Firefly Fencing

Firefly Updater

This page details the steps required to update the firmware on your Firefly. A lot of work has gone towards making sure that updating your firmware will result in no permanent damage to your Firefly (called "bricking"), please be aware that it IS a possibility, so please follow these instructions carefully. If something does go wrong, please contact us, and we'll take care of things.

2016-11-13 UPDATE: The latest firmware version, 2.16, incorporates the 2016-2017 season changes to saber blocking timing. Note that version numbers have changed: 1.x firmware is for the old hardware (yellow off-target lights) and 2.x is for the new hardware (white off-target lights).

Step 1: Determine What Hardware Version You Have

Currently, there are two versions of Firefly out there, and the naming is a little confusing. Officially, the old version with five yellow off-target lights per side is called FSR1b (though the board itself is labeled FF2). The new version (with three white off-target lights per side) is FSR1d, and is labeled accordingly. So, to make things simple:

Step 2: Uninstall Old Firmware Updater

I've been having problems successfully installing over older versions of the Firmware Updater, so if you don't uninstall the old version, you may not be getting the latest firmware. You can uninstall by going to Control Panel, selecting "Add and Remove Programs", locating "Firefly Updater" and selecting "Remove". Obviously, if you've never installed an old version, you may skip this step.

Step 3: Download Firmware Updater

Download this installer: Firefly Updater 1-16. Your browser may warn you about this file; there are no plans at this time to offer a more modern Windows installation experience, unfortunately.

Step 4: Install Firefly Updater

Now that you've downloaded the firmware updater, you should be able to run it by double-clicking on it (you do remember where you downloaded it, didn't you?). Here's the rub: if it doesn't work, it may be because you don't have Microsoft's .NET framework, which is necessary to load the updater. If that's the case, you may download it here: .NET Framework 3.5 SP1. Once you've downloaded and installed that, try installing the Firefly Updater again.

Step 4: Attach your Firefly to your Computer

If you have a real serial port (increasingly uncommon on today's computers), you can attach a regular serial cable (not null-modem!) from your computer to the Firefly. If not, you can use a USB to serial converter (recommended choice: AYA 5" USB to Serial Adapater). Once you've attached Firefly, turn it on. Caution: you really don't want your computer to lose power during the update. If you're using a laptop, make sure it's plugged in. If you're using a desktop, make sure you're not doing it during a lightning storm, or when Jr. is rushing towards tripping over the power cord.

Step 5: Run Firefly Updater

In your Start menu, find the Firefly Updater and run it. You will have to select which Firefly version you have (see Step 1). Note: if you accidentally load the wrong firmware, it won't damage your Firefly, but it won't work either; you'll have to re-load it with the correct version. If you know which COM port your Firefly is attached to, you can specify it, or just leave it on <Find automatically> (if you have modems or other serial devices attached to your computer, you may want to turn them off or specify the correct COM port, because the updater will attempt to communicate with them, and they may not like that). When you're ready, press "Begin Update" and you're off and running! While updating, the weapon display will change to a small 'c' , and if your Firefly has white off-target lights (instead of yellow), the clock will also read "CCCC". This is normal. IMPORTANT: most of the time, the progress bar will exhibit steady progress. However, every now and then, the process will stall. Please be patient and wait five minutes before giving up: usually it will come back, and if you interrupt it, you could brick your Firefly.

Step 6: What if Something Goes Wrong?

Tragedy! Something didn't work and now you're left with a Firefly unit that hasn't been updated or, even worse, a bricked Firefly. Have no fear...simply contact us, describe the problems you are having, and we will do our best to get things resolved.