Upgrading my FrSKY Taranis from OpenTX-r2834 to v2.08

Since I got my Frsky Taranis X9D for Christmas last year, I have been running (happily) on opentx-r2834 firmware (from Dec2013) and using Companion9x v1.52 on two Macs (one osx 10.6 snowleopard, the other osx 10.7 lion).

Why change?

Because my shiny new SPORT GPS telemetry sensor reports rubbish data (and no latitude / longitude) to the telemetry screens of my Taranis using an X8R reciever. Did a test with different x6R receivers – same issue. Used a mate’s more recent Taranis (the one that ships with bigger battery, nicer sliders and v2.x firmware) and it worked fine. OK – time to bite the bullet and upgrade to the totally new V2.0 platform which replaces Companion9x with OpenTX companion v2.x

What a bloody nightmare of issues. Lets start with what worked then list the plethora of things that didnt.

WORKED (eventually) with some help from this manual (wish I had found opentx university and THIS differences to OpenTX2.0 reference:

  • Backup models. Make sure you have an .eepe file with all of your models (EEPROM memory to file) before proceeding.
  • Backup firmware. Use OpenTX Companion v2.0.8 on a windows 8.1 PC to Read Firmware from Radio and save it to FirmwareBackupFromRadio.bin on OneDrive. The trick(s):
    • Turn Taranis TX OFF before USB Connect to PC.
    • Check for STM32 BOOTLOADER in windows cpanel device manager (thanks to this and this video) then
    • download the right zadig.exe and run the bizzare driver swap (thanks to this post) to work around DFUUTIL errors when trying to read firmware from radio.
  • Set preferences & download new firmware. OpenTX Companion v2.0.8 has moved preference s to Settings-Settings. It is crucial to ensure Radio Type is OpenTX for FrSky Taranis before proceeding. Then select the Build Options (I chose no heli, have be warned not to add haptic). The build and download firmware buttons have also been helpfully removed. Go to help – check for updates and you will get exactly one chance to download the appropriate opentx-taranis-noheli-en.bin firmware file. Hint: if you change one of the build options you will get ‘no firmware appears to have been downloaded’ and you can download.
  • Update the firmware. Read/Write -> write firmware to radio. That was the easy bit!
  • Panic. Unplug Taranis from USB. Switch on. Greeted with ‘EEPROM WARNING EEprom Data v215’. Hit any key. Converting EEPROM.
  • Phew: conversion finished. All my models are there. The ‘WizardGlider’ model works, test GPS telemetry – now get coordinates! Mission Accomplished.
  • Sort of… Remembering the new ‘3finger salute (two trims inward while power on) to put taranis in USB mode before connect to computer – now my SD card structure with log files etc doesnt show up.
  • Restore custom splash startup image. My fancy FANG skull n cross bones startup image has gone (but the sailors hornpipe custom sound remains). Found FangSPLASH-212×64.bmp on an old drive and away we go.
  • Taranis Bootloader – 2.0.8. I knew about the 3 finger salute (two trims in and power on) to get to USB mode but had no idea what it meant or where to get information on it. Info on understanding bootloaders at OpenTX University.
    • Backup EEPROM to SD card. Long Menu->Radio Setup->4xPage->VErsion -> ENTER long to backup EEPROM to SD. Creates /EEPROMS directory on the SD card in the same drive as /LOGS etc. NOw you can restore a whole .eepe file with all the models etc in the field without a PC.
    • Backup FIRMWARE to sd card. Create /FIRMWARES directory on the same drive as the /EEPROMS and /LOGS directories. Copy in one or more .bin files to enable restore from bootloader (WITHOUT PC / MAC / ZADIG OR ANy o that shite).

BOLLOCKS:

  • Trying to get Companion9x v1.5.2 (the last before the big v2.x jump) running on mac osx 10.7. Tried many combinations of installers / downloads none would give me a working v1.5.2. The app would always crash on launch.
  • Trying to read firmware from radio to create a backup of my firmware using companion 9x v1.5.1 on either of my Macs. The ‘Read Flash Memory’ icon would prompt for a file (.bin) to save then exit blindingly fast with no indication of reading from TX and no file written.
  • Trying to  read firmware from radio on the windows 8.1 PC running OpenTX Companion V2.0.8 with the Taranis TX turned ON while connecting to USB. Many circles and loops of dfu-util [Opening DFU capable USB device .. Cannot open device ] errors and zadig.exe insanity here.
  • Having to use a Windows 8.1 shitebox to get from the world of Companion9x 1.5.x to OpenTX Companion v2.x. I guess that’s because my macs are getting long in the tooth. (OSX 10.6 Snow Leopard and OSX 10.7 Lion).
  • Support for old Apple Mac OSX versions (down to OSX 10.5 Leopard). Had to wade through gallons of tripe to find an OSX universal build of OpenTX Companion V2.0.7 from a DropBox of some brave compiling soul who commented on this thread in a github database of OpenTX issues. I like building rockets but I’m not about to start compiling my own builds of OpenSource software just to manage my TX.
  • OSX Universal (OSX 10.5 upwards) download – having found a universal build for 2.0.7 in the dropbox from the comment above, I went looking for a decent source of OSX universal downloads. And there it was, right under my nose [the 2.0.8 OSX .dmg is universal and works on my OSX 10.7.5 Mac.

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Fang – Mike Seyfang

TriBeardLesBones

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About mseyfang

Interruptus Digitalis
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