[riot-notifications] [RIOT-OS/RIOT] board suggestion: nRF52840-dongle (#12189)

chrysn notifications at github.com
Thu Sep 12 14:49:58 CEST 2019


Observations from initial looks at the device and flashing process:

Just because it says "Open DFU Bootloader" on the USB descriptors, it doesn't follow the USB DFU specification.

The linked python2 utility has broken links; [look at the utility's github repo](https://github.com/NordicSemiconductor/pc-nrfutil/). Beware that this is published under a non-free license ("use only with Nordic components", "no reverse engineering of shipped binaries").

There's a [javascript library](https://github.com/NordicSemiconductor/pc-nrf-dfu-js) that probably has similar functionality. That appears to only be usable through the behemoth pc-nrf-core application with electron dependencies and whatsonot though.

The DFU protocol itself is quite a complex thing, which I attribute a) to the signature parts they roll in, b) supporting a plethora of transports (BLE, ant, serial, ...; there's even a generic chunking mechanism somewhere in there), and c) using their SoftDevice library in a fashion shared among bootloader and application. \<rant\>Feels a bit like the 80s'-net of things where everyone rolls own protocols over dozens of network technologies rather than using Internet technology. If they only just followed SUIT...\</rant\>

Still, I think for the time being (ie. until having board support in RIOT means automatically getting a great USB-based bootloader) it's best to work from this rather than to put an own bootloader in; documenting (/ linking to docs on) how to flash the original bootloader back if something goes afoul would be helpful either way. With the guidance from the article I succeeded flashing the provided blinky hex file, let's see where I get from there.

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