Very sick Core - constant yellow LED

I have a very sick Core. When I plug in the power it looks like it goes straight into DFU mode (blinking yellow). I’ve tried setting it to factory via the video above and after blinking white and then green it blinks blue (like it’s trying to go into Listen mode) for 1 or 2 blinks and immediately goes back to blinking yellow. The blue on-board LED stays on constantly.

Does this also happen when powering the device via a 5V wall wart or only when it’s connected to a Mac/Linux machine?

BTW, which

Sorry, I was watching one of the videos on the Troubleshooting channel.

it does the same thing whether it’s powered via my Mac or the wall wart. I tried to put it into factory reset by holding down setup, touching reset, letting go of reset and holding down setup until it cycles through blinking white, blinking yellow, and then breathing white. After it breathes white it changes to flashing green, breathes blue for about 1 second, then changes back to flashing yellow.

I’ve tried several iterations of the “particle flash” command without any luck.

Let me know if a video of the startup process would be helpful.

Have you tried these (in that order)

particle flash --factory tinker
particle flash --usb CC3000
particle flash --usb tinker

@scruffr Yes, I get an error message indicating that there are no devices found in DFU mode.

Have you tried another USB cable and port?
With Mac I can’t be of any help about the possible reasons for your Core not being detected.

I will say that my main development Core died in a similar way–I could not reprogram the TI CC3000 WiFi chip and just could not be made to work again. It just flashed white forever.

I have other Cores that are still working but the limited lifetime of flashing the TI CC3000 was a big problem on Cores and one of the reasons Photon uses a different chip.

I have tried multiple cables and I also tried on my Windows 7 box.

I upgraded both the Mac and PC versions of Particle-cli to 1.29 before starting.

@bko, since it sounds “terminal”…what was the solution? Throw it in the trash? Does Particle have a trade-in policy to get the Cores “off the street”??

You don’t live in a sanctuary city? :wink:

I’ve got a few cores in the wild that have been working using the same firmware for years now. It is always heartbreaking to hear that one of their colleagues may have expired. :cry:

Maybe the nice folks at Particle will give you a discount on the purchase of a shiny new Photon. :persevere:

This core is my first Spark product…bought it during the Kickstarter days. I feel like I’m watching Ol’ Yeller.

I just purchased two shiny Photons to go with the 3 I already have and one Electron. And I have a standing order for 6 of the shiny new products when they ship.

The good folks at Particle took incredibly good care of me when I had an unfortunate accident with my first Electron. They went WAY above and beyond the call of duty from a customer service perspective.


It was fatal to that Core–I have others that have been working fine since the kickstarter but I didn’t try as many things with them. The one that died had lots of firmware flashed to it and many iterations of CC3000 firmware.

There was a Core program here in the forum that did (and I’m trying to remember here) RSSI and SSID or something like that but it ended up writing CC3000 flash over and over causing faster than normal wear out, as I recall. Running that over say a weekend could brick a Core. You could do the same thing by writing the WiFi credentials at startup in your code or a variety of other things.

I chalked it up to experience and moved on to Photon where things are much, much better!