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Published by: Gaklennox on Jul 04, 2012
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Revolution Education Ltd Web: www.picaxe.co.uk v2.5 09/11
Index:1.0) Introduction2.0) General tips for using the AXE027 USB cable3.0) Windows 2000/2003/XP/Vista Installation3.1) Windows 7 (32/64 bit) Installation4.0) Linux Installation5.0) Mac OS X Installation6.0) Windows CE/PocketPC/Mobile Installation7.0) PICAXE Download Circuit8.0) AXE027 Circuit Diagram1.0) Introduction
The PICAXE USB download cable is used to download PICAXE programs intoPICAXE chips. It can be used with any PICAXE chip or project board. The cable iscompatible with any software application that supports programming of PICAXEchips.The PICAXE USB download cable connects via the computer’s USB port. Howeverthe cable contains a tiny circuit board, moulded into the compact USB connector.This circuit contains a USB to serial convertor chip, and so the actual data transferto the PICAXE chip is via a 5V logic level serial connection.
2.0) General tips for using the AXE027 USB cable
Always plug in the USB cable
starting the software application.
Always use the USB cable in the
USB port on your computer.
Most operating system regards each individual USB port as a unique location.Therefore if you plug your cable into a different USB port on the computer youmay be prompted to reinstall the driver files for this new location.The USB cable’s internal circuit board is powered by the computer’s USB port.Therefore remove the cable from the PICAXE project when the USB end of thecable is not inserted into a computer, as the cable will not then be powered.
(c) Revolution Education Ltd. Web: www.picaxe.co.uk V2.5 09/11
3.0) Windows 2000/XP/Vista Installation (see section 3.1 for Windows 7)
When the AXE027 software driver is installed, the Windows operating system automaticallyallocates the USB cable a ‘virtual COM port number’ to be used (e.g. COM5) within thePICAXE software. This virtual COM port number will vary between computers, but can also bechanged to a different number if desired.After you have installed the drivers, if you are not surewhich COM port number has been allocated, you can useWindows ‘Device Manager’ to study the configuration. Touse Device Manager click:Start > Control Panel > Performance & Maintenance >System > Hardware > Device Manager
or in classic view
Start > Settings > Control Panel > System > Hardware >Device ManagerThe Device Manager will then start - click the ‘+’ symbol beside ‘Ports (COM & LPT)’ so that allthe entries are visible. Beside the ‘AXE027 PICAXE USBentry will be the currently allocatedCOM port number. The instructions given later in this manual explains how to change thisCOM port number if necessary.
3.01) Installing the AXE027 PICAXE USB Cable Driver
The first time you connect the AXE027 PICAXE USB cable you will be automatically promptedto install the software driver files. These driver files can be found on the Programming EditorCDROM (in the USB_drivers_AXE027 folder) or downloaded free of charge from the softwaredownloads section at www.picaxe.comThere are two download options:1) Self extracting pre-installer - this is the easiest option - just download and run the file beforeconnecting the cable. It pre-installs the drivers onto your Windows system.2) Manual zip file - download and unzip the downloaded files into a temporary folder (e.g.c:\temp) before proceeding. On computers setup with user accounts (e.g. school networks)please ensure you are logged in as an ‘administrator’ before proceeding.
Step 1
Plug the AXE027 USB cable into an available USB port onyour computer. Remember which port you have used as it isimportant to always use the same port in the future.After a few seconds Windows will recognise that the cablehas been inserted and will automatically prompt you withthe ‘Found New Hardware’ wizard.Do NOT connect to Windows Update - as you have alreadydownloaded the correct driver files. Therefore select ‘No’ thenclick ‘Next.
(c) Revolution Education Ltd. Web: www.picaxe.co.uk V2.5 09/11
Step 2
If you have used the pre-installer then simply select:‘Install the software automatically’click ‘Next’, then move to Step 4 below.If you have not used the preinstaller then select:‘Install from a list or specified location (Advanced)click ‘Next’
Step 3
Select ‘Search for the best driver in these locations’.Remove the tick from the ‘Search’ box and add a tick besidethe ‘Include’ box. Click the ‘Browse’ button and thenbrowse to the driver folder. This is either the appropriatefolder within the ‘USB_drivers_AXE027’ folder on theProgramming Editor CDROM or the temporary folder onyour hard-drive where the website downloaded driver fileshave been saved (e.g. c:\temp).Click ‘Next’
Step 4
If a Windows logo testing warning is displayed click ‘Continue Anyway’
 Note that the generic FTDI software drivers to be installed duringthis process have already passed Windows logo testing. However due to legal reasons when distributed by a third party (e.g. Revolution) they cannot currently be marked as passed.
Step 5
Click ‘Finish’ when the installation completes.
Step 6
Please note the entire process (steps 2 to 5) will nowrepeat. This is completely normal as the Windowsoperating system requires two separate driver files for theAXE027 cable to operate.
The Windows operating system will now automatically allocate the AXE027 USB cable a default ‘COM port number’ to use within theProgramming Editor software. However this automaticallyallocated COM port number may not be suitable (e.g. COM20)and may need to be re-assigning to another port (e.g. COM4).

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