GUIDE: How to update Neato XV Series using Vorwek Updater

News and information about the Neato XV-11 Robotic Vacuum. All discussion and troubleshooting questions go here.

Re: GUIDE: How to update Neato XV Series using Vorwek Update

Postby humanoid » January 16th, 2016, 6:47 pm

djos wrote:You might as well go to v3.2 imo, it's the newest for rev 113 boards and on both mine it's been prefect.

Thanks for the tip. Do you guys know what changed from 3.1 to 3.2? The wikipedia page has no details on 3.2.
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GUIDE: How to update Neato XV Series using Vorwek Updater

Postby djos » January 16th, 2016, 7:04 pm

I think it's just minor bug fixes for 3.1 and nothing major.

When the Costco xv14 showed up with 3.2 it was noticed that 3.2 is "more careful and takes a little more time when doing the perimeter".
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Re: GUIDE: How to update Neato XV Series using Vorwek Update

Postby humanoid » January 16th, 2016, 9:26 pm

Updated to 3.2 successfully!
Thank you djos, one day when we will be cleaning houses for the robots they will return you a favor :-)

I made an obstacle course from boxes and run the Neato before and after the update.

  • After the update it goes into square corners better, goes all the way in.
  • Older version barely touched the boxes. 3.2 pushed them around, it is more aggressive bouncing into things until the bumper switches trigger.
  • Did not improve going around obstacles that are touching the wall (20cm box near the wall). After hitting the obstacle it gets back to the wall in a long slope missing everything behind the obstacle. Seems little worse in 3.2, longer slope when it does not go close to the wall. My house is old, it has many of those unexplained "features".
  • I think it took less time to clean, but I didn't measure it. Just a guess.

Overall, good update.
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Re: GUIDE: How to update Neato XV Series using Vorwek Update

Postby djos » January 16th, 2016, 9:47 pm

Good update, cheers! :)
Current Robot's:
Neato BotVac 80 w/ Li-NMC Battery , 2x XV11 w/ Li-NMC Battery
iRobot Roomba 561 w/ NiMh Battery & Aerovac Bin, Scooba 380 w/ Li-NMC Battery

Previous Robots:
iRobot Roomba 562PE w/ Aerovac Bin & Sealed-bearing CHM
Evolution Mint 4200
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Re: GUIDE: How to update Neato XV Series using Vorwek Update

Postby snoozy » January 17th, 2016, 7:16 am

Hey there,
thank you for your update guide, but it nearly bricked my neato Rev 64.
I followed your steps, but the automatic update with vorwerk tool failed.
The neato had only the bootloader left.

Lucky me found the tutorial of this russian guy cuper6 and later the translation of the alternative way here:
viewtopic.php?f=20&t=18064&start=100

It worked and got me on 3.4
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GUIDE: How to update Neato XV Series using Vorwek Updater

Postby djos » January 17th, 2016, 3:45 pm

Hmm, that's surprising as Vorwerk did use the rev 64 boards too aiui.

Can you give more detail on what failed and where please?
Current Robot's:
Neato BotVac 80 w/ Li-NMC Battery , 2x XV11 w/ Li-NMC Battery
iRobot Roomba 561 w/ NiMh Battery & Aerovac Bin, Scooba 380 w/ Li-NMC Battery

Previous Robots:
iRobot Roomba 562PE w/ Aerovac Bin & Sealed-bearing CHM
Evolution Mint 4200
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Re: GUIDE: How to update Neato XV Series using Vorwek Update

Postby mfortuna » January 18th, 2016, 7:52 am

Thanks for the procedure. I made it a sticky so it will stay near the top for new users to find.
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Re: GUIDE: How to update Neato XV Series using Vorwek Update

Postby djos » January 18th, 2016, 3:53 pm

mfortuna wrote:Thanks for the procedure. I made it a sticky so it will stay near the top for new users to find.


No worries. Cheers :)
Current Robot's:
Neato BotVac 80 w/ Li-NMC Battery , 2x XV11 w/ Li-NMC Battery
iRobot Roomba 561 w/ NiMh Battery & Aerovac Bin, Scooba 380 w/ Li-NMC Battery

Previous Robots:
iRobot Roomba 562PE w/ Aerovac Bin & Sealed-bearing CHM
Evolution Mint 4200
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Re: GUIDE: How to update Neato XV Series using Vorwek Update

Postby snoozy » January 24th, 2016, 5:58 am

The automatic update with the vorwerk tool failed.
It seems like it just started flashing and then the USB connection droped.
I don't have more details because you couldn't see anything. :think:
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Re: GUIDE: How to update Neato XV Series using Vorwek Update

Postby TechGuy » February 5th, 2016, 11:56 pm

I have XV-11 with board rev 112.
Can I use this guide to update the firmware?
Charging battery directly: 400 Series, 500 Series,. How to Desolder
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Re: GUIDE: How to update Neato XV Series using Vorwek Update

Postby djos » February 6th, 2016, 12:12 am

TechGuy wrote:I have XV-11 with board rev 112.
Can I use this guide to update the firmware?


Are you sure it's 112 and not 113?
Current Robot's:
Neato BotVac 80 w/ Li-NMC Battery , 2x XV11 w/ Li-NMC Battery
iRobot Roomba 561 w/ NiMh Battery & Aerovac Bin, Scooba 380 w/ Li-NMC Battery

Previous Robots:
iRobot Roomba 562PE w/ Aerovac Bin & Sealed-bearing CHM
Evolution Mint 4200
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Re: GUIDE: How to update Neato XV Series using Vorwek Update

Postby TechGuy » February 6th, 2016, 12:30 am

Yes, it says board rev 112.
Charging battery directly: 400 Series, 500 Series,. How to Desolder
For Sale: Black CHM 2 Ball Bearings set
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GUIDE: How to update Neato XV Series using Vorwek Updater

Postby djos » February 6th, 2016, 12:38 am

TechGuy wrote:Yes, it says board rev 112.


It should work as the basic design is the sameno haven't had a 112 recently to try tho so ymmv.
Current Robot's:
Neato BotVac 80 w/ Li-NMC Battery , 2x XV11 w/ Li-NMC Battery
iRobot Roomba 561 w/ NiMh Battery & Aerovac Bin, Scooba 380 w/ Li-NMC Battery

Previous Robots:
iRobot Roomba 562PE w/ Aerovac Bin & Sealed-bearing CHM
Evolution Mint 4200
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Re: GUIDE: How to update Neato XV Series using Vorwek Update

Postby TechGuy » February 6th, 2016, 1:22 am

I just got this yesterday. I like to play with it for a while first.
I will follow your guide in a few months after finding out what is the different between the 112 and 113 boards.
Charging battery directly: 400 Series, 500 Series,. How to Desolder
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Re: GUIDE: How to update Neato XV Series using Vorwek Update

Postby TechGuy » February 6th, 2016, 2:51 pm

After a successful run on the main floor yesterday night, I move my XV11 upstairs this morning. It had problem at the front of a bathroom opening. The door was open, it inches forward and backward a few times. It gave up giving me clear my path message. It was completely lost and cannot even went back to dock. If it continues to not completing cleaning missions, I may try this procedure to upgrade my rev 112 soon . Is there any procedure to unbrick Neato?
Charging battery directly: 400 Series, 500 Series,. How to Desolder
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Re: GUIDE: How to update Neato XV Series using Vorwek Update

Postby vic7767 » February 6th, 2016, 3:26 pm

TechGuy wrote: Is there any procedure to unbrick Neato?
There is a keypress sequence to revert back to the prior load. Someone may remember what it is and share here, my memory is shot.
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Re: GUIDE: How to update Neato XV Series using Vorwek Update

Postby glnc222 » February 6th, 2016, 3:46 pm

See mods & repairs list. However, the function can be damaged along with other stuff when bricked.
Also the reversion function may not exist in v3.4. Updating must also be done on batteries the way it is designed, maybe with the power switching software controlled, so be sure batteries are good and fully charged. WiFi designs tend to the opposite because the radio takes power.

[edit] Still need an engineer to interpret the schematic made of the power circuit mosfets.

Lots of updates were performed on XV's through several releases, and several updates have been performed offline.
If the hardware does not show any defects and the machine is otherwise operating correctly chances are good. But the PC and cable connection etc. should be reliable. Test communication with Neato Control or terminal emulator before updating.
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Re: GUIDE: How to update Neato XV Series using Vorwek Update

Postby glnc222 » February 6th, 2016, 5:32 pm

Re old boards 112 vs 113.
Pictures and data on boards http://xv11hacking.wikispaces.com/XV-11+PCB+Information
Rev64 http://xv11hacking.wikispaces.com/PCB+rev.+64
In those early days I don't think there was any difference in the online updating for one board or another. With the 64 board a different cpu IC apparently is incompatible and the website got expanded. This was also when the side power jack was eliminated. The 113 had an unpopulated serial header usable with Bluetooth transceivers simpler than USB protocol, gone in 64. Their USB methods were pasted on top of older teletype interfaces with inefficient single character USB packets (and the robot does backspace editing etc. instead of the terminal emulator). There could be little changes in hardware unrelated to any software function, like rearranging plugs on the system board. One plug on 113 is unused (bottom right corner); maybe for side brushes in Vorwerk's; driver components maybe unpopulated. Perhaps 113 was produced for Vorwerk's addition. Vic thought it was a sensor plug.
There seems to have been a change involving a jumper wire on the system board.
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Re: GUIDE: How to update Neato XV Series using Vorwek Update

Postby TechGuy » February 6th, 2016, 7:46 pm

Thank you for the info, vic7767 and glnc222.

I purchased it used yesterday with a battery ran my XV-11 for about 30 minutes before going back to the dock to charge its battery. From reading posts on this forum, Neato OEM battery lasts about 30 minutes. So, this set of batteries should be fine for firmware update after charging overnight.
What do you think?
Can I plug in the charger from the side jack while I am updating the firmware?

Since there is not much change between the board rev 112 and 113, I should be fine(finger crossed) using the Vorwek Updater as it updates rev 113 to firmware 3.2 without any problem.


My XV-11 details
Firmware 1.0.12959
Board rev 112
Charging battery directly: 400 Series, 500 Series,. How to Desolder
For Sale: Black CHM 2 Ball Bearings set
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Re: GUIDE: How to update Neato XV Series using Vorwek Update

Postby glnc222 » February 6th, 2016, 10:06 pm

Charging is indifferent between dock and side jack. Nuisance taking brick out of dock. The side jack is more direct.
[edit] oops -- I think you have to be off the charger when updating. Online procedure always advised.

The problem I would think of is whether the Vorwerk procedure was usable on so old an initial version of software installed, maybe before there ever was a Vorwerk. The effect of SetConfig commands should be seen on the LCD display or over USB GetVersion command.
Neato Robotics' update system is described in the other thread http://www.robotreviews.com/chat/viewtopic.php?p=134696#p134696
with files for the Rev64 boards. The older board software was found on the Vorwerk servers.
There is an automatic software reversion mechanism built in for some cases, where an LCD error message and USB advisement exists for "an update is available", meaning the main software encountered a failure and the system reverted to a backup. You can also test the reversion special key combos on the system first because they are only temporary until the system is rebooted by powering off and on.
Some error msgs even ask you to reboot -- press ok to restart. Sure signs the hardware is damaged.
What bricks the system is damaging the USB interface software needed to flash. There is a USB command to flash, without details in the manual. Additional com sends SetConfig parameter setting commands. The parameters are shown in the GetVersion info, and have those names.

There might be a way to use the Vorwerk files with the Neato Robotics upgrader program, you would have to look at the structures of the procedures I have not compared in detail.
Basically the Vorwerk and Neato code files should be the same except for the SetConfig commands in separate com to set up each hardware system, battery charging type etc.
(If you need a new battery you might want to make your own lithium battery now easy by setting the Vorwerk type for proper charging. Good results in France, thread "lithium ion revisited" here.)

The battery load updating is minimal compared to running. Comp runs only around 100ma compared to 3 amps motors.
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