How to Install BenF Firmware on Your DS201 Oscilloscope

So you’ve just bought a DS201 oscilloscope and read online that you should update the firmware from the manufacturer provided one to the BenF version. Since I could seemingly find no organized source of information on how to do this and instead had to read through multiple forum posts to figure it out, I thought I would post what I learned here.

Here’s how I was able to upgrade to the BenF firmware:

1. Connect your DS201 to a Windows computer using the USB cable.

2. Hold down the minus key (-) while turning on the DS201. Note that this is different from what the included manual tells you to do. The manual is incorrect. Doing this should take you to a screen saying “Please copy Hex or Bin file to the DFU virtual USB disk.” You should now be able to see the DS201 as a virtual drive in Windows Explorer. Mine shows up as DFU V3_45_D.

3. Now this is where it gets a little tricky and I had to spend some time sleuthing through forums to find the correct HEX files to install. Depending on the version of the firmware that comes pre-installed on your device you will need to download a different set of HEX files. I don’t know which exact versions of the device need to use which HEX files so I will describe both processes below. If your device comes pre-installed with a firmware version of 3.45 or higher you may want to skip to the second paragraph below. If at any point you restart your device and get a white screen or any other broken state do not panic. The boot loader on your device will still function and by performing step 2 again you can at the very least find the manufacturers provided firmware using Google and re-install that. Now on to installing the HEX files.

Devices with the older version will need to download from the forums here. When you extract the zip, you will find that it contains two HEX files. You need to copy the HEX files one at a time to the DS201 virtual drive in Windows explorer. After you copy each file there is a short period where the device restarts (you will not see anything on the device itself) but it will disconnect and reconnect to the PC. Make sure you wait 10 seconds between copying each file. When you are done copying both files, look at the DS201 virtual drive in Windows Explorer. If both of the files you copied over now have .RDY extension you are good to go. You simply need to turn the device off and on again. If it was successful the loading screen should now say BenF on it. If either of the files have a .ERR extension you have not been successful. You may need to try this step several times. Each time you attempt it you need to power the DS201 off and perform step 2 again. If you try this multiple times and are not successful, especially if you have one file marked as .RDY and one marked as .ERR you probably need to use the newer HEX files on your device. Keep reading below.

If you’ve gotten this far it probably means you have a newer DS201 and need to use the newer HEX files. Download LIB301_APP311_2.ZIP from the forums here. When you extract it you will find a single HEX file. Turn your device off and follow step 2 again. Then copy over the single HEX file to your device. After 10 seconds look at the DS201 in Windows Explorer. If the file has been renamed .RDY turn your device off and on again. If it was successful the loading screen should now say BenF on it.

Hopefully by this point you should have successfully upgraded your DS201 to the BenF firmware. If not you must have encountered a problem that I did not.

I hope this was helpful.

Leave a comment

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: