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I'm currently trying to leave the Arduino board aside and starting to program microcontrollers on PCB boards via programming pins. I'm using an ATMega328U from this premade board.

For starters, I'm trying to upload the bootloader. I know every single connection is in place since this PCB is a kit, the FTDI driver is installed on my machine, the cable has been verified to work by using this guide

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FTDI Board pins

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However I have no idea of how to actually write the program and upload it to the microcontroller. I have been messing with the Arduino IDE all day. My FTDI cable is at COM10, however no programmer available in the Arduino IDE seems to work with this cable, I have been looking and trying all day with no luck.

How can I write code in C and upload it to my microcontroller using the FTDI cable? Do I need specific software to do this? Any special configuration or hack? What am I missing?

Actual schematic of the project I'm trying to program:

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I am currently using this datasheet for my cable.

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    \$\begingroup\$ Minor nitpick. Those are not the programming pins, they're just a serial interface that the bootoader listens on. They can be used to transfer code to the MCU, but the dedicated programming pins are the 2x3 header in the background of the 3rd image. \$\endgroup\$ – Connor Wolf Jun 22 '15 at 3:45
  • \$\begingroup\$ yes maybe you are right, the ones you call programing pins(isp if im not wrong) are actually to program the uC hidden behind the RJ45 jack (little green board), that is a RF module, im beggining to suspect that the uC does not have a bootloader and thats why its not listening to my program uploads, however my question still stands, how or with what do i upload the bootloader with this setup? \$\endgroup\$ – GoatZero Jun 22 '15 at 3:56
  • \$\begingroup\$ Try installing Atmel srudio, you can download it for free from Atmel website. Also if you're serious about moving from Arduino, I would suggest you get a programmer, something like Avr ISP mk2. It will make your life much easier. \$\endgroup\$ – Golaž Jun 22 '15 at 5:19
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If you use a blank Atmel ATMEGA chip, it will not come with a bootloader.

When you click Upload in the Arduino IDE, the IDE interacts (via the serial port) with the bootloader in the ATMEGA chip.

You will have to use an ISP (in system programmer) to write this bootloader to the ATMEGA chip. After that is done, you can use the FTDI cable from the Arduino IDE.

You can get a range of different ISP adapters, from expensive Atmel brand programmers, to sub $2 USBasp clones.

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You should try to install Atmel IDE or another professional IDE. They are sure to support your programmer.

Atmel studio: http://www.atmel.com/tools/atmelstudio.aspx

Keil uvision (supports some Atmel devices): http://www.keil.com/uvision/

I would be very surprised if Arduino IDE is compatible with FTDI chip. Eventually, you could make it work but you should take the step toward a more complex IDE now.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ Why wouldn't the Arduino IDE work with an FTDI chip? The Duemillanove uses an FT232RL. \$\endgroup\$ – corecode Jun 22 '15 at 13:29
  • \$\begingroup\$ Well, FTDI chip are plug n play , you aren't suppose to do anything for them except install the driver. Technically, if Arduino IDE is supporting the chip, he could just use his serial port and programm the chip. Perhaps, the problem is that he isn't connect to the right port. Also, he is using a "premade" so I would suppose that board work. \$\endgroup\$ – MathieuL Jun 22 '15 at 13:56
  • \$\begingroup\$ @JYelton - this answer is just wrong and irrelevant in ways that a format edit won't fix. \$\endgroup\$ – Chris Stratton Mar 1 at 20:28
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Chris I won't bother with heavily downvoted answers, but this was sitting at zero. However, such edits aren't meant to make an answer right, just more readable. \$\endgroup\$ – JYelton Mar 1 at 21:59
  • \$\begingroup\$ Votes aside, the problem is that this response is based on a misunderstanding of both the question and the technology. It should be deleted, not edited. \$\endgroup\$ – Chris Stratton Mar 1 at 22:06

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