repurpose of kwikbyte DS

was sorting through old robot hardware, was looking at the old kwikbyte driver station. nice piece of hardware. some USB, a couple of Ethernet ports, a CRT screen.

does anyone have any information on reflashing these with a general purpose software?

It is possible, check

contacted them, the response was:

Thank you for your interest in KwikByte.

Unfortunately, we are no longer involved with FRC. The processor is AT91SAM9260. Tools, boot loader, and kernel sources are readily available for that chip. You can use the serial port and Ethernet connection to reflash all images.

Looks like I got a lot of research to do, especially around the peripherals. Doesn’t sound like anyone has been down this road yet (though everyone is probably too busy trying to get robots done to pay attention to this thread!)

Yeah, they are not going to support you. It will be a learning exercise if you have never put Linux on an embedded system. But it is not crazy difficult.

One thing you should ask them - can you get the kernel source they developed for that particular board? Linux is open source - they are really supposed to make it available.

Just wondering if there’s been any development on this? I randomly had this same idea yesterday and got my hands on one of the DS’s. Ironically this post came up while googling documentation on it.

our season just ended this past weekend, so I have time to look at it. I’m not going to try to reflash it until I either have a spare and some idea of where to go for a kernel and goodies, or if someone else is successful. I can use it for data acquisition as it is (with the FIRST software in it).

I’m also having no luck finding the USB key/dongle for it in our robot room, so that would also be an issue.

Looks like a good idea, but I think I had it too late…

Schnabel: too bad we didn’t have this discussion last week. We could have compared notes while our teams were at Niles (in the quarter finals together)…

Here is a great purpose for the old KwikByte DS.

You can still use it as a DS for robot demos and such. That is what we do.

In fact you buy them from AndyMark. I talked to Andy Baker a year or so ago about selling them at a discount price to the FRC community for demo bots and such.

I’ll let Andy finish the rest of the post…

AndyMark is sold out now. I assume this since they don’t have it listed any more, however I did find a lot of really cool info on it last night. Firstly I opened it up and noticed that it is in fact powered by an ARM processor. I confirmed this by going to Kwikbyte’s website and looking at the specs. Then I noticed a link to “Driver Station Challenges”. Pretty much it looks like they designed this thing to be hacked providing instructions and necessary equipment to upload information to the flash on it. They even have instructions on how to change how it boots (specifically how to change the logo it shows). It really looks like they had this in mind from the start, yet stopped setting everything up right about Kickoff time in 2009. While yes it still works with the robot, why couldn’t we hack it to be a robot controller? It would be funny to have two of these on either end of the link, one telling the other what to do, and the other doing it.

Call me a thread vampire, but I managed to get the documentation(link) with links to the original firmware. If only I could get the pinout for that clip adapter, since I have a serial port on my pc.

Looks like a summer project!

Here’s what I did to re-flash the DS:

Apologies for the necro-post. I finally got around to tinkering with the DS9260, and my results are here: (also uploaded to CD at

Carlos, cool! I’ll take a peek at this once we be through competition season…