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Updating Kindle Firmware

After my last post about custom Kindle firmwares possibly making appearance soon, I received several emails with questions on how official firmware updates should be applied. Indeed there is very little information in the User’s Manual on how to update the Kindle software.

Normally Kindle 2 would automatically download appropriate software updates if it is connected to the WhisperNet and automatically intall it when Kindle goes into sleep mode. Update installation will be followed by a reboot.

If you are don’t have Sprint EVDO coverage and therefore don’t have access to WhisperNet update can be done manually by following these steps:

  1. Download appropriate update file from Amazon.com. Kindle 1 updates should be downloaded from http://www.amazon.com/update_kindle.bin. Kindle 2 users should download from http://www.amazon.com/update_kindle2.bin. It’s very important not to mix these files as you can possibly brick your Kindle by installing the wrong update.
  2. Connect your Kindle to your PC via USB cable.
  3. Once Kindle USB drive is mounted copy the downloaded file to the root folder of it.
  4. Unmount the drive using Safely remove installed hardware icon in the system tray (next to the clock, volume control icon etc)
  5. Disconnect Kindle from the PC.
  6. Go to the Home Screen, press Menu and select settings and then select “Update Your Kindle”. If your Kindle is already updated the menu item will be gray and you will not be able to select it.
  7. Once update is installed your Kindle will reboot.

Please be extremely careful when following these instructions and even then do it at your own risk!

8 comments to Updating Kindle Firmware

  • vavavoom

    Hi, I really really like the new Kindle2 and I can afford it, but, problem is I cannot buy books from Kindle Store cuz I don’t have a u.s. based credit card. Is there a way where I can set up an american bank account or something? ;s Yes I am that desperate to get one!

  • Apparently, the Kindle has to be registered first for the Settings menu to allow access to anything other than registration.

  • Sam

    Hi, try copy the firmware to your root directory via USB. Then unmount the kindle and disconnect the cable. Reboot the unit. Upon restart, the Kindle should recognize the new update file placed in the root dir and start the update process automatically. My K2 wasn’t able to register as I live outside the US and the described process works fine for me. My FW is now 2.0.3

  • splendidus

    Any word on a separate v2.1.1 update? That is for all those users without Whispernet, like myself :/

  • Boris

    Hmm looks like http://www.amazon.com/update_kindle2.bin link still points to 2.0.3 version.

    My Kindle 2 updated at 12:10pm this afternoon.

    To my best knowledge update was successful.

    Still I have version 2.0.3 showing.

    From what I was able to gather many have reported same issue.

  • I can’t access either of the above through a US proxy or locally (AU) :(

    Just get an amazon product not available error.


  • Tonga

    not living in the US, I have not registered my Kindle as I was unable to ( I understand this has now changed). Does anyone have the 2.0.3 or 2.0.4 update as a direct link instead of going via Amazon and having to login and register to download it? Someone must have it….




    I buy an amazon kindle I’d like to know if there’s a solution that I can read books in Arabic or other languages.
    thank you

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