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Hello,



I am an electronics engineering student and a beginner in arduino stuff. I have a UNO and just etched a Severino (version 3 rev 2) for using in a few projects. I searched extensively about Severino, now I need some suggestions.

After seeing the bootloader page at http://arduino.cc/en/Hacking/Bootloader and post about using USBasp to burn bootloader herehttp://www.arduino.cc/cgi-bin/yabb2/YaBB.pl?num=1282243271/0 I thought about using my USBasp programmer for bootloading the severino using the ICSP pins on the board.

About the above I have these questions:
-> Can I after doing this procedure, program the Severino with just a cable with usb connector on one side and DB9 on other side?

-> If I don't burn the bootloader and just use USBasp on ICSP pins everytime to burn the program for this particular board using arduino IDE as given in the inststuctions at http://arduino.cc/en/Hacking/Programmer
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If you would rather use an external programmer for only an individual board, you can edit the boards.txt file in the hardware/ sub-directory of the Arduino application directory. Set the board.upload.using parameter to the identifier of one of the programmers in programmers.txt.
will it be any better or worse than using a bootloader? Or it doesn't matter?

What I am really confused about is that if I have a programmer at my hands, is there a point of burning bootloader in the Atmega8?

Sorry to sound so confused up, but I am smiley
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The bootloader is convenient if you are frequently changing the program you want to run, because you can upload and run a new program without connecting/disconnecting the ICSP cable and power supply to the target every time. Other than that, there's not much difference. My policy is to prototype on an Arduino and breadboard using the bootloader, then migrate the design to hardware based around a virgin atmega328p and program it directly using ICSP.
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Thank You for your reply dc42.

I got your point. Also, during prototype serial communication between PC  and arduino may be needed. So instead of hooking up an ICSP cable and a Serial cable I can just do with a serial cable.


Also, please tell me if I do use a bootloader, can I just use a USB cable with  DB9 on the other side (or  female headers) to program and serially communicate or do I use some other kind of interfacing module?
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Thank You for your reply dc42.
I got your point. Also, during prototype serial communication between PC  and arduino may be needed. So instead of hooking up an ICSP cable and a Serial cable I can just do with a serial cable.

That's right.

Also, please tell me if I do use a bootloader, can I just use a USB cable with  DB9 on the other side (or  female headers) to program and serially communicate or do I use some other kind of interfacing module?

No, you need a serial-to-USB converter, also known as a FTDI chip. Alternatively, convert the serial in/out connections on your target to RS232 voltage levels, then you can connect to a serial port on your PC instead of USB. The Arduino also has an auto-reset mechanism to reset the mcu when you upload a new program, but you can manage without that if your hardware has a reset button and you press it at the right time.
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Okay I shall learn more about FTDI then. Thank you very much.

I am wondering why it is not included in the serial board given that serial communication is a very important feature.
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Having now looked at the Severino manual, I see that the serial i/o is already converted to RS232 levels. So you just need to connect it to a COM port on your PC, then you can upload programs to it using the bootloader, once you have burned the bootloader into the chip using ICSP. No need for USB at all.
« Last Edit: September 03, 2011, 05:04:22 am by dc42 » Logged

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I read the manual but didn't notice that. I think I should read the manual again.
I will just take serial port output from my PC and connect it to the board using male female breakaway connectors as I don't have a female DB9 right now. Hope It goes well.  smiley

 Thank you very much for all your time and effort smiley
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