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Hardware of a Free Design
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Chipflasher Webpage

Chipflasher ‘board-edition-1’


Branch master, tag board-edition-1: In May 2018, this version had been certified to respect computer users’ freedom by the Free Software Foundation (FSF). First ten devices, shipped in signed packages, were available for purchase since then. Production of more devices had been resumed as of 2021, 12th of April, but has been suspended again in September 2021 due to ongoing development. However, the software of branch master (e.g.: kick2) still applies for this RYF-certified device, so please feel free to upgrade in case you have built or purchased this product.

Check its dedicated webpage for more details:
Webpage for Zerocat Chipflasher ‘board-edition-1’

The documentation, now built in an updated GNU Guix environment, is available here:
Documentation for Zerocat Chipflasher ‘board-edition-1’

Chipflasher v2

We are happy to announce that Zerocat Chipflasher v2 is out and ready for sale! Some first devices and kits are available from two shops, Zerocat and Vikings, both located in Germany, Europe:

The development of “Chipflasher v2” and its firmware, kick2, has been funded by the Next Generation Internet (NGI) programme, as announced by the NLnet Foundation. The funded results are available for reference on branch flashrom-interface, which has been updated to meet important progress and bug fixes. The documentation, as referred by NLnet, is available here:
Documentation for Zerocat Chipflasher Flashrom Interface

The new firmware offers interfaces to the project’s own host utility, as well as to flashrom. By default, the device communicates via RS232 at 115200baud and drives the SPI bus at clock rates up to 40MHz when used via serprog v1 protocol.

It is worth noting that the flasher can be used to access SPI configuration registers so that the users can apply hardware protection mode to the BIOS chips of their desktops and laptops if the chips support that feature.

Hardware protection mode greatly improves system integrity by preventing firmware modification via software, spyware or malware...

The “Chipflasher v2” documentation is available here:
Documentation for Zerocat Chipflasher

We will send device samples to the Free Software Foundation in Boston, USA, and apply for their Respects-Your-Freedom (RYF) certification programme. In order to reflect the current status of our application, an extensive system is used on the sales pages and associated documents:

    RYF intended –> pending –> applied/denied

At the time of writing (3rd of February 2023), the status is:

    RYF intended

The RYF programme not only requires the device to be developed with a clean stock of free-software applications, it also checks copyright and license compatibilities of the hardware distribution, of shops and their sales pages. We take both shops as listed above into account. If we finally succeed, “Chipflasher v2” can be offered as an RYF-certified device by two shops in parallel – something new and unseen as of today.

First things first: We will check with the FSF to see if they are able to look at it and get a ticket number.