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EAM Platinum firmware recovery



This procedure applies to EAMs and products containing EAMS (other than CTBTO-style authenticating digitisers). Compatible products are those without red crosses in the following table. If your product is not listed, please contact for advice.

  • DM24S3EAM
  • DM24S6EAM
DM24 in a metal cylindrical case
DM24SxEAM in a pali-case
excluding CTBTO-style authenticating units.
  • 3TDE
  • 40TDE
  • 5TCDE
  • EAM
  • DM24S3AM
  • DM24S6AM
DM24 in a metal cylindrical case
DM24SxEAM in a pali-case
CTBTO-style authenticating units require a different procedure. Please see the EAM Platinum firmware recovery for CTBTO digitisers page for details.
  • Affinity
Affinity The Affinity requires a different procedure. Please contact for details.
  • DCM
EAM The DCM requires a different procedure. Please see the DCM Platinum firmware re-flash page for details.


This recovery procedure can be useful if the firmware has become damaged by a partial upgrade. If this procedure is not able to recover your unit, then the unit must be returned to Guralp Systems for reflash. If this is the case, please contact for details and to arrange an RMA Return Material Authorisation. An RMA is permission to return goods for any reason. Our Goods-In team may refuse to accept any item received without an RMA number clearly marked on the outer packaging so, please, always ensure that you have an RMA before despatching anything to us. For more details, please see our Warranty and Repairs policy.

If you have only forgotton the root password, there is no need to perform a full firmware recovery: the root password can simply be reset. Please see the Platinum password-reset page for details.
This procedure erases the filesystem of the EAM. All configuration will be lost and the unit will need to be reconfigured afterwards. If possible, please ensure that you have downloaded a configuration save-file before proceding.
This procedure relies on network access to an upgrade server. Please ensure that you have access to any relevant information about your network before proceding. In particular, if you do not use DHCP, you will need to know a valid IP address to use and the addresses of the network's default router and DNS server.


Physical access to the unit will be required.

Equipment required:

A suitable rsync/upgrade server is required. You therefore need either:


  1. Connect the console cable to the EAM and to the laptop/PC (the "recovery machine").

  2. Open the terminal emulator on the recovery machine and set it to 38400 baud, 8N1.

  3. Apply power to the EAM.

  4. Almost immediately, there should be some output. Approximately two screens (2×25 lines) of output will be displayed.

  5. There will be a series of yes or no questions. Answer no (by pressing the n key) to each question. Very old bootloaders have some minor differences, but the questions should be as below. If any question is accidentally answered yes, it is safe to simply remove and re-apply power, starting the process again.

    Boot-up procedure questions:

    Attempt rsync update ? (y/N) n Boot main via kexec ? (Y/n) n Boot main via switch_root ? (y/N) n Mount successful but no boot options available Attempt scripted NAND device reinstall ? (y/N) n

    At this point, you are now at a shell prompt:

    / #

    and can continue the process as below.

Reflashing the firmware

If the firmware has really become damaged, to the point that it is no longer possible to boot the unit, then it is possible to erase everything and reflash it. This procedure is involved, and you may prefer to return the unit to Guralp support, but instructions are presented below for users willing to attempt the procedure.

Set up networking

The required configuration for the network depends on whether you use DHCP on your local network or not.

Set system date

The date must be set to something sensible because, otherwise, files will have incorrect modification times, which will cause various malfunctions. In the command below, replace:

The command should entered as

date mmddHHMMYYYY

The data and time should be entered in UTC, regardless of your current time zone.

Erase NAND flash

This will destroy all your settings and data in the buffer (it won't affect data recorded on any mass storage device). There is no way to retrieve anything from the unit after running these commands.

umount /mnt flash_eraseall /dev/mtd3 mount -t yaffs /dev/mtdblock3 /mnt

The flash_eraseall command will likely complain about multiple bad blocks and failures. This is normal for NAND flash. However, it should tick all the way up to 100%. If it aborts early then there is potentially a hardware problem. The last mount command must succeed, or there is a problem somewhere and the unit will likely need to be returned to GSL support.

Copy files on

In the example below it may be necessary to replace with its IP address (currently or with the name of your local rsync server. This step will download about 50 MB of image data.

rsync --super --verbose --stats --human-readable --progress \ --itemize-changes --recursive --times --links --perms \ --chmod=ugo+r,+X --force \ rsync:// /mnt/

If this step fails at start-up (with error messages like temporary failure in name resolution, no route to host, etc.) then something is wrong with the networking configuration. If, instead, it fails part way through, or at the end, something is likely wrong with the unit and it will need to be returned to the factory.

If the rsync command completes successfully, create some necessary files:

cp -a /dev/null /mnt/dev cp -a /dev/zero /mnt/dev cp -a /dev/console /mnt/dev mkdir -p /mnt/etc/conf.local echo set_hwclock `date +%s` > /mnt/.magic_upgrade sync

Each of these commands is critical and must not fail.


Now it is safe to power cycle the unit. You can also boot the new system without power cycling by running:

kexec -l /mnt/boot/zImage kexec -e

You can watch its boot progress on the console port. The first boot can take several minutes as the system will have to run through some basic initialisation procedures. However, you should eventually have a login: prompt, at which point you can log in as root using the default password (see note below) and refer to the Platinum manual to reconfigure the device.

The previous default root password is now routinely tried by hackers during brute-force atacks. As a result, this procedure now changes the root password to . We strongly recommend that you change this to something secure if the unit is to be connected to the Internet. Please see our Platinum security guide for more information.