This guide is written by tadad1 and was originally posted here --> Dead Player Recovery Guide
If you have tried to upgrade your player with the wrong firmware and you find it no longer turns on or is not recognised by your computer this guide may help you to restore your player. I suggest you read the whole guide before starting so that you understand what you are about to do and have everything you need. It is not fool proof there are no guarantees. If you have backed up your players firmware you have a much greater chance of succeeding if not then you will have to search for a firmware version that is compatible with your player. Look for versions that have the same features as yours and similar layouts and menu pictures. If you know the version number then look for that version. If you do not then get a few versions
First arrange a space near your PC where you can work. Make sure that your player is switched off and disconnected from your PC. You will need a fine screwdriver and a pair of metal tweezers. If you do not have any tweezers a second fine screwdriver or a bent paperclip even will do. I suggest that those without a firmware backup download a selection before starting.
Remove the 4 screws 2 on either side of your player.
Gently remove the stainless steel backing taking care not to lose the switch from the top of the player
Now connect your player to your PC and turn it on.
Using the tweezers or other metal item gently make a connection between the pins on one side of the chip. I have found this can be quite random you may also have to do it a few times.
If you are having problems resetting the player as an ADFU Device you can try this method. Place the tweezers across the chip conecting the first pin on both sides then drag the tweezers down all pins.
Your PC should now detect your player as a ADFU Server and install the drivers. If this happened you can skip the next section and continue after the red text.
If your player is detected as a USB device then you will have to follow the next steps in Red. Windows will try to install a driver for your USB device and fail. Right click on My Computer icon and select properties, then go to the Hardware tab and select device manger. Here you will find your USB Device.
Right click on the device and select properties. When the properties dialogue opens select update driver
Then select “Install from a specific location” and “Don’t search. I will choose a driver to install” then press next.
When the next window opens choose “Show All Devices” then next. In the next window select “Have Disk” then “Browse”. Now you will see you are looking for AdufUpdate.inf which you will find in the Windows Folder.
Once selected you will be asked to select the driver and it will be installed
Now the player is in a state where you can upload firmware so open the MP3 Upgrade Tool and you will be presented with this dialogue.
Note: If you have a backup of your firmware at this stage it is no good to you as it is not a complete firmware file and will give you an error message when you try to install it. You need to find a full version firmware. It may not have to be the same version as your original. My original was 3.5.35 and I used 3.5.37 to recover, you can download it here:
UPDATE 28/06/06 Here is another firmware that also worked for me, it is a 3.5.35 version and it restored my test player with one flash instead of two. It is also fully themed. DOWNLOAD
Updated 06/07/06 "wolfport2001" has kindly uploaded a Full Version 3.2.16 HERE
Updated: 20/01/08 - You can search for a firmware that is compatible with your player from this site here: Search Downloads.
Updated: 20/01/08 - You can also search for firmwares from the largest search engine of MP3/MP4 player firmwares: s1fw.com.
Once installed your player should show signs of life and you will be able to see it in explorer. It still will not be usable but is ready for the final step.
Turn the player off and then back on. Wait about 30 seconds till it boots now open the MP3 Upgrade Tool again. If it indicates that there is no device connected see if you can access your player through Explorer. If you can not you may need to format it with Windows. I have found that both FAT and FAT32 work on newer models but suggest you use FAT to avoid any problems. Once formatted the MP3 Upgrade Tool should have no problems. Now you can upload your backup dump.bin. Your player should now reboot and be fully recovered.
If you do not have a backup dump.bin you are going to have to try the firmware you downloaded until you find one that restores your player. Be aware that doing this could kill your player again in which case you need to start from the beginning and do the whole process again.
As I said at the start, this is not foolproof and there are no guarantees that the firmware I have used will recover your player but now you know the process and it is only a matter of finding the correct firmware. I believe that unless the player or its components are damaged that every player can be revived.
If you have a backup dump.bin please upload it to the firmware section along with a description of your players size, screen size, what feature it has, even a picture if possible, what ever information might help someone else identify it and recover their player.