Failed Boron Firmware Upgrade

Over the last few months I have had two Borons that were being being upgraded from 2.0.1 to 2.2.0 and failed. When I power them on now they start blinking magenta but after a few seconds start blinking red. I tried a bunch of different things including the Device Restore JTAG but it always fails on the “Programming Bootloader”. When I try to hold the MODE button it goes from Magenta, Yellow, White and Red. It never goes to the listening mode. I suspect a bad USB cable but on the other hand I did maybe 50 upgrades and all went without an issue. Any thoughts on what may have caused this? Anyway to recover or are the bricked?

Have you tried Safe Mode?
Have you tried updating via CLI?
When you say it starts blinking red, could you also describe the exact blink code?

Yes, tried Safe Mode with no luck. It starts flashing magenta but after a few seconds I get red led.
Yes, tried updating using CLI.
Starts with a few fast red blinks followed by 10 one second apart links - looks like a Assertion failure.
Tried this as well Status LED and Device Modes - Boron | Tutorials | Particle but no luck.

I’ve had three borons fail this way as well, in the field. I’m wondering if anyone else is having this issue and whether they’ve found root cause?

Particle has had some (<5) reports of this happening, but have been unable to either replicate or get our hands on a flash dump of an affected device.
If anyone has access to a J-Link or a Debugger with an affected device - please reach out via a ticket to take things further.

The current theory is that a corruption of the DCT memory causes the device to fail before the bootloader hands off to the app.

I can’t really pinpoint exactly if there is a pattern to it but the times it happened to me was when going from 2.0 version or lower to version to 2.2 I believe there is a two stage upgrade somewhere along the upgrade path if you are coming from an older version to 2.2. From what I have been told the device is bricked, no way to recover it.

Hi @no1089

I have another device that ran into this issue. It booted up, connected to the cloud, started going through the OTA update which seemed to download it successfully, after that it started blinking magenta followed by 10 red blinks. Tried to use the JTAG to restore it but no luck. It stops at “programing bootloader” after that it starts blinking Red and the process never completes. I’m willing to send you guys the device to see if we can find the root cause.

I have 3 Borons that ran into this over the last 2 years and each time it happened was during a OTA upgrade.

We can try a flash dump first to see if that provides any clues as to why this is happening?
Particle Flash dump should work.

If that’s no dice please open a ticket and ask for me to respond and we’ll get the device shipped from you.