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Uploading New Firmware

Pixy uses a ROM-based algorithm to upload new firmware into flash memory over USB, which makes Pixy “unbrickable” - that is, you will always be able to recover Pixy from an unsuccessful firmware upload or a “bad” version of firmware.

The First Time You Upload Firmware

Start like this:

  • PixyMon is running on your computer.
  • You have your new firmware file available somewhere on your computer. You can find the latest version here.

Now do these steps (please):

  • Make sure Pixy is NOT plugged in to a USB cable.
  • If you haven't already, connect a USB cable to your computer:
  • Press and hold down the white button on top of Pixy. While holding the button down, connect Pixy to the USB cable from the previous step. Once the cable is connected, you can let go of the button.

Holding the white button down while connecting Pixy to USB puts Pixy in “firmware upload mode”. Since this is the first time you have uploaded firmware onto Pixy, your computer will go through a driver installation process. This is because Pixy uses a separate device driver for firmware upload, and your computer hasn't seen this device on its USB port before (Note: this only happens if you're using a Windows computer. If you're using a Mac or Linux machine, scroll down to the “Pixymon” section and skip this driver installation business).

Windows Vista, 7, or 8

You should get a small message in the system tray similar to this one:


Wait for the driver to finish installing, which shouldn't require any actions on your part, just some waiting.

Windows XP

You should get the New Hardware Wizard


Click on “No, not this time” and then “Next”. In the next dialog, *click on “Install the software automatically” and then “Next”.


The driver will then be installed. Wait for this to finish before continuing.


In the PixyMon command/status window (at the bottom of the PixyMon window) you should see the message “Pixy programming state detected”. If you don't see this message, the drivers may still be installing. Just wait a little more.

Then a file selection dialog will appear. Browse to your new firmware file (it's a .hex file) and select it, then press OK. Pixy will then take the new program and write it into its flash memory. It's really quick – it literally only takes 2 or 3 seconds. When it's done, you should see the “done!” message in the PixyMon command/status window, and the new firmware will start running.

You're done!

The Next Time You Upload Firmware

The next time you upload firmware, the drivers will be installed, so you just need to initiate firmware upload mode by holding down the white button while plugging in the USB cable.

wiki/v1/uploading_new_firmware.txt · Last modified: 2018/05/28 00:03 by pixycam