Friday, 8 February 2008

Why is it so difficult...

To upgrade Olympus firmware? I found how to read out the key information on my "new" E1 through the 4/3rds system website:(, from information supplied by Andrzej Wrotniak). I was delighted to find that the shutter count is just over 1900 - nothing for a professional spec camera - and that the firmware was at version 1.4. That was the last "key" update: the recently released 1.5 is said to just include support for the EC-20 teleconverter. Nevertheless, I wanted to update the firmware as Olympus have a habit of including little, unannounced tweaks with these updates.

It was really a bit of nightmare! After spending some time searching DPReview and the Olympus UK E-System User Group (, I eventually found that I had to:

  • Charge the camer battery
  • Load Olympus's "Viewer" software (no use for anything else, as far as I'm concerned)
  • Update it to the latest version
  • Restart the PC
  • Locate and upload special driver software to support the E1 (from
  • Restart the PC
  • Connect the camera and download the firmware, itself a three stage process.

All together, that has consumed several hours of my time yesterday and today, and probably turned several more hairs grey! The problem being, that if the update fails part way through (like if the camera is disconnected) you can easily end up with a dead camera that needs to be sent back to Olympus. As my broadband connection falls over periodically (twice this morning alone), I find this way of doing things very worrying...

Apparently other manufacturers use a system where you download an update to a memory card, and then put that in the camera to run the update. Surely a much safer and slicker operation?

Anyway, it's done now, and hopefully won't need to be done again for a while! When I do, I hope I can remember how it all works.

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