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Old 10-12-2008, 10:52 PM
m_k m_k is offline
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 277
Default Firmware update and audiobook probs (related?)

Hi, I'm basically going nuts here... seem to be in a double-bind -- am running Win2K, which Sandisk doesn't really like at all (me, I prefer it to XP and Visturd).

I have a couple of Sansa Express (1GB model) which I want to use for listening to audiobooks. (I have been using my 2GB "Clip" as a beaucoup sweet audiobook listener and voice-note-taker -- works great, but, no MicroSD support, so... here I am.)

The double-bind: I have updated the Expresses to 01.01.05A, using similar to the same method I've used for the Clip, the c250, and the e260 -- download the firmware, unzip, copy, restart (with the others), and, with the Express, download the Express Updated (.exe) and run it, which stuffed the 01.01.05A into it.

After searching every few days for the past week or so I have concluded that there is NO way to upgrade above 01.01.05A on the Express other than via the standard Sansa updater, and, there's a new version available.

The double-bind is that I can't run the updater on Win2K -- and when I try to run it on our Visturd machine, it crashes at step 3 (the actual download of the firmware), telling me to try again later. Utterly worthless error message.

So, I do some searching, and see a note to the effect that it won't work through a Proxy. Well, there ya go. We're running Windows ICS (Internet Connection Sharing), with the Win2K machine "serving" the modem (yes, on top of everything else, we live in one of those parts of the country that has NO high-speed Internet availability).

So, I can run the updater on the computer that has a connection it would like, but it rejects the OS -- or, I can run it on an OS it likes, but it refuses to talk through the network.

Does anyone know if Sandisk will EVER make the higher-than-01.01.05A firmware available for "the rest of us"? (What about people running Linux etc?)

Now, the other half of my nightmare... I've been trying to upgrade the FW because I read that 01.01.05A has problems with the card handling. So, I was hoping it would let me use the card for listening to audiobooks.

I copied a slew of audiobook files (MP3) to a 4GB card. I spent a lot of time in Mp3Tag making sure they are properly set up with chapter numbers and all other fields that make it friendly for the Clip, and they work there without a hitch, so I know my tagging isn't the issue.

The problem is that the files do not show up at ALL in the Express! Well, I take that back -- they show up when I am copying them to the card -- or, when I go back in to look at the card (S.E. connected to USB port). So, I know they're there.

But, when I fire up the player, it's as if there wasn't even a card in the slot! NO files show, either in Audiobooks (where they show on the Clip), or, under the music menu, not even in the "all" selections.

Plus, when I go into Settings, it does not reflect the presence of the flash card. I don't know if that's a quirk of the Express (maybe Express doesn't show card info there?), or, a firmware bug, or whatever.

So, kind of at my wit's end here. I've asked my wife to drive around and see if she can find a place with a hotspot they make available, and if so, I guess I'll have her try flashing the firmware via her laptop, but that's a last ditch effort -- it gives me the willies just thinking about it. Heck, I'm not even all that relaxed when flashing on this machine that sits behind a UPS. To try it on a battery operated computer, on a *wireless* connection, subject to everything from a car with a noisy ignition pulling into the next slot, or an overworked restaurant employee bumping into the router... that's just asking for trouble, and I don't want to find myself no longer searching the "how do I upgrade" threads due to spending all my time in the "how do I unbrick my Express?" threads.

Can anyone help me get a handle on what's going on here, what my real options are, and what I might expect if everything was working OK? Thanks in advance.
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