I have been using Chirp to try to program my Baofeng UV-5R but have been having one problem after another. I was wondering if there was an alternative to Chirp and RT-Systems programming software for use in programming my UV-5R.

  • $\begingroup$ make sure your download the daily build before trying to program... $\endgroup$ – Boywonder Aug 26 '18 at 3:16
  • $\begingroup$ I'm completely new to all this, but I just acquired a pair of Baofeng UV-5Rs and the Baofeng-branded programming cable, and chirp "just worked". Have you posted a question with the details of the issues you encountered? Maybe someone could help get things working. $\endgroup$ – larsks Sep 1 '18 at 19:48

How about the software made by Baofeng for the UV-5R?


I have used it and works fine when you figure out how to put it into English mode. The instructions for that are on the link, in the middle of the page.

  • $\begingroup$ I know you were asking for alternatives to CHIRP and RT-Systems, but have you tried the CHIRP beta version instead of the stable version? $\endgroup$ – VE3BLU Jan 25 '15 at 16:06
  • $\begingroup$ I have tried both with the same results. $\endgroup$ – W8AWT Jan 25 '15 at 16:24
  • $\begingroup$ Both as in the Baofeng and the beta CHIRP or both CHIRPS? $\endgroup$ – VE3BLU Jan 25 '15 at 16:25
  • $\begingroup$ And what kind of problems were you having with CHIRP? $\endgroup$ – VE3BLU Jan 25 '15 at 16:25
  • 3
    $\begingroup$ Your problem could be the cable, or the cable's driver. Have you digested the advice from this page? $\endgroup$ – rclocher3 Apr 25 '16 at 20:11

One of the biggest problems people have is that the inexpensive Chinese radio programming cables often use cloned or pirated Prolific USB-to-serial chipsets. Modern Windows drivers usually don't work with these cables.

You can buy a good, legitimate-chipset programming cable - Kenwood-brand ones are the safest bet but off-brand ones using the FTDI chipset tend to be more reliable. This chipset seems to have less issues with piracy.

Another solution is to use the Linux operating system. Being open-source, it's impossible for hardware developers to block off-brand versions of their hardware from working, because the developer community can remove these artificial restrictions. I'll let you make your own moral decision about whether you want these cheap clone cables to work, but in Linux, they will work. CHIRP is well-supported under Linux.


Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.