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View Full Version : "No propeller chip found on any serial port. Proto board stopped being recogni



bill-phx
05-23-2010, 11:48 AM
I received a Propeller Proto Board and Prop Plug last week, and created a couple simple programs and they loaded/ran fine.

I took the board home for the weekend, to work on it more, and it is not recognized in the Propeller Tool or BST.

I tested the prop plug by opening up a terminal program on that com port and shorting together rx and tx on the prop plug.· All characters echo as expected.
The blue LED also lights when doing this, and when trying to program with BST.

I verified the 4 header pins (gnd,rst,tx,rx) had continuity to Vss, Pin 7 of the propeller chip and P30/31 of the propeller chip.

Any ideas on what might be wrong, or anything else to check?

thanks
bill
·

Mike Green
05-23-2010, 11:59 AM
Check your Protoboard power supply. The Propeller has to be running to be identified, so you need proper power for that.

bill-phx
05-23-2010, 12:17 PM
Looks good, 5.00 volts and 3.331 volts

VIRAND
05-23-2010, 02:38 PM
Ideas:
Are you using a different (slower) computer than before?
I'm not sure if its needed but is the prop plug or Vinculum FTDI driver installed on it?
Are you running other applications besides Propeller Tool? (especially internet access)
Generally I only see the Propeller fail to program because of timing issues from other processes.
But I only see "No Propeller Found on COM port" if I forgot to put the power switch on
or connect the programming cable.

Does the Propeller run from eeprom instead?
I've never even heard of sudden unexplained total loss of programmability before.
If it worked on a different computer, I think it probably still does.

bill-phx
05-23-2010, 04:02 PM
> Are you using a different (slower) computer than before?
I tried on 3 different computers at home.

> I'm not sure if its needed but is the prop plug or Vinculum FTDI driver installed on it?
Yep, installed before connecting the cable, just like the first time.

> Are you running other applications besides Propeller Tool? (especially internet access)
Npoe.

> Generally I only see the Propeller fail to program because of timing issues from other processes.
> But I only see "No Propeller Found on COM port" if I forgot to put the power switch on
> or connect the programming cable.
Checked several times, moved between computers, no extraneous processes running, etc

> Does the Propeller run from eeprom instead?
There wasn't a program in it so that I could verify if it was running.

> I've never even heard of sudden unexplained total loss of programmability before.
> If it worked on a different computer, I think it probably still does.

I find it hard to believe that both computers I tried at home are both "incompatible" -- I will bring it back to work
in the AM and see if it works with the original machine.

If not, send it back to find out what happened?

bill
·

ElectricAye
05-23-2010, 09:30 PM
I get this kind of message all the time with an old laptop I use that runs Windows XP. The laptop runs so slow that I think the Propeller just gives up trying to talk to it. I suspect one of the reasons the laptop is so sluggish has to do with the crappy Windows security features running in the background. Often, I must load a new program into the Propeller by hitting the F10 key over and over and over. I almost never use the F11 key to load the EEPROM with this particular laptop because it takes forever to get it to work.

I'm telling you all this because maybe 1. your background security features are causing your problems and/or 2. you might get success by just trying again and again and again...


I hope that helps,
Mark

bill-phx
05-25-2010, 01:07 AM
Tried again on the original computer, still not working.

I have emailed a support request to Parallax to see what steps to take next.

thanks
bill

Rayman
05-25-2010, 09:07 AM
Testing PropPlug with Rx/Tx short was good idea...

One other thing to check is if your Prop resets when you do "identify" from PropTool...

It does this by toggling the DTR line of the FTDI chip on the PropPlug which momentarily pulls down RES\ of the Prop...

Might be hard to tell, depending on what code you had in EEPROM last...

If you did any soldering on your Protoboard, you might want to re-check the last things you did...

Beyond that, I'd just say that I've found it easier to kill a Protoboard than a PropPlug...

▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔
My Prop Info&Apps: ·http://www.rayslogic.com/propeller/propeller.htm

My Prop Products:· http://www.rayslogic.com/Propeller/Products/Products.htm

Zap-o
05-25-2010, 09:16 AM
Try turning the prop plug around. You may be using it backwards.

Make sure you have a good ground and the propeller programmer sees the port. Check the port list

blittled
05-25-2010, 09:40 AM
Also try a different USB cable. The one I got with my Prop Plug produces that error but when I switched cables it was found.

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Will work for Propeller parts!

garylake
11-26-2010, 03:54 PM
Reset eeprom did it for me

obrienm
11-26-2010, 06:57 PM
Bill,
I have not had problems with the FTDI chips in my prop plugs(4 of 6), prop clips(2), protoboard USB's (~20), prop demo boards (3), PPDB(2), propstick USB (3). I have run various combinations of these (sometimes 3 at a time) on differrent PC's from old XP P4-530's to the CoreI7-920 under Windows7-64bit with no issues. I have around 10 XP machines, a couple vista tablets and several Windows7 (all 64-bit unfortunately) machines that always work fine with some them up to COM35 because of all the different FTDI chips that connected to a particular machine. Asside: I am thankfull that Parallax has drivers that work on 64-bit and the fact that they are signed (Windows 7 needs it) - for other manufactures - notably some FPGA ones - the drivers are either unsigned (alternate boot req) or only support 32-bit (welcome back XP).

However, I do have 2 prop plugs that do not work anymore -and this is likely 100% my fault, I keep trying to use them but put them in a static bag - labelled and will one day send them back to Parallax for diagnostics as I was told on the forum by a Parallax director-level person that they are curious and will replace them.

So my issue was likely static discharge as I hand carried them across town or the carpet at my work - as I, like you occassionally bring boards (connected in my case to breadboards) back and forth to work so I can

A) work on the software at lunch hour or
B) admire the LED patterns in my cubicle, or
D) upgrade the hardware of some working device back at home and bring it back to work on monday and hang it on the wall.
E) monitor the temp of the 3.3v regulator under a heavly load all day
I used to just carefully carry the circuit contraption (usually a metal backed quad breadboard) 10 blocks and drive it home. This likely wrecked the prop plug as they were working at work but when I got home (2 times) they did not work. Note: 1 propplug heats up past 60c in 5 sec, the other has both the red and blue LED's on constantlly when connected to USB (with or without connecting to the propeller) - with a nice purple glow. I think it the rubber on my shoes and the fact that winter up north can get the humidity very low.
I also busted a VFD from parallax and a protoboard after soldering 4 headers but that is another issue - the protoboard is in the freezer trying to replicate the -72c that parallax tests under (see youtube) and i only solder 2 of 4 headers on my other protoboards more carefully - and I am more relaxed now.

Solution:
I try to get at least 2 of everything and make identical prototypes - so I can have an exact replica of each circuit at work and at home and I only carry a memory stick with spin on it now - it also helps to narrow down the issue to usually my own circuitry.

When I need to move a board, I leave the USB proto plug connected to the USB cable at work, take the board home and reconnect it to another USB protoplug at home - no more issues. Otherwise I use a large static bag for the whole thing.

I use a static wrist strap around my lab, but I find that handling the prop clip especially by the edges has no issues.
The humidity in my lab usually hovers at 40%

When I follow these precautions I no longer have had any issues with my prop plugs for over 6 months now.

Also the fact that Parallax has graciously lowered the price of protoboard USB versions and the prop plug by about 30% this year.

Don't know if any of this helps.

thank you
Michael O'Brien

5thDimension
02-03-2011, 01:26 AM
Check your Protoboard power supply. The Propeller has to be running to be identified, so you need proper power for that.

If it helps anyone else, I had the same error message (and this was the first time trying to use my new Prop demo board). The problem was simply not turning on the little power switch (duh). :)

prof_braino
02-03-2011, 02:28 PM
I have had this problem a couple times so far. The first time was due to the driver update not being compatable with an older version. Fixed by reinstalling windows xp (reformat hard drive, clean install).

The more recent issue was due to winodws updates: windows xp SP2 worked for a while, but would not work with a new prop board. The PC was very old and slow, and not connected to the internet; all non-essential "features" were disabled for performance. The issue was resolved reinstalling windows xp SP1 (reformat hard drive, clean install), connecting the PC to the internet, and allowing the PC to automatic update to the the current (SP3) level. The actual isue may have been related to .NET or MDAC, but I did not bother to check it fully after it started working.

My general fix for windows xp is to reinstall windows xp (reformat hard drive, clean install) and ask questions later. It save a LOT of time.

train nut
02-03-2011, 05:41 PM
To add another two cents worth to this discussion. My propeller project is large enough that is is spread over several protoyping boards with the Prop, EEPROM, and hard wired serial interface on one board. I had had no problems until recently since cold weather set in and the house got dry that I had to redo some connections on the Prop board. After making the connections I reconnected everything and low and behold the old No Prop found error popped up. Tried everything to no avail. Since I had a spare Prop I plugged in new one and everything went to working fine. I think it was definitely a staic discharge problem and I have been very careful loately as to how I handle the Prop board when working on it.

Hope this helps

Ben

idbruce
02-03-2011, 05:56 PM
I once had this problem and it was because there were several FTDI drivers installed on the computer. Perhaps it could be a corrupted driver. Try uninstalling the driver and/or drivers and then reinstall. It fixed the problem for me.

Bruce

davidrudd
01-12-2012, 03:11 AM
Had this same error on Windows 7 64-bit. What worked for me was changing the USB cable and restarting the Propeller Tool. I also made sure to restart the computer after installing the InstallParallaxUSBDriversv2.08.02.exe.

T Chap
01-12-2012, 02:23 PM
Try plugging in the USB cable and see the LEDs blink several times (red and grn) that indicates when the FTDI chip received power from the cable. In rare cases of the FTDI going bad, the LEDs usually will not blink. In other very rare cases, a solder connection on the Prop or the FTDI chip can cause a failure to find Prop. Same for the reset pin to the Prop, which is driven by a transistor fired from the FTDI.

stargazer2050
03-17-2012, 10:09 PM
Same message, but it worked yesterday

cavelamb
03-17-2012, 11:41 PM
I once had this problem and it was because there were several FTDI drivers installed on the computer. Perhaps it could be a corrupted driver. Try uninstalling the driver and/or drivers and then reinstall. It fixed the problem for me.

Bruce

+1 - a couple of times.

stargazer2050
03-18-2012, 04:20 PM
Com port 10 is in use and responding to that usb being plugged in and out
Blue and red is flashing
Nothing connected to bd
Software says code is verified and uploaded (yellow box in lower rt )
Thats when the no propeller chip found msg arrives

I unloaded and reloaded drivers downloaded fresh from site
Tried 10k from pin 30 to 3.3v

What's next?

stargazer2050
03-20-2012, 08:47 PM
Reduced latency below 16 (in hardware advanced)Downloaded vcp drivers from ftdichip.comAll is well in parallax land(this was for the new quickstart board)

Rayman
03-20-2012, 11:29 PM
Are you saying you had trouble connecting and made this driver setting change to fix it?
I might have to look into this too... I think I'm having occasional troubles on some comptures with the Quickstart.
It's wierd because I've had absolutely no trouble for about a year... I think it must of been some Windows Update on that driver that messed it up...

stargazer2050
03-22-2012, 10:37 AM
Yes
Lower latency below 16 (hardware, device manager, advanced)
Download ftdichip.com VCP drivers

Yes its working at least every other time which is ok fer now

g3cwi
03-22-2012, 11:00 AM
I had this problem too. However in my case it turned out to be due to the USB lead. This worked fine with anything else but not with the Prop board.

Regards

Richard

dgately
03-22-2012, 03:45 PM
Reset eeprom did it for me
What does "reset the EEPROM" mean? Do you mean the Proto board's EEPROM? The FTDI chip's EEPROM? When someone is asking for help, please provide steps that walk the person through a solution rather than cryptic responses.

Anyone have the steps for resetting a FTDI chip's eeprom? I've heard that mentioned in several threads but have never gotten a reasonable description of how this can be accomplished.

As far as resetting the Proto boards EEPROM, are we talking about just pushing the board's reset button? Or is there a way to erase the EEPROM without having access to the board via the FTDI driver on a USB-based computer?

Thanks,
dgately

Mike Green
03-22-2012, 04:04 PM
You don't have to erase the EEPROM. The Propeller Tool will force the Propeller to reset and the built-in bootloader completely rewrites the 1st 32K of the attached EEPROM when you download a program to the EEPROM. The Protoboard has a 64K EEPROM, but the bootloader ignores the 2nd 32K.

Don't mess with the FTDI chip's EEPROM. It's intended to be set by the manufacturer of the device and contains things like the USB identification information. In Parallax's case, FTDI sets it.