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avrdude: initialization failed, rc=-1


I am trying to build the $50 robot. So far I have connected everything on the perf board and am trying to upload a .hex file to the microcontroller.

The programmer I am using is the Pocket AVR Programmer from SparkFun ( I am trying to upload hold_servo.hex (It zeroes the servos). I am trying to use AVRDude to upload the hex file, but I get this error:

--- Code: ---> avrdude -c usbtiny -p m8 -U flash:w:hold_servo.hex

avrdude: initialization failed, rc=-1
        Double check the connections and try again, or use -F to override the check

avrdude done. Thank you.

--- End code ---

All the connections are fine and the circuit is powered. The voltage regulator is outputting 4.6V. This is lower than it should be (5V) but it is still within the operating range of the ATMega8.

Does anyone know what could be wrong? Is it safe to use the -F flag?

P.S. I am using the 6-pin configuration.

Oops! Turns out I connected the programmer wrong way round. Sorry for the trouble.


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