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How to Update Print Server Firmware with PJL Files Over a Parallel Connection

Document ID:HO192

Usergroup :External


How to update print server firmware with PJL files over a parallel connection; Integrated port Tx2x; Microsoft Windows


This document assumes the firmware revision has already been downloaded and expanded on the local hard drive. For details of which firmware extensions go with which adapter, refer to the list at the end of this document. 
Flash memory is a type of ROM (read-only memory) that can be electronically erased and reprogrammed. The flash memory in the network adapter contains the firmware that operates it. This firmware communicates with the network, the printer, and the network utility.  When the firmware is updated, the flash memory on the network adapter is reprogrammed.  This procedure overwrites old firmware and replaces it with the upgraded version.  Although many adapters can accept each firmware file, there are some intermediate levels that must be reached before the adapter can accept the current level, as explained below. 

  • The MarkNet S adapter must be flashed to 1.9.14 before it can accept any higher level of firmware. 

  • The MarkNet Pro adapters must also be flashed to 2.9.14 before set to the current level. 

  • When a PJL file is being flashed, the intermediate level is not necessary.

  • The MarkNet XL must be flashed to 15.84 before it can be flashed to 79.* levels. 

Once the network adapter has been reprogrammed, all of the adapter's settings should be saved; however, this is not always the case. Make sure to print a network settings page before starting the procedure to enable you to compare network settings before and after the firmware update.
Important! While the code is being updated, be sure not to turn the adapter (or printer) off!
Windows operating systems
From most Windows operating systems and OS/2,  MarkVision Classic and MarkVision Professional can be used to update the print server firmware. Firmware can also be sent using a TFTP session from Windows NT, 2000 and XP. For the MarkNet S series, N series, Pro series, and X series adapters, the internal Web Interface is another option for updating firmware.  Some adapters also accept PJL files which can be sent via FTP and over a parallel port.

  • This document outlines MarkVision update procedures.

  • This document provides information on the TFTP procedures.  

  • This document provides information on the Web Interface update procedure.

  • This document provides information on updating with FTP.

Flashing the adapter via a parallel connection
The adapters that can be flashed via parallel are the MarkNet S, MarkNet N, MarkNet X, MarkNet XLe, and the MarkNet Pro. A parallel converter is necessary to flash the external devices (MarkNet Pro, X and XLe adapters). This section assumes that you already have the parallel converter if it is required for your adapter, and that the necessary files have already been expanded on your computer. 
Contact Lexmark Technical Support to order a parallel converter.  The internal network adapters can only be flashed over parallel with PJL files, but the external adapters can be flashed with normal firmware files. If this session is from OS/2, either disable the spooler or use a null driver. If using a null driver, make sure the Form Feed Control is set to None.
MarkNet S / Marknet N:
To upgrade the firmware on a MarkNet S or MarkNet N card via parallel, a special PJL version of the firmware is required. This file is usually available for download from our ftp site under the firmware directory for each adapter, as a file named *pjl.exe.  Make sure the .exe file is expanded before starting this procedure.

  1. Attach the printer directly to the computer using a parallel cable.

  2. Open a command prompt and change to the directory that contains the PJL file.

  3. Copy the file to the printer using the following command: 
    copy /b filename.pjl lpt1
    where is the pjl file and lpt1 is the parallel port.

  4. The printer will display a message that it is upgrading the firmware or flashing ports 1, 2, and 3. Eventually it should reset itself and return to a ready state. Warning! Do not power off the printer during this update! 

  5. You can then print out a network settings page to make sure that the firmware was upgraded correctly.

MarkNet Pro / MarkNet X:

  1. Attach the parallel converter to the end of the parallel cable.  This will make the cable symmetrical on both ends.

  2. Connect the cable to the computer and the parallel 1 port on the external adapter.  On the Pro 3/X2030 adapters, this is the port closest to the network cable.

  3. Press and hold the Test and Menu buttons until all lights come on.

  4. While still holding the Test button, release the Menu button. The adapter will begin to either alternate between the Menu and Parallel 1 on the single port adapters, or sweep right, skipping the Parallel 2, on the Pro 3/x2030.

  5. When the Parallel 1 light is on, release the Test button.  The adapter should then start a "sweep right" pattern, indicating that it is waiting for a flash file over Parallel 1.

  6. Open a command prompt on the computer and and change to the directory that contains the firmware file.

  7. From the command prompt, copy the file to the parallel port using the following commands:
    copy filename lpt1 /b 
    where is the firmware file for the adapter.  The Menu light on the adapter should flash, and then go solid.

  8. The adapter should then reset itself and either go back to a ready state or to a "no network connection" pattern of lights.

  9. Print a test page from the adapter to verify that the new code has been processed.

MarkNet XLe :

  1. Attach the parallel converter to the end of the parallel cable. This will make the cable symmetrical on both ends.

  2. Connect the cable to the computer and the parallel 1 port on the XLe adapter.

  3. On the adapter, press the Reset button. The adapter will begin its normal startup procedure.

  4. While the adapter is starting up, hold down the Test button until the Data light flashes, indicating that the adapter is ready to receive a flash file.

  5. Open a command prompt and change to the directory that contains the firmware file.

  6. Copy the file to the XLe using the following command:
    copy /b filename.unc lpt1   
    where is the appropriate firmware file.

  7. While the firmware is downloading and processing, the Test and Data lights will blink, and the power light will stay on. The Status light will also start blinking while the adapter is actually flashing the code.  If the Status, Test, and Data lights go out, an error has occurred.  Verify the parallel cable connection and repeat this procedure. When the flash file has been downloaded successfully, the Test light will go out and the Status and Data lights will alternate rapidly.

  8. Remove the parallel cable and set the adapter up again with its network connection.  Print out a test page to verify that the flash file has been sent correctly.

Flash File Extensions
ADAPTERNetwork file extensionParallel or FTP file extension
MarkNet XL*.PXLN/A
MarkNet XLe*.PRP*.UNC
MarkNet S*.PSH*.PJL
MarkNet Pro*.PPN*.PPN
MarkNet N2501e and 2401e*.PML*.PJL
MarkNet N2000*.PSW*.PJL
MarkNet X*.PEN*.PEN

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