NexStar Resource Site

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Fix for "Initializing" Message after a Failed MCupdate Attempt

If the upgrade process is interrupted, when the mount is restarted the hand control may display "Initializing" and then a blank screen -- this prevents MCupdate from connecting to the mount in order to reprogram it.  This problem may happen on SE6/8, AS-GT, or CGE mounts.  A special version of hand control firmware is available below to work around this problem when upgrading motor control firmware via the hand control serial cable. (Note: this firmware is not supported by Celestron; in any case reloading the latest hand control firmware is required after this procedure is complete.)  This NXS firmware can be used even if you have a GEM mount -- you just need to reprogram the hand control back to the normal firmware once the process is complete.

Note: if the hand control displays "No Response 16" or "No Response 17", you can hit UNDO multiple times to clear those messages and you do not need this firmware. Once the messages are cleared, you can then connect to the mount with MCupdate. You must be using the most recent version of MCupdate in order for this to work.

  1. Ensure that you are using the most recent version of MCupdate by running MCupdate and selecting "None" for the COM port. Then click Next and then "Download via the Web". If a newer version of MCupdate is available then you will be prompted to install it. Exit MCupdate.
  2. Click here to download the "NXS 99.99.bin" file - you should save it, not open it.  Save it or copy it from where you downloaded into the HCupdate folder, usually under C:\Program Files\Celestron\HCupdate.
  3. Run HCupdate and upgrade your hand control to this new firmware version. It will give you a warning about an unsupported firmware version, which you can ignore.
  4. After the HCupdate is complete, exit HCupdate and cycle power on the mount. The hand control should come up with "No Response" messages. Hit UNDO multiple times when the messages appear to clear out the errors. The hand control may display "NexStar GPS" on the main screen even if you don't have that kind of mount -- this is normal. Do not hit any other buttons on the hand control.
  5. With the hand control at the main prompt, connect to the mount using MCupdate. The hand control should display "LOCKED" and you should then be able to upgrade the mount normally.
  6. When complete, be sure to reprogram your hand control back to whatever version you normally use. The firmware provided here is not supported by Celestron and may not operate properly in normal use.

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Michael Swanson
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