need help with cloud ftp and file browser / good reader app

Started Sep 6, 2012 | Discussions thread
noirdesir Forum Pro • Posts: 13,402
Re: cloud ftp, not for the faint of heart or tech challenged

Tom_N wrote:

Jane S wrote:

So I get the link to download the new firmware, but my iMac Os 10.8.1, says safari can not open the file, because no application can open it. I tried to save it and open it through finder to no avail. TextEdit just gives me gibberish. I don't have the option for Archive Utility.

I can think of three main ways that a vendor might distribute such an update:

  • As a binary file that is to be transferred to the device somehow. The contents of this file won't mean anything to you unless you are a software developer and you are prepared to spend an infinite amount of time trying to figure out a large blob of machine code. The contents will definitely appear to be gibberish in TextEdit or any other word processor; that's normal for machine code.

  • As a Windows application that installs the firmware.

  • As a Mac OS X application that installs the firmware.

My guess is that you have a binary file. The description on this Web page (assuming that it's talking about some version of the product that you have) seems to confirm this.

That is, you don't need to do anything with the file on the Mac – other than to download the correct firmware file from the vendor's site, and then place it in the root directory of a USB flash drive. After that, the upgrade instructions indicate that the device itself controls the upgrade process.

Exactly, almost all device firmware updates work like this, the device is updating itself, not an application running on a computer is updating it. The only thing the computer has to do is to put the firmware update onto a storage media that the device can then read it from.

The advantage for the device manufacturer is that it does not have to write applications for multiple OSes, test that they work with every version of the OS, and that don't need to make the device writeable via their USB port (which would require something like a target mode, one cannot update the OS/firmware while a device is running, that would be akin to changing the engine of a car while it is running; eg, to update the OS on a Mac from a different computer, the Mac has to booted up in target mode where the OS is not running but the firmware just presents the Mac's HDD as plain HDD that is writeable).

The disadvantage is that a firmware update on most devices is a multi-stop affair and not just a run-one-application-and-hit-a-button-called-update thing.

Keyboard shortcuts:
FForum PPrevious NNext WNext unread UUpvote SSubscribe RReply QQuote BBookmark MMy threads
Color scheme? Blue / Yellow