Fwupd 1.7.4 Supports More Hardware For Firmware Updating On Linux

Written by Michael Larabel in Hardware on 13 January 2022 at 01:25 PM EST. 24 Comments
Lead Fwupd/LVFS developer Richard Hughes of Red Hat today released v1.7.4 for this open-souce utility to allow firmware updating on Linux of system motherboards and peripherals.

The Fwupd 1.7.4 release adds firmware branch support for ModemManager devices, support for firmware engineers to be able to patch files at known offsets, and a variety of bug fixes.

But arguably most interesting with Fwupd 1.7.4 is several additional devices now supporting firmware updates under Linux:

- HP USB-C G2 Dock
- Many UF2 devices, experimentally
- More PixArt devices
- Nordic HID devices using MCUBoot
- Quectel EG25-G LTE Modem
- ThinkPad Thunderbolt 4 Dock

Seeing more USB-C / Thunderbolt docks supporting firmware updates and working well under Linux is a welcome sight. PixArt device support has also been expanding in recent times. The UF2 device support is experimental and messy but works:
A UF2 device exposes a VFAT block device (sometimes called a Mass Storage Device) which has a virtual file called `INFO_UF2.TXT` where metadata can be read. It may also have a the current firmware exported as a file called `CURRENT.UF2` which is in a 512 byte-block UF2 format.

Writing any file to the MSD will cause the firmware to be written. Sometimes the device will restart and the volume will be unmounted and then mounted again. In some cases the volume may not “come back” until the user manually puts the device back in programming mode.

Match the block devices using the VID*PID, UUID or label, and then create a UF2 device which can be used to flash firmware.

Fwupd 1.7.4 downloads and more details on the changes via GitHub.
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Michael Larabel is the principal author of Phoronix.com and founded the site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience. Michael has written more than 20,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and OpenBenchmarking.org automated benchmarking software. He can be followed via Twitter, LinkedIn, or contacted via MichaelLarabel.com.

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