Photon - Hard fault, unable to detect devices in DFU mode

Hi everyone,

I am new to this and have 7 photons that are blinking red (Hard Fault). I want to get them into safe mode to do a firmware upgrade, but they will only switch into DFU mode. So next I’ve been trying to do a firmware upgrade via USB, but my computer can’t detect any devices in DFU mode. I have a macbook pro (OSX 10.11.15), dfu-util-0.9, and the particle is definitely in DFU mode. There’s a fix for this on PCs but I only have a mac.([SOLVED]Photon Hard Fault, Cannot connect via serial in DFU-Mode).

I get the following error message:

…$ particle update

!!! I was unable to detect any devices in DFU mode…

Your device will blink yellow when in DFU mode.

If your device is not blinking yellow, please:

  1. Press and hold both the RESET/RST and MODE/SETUP buttons simultaneously.
  2. Release only the RESET/RST button while continuing to hold the MODE/SETUP button.

I have also tried downloading the files and installing them directly, but get a similar error message:

…Downloads sarah$ dfu-util -d 2b04:d006 -a 0 -s 0x8020000 -D system-part1-0.5.1-photon.bin

dfu-util 0.9

Copyright 2005-2009 Weston Schmidt, Harald Welte and OpenMoko Inc.
Copyright 2010-2016 Tormod Volden and Stefan Schmidt
This program is Free Software and has ABSOLUTELY NO WARRANTY
Please report bugs to http://sourceforge.net/p/dfu-util/tickets/

dfu-util: Invalid DFU suffix signature

dfu-util: A valid DFU suffix will be required in a future dfu-util release!!!

dfu-util: No DFU capable USB device available

Try doing a

sudo dfu-util -l

That’s a lowercase L. The Particle CLI automatically installs udev rules so you shouldn’t need to sudo, but if that didn’t happen properly, that can cause problems because dfu-util won’t be able to open the port.

Thanks rickkas7! Here’s what I got when I tried sudo dfu-util -l

nat-oitwireless-inside-vapornet100-d-28124:~ sarah$ sudo dfu-util -l
Password:
dfu-util 0.9

Copyright 2005-2009 Weston Schmidt, Harald Welte and OpenMoko Inc.
Copyright 2010-2016 Tormod Volden and Stefan Schmidt
This program is Free Software and has ABSOLUTELY NO WARRANTY
Please report bugs to http://sourceforge.net/p/dfu-util/tickets/

Found Runtime: [05ac:8290] ver=0119, devnum=2, cfg=1, intf=5, path=“20-3”, alt=0, name=“UNKNOWN”, serial=“UNKNOWN”

particle update says it still can’t find devices in DFU mode.

ls /dev/cu* only lists:
/dev/cu.Bluetooth-Incoming-Port /dev/cu.SarahsiPhone-WirelessiAP

There is definitely something wrong, because after the UNKNOWN entry, there should be two 2b04:d006 devices, like this:

Deducing device DFU version from functional descriptor length
Found Runtime: [05ac:8215] ver=0208, devnum=2, cfg=1, intf=3, alt=0, name="UNKNOWN", serial="78CA39C09D0F"
Found DFU: [2b04:d006] ver=0200, devnum=11, cfg=1, intf=0, alt=1, name="@DCT Flash   /0x00000000/01*016Kg", serial="00000000010C"
Found DFU: [2b04:d006] ver=0200, devnum=11, cfg=1, intf=0, alt=0, name="@Internal Flash   /0x08000000/03*016Ka,01*016Kg,01*064Kg,07*128Kg", serial="00000000010C"

That’s why the Particle CLI can’t see the DFU device, it’s not actually there. Unfortunately, I’m not sure why.

Have you installed the proper drivers for DFU mode?

Hi Moors7,

Can you please be more specific about the “proper drivers”? I have installed node.js and particle cli. I only see instructions for Windows drivers, nothing about Mac drivers. Thanks!

There are no DFU drivers to install on Mac OS X. One other thing to try: Unplug the USB cable, hold down the SETUP button, and plug in the USB cable while continuing to hold down SETUP. It may or may not go through flashing magenta, but keep on holding down SETUP until the status LED blinks yellow and the blue D7 LED goes on. Then try dfu-util -l again.

Hi @sfmousetrap

We have seen on some MacBook’s that you need a powered USB 2.0 hub in between the laptop and the Particle device to make it work. I don’t know why that would be, but experimentally it has helped in a few cases.

If you have or can borrow a USB 2.0 (not 3.0) powered hub and try it, it might help.

As @rickkas7 points out, your Particle device must be in DFU mode (flashing yellow) for the device to be seen so make sure of that first.

Thanks all,
I held down setup while plugging in the USB and it flashed through magenta to yellow. The blue DY LED never went on. I left in in yellow flashing mode and tried this again:
dfu-util -l
dfu-util 0.9

Copyright 2005-2009 Weston Schmidt, Harald Welte and OpenMoko Inc.
Copyright 2010-2016 Tormod Volden and Stefan Schmidt
This program is Free Software and has ABSOLUTELY NO WARRANTY
Please report bugs to http://sourceforge.net/p/dfu-util/tickets/

Found Runtime: [05ac:8290] ver=0119, devnum=2, cfg=1, intf=5, path=“20-3”, alt=0, name=“UNKNOWN”, serial=“UNKNOWN”

I’ll see if I can borrow a MacBook with a USB 2.0 or a PC. Hopefully another computer will be able to communicate with it.

This may be too late, but have you tried using a different USB cable? Some USB cables have damaged or missing data lines.

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Switching to an old mac with USB 2.0 drives allowed me to connect to them and update the firmware.

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