TI’s application note: USB field firmware updates on MSP430 MCUs (PDF!)
With the advent of USB, end users can perform firmware upgrades in the field by simply attaching the device via USB and executing an application on the host PC. Such an approach has numerous advantages:
- Problems discovered after product release can be fixed.
- Reduced need for high-touch support, because problems can often be solved by instructing the user to upgrade firmware.
- End users have a more positive experience with the product.
- Product returns can be reduced.
The USB solution for MSP430™ microcontrollers has been designed to make this process simple and straightforward. The device contains a USB-based on-chip bootstrap loader, and TI provides a Windows source project for downloading firmware that can be quickly customized. This source can be built with Visual C++ 2008 Express, available from Microsoft at no cost. For the USB support software for MSP430 MCUs, see the MSP430 USB Developers Package (MSP430USBDEVPACK).