These update instructions can be used to update any RealSimGear hardware with the latest firmware.

NOTE: It is recommended when updating RealSimGear hardware, that you ensure you only have the individual hardware being updated, connected via USB.  This helps avoid uploading the wrong firmware to the wrong devices.

NOTE 2: Before updating any hardware, ensure you know what COM port is being used by your RealSimGear hardware.  This information can be seen in the Plugin menu in X-Plane, or Add-on Menu in FSX/P3D.  It is recommended prior to starting a firmware update, that you have a some record of what devices are on what COM port, so that per the first NOTE, you can ensure you are updating the correct device with the correct firmware.  You can also refer to our DEBUG article if you want to use Arduino IDE to determine what devices are on what COM port.

Download the Firmware
The first step is to find and download the appropriate firmware for your hardware device.

There are two versions of firmware to choose from:

If running our latest plugin for X-Plane or FSX/P3D, then use the firmware on THIS page.

For older RealSimGear plugins, use the firmware from HERE.

Make note of the firmware download location and name, you will need to select this later.

Update the Firmware

Windows

  1. Download the 'XLoader' application from HERE.  Once downloaded, extract the contents to your Desktop.  The result will be a folder called XLoader that contains an executable XLoader.exe.
  2. Ensure you only have the hardware device you intend to update, connected via USB.
  3. Start 'XLoader.exe' by double clicking on it
  4. In the first section under "Hex file", click the 3 dots ... button and select the .hex file you downloaded above for your product.
  5. In the second section, ensure you have "Mega(ATMEGA2560)" chosen from the dropdown. Note: if you are updating firmware for G5 select "Uno(ATmega328)
  6. In the COM port, ensure you have selected the COM port applicable to the hardware being updated (usually the bottom entry in the list)
  7. In the Baud rate, ensure it is set to 115200.
  8. Once configured, simply hit the "Upload" button.  The firmware update will only take a few seconds and will finish with a simple message of "Uploaded xxx bytes" or similar.
  9. Disconnect and reconnect the USB cable.

MacOS

For updating using MacOS, you will need two applications, the Arduino IDE and the Hex Uploader below.

  1. Download and unzip the Arduino IDE from HERE.  Note it MUST be placed in your Applications folder when extracted.
  2. Download the 'Hex Uploader' application from HERE.  Once downloaded, extract the contents to your Desktop.  The result will be an application called 'Hex Uploader.app'.
  3. Ensure you only have the hardware device you intend to update, connected via USB.
  4. Start 'Hex Uploader' by double clicking on it
  5. In the first section under "Arduino Type", choose Mega - ATmega 2560
  6. In the Serial Port port, ensure you have selected the COM port applicable to the hardware being updated (typically usbmodemxxxx)
  7. In the Baud rate, ensure it is set to 115200.
  8. Once configured, simply hit the "Upload a Hex File" button which will prompt you to select the .hex file downloaded above.  As soon as you choose that file, the upload will begin.  The upload will only take a few seconds and when finished will say "avrdude done. Thank you".
  9. Disconnect and reconnect the USB cable.

Linux
Updating the RealSimGear on a Linux machine is a bit more involved as it requires the use of CLI commands at this time.  You should be fairly familiar with Linux if you use this route as many Linux systems will have different variations of commands and dependencies.  This process was tested on an Ubuntu 19.10 system.  As such, use this a guide to get you started.

1. Open up a Terminal session

2. Install the 'avrdude' application
     For Ubuntu systems the command is:

sudo apt install avrdude

3. Connect ONLY the device you want to upgrade to avoid any conflict with other hardware on your system.
4. After you have connected the USB cable, after a few seconds run the following command to determine which COM port the RealSimGear hardware is using:  

sudo dmesg | grep USB

     With output similar to one of the following:
          ch34x converter now attached to ttyUSB0
     OR
          cdc_acm 1-5:1.0: ttyACM0: USB ACM device
5. Note the port in use, the above cases, either ttyUSB0 or ttyACM0 (those are zeros at the end) as you will need to specify these in an upcoming command.
6. Download the appropriate firmware file as outlined above in this document for the hardware you wish to update.  Typically this will go into your home Downloads folder.  In the CLI change to your Downloads folder:

cd ~/Downloads/

7. Make sure you file is there by running:

ls | grep RealSimGear

     Which should output the filenames, for instance:
          RealSimGear-Arduino-2.6.2-G1000MFDv2.ino.mega.hex
8. Now its time to update the firmware using the avrdude command.  The following command worked on our test system, but its possible that your system may need different options.  If so, you may need to research a bit to find the right options for your system (this is one long command on a single CLI entry).  Replace the -p/dev/ttyUSB0 with whatever port you found in steps 4 and 5 and the filename with the filename you downloaded in steps 6 and 7 (while retaining the "-Uflash:w:" at the start and ":i" at the end:

avrdude -v -pm2560 -cwiring -P/dev/ttyUSB0 -b115200 -D -Uflash:w:RealSimGear-Arduino-2.6.2-G1000MFDv2.ino.mega.hex:i

The output should show some activity at the end you should get something similar to the following:

Writing | ################################################## | 100% 3.24s

avrdude: 10430 bytes of flash written
avrdude: verifying flash memory against RealSimGear-Arduino-2.6.2-G1000MFDv2.ino.mega.hex:
avrdude: load data flash data from input file RealSimGear-Arduino-2.6.2-G1000MFDv2.ino.mega.hex:
avrdude: input file RealSimGear-Arduino-2.6.2-G1000MFDv2.ino.mega.hex contains 10430 bytes
avrdude: reading on-chip flash data:

Reading | ################################################## | 100% 2.88s

avrdude: verifying ...
avrdude: 10430 bytes of flash verified

avrdude: safemode: lfuse reads as FF
avrdude: safemode: hfuse reads as D8
avrdude: safemode: efuse reads as FD
avrdude: safemode: Fuses OK (E:FD, H:D8, L:FF)

avrdude done.  Thank you.

If the update fails for some reason with a communications or other error.  Try re-connecting the USB cable and waiting at least 30 seconds before trying again.

9. Once done, you can reconnect your other RealSimGear hardware and use as normal.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact us: support@realsimgear.com

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