5.1. Installing p-load and drivers

To use the P-Star’s USB bootloader, you will need to install a command-line utility called the Pololu USB Bootloader Utility. This program is also known as “p-load” because that is the command used to run it from a command prompt.


If you are using Microsoft Windows, you should download and install the Pololu USB Bootloader Utility (p-load) for Windows (1MB msi). This includes the p-load executable and the drivers necessary for the P-Star bootloader. During the installation, Windows will ask you if you want to install the drivers. Click “Install”.

After the installation has finished, your computer will automatically detect any P-Star that is in bootloader mode and use the proper drivers for it. You should see an entry for the P-Star bootloader in the “Universal Serial Bus devices” category or the “Pololu USB Devices” category in your Device Manager. The latest drivers use the “Universal Serial Bus devices” category, but if your P-Star was set up with an older driver, then it might still be in “Pololu USB Devices”.

Mac OS X

If you are using Mac OS X, you should download and install the Pololu USB Bootloader Utility (p-load) for Mac OS X (87k pkg). The latest version of the utility software requires Mac OS X 10.11 or later. For older versions of Mac OS X, use p-load 1.0.0 (33k dmg) instead (which only supports the P-Star 25K50).


If you are using Linux, you should download and install the appropriate version of the Pololu USB Bootloader Utility below:

Run tar -xvf p-load-*.tar.xz to extract the software, and then follow the directions in README.txt to install it.

Source code

The Pololu USB Bootloader Utility source code is also available, so you can build the utility yourself.

Related Products

P-Star 45K50 Mini SV
P-Star 25K50 Micro
Log In
Pololu Robotics & Electronics
Shopping cart
(702) 262-6648
Same-day shipping, worldwide
Shop Blog Forum Support
My account Comments or questions? About Pololu Contact Ordering information Distributors