Answered: Firmware release notes

I would request that VEX post more detailed release notes for the cortex and joystick firmware. CMU has just released ROBOTC V3.05 which includes master firmware version 3.20. We have had success over the last three months with the V3.16 firmware included with ROBOTC version 3.04 and EasyC version 4.0.2.7, the common firmware between these two development environments has simplified switching back and forth at will.

Is V3.20 in any way compatible with V3.16? ie. can a joystick on one version communicate with a cortex on a different version?

Upgrading multiple cortex and joystick systems in a school environment is time consuming. More detailed release notes explaining exactly what has changed in the firmware would allow a more objective decision to be made as to the necessity to upgrade. We prefer to delay but obviously if there are improvements to firmware stability then we would like to know about these.

Any details you can provide would be appreciated.

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jpearman,

Thanks for the feedback, I will pass it along.
I personally tried easyC 4.0.2.8, ROBOTC 3.04 & 3.05 and they all are compatible with each other.
A VEXnet link is able to be established between a Joystick and Cortex, even if they have different versions.

I understand that upgrading your computer lab can take some of your time; however, I encourage you to try out the new features of ROBOTC on just one of the computers. If you feel like the 3.04 version has all the features you need, you can always go back to the previous version: http://www.robotc.net/download/cortex/

Also ROBOTC provides a very helpful “Change Log” in their website.
Feel free to check it out, if you have not already: http://www.robotc.net/blog/2012/01/13/robotc-version-3-05-has-been-released/

Here is another page provided by ROBOTC, its a brief breakdown of the improvements made in 3.05: [http://www.robotc.net/blog/2012/01/13/major-improvements-to-robotc-3-05-for-vex-cortex/

Hope this helps.
Thanks.

-Eli](http://www.robotc.net/blog/2012/01/13/major-improvements-to-robotc-3-05-for-vex-cortex/)

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This is good to know but something I guess I need to try.

Also ROBOTC provides a very helpful “Change Log” in their website.
Feel free to check it out, if you have not already: http://www.robotc.net/blog/2012/01/13/robotc-version-3-05-has-been-released/

Here is another page provided by ROBOTC, its a brief breakdown of the improvements made in 3.05: [http://www.robotc.net/blog/2012/01/13/major-improvements-to-robotc-3-05-for-vex-cortex/

Hope this helps.
Thanks.

-Eli](http://www.robotc.net/blog/2012/01/13/major-improvements-to-robotc-3-05-for-vex-cortex/)

I’m not so much concerned about the changes made to ROBOTC, I’m quite familiar with those, however, I would like to know the specifics on the change from version 3.16 to 3.20 in the firmware. I understand that there is probably a timeout on VEXnet detection and perhaps some changes to USB enumeration. I realize that for the majority of users these changes are irrelevant but, in addition to being a mentor, I am also a VEX hobbyist with an inherent interest in the underlying technology. The VEX system seems unnecessarily closed with it’s users constantly guessing about how it works, releasing some notes on the firmware would be a good first step towards openness.

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jpearman,

Here is the official statement on the release of the newest Master Code:

“This change added support for the newly released VEX Integrated Motor Encoders, some performance improvements to VEXnet which resulted in a reduction to the VEXnet link time, as well as improved support for USB 3.0. As always we recommend that ALL users upgrade to to the most recent version of the firmware.”

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