Not getting the remote control menu

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Don't Panic. Please wash hands.
  • I tried to connect to the USB port using two different PC's and two different cables. I get the same result in Tera Term ... the cursor blinks until I power on the C64 Reloaded MK2 and then the cursor "freezes" and just becomes a solid white block in Tera Term, but no menu appears. Any suggestions to what my issue could be? Thanks in advance.

  • First of all, please make sure that there is an extra COM port listed if you connect the USB cable. Did you find that extra COM port and point TeraTerm to it?

  • also make sure the baudrate is set correctly and hardware handshake is disabled (when the transfer stalls my guess would be it is not, with just wrong baudrate you should at least get some random gibberish)

  • Did you try updating the firmware yet? We had a few cases where the "fuses" on the microcontroller were set wrong for some reason, causing the oscillator frequency (and with that the baudrate for serial) being totally off - updating the firmware will fix this (use the tool from the wiki).

  • I can sort of get it to work, but not really. The only way I can connect is to 1) go into the firmware tool and press connect (no chip info will appear), 2) Press Program Firmware, 3) Power recycle MK2 as it ask for and, 4) Click Abort after the power cycle. 5) Click Disconnect and Connect again and now the tool will get the chip info. 6) Disconnect from the firmware tool and connect with TeraTerm, 6) TeraTerm now connects and gets the menu.


    The steps above will reliably connect to the MK2 remote control menu, but no other method I have tried will. It could be something with sending the pulses for the bootloader? If I simply start the MK2 and connect I can not get to the remote menu (restarting and power cycle does not work)


    I have flashed to 20188227 (current stable release) firmware. And using the method above I have tried uploading a new kernal rom from the remote menu. It transfers and acknowledges, but I fail to get it to start using the custom kernal. I have set it to use the new kernal in the memory configuration menu. And I have written the settings on exit. But no matter what it just starts using the standard C64 kernal. My (Jiffydos) kernal image works fine. I have tested it in both Vice and on the MK2 using my 1541Ultimate2 ... so there is no issue with the image.


    Hope you can help.

  • Quote

    I can sort of get it to work, but not really. The only way I can connect is to 1) go into the firmware tool and press connect (no chip info will appear), 2) Press Program Firmware, 3) Power recycle MK2 as it ask for and, 4) Click Abort after the power cycle. 5) Click Disconnect and Connect again and now the tool will get the chip info. 6) Disconnect from the firmware tool and connect with TeraTerm, 6) TeraTerm now connects and gets the menu.


    The steps above will reliably connect to the MK2 remote control menu, but no other method I have tried will. It could be something with sending the pulses for the bootloader? If I simply start the MK2 and connect I can not get to the remote menu (restarting and power cycle does not work)

    This sounds very odd. Do you have another PC you can try? Somehow sounds like a problem on the PC side of things to me... some other Software preventing the COM port to work correctly, or something.

  • Hi Tobias. Just tried with another PC and a laptop. Identical behavior. And I can consistently reproduce the way to connect, however it still does not seem to save neither settings nor ROM files transferred.

  • I'd do some measurements first: If 12V come from the Commodore PSU (the unit we sell), I'd rate that safe (please confirm).


    Next would be to check the 5V rail with a multimeter: Any of the mounting holes or the expansion port shield are grounded ("minus", the black tip of the multimeter), and the easiest point to measure the 5V would be the right terminal (closer to the expansion port) of the inductor L1. That's the square part in the "5V supply" group, just under the audio connector, with a black "100" on it.


    If you have an oscilloscope, I'd also like to know if the 27MHz crystal swings. That's component Y1 left of the CPU, under the iComp logo. You should be able to measure 27MHz on that. I suspect that you can see the 27MHz when connecting is possible, but you don't get the 27MHz if connecting is not possible.


    Another thing we sometimes have is that customers attempt to operate the board on the black bubble foil that it came in. This will cause random malfunction, as the bubble foil is conductive. Please make sure you've properly mounted the board in a case, or operate it temporarily on an insulating surface.

  • Thanks Jens. I will perform those measurements and get back to you.

    I use my own 12V PSU and have several I can swap between if needed.

    I operate the board inside a good old C64 breadbin shell :-)

  • I can confirm very stable 12.05V coming in from the PSU and 4.97V measure on the L1 inductor. Crystal swings with a very nice sine wave at between 26.9 and 27.2 MHz.


    something is definitely wrong. it wont remember the simplest of settings. e.g. I switched from mono on SID1 to SID2 and wrote the settings. After a power cycle it's back to SID1.


    When I connect here is the chip-set info I get (if that is of any help)


    VIC-II: 73 00 AF55 )

    SID 1 : A3 D0)

    SID 2 : DD 00)

    CPU : 0458)

    MCU :

    READY (press key for menu)


    Update: I flashed an older firmware (20180205) and after that chip info shows up as


    VIC-II: 8565 (76 00 AF61 PAL)

    SID 1 : 6581 (A1 CF)

    SID 2 : 8580 (DC 00)

    CPU : PHI2 OK (0458)

    MCU : 20180205

    READY (press key for menu)


    Which looks more what you would expect? However after power cycling the chip info is back to the first listing (w no MCU info) and same behavior in terms of connecting and not remembering any settings.


    I then tried updating to the current stable release and after writing the firmware the chip info shows as


    VIC-II: 8565 (76 00 AF55 PAL)

    SID 1 : 6581 (9E CC)

    SID 2 : 8580 (DC 00)

    CPU : PHI2 OK (0454)

    MCU : 20180227

    READY (press key for menu)


    However still same unchanged behavior after power cycle.


    Thanks again for all your help and troubleshooting

  • All settings are saved in the MCU, and if that can't remember these settings, it's internal EEPROM may be defective. Looks like we need to exchange the chip here. Please read this article before sending the board back.