Update any Garmin. Manual procedure.


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This article was originally written for the Garmin Fenix 2 update. However, the procedure is the same for any other Garmin Fenix 2 device. You can follow the same instructions if for some reason you have or want to perform the update manually, rather than through Garmin Express or wirelessly.


I recently received a new device for a full scan. It is the fantastic Garmin Fenix 2. And as you should always do as soon as you receive a new watch, the first thing to do is to update it to the latest firmware version available.

And that's where I was, when I got the first one on my forehead. Garmin Express was determined to tell me that my Fenix 2 was not compatible with the application, and to use Garmin Map Updater. Impossible, because that program is intended for other types of Garmin devices, and not for watches. This error occurred on all the computers I tested, regardless of operating system. Mac 10.9, 10.10, Windows 7, Windows 8.1...

Garmin Express error

If I couldn't synchronize it with Garmin Express, how was I going to update the clock? And I had to, because it came with version 3.50 and at the time of writing this entry we are already in version 4.00. The next thing I tried was WebUpdaterThe program correctly recognized the clock connected to a Windows 7 computer (on a Mac I couldn't even see it), but after downloading the update, it indicated that the file was not correct and cancelled the installation.

After a few heads against the wall, I decided to study the way Garmin does the update, to find some solution to the problem. After a couple of minutes checking the memory of the clock, connected as USB storage, and reading a couple of links in Google, I saw that the program what it does is to pass the update file to the internal memory and once copied to its folder, it sends a command to the clock to restart it and start the update. So I was going to do the same, for which I was going to need the update file.

And where to get it? It's easy, you just go to the update for the Garmin Fenix 2and right-click and select "view source code". In the first lines you will see directly the link to download the update, which in this case is: Surely this step will save you podrue, since the most normal thing is that if tomorrow the update to 4.30 is released, the file name will simply change to fenix2_430.gcd, and therefore modifying the download link will be more than enough. But just in case, there you have the way to get it.

Once you have the update on your hard drive, all you have to do is change the file name, from fenix2_420.gcd to GUPDATE.gcd, then connect the Garmin Fenix 2 to your computer in USB storage mode (as a hard drive).

Garmin Fenix 2 Update


Go into the /Garmin folder, and copy the GUPDATE.gcd update file to that location. As I mentioned at the beginning, we are doing the same procedure as the update software, so once the file is copied, the next thing to do is to restart the clock. Press and hold the "Light" button and in the menu that appears select turn off, and then turn it back on with the same button. And this is the screen you will see.

Garmin Fenix 2 Update

Once the clock starts, the update will begin. Don't worry, because before installing, first verify that the file is correct and not corrupt.

Garmin Fenix 2 Update

After validating the update, the installation process begins. The first message you will see is "Loader". The watch is loading a small program that will be in charge of installing the update.

Garmin Fenix 2 Update

The update continues.

Garmin Fenix 2 Update

And after preparing the Garmin Fenix 2 update, the loading of the new firmware begins.

Garmin Fenix 2 Update

After completing the installation (don't panic, it takes 2-3 minutes, patience) the clock will restart, so the first thing you can do is go to Menu > Settings > System > Envelope and check the information. Indeed, you already have the clock updated to the latest version.

Garmin Fenix 2 Update

No data or settings are lost in this update (just like in the "official" process). And all this without having to install any intermediate programs.

Eduardo Mateos

I've been surrounded by electronic devices of all kinds for more than 25 years. Using them, testing them, taking them apart and dissecting them. Long distance triathlete: I swim, run and cycle for a long time. Maybe too much.

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  1. Thank you very much my friend! After upgrading, the Garmin Express recognized your watch?

  2. Good afternoon. how do i know when the battery of the garmin fenix 2 is damaged? is this possible with 5 months of use? it is working badly only when i connect it to the charger it works perfectly after that it shuts down for some time.

  3. Ola very good your comment, I hope you can help me, in my phoenix 2 does not appear in the menu "sync" and therefore I can not link the watch with my android, and I do not know what to do not how to repair it, and obviously I can not link and update my training with Garmin connectet, thank you very much.

      1. Ola Eduardo, first thank you very much for your time, of course the bluetooth has been turned on, before it was connected and transferred the data well everything started on the day I started the Garmin connectet session on the pc. From that day on they no longer uploaded it between us, before I only did it with my smartphone, and in the month of December I was in the navigation mode and the clock stuck did not do anything, perform the procedure to unblock it and restart it, and from that day the option to synchronize does not appear in the menu. I waited for your comment and thank you very much

        Kind regards

        1. Well, I can't tell you anything about it. Try restoring it to the initial configuration and performing the procedure from scratch.

  4. Good afternoon, I have a problem with the fenix 2, it turns out that I had a problem in which the clock stayed as frozen, the solution was erasing the activities and the team returned to normal but with a problem every 15 seconds the clock sends me a message saying updating the gps firmware if connected to the pc and the gps does not find satellites, I did the formatting, reinstallation and nothing continues the problem, please someone who has had a similar problem

  5. hola profa ayuda despues de realizar todos los pasos el reloj se colga en validating update que puedo hacer para solucionar este problema porfa una ayuda

    1. The process is the same as if you were upgrading from Garmin Express. There is no danger to the clock. If after a few minutes it doesn't go beyond that, force the shutdown and try again.

  6. Good afternoon, I have the garmin fenix2, and for certain reasons, I had it in disuse for a month and a half approximately, after this time, I reconnected it to load,,, and my surprise was that it turns on but it doesn't load, it stays in 0%...
    Does anyone know anything?
    Thank you very much in advance

    1. Leave it connected and charging for several hours. If it does not start to build up battery charge, it is a battery failure.

      1. Hi! I tried to do a downgrade with this system of my garmin 2, and it did the whole process that you descend, but at the moment of starting it the screen remained black, but blinking slightly, and it doesn't come out...
        The computer doesn't recognize it...
        Could I have put a "corrupted" firmware? I can get it out of that state...

        Download the firmware from here :

        specifically this file: fenix2_390.gcd


        1. You probably can't download a version determined if there is a difference in the bootloader

          1. Thank you, Eduardo, but then, it's my turn to send it to Garmin?
            Or do you know if there is an option to connect it and put the current version in?
            Thank you

          2. If it doesn't connect to the computer anymore, you won't have anything to do

  7. Hi, I accidentally formatted my Garmin Feniz 2 on a Mac. I managed to reset it by formatting it in Windows and it's visible on the computer. The garmin works, it reloads the system files but says it has low memory and can't possibly recognize the change of language and so on after initialization. Apparently when it starts it doesn't read the XML files or can't see the partition where the data is.

    Any suggestions?

    1. Well, apart from forcing the update from the watch's own memory, I can tell you little else...

  8. hello i bought a fenix two but it doesn't give me the actual temperature where i update that theme and the barometer is still not accurate

  9. Bravo - worked for me. Just copy paste the file into the Garmin folder and boom it works. Thank you so much.
    I deleted also the tracks and GPS coordinates saved - maybe also a source of error.

  10. garmin fenix 2, only remains on screen software loader, and does not connect to the pc, I do not know what to do, if you help me I will be grateful.

  11. Greetings friend. I know the post is a bit old and you may not be answering questions anymore, but I don't lose anything by trying. Is there any way to get the firmware currently? Since the way you post it no longer works. I know it worked for a long time, but it doesn't anymore.

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