I think you should close the Arduino IDE and just try using AVRDUDE + Pololu USB AVR Programmer to flash the bootloader on to the Arduino.
First of all, have you located the HEX file for the bootloader that you want to burn on to your ATmega328?
Secondly, have you determined what COM port your programmer is on? Please unplug your programmer, plug it back in, and then look your Device Manager and tell me all of the entries you see under “Ports (COM & LPT)”. The one that is labeled “Pololu USB AVR Programmer Programming Port” is the COM port you should be using
Please try to burn the bootloader by opening a Command Prompt and typing something like
You should replace COM2 with the name of programming port as shown in your Device Manager and replace “bootloader.hex” with the name/path of the bootloader HEX file that you want to burn.
If that does not work, please post the command you ran and the entire output of avrdude here. If the red LED on the programmer turns on then try running the Pololu USB AVR Configuration Utility (which is included with the drivers) to find out what the error is, and use that same program to tell us what ISP frequency the programmer is configured to use.
Okay. Could you also try running avrdude with a different -P argument? Try the same command you tried before, but replace “-P COM5” with “-P \.\USBSER000”. Please also try “-P \.\USBSER001” and “\.\USBSER002”.
Also, if you haven’t done so recently, try unplugging your programmer and rebooting your computer.
I’m glad you got the bootloader loaded, but I’d like to figure out what went wrong with the programmer.
Please let me know: Does your Arduino UNO’s USB connection / bootloader work on the same computer where our programmer didn’t work?
What version of usbser.sys is on the computer where the programmer didn’t work? You can check what version of this driver you have by looking in the “Details” tab of the “Properties” window for C:\Windows\System32\drivers\usbser.sys.
Could you connect your programmer to the computer where it didn’t work and look carefully in the Device Manager in the Ports (COM & LPT) list to see if there is anything wrong with the programmer’s drivers? Try double clicking on them and tell me what the “Device Status” box says.
I noted one thing, in the Device Manager, under “COM and LTP”, I can see only hardware phisically connected to my pc. And this is right. When I use Arduino, or Hyper Terminal, I can see another COM port (number 3), that is not listed in Device Manager / COM and LTP.