I'm new to microcontroller programming. I've done some small projects on breadboard using the Arduino UNO. Now I would like to make a permanent circuit on pcb using an ATmega32 or ATmega328. Using the Atmega328 will make the circuit more complex and I will have to include multiplexers for getting more inputs. So I would like to use the ATmega32 with the Arduino IDE. But I'm a little confused about how to program it. I've got the modified hardware files for the ATmega32 and would like to program it using the USBasp. But right now, I don't have an ATmega32 or any of its 40pin variant and I'm not gonna buy one unless I'm sure that I can program it using the Arduino. Now for my question:
Can I program the ATmega32 using USBasp after making necessary changes in #\arduino\core files and also in 'preferences.txt'? Has anyone tried this before?
Another question is about the arduino bootloader. What does the 'arduino bootloader' actually do? Is it compatible only with the arduino IDE?
I'm new to this forum and I searched for info but I didn't find exactly what I was looking for. Sorry if I'm posting a repeat thread.