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One time installation of Quartus support libraries is needed. There are no custom USB drivers needed, WHQL certified Drivers from FTDIChip are used.

Table of content

Download Setup Files

JTAG Frequency

Default JTAG Speed with driver Version 2.2 is 20 MHz.

USB controller Maximum frequencyOther valid frequencies
FT2232D6 MHz3 MHz, 2 MHz, 1.5 MHz, 1.2 MHz … 92 Hz
FT2232H20 MHz15 MHz, 10 MHz, 7.5 MHz, 6 MHz … 460 Hz

 Change on Linux:

  • Change via Quartus Tools or ".arrow_usb_blaster.conf" file, see install instructions

Change on Windows

  • Change via Quartus Tools or change registry:
    • Open Registry Editor on section: HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\
    • Browse to Altera Corporation\JTAGServer\Hardware_Arrow_USB_Blaster
    • Change value from TckFrequency
  • See also PDF included in "C:\Program Files\Arrow\Arrow USB Blaster" installation

Installing Instruction of the newest version


  1. Install Quartus Software
  2. Download the appropriate version of Arrow USB Programmer2
  3. Run Install to install the Arrow USB Programmer.The setup executable installs the programmer DLL and adds some keys to the registry of the PC.
  4. After connecting  Arrow USB Programmer2 to the PC, two unknown devices might appear in the “Other devices” section of device manager of the PC.

  5. Windows usually automatically finds the appropriate drivers for these devices. After some time, the “Other devices” section should be empty. Instead, two USB Serial Converters should be listed in the section “USB Serial Bus controllers”. Furthermore, a USB Serial Port should be listed in the “Ports (COM & LPT)” section.


Known issues:

For problems on Windows, please check Troubleshooting Guide and use Diagnostic program, available on Arrow_USB_Programmer Setup Libraries Download Area.


Be sure you have the right permissions for doing as follows.

  1. Copy the file to the directory linux64 of thw Quartus installation directory e.g. /usr/local/intelFPGA_lite/18.0/quartus/linux64 .
  2. Copy the file 51-arrow-programmer.rules to /etc/udev/rules.d .

The frequency of the JTAG clock TCK can be configured using an additional configuration file. The programmer hardware library searches the configuration data using different file names at two different locations.

  1. as ".arrow_usb_blaster.conf" in the home directory of the user who has started the JTAG demon. This possibility is intended to set the frequency for an individual user or project.
  2. as "arrow_usb_blaster.conf" under "/etc" if it was not found in the home directory. This is to change the settings globally.

If no configuration file is found the default setting is used which is 20 MHz.

If there is the need to change the JTAG clock frequency, copy the file "arrow_usb_blaster.conf" and adjust the frequency to your needs.

The programmer shared library uses the FTDI library libftd2xx version 1.4.8 which is statically linked.

The programmer shared library for Linux has been developed and tested under Ubuntu 16.04 LTS. However it should also work with other Linux distributions.

Known issues:

  • During the enumeration process, the FTDI USB controller performs a reset. Depending on the hardware used, this might remove the power from the FPGA and therefore might erase the contents of the FPGA.

Revision change history

  • 2.1 to 2.2

    • the frequency of the JTAG clock TCK can be set and queried via the command line tool jtagconfig from Intel

    • the standard TCK frequency is 20 MHz instead of 6 MHz

    • it is now possible to program non-volatile keys into an FPGA

    • In the Windows version, the current USB drivers of FTDI are copied to the installation directory.

    • In the Linux Version, new installation description and rules file

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