Xloader - instructions

How to use Xloader to load a new version of grbl into the Arduino/X-controller.

The left screenshot shows the window that Xloader displays when it starts.

Enter the file path or browse to the .hex file that you would like to load into the Arduino/X-controller.

Select the device type you are going to load into (Uno/ATmega328 for the Arduino/X-controller).

Select the COM port where your Arduino/X-controller is attached.

The baud rate should be 115200.

Press the “Upload” button.

When the .hex file has been loaded into the Arduino/X-controller the right screenshot will show the size of the file uploaded, or an error message if the upload fails.

Here is the version of Xloader that I use.

Xloader.zip (646.7 KB)


I don’t know it I dare to mess with something like that.
do I have to get the file from Inventables?

There are various versions available on the internet. You can get it from Inventables.

Unfortunately there are some versions at Inventables that have problems.

I know this works, it’s mine. download link

So what happens if I screw it up.
Will my Xcontroller be toast?

Some telecom devices can be rendered inoperable by firmware updates that fail, which has given many people a bad feeling for firmware updates.

If the firmware update on the X-controller doesn’t work right, grbl will not be runnable, but you can reload the firmware as many times as you would like. The X-controller doesn’t lose it’s ability to update the firmware by a failed update.

Many days I do this procedure multiple times to switch among grbl versions in helping people with their machines.

Direct answer = No.

Thanks for the help and files.
Maybe this evening I might give it a try.
In pdf is says to make a copy of the current file that’s in the xcontroller.
How do I do that?

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Click the yellow GRBL button in PicSender, select the GRBL Settings button and then Save. Name the file anything other then Spindle.txt or Laser.txt.

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thank you.
I will try it this evening.

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I did as instructed and opened up picsender, clicked on Grbl, then clicked on Grbl settings.
I highlighted the text and saved it as an excel file with todays date
How can I open up the new hex file and just do a comparison before I run it through the Xloader?

You can’t really look inside the .hex file. Here are the grbl spindle parameters on my machine. They are close to the defaults, with some options that I use (500mm machine).

$0=10 (step pulse, usec)
$1=255 (step idle delay, msec)
$2=0 (step port invert mask:00000000)
$3=3 (dir port invert mask:00000011)
$4=0 (step enable invert, bool)
$5=0 (limit pins invert, bool)
$6=0 (probe pin invert, bool)
$10=115 (status report mask:01110011)
$11=0.020 (junction deviation, mm)
$12=0.002 (arc tolerance, mm)
$13=0 (report inches, bool)
$20=1 (soft limits, bool)
$21=0 (hard limits, bool)
$22=1 (homing cycle, bool)
$23=3 (homing dir invert mask:00000011)
$24=25.000 (homing feed, mm/min)
$25=750.000 (homing seek, mm/min)
$26=250 (homing debounce, msec)
$27=1.000 (homing pull-off, mm)
$30=255. (rpm max)
$31=0. (rpm min)
$32=0 (laser mode, bool)
$100=40.000 (x, step/mm)
$101=40.000 (y, step/mm)
$102=188.947 (z, step/mm)
$110=8000.000 (x max rate, mm/min)
$111=8000.000 (y max rate, mm/min)
$112=500.000 (z max rate, mm/min)
$120=500.000 (x accel, mm/sec^2)
$121=500.000 (y accel, mm/sec^2)
$122=50.000 (z accel, mm/sec^2)
$130=290.000 (x max travel, mm)
$131=290.000 (y max travel, mm)
$132=88.000 (z max travel, mm)

All you had to do is select Save in the GRBL menu like I explained. When you select Save, it will open up a window to save/backup the grbl settings to a user named text file.

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I will go back and try that.

That worked fine.
Now if something goes wrong (because I’m seeing quite a bit of differences between Larry’s file and

my original) how do I go back to the original configuration?

As you can tell, I’m very nervous about messing around with stuff like this.


That’s Ok. Wait a minute and I’ll tell you what you need to change in the settings once you get the new firmware loaded.

$30=1. note the decimal

This is a good starting point. We can change some things once you get it working the way you have it set up now.

We just change it back.

The Save is for backing up your original grbl settings. If you want to recall them, select Open, select the file you saved and then select Send. I will restore all of your grbl settings back to the original ones.


Here goes…

some more of the same bull shit…

No. You can’t have multiple programs with the serial port opened at the same time. Close PicSender and run Xloader again.

You have the wrong device selected in Xloader

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will do.
sorry I’m getting frustrated.
(and more nervous)