the arduno and plug it into the computer , all ready to go.

Here is the one that I purchased and that the pinout worked on:

usbasp programmer

Also, if you have one of these, and you notice that it doesnt work sometimes, just unplug it and wait a few mins, then try again, mine tends to misbehave if you unplug it and plug it in a few times, I think mine just spazzes out sometimes.


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