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Khenglish

Getting an SPI programmer

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So I decided that I'm finally going to get an SPI programmer for more exotic BIOS and ME FW mods, and was looking for some input. There's a bunch to choose from on ebay (is there a better source than ebay?), and I was wondering if anyone could help on what I should pick.

I need something that can flash Winbond W25Q64BV and W25Q16BV, and Macronix MX25L1605A and MX25L3205D chips. All 4 chips listed are SOP-8. These chips seems to be common and thus cheaper programmers can handle them, but who knows what I'll plan on in the future, so spending a little more for supporting more obscure chips is something I am not opposed to. I'd prefer to spend less than $50 though.

I'll want sockets to hold the chips in so I don't have to solder all the time. When I search on ebay though I only get results for sockets for cable connectors to flash programmers, not something that can connect to a motherboard. Where can I get something that is low profile and can fit on a motherboard? Or maybe I am supposed to solder a cable to the motherboard and I put the flash chips in a new, more accessible spot?

What's the story with clamps so that the chips don't need to be desoldered at all? Are they reliable? Are they dangerous to the motherboard?

And lastly, I found both chips on the Latitude and the P150EM ME FW chip, but I can't find the BIOS chip (the MX25L3205D). Where the hell is it?

I'm mainly looking for feedback on things like what's good, what sucks, and where to get things. Any input would be appreciated!

Update: I found the BIOS chip.... looks like a full disassembly is needed to get to it :(

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Get a TL866CS then reflash that with a little hack to TL866A to do inline programming.

Get a set with a 150mil (GPU) & 200mil (ME/BIOS) SOIC8 sockets.

Along order a SOIC test cable:

http://www.ebay.com/sch/i.<wbr>html?_trksid=p2050601.m570.<wbr>l1313.TR1.TRC0.A0.Xsoic+test+<wbr>clip&_nkw=soic+test+clip&_<wbr>sacat=0&_from=R40

And a 6 pin connector for the CS>A model conversion:

http://www.ebay.com/itm/2-pcs-KF2510-6P-Connector-Kits-2-54mm-Pin-Header-Terminal-Housing-Right-Angle-/150828738649?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_2&hash=item231e17e859

On P1-HM the ME Firmware Chip is next to the USB 3 ports on the top, the BIOS is next to the RAM/HDD at the bottom.

On my systems I have sockets on the chips:

http://www.darkwire.com.au/html/spi_flash_sockets.html

Once a socket is on there you can exchange the chip through the SSD cover at the bottom, so no more disassembling.

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@Khenglish, does this mean you might go for a x2 / x4 eGPU link width ME FW hack for the Dell E6520 (or is it a E6530)? I found a PE4H 2.4a can run a Gen2 link with a HD7970 using the new PCIEMM-060B cable here.

I'd be curious what your final SPI programmer solution is. I was only recently pondering about a x2/x4 2.0 eGPU link proof-of-concept on a Haswell Dell E6440. I too would need a SPI programmer since there's no public info on how to unlock the flash descriptor on Dell Latitude systems.

Work also seeing if your manufacturer has any debug ports with SPI pins. HP has this on their 2560P/2570P as shown here .

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I can tell you how I did it.

First, my chip is Winbond W25Q64BV/FV, I was looking for a programmer, candidates were TL866A, EZP2010 and EN25T80/CH341A.

So, after some reading ordered like 2 month and 15 days ago a EN25T80. For 7.5 bucks.

Got it today, btw, still trying to figure out how it works.

Because i thought the programmer was lost after not arriving in 2 months, I was thinking about buying a Raspberry Pi from the local market. This device can also be used for programing chips via flashrom application.

Finally, found another solution, more like a DIY, involves a computer with LPT port, 4 wires for data transfer, 4 resistors of 220Ohm, 3 wires joined in a single wire for voltage, and 2 wires for ground.

Software is spipmg

http://rayer.g6.cz/programm/programe.htm

Use google translate.

Also you can take a look at video and pictures here:

http://forum.lab501.ro/showpost.php?p=345938&postcount=2

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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@Khenglish, does this mean you might go for a x2 / x4 eGPU link width ME FW hack for the Dell E6520 (or is it a E6530)? I found a PE4H 2.4a can run a Gen2 link with a HD7970 using the new PCIEMM-060B cable here.

I'd be curious what your final SPI programmer solution is. I was only recently pondering about a x2/x4 2.0 eGPU link proof-of-concept on a Haswell Dell E6440. I too would need a SPI programmer since there's no public info on how to unlock the flash descriptor on Dell Latitude systems.

Work also seeing if your manufacturer has any debug ports with SPI pins. HP has this on their 2560P/2570P as shown here .

The clevo has that but the dell doesn't. I assume you'd have access to every SPI device on the laptop so you'd need to know how to do the chip select. Not much of a port anyway without the connector.

I'll set x2 in the flash descriptor to see what happens (it's really simple so I completely expect it to work), but currently I don't have any GPUs to test x2 2.0 on. I think the 580 died due to a failing BGA since I never put a backplate on it. I need to put a bunch of caps back on that I removed for other projects to see if I can fix it. From your testing the 580 wouldn't work even if it was fully functional anyway, and I don't have any other desktop cards (or the adapters for my pe4H). If I do get the card running again I'll get back to you on the idea. It'll be a while though since I am letting someone borrow my only PSU powerful enough for the 580. I'll also definitely get PCH PCI-E overclocking working if I get the 580 working.

By the way, x4 can only be done by figuring out the pinout of dell's proprietary modular bay connector on the E6520. I assume other latitudes are the same way.

@Prema Just to clarify the point of the test connector is to do inline programming right? And since the BIOS chip cannot be clipped onto without taking the motherboard out, you socketed it so you can pull the chip out through the SSD cover since a full disassembly is such a pain in the ass? The ME FW chip looks easy enough to just leave unsocketed though since it only requires the dGPU to be pulled.

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@Prema Just to clarify the point of the test connector is to do inline programming right? And since the BIOS chip cannot be clipped onto without taking the motherboard out, you socketed it so you can pull the chip out through the SSD cover since a full disassembly is such a pain in the ass? The ME FW chip looks easy enough to just leave unsocketed though since it only requires the dGPU to be pulled.

YES for the BIOS and connector part!

(I would have had to open my system 100+ times without it, had in fact to re-solder it a couple of times because of excessive bricking business.) :P

On my HM the ME is not reachable (unless you make a hole under the left side of the keyboard). So the test clip for the ME (which is really hard to brick btw), the socket for the BIOS.

Chip locations:

ME:

buo0.jpg

BIOS/EC:

894r.jpg

You may have to confirm the ME location. On HM it's there, they may have very well moved it on EM!!!

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YES for the BIOS and connector part!

(I would have had to open my system 100+ times without it, had in fact to re-solder it a couple of times because of excessive bricking business.) :P

On my HM the ME is not reachable (unless you make a hole under the left side of the keyboard). So the test clip for the ME (which is really hard to brick btw), the socket for the BIOS.

You may have to confirm the ME location. On HM it's there, they may have very well moved it on EM!!!

The BIOS is in the same spot, but the ME FW was moved to a much more accessible location:

http://i.imgur.com/JGh9Zdn.png

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The BIOS is in the same spot, but the ME FW was moved to a much more accessible location:

http://i.imgur.com/JGh9Zdn.png

Oh lucky you! :)

They are also disassembling the TL866 source code atm, so future community support for additional chips is incoming.

Though the original company still updates them...

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So what was your choice for programmer & clips?

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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I had a hard time getting my clip to work, it didn't make any good contact. Which clip do you use Prema?

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I had a hard time getting my clip to work, it didn't make any good contact. Which clip do you use Prema?

Some 'fake' 3M I suppose...

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