Garmin, Lowrance, Raymarine, Simrad, Furuno, Humminbird, and other marine manufactures have all incorporated the ability to update multi-function displays using their proprietary software versions on specific units. These software updates allow us to fix bugs and glitches in prior software, and can even give us the ability to add new features and devices to our MFD's. You can view all of the most popular updates HERE.
How to update your unit:
On most newer style units software updates are uploaded through an SD or microSD card. The process is fairly straight forward and takes very little effort to complete. Typically the software is downloaded from the manufacturers website and loaded onto one of these SD via the SD card slot in your computer or using a USB to SD card reader. One thing to keep in mind before downloading the software to your card is that the card should be completely blank. The best way to ensure this is to right click on the SD card drive and format the card. This will clear everything to ensure a clean version of software is on the card. Once the software is on the card we then need to pug it into the unit with it powered off. After the card is in power the unit on and then most units the software will either prompt you to update or automatically start updating. While updating the unit may flash, flicker, or restart. After the unit has updated it will restart and you can remove your card when the main screen is reached.
Key point on updating:
- Back up any data on your unit before installing updates onto your device.
- Read the update instructions provided by the manufacturer before updating the unit as procedures many vary between units.
- Format your SD or microSD card before downloading software to ensure the card is completely empty.
- Make sure the unit does not loose power while updating. The unit may look like it is frozen or stuck, but do no attempt to power down or remove power to the unit.
- Be patient with the updates. They can take awhile so just wait for everything to complete before trying to use or power off the unit.
Advantages of updating software:
Software updates are a good thing. It means either the manufacturer is adding new technology to your system or they are fixing issues on previous software versions. Whether its new features or fixing old software issues the fact that the manufacturer is recognizing a problem or trying to give you updated technology means they are doing their job to keep your units working to full potential.
Recent Updates and Versions Link:
Links to Manufactures websites: