[time-nuts] OT FTDI (Was Re: Trimble Thunderbolt Start Up RS-232)

Dave B g8kbvdave at googlemail.com
Fri Sep 7 04:09:22 EDT 2018


Anyone with a "bricked" FTDI clone device, all that's been done is the
VID/PID info has been rewritten to all zero's.  They are not "damaged",
just "disabled" as a result.

There are several public domain tools about to re-program that info,
should you need.   Including a (somewhat fiddly) command line tool for
Linux.   (Google is your friend, as always.)

FTDI's own GUI tool works well (on their genuine devices) but if you
find one where a change doesn’t "stick", it's probably a clone.

I found that when I needed to change the "sense" of the TXD line to
accommodate a fibre-optic interface for a work project.  I had two such
devices, both marked up correctly as FTDI, one identified itself as the
expected device type, but exhibited the above behaviour.  The other
announced itself to the OS as a Prolific device!.   A full refund was
obtained, and genuine devices supplied as replacements.

In truth, the cloners are using micro-controllers to emulate other
people's parts.  Sadly, in a lot of cases they work well.  But impressed
though I am, I don’t condone such activity in any way.  Plus, you have
no way of knowing what "other" functionality such things might have.

Also, many of the clones are now being marketed for similar costs to
genuine!  It's only if you need to customise them you find this out.


Dave B.


On 07/09/18 02:09, time-nuts-request at lists.febo.com wrote:
> They have been extensively cloned with
> extremely poor quality parts and the legitimate vendors have mangled up
> their drivers in order to try and prevent the clones from working with
> those (and in some cases intentionally trying to damage the device), the
> net result being a total mess of unreliable parts and software.

Created on and sent from a Unix like PC running and using free and open source software.

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