3.1. Installing Windows drivers and software

To install the drivers and software for the Tic on a computer running Microsoft Windows, follow these steps:

  1. Download and install the Tic Software and Drivers for Windows (9MB msi).
  2. During the installation, Windows will ask you if you want to install the drivers. Click “Install” to proceed.
  3. After the installation has completed, plug the Tic into your computer via USB. Windows should recognize the Tic and load the drivers that you just installed.
  4. Open your Start Menu and search for “Tic”. Select the “Tic Control Center” shortcut (in the Pololu folder) to launch the software.
  5. In the upper left corner of the software, where it says “Connected to:”, make sure that it shows something like “#01234567 T825”. This indicates the serial number and model of the Tic that the software has connected to. If it says “Not connected”, see the troubleshooting section below.

The Tic’s USB interface implements Microsoft OS 2.0 Descriptors, so it will work on Windows 8.1 or later without needing any drivers. The driver we provide is needed for earlier versions of Windows.

This Tic software consists of two programs:

  • The Pololu Tic Control Center is a graphical user interface (GUI) for configuring the Tic, viewing its status, and controlling it manually. You can find the configuration utility in your Start Menu by searching for it or looking in the Pololu folder.
  • The Pololu Tic Command-line Utility (ticcmd) is a command-line utility that can do most of what the GUI can do, and more. You can open a Command Prompt and type ticcmd with no arguments to a see a summary of its options.

The source code for the software is available.

USB troubleshooting for Windows

If the Tic software did not connect to the Tic, try opening the “Connected to:” drop-down box to see if there are any entries in the list. If there is an entry, you can select it to connect to it. If there are no entries, then the tips here can help you troubleshoot the Tic’s USB connection on a Windows computer.

If you have connected any electronic devices to your Tic besides the USB cable, you should disconnect them.

You should look at the LEDs of the Tic. If the LEDs are off, then the Tic is probably not receiving power from the USB port. If the green LED is flashing very briefly once per second, then the Tic is receiving power from USB, but it is not receiving any data. These issues can be caused by using a broken USB port, using a broken USB cable, or by using a USB charging cable that does not have data wires. Using a different USB port and a different USB cable, both of which are known to work with other devices, is a good thing to try. Also, if you are connecting the Tic to your computer via a USB hub, try connecting it directly.

If the Tic’s green LED is on all the time or flashing slowly, but you can’t connect to it in the Tic software, then there might be something wrong with Windows. A good thing to try is to unplug the Tic from USB, reboot your computer, and then plug it in again.

If that does not help, you should go to your computer’s Device Manager and locate all the entries for the Tic. If the Tic’s main USB driver is working, you should see an entry in the “Universal Serial Bus devices” category called “Pololu Tic T825”. If it has a yellow triangle displayed over its icon, you should double click on the entry to get information about the error that is happening. If you do not see that entry, then you should open the “View” menu and select “Devices by connection”. Then expand the entries until you find your computer’s USB controllers, hubs, and devices. See if there are any entries in the USB area that disappear when you unplug the Tic. This might give you important information about what is going wrong.

Do not attempt to fix driver issues in your Device Manager using the “Add legacy hardware” option. This is only for older devices that do not support Plug-and-Play, so it will not help. If you already tried this option, we recommend unplugging the Tic from USB and then removing any entries you see for the Tic by right-clicking on them and selecting “Uninstall”. Do not check the checkbox that says “Delete the driver software for this device”.

The Status tab of the Pololu Tic Control Center.

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