Received a message about a ChipWhisperer firmware update being available? Accidentally erased the firmware on your ChipWhisperer? If so, this page contains all the information you need to get your device up and running again!
All ChipWhisperer scopes and FPGA targets have a ROM base bootloader, meaning it is effectively impossible to “brick” your ChipWhisperer by updating or erasing its firmware.
This page only concerns firmware for ChipWhisperer scopes and FPGA boards like the CW310 or CW305, not for integrated targets or CW308 target boards
This update method for updating firmware only works for ChipWhisperer 5.6 and newer. For ChipWhisperer versions earlier than 5.6, see Firmware Update.
If you are already running ChipWhisperer natively on Windows, no steps are required before upgrading or flashing new firmware onto your ChipWhisperer.
If you have ChipWhisperer installed and are unable to connect due to not having the correct driver, follow the steps shown at How to Change Drivers.
If you are running natively on Linux, you will need to
ensure you have access to the serial ports. As of
ChipWhisperer 5.6, a rule in
will give serial port access to the current user
Older versions do not include this rule, so it is recommended to replace
with ChipWhisperer 5.6’s
chipwhisperer/hardware/50-newae.rules, then run
$ sudo udevadm control --reload-rules
In addition to the prerequisites for your guest system, you will also need to ensure that the serial bootloader is being passed through from your host, like with your other ChipWhisperer devices. To add a USB passthrough filter for the bootloader, go to the settings for your VM > USB and create a new USB filter with the following settings:
Name: ATSAM Bootloader
Vendor ID: 03eb
Product ID: 6124
This should already be done on the ChipWhisperer VM, but may not be present on older VMs.
If you just need to update the firmware on your ChipWhisperer,
the easiest way is to connect to your ChipWhisperer as usual,
then call the
upgrade_firmware() method. For example,
upgrading a ChipWhisperer-Lite:
>>> import chipwhisperer as cw >>> scope = cw.scope() >>> scope.upgrade_firmware() Entering bootloader mode... Detected com port COM13 Loading cwlite firmware... Opened! Connecting... Connected! Erasing... Erased! Programming file SAM3U_CW1173.bin... Programmed! Verifying... Verify OK! Resetting... Upgrade successful
If you don’t see the “Resetting…” line, you’ll need to power cycle your ChipWhisperer.
Programming New Firmware¶
If you’ve accidentally erased the firmware on your ChipWhisperer,
the best way to flash new firmware is to use ChipWhisperer’s
program_sam_firmware() function. You will need
to specify the device you are upgrading from the following list:
For example, to flash new firmware to a CW305:
>>> import chipwhisperer as cw >>> cw.program_sam_firmware(hardware_type='cw305')
Old Firmware Upgrade¶
For ChipWhisperer versions earlier than 5.6, see Firmware Update.
Firmware upgrade failed¶
for any reason, use
Could not find bootloader serial port¶
Ensure the device is plugged in. If you’re using a VM, ensure you have the USB device passed through.
If running on Linux, ensure you have the new
50-newae.rules file in
/etc/udev/rules.d/, then run
sudo udevadm control --reload-rules.
Additionally, try unplugging and replugging your ChipWhisperer. If the udev
rules have been applied properly, you should see a
%n is some integer.
If you’re still unable to program new firmware, try adding your user
sudo usermod -a -G dialout $USER
then logging out and back in again.
Accidentally flashed incorrect firmware¶
Short the erase pins on your ChipWhisperer to enter bootloader mode, then flash the correct firmware onto your device.
Instructions for shorting the erase pins can be found on the documentation page for your device at https://rtfm.newae.com
If you run into any issues not covered here, or if none of these steps work for you, let us know over at https://forum.newae.com