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How to update firmware of 879B/878B LCR Meter (For UPD v3.0 and v2.0 only)

Last Updated: May 01, 2014 03:19PM PDT
Applicable Models:  879B, 878B
Applicable Firmware version: v2.0

For updating to firmware version: v2.1
- Fixes min/max/avg function not operating correctly.

This firmware update instruction applies to meters with UPD version 3.0 and version 2.0 (See below where it indicates specific instructions for "UPD 2.0 ONLY") ONLY.  DO NOT do the same if you have a different version.  To find out the UPD version on your device, please follow the instructions below.

Note:  Alternatively, you can watch the video linked as a related article below to see how to update the firmware of your LCR meter (Please note that for units with UPD v2.0, use baudrate 9600 instead of 38400).


- Mini-USB cable

- PC with Windows XP® or Windows 7® OS

- Hyperterminal Software (not included in Windows 7®)

Note:  Other software that supports xmodem transfer can also be used, but we recommend using Hyperterminal as it has been fully tested for a successful update.

- Firmware file (*.upd file extension), for UPD version 3.0 (Download from attachment below "") or for UPD version 2.0 (Download from attachment below "")

Preliminary check:

1. Before proceeding with updating the firmware, be sure to check you have the correct following:

- Firmware update file (Version newer than current firmware inside instrument)


Users can verify the current firmware version they have by holding down the Power On button.  Version # will be shown on display.

- Upload module version

Note:  This is specific to the built-in update processes for the instrument. 


To verify this version, first power off the meter.  Then, hold down “USB” key and Power on the instrument.  Display will show “UPdx.x”.  The “x.x” is the Upload module version.

2. Depending on the firmware update file and the upload module version of your instrument, different instructions are required. 

WARNING:  DO NOT use a firmware file that does not support the upload module version of your device.  Doing so may cause errors to occur and possibly make your meter inoperable.  Check

Update Instructions (FOR UPD v3.0 and v2.0 ONLY):

1. Power off the LCR meter if you have not done so.  Hold down the “USB” key and then power on the instrument.  Display should show “UPd3.0” or "UPd2.0"(for UPD v2.0 only).

2. Connect the Mini-USB cable between the instrument and your PC.  Make sure the drivers are installed correctly and that your PC assigned a COM port for this virtual COM interface.  You can verify this by going into “Device Manager” and checking the “Ports” listing to look for a description for CP210x.  The COM port assigned is shown in parentheses next to it. (To go to device manager, in XP right-click My computer -> Properties ->Hardware -> Device manager.  In 7 right-click “Computer” -> Properties and select “Device manager” at the top left list of links in the window.

3. Open up Hyperterminal software.  For Windows 7 users, there are two alternatives.

- If you have Professional or Ultimate edition, you can install Windows Virtual PC XP mode and run hyperterminal within the virtual environment.  You will need to virtualize the physically assigned virtual COM port to the virtual window first.  Details of this feature can be found here:

- Install Hyperterminal manually (See “How to Install Hyperterminal in Windows 7”)

4. Select the COM port that is connected to the instrument, and click OK.

5. You will be asked to enter the port settings.  Enter the following:

Baudrate/Bits per second:  38400 (for UPD v3.0 only), 9600 (for UPD v2.0 only) (**NOTE: For units with UPD version 2.0, use 9600 as baudrate/bits per second.  DO NOT use 38400)

Data bits:  8

Parity:  None

Stop bits:  1

Flow control: None

6. Click OK, and you will get a blank log screen.  Now, press the “D” key on your keyboard and the message “Update Ready!” should show, and it will keep showing a “C” continuously every 1 second or so.  If it does not, do not proceed further.  Turn off the instrument, and start all over.


7. Now, go to “Transfer” menu and select “Send File”.  A new window will open up and ask for Filename and an option to select protocol.

8. Click on “Browse” and locate the *.upd extension firmware file that was downloaded along with this documentation.  (Note:  Be sure to download the correct file for the UPD version that matches your unit.  A readme.txt file is contained in the download .zip file to indicate which UPD version the file is for.  Please check before selecting) Click “Open” to select the file.

9. Under “Protocol”, select “Xmodem”.

10. Now, confirm that the correct firmware file was selected and Protocol is set to Xmodem before proceeding further.  Once you verified, click the “Send” button.

11. The instrument will be updated.  When it’s finished updating, the instrument will power off, and the log window should say “Update Complete!” after all the “C” within hyperterminal.


12. Power on the instrument again and hold down the Power on key.  The new version number should be displayed on screen, showing that the instrument has been updated.


How to Install Hyperterminal in Windows 7(R)

Hyperterminal software was removed for all versions of Windows after XP, but it can still be manually installed.  Contact B&K Precision for details.
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