PonyProg is the last application I would suggest you to install to complete our basic software requirements. Use the downloaded setup.exe file to install PonyProg into a directory of your choice.
Once you install, you get a welcome screen with a couple of options. One of the options is to disable sound. If you do not check this option you hear a sound as if a horse neighs next to you everytime you fire up PonyProg.
If you use PonyProg for the first time, the program throws two message pop-ups. First one to run setup and the second one to run calibration.
To run setup, goto Setup -> Interface Setup. Select the Serial or Parallel radio button option based on the programmer in use, and then the respective options below that. Be sure not to check any other checkboxes below unless you are aware of what you are doing.
Once you are done, you can use "Probe" to see if the programmer is selected and recognized. For some reason if there is a problem with the programmer and it is Probed, the entire application freezes. The only option left is to restart the system (Even the famous Alt+Ctrl+Del won't work). If anybody knows the reason why this happens, please let me know.
Once you are done with the Interface Setup, select Calibration option just below Interface Setup Option. Read the warnings and select "Yes"..
Now goto Device -> AVR Micro -> Select appropriate device name. You can also use the dropdown provided (as shown in the figure below). Be informed that this is a very important step failing to which leads to unexpected results. Once you are done with this, you are all set to start using PonyProg.
To upload a intel hex file, select File -> Open Flash File (Even Open Device file or EEPROM file still gives the same result). Select appropriate directory where you saved your .hex file and Open it. (Whatever was saved through AVRStudio). If you are skeptical, refer Configure AVR Studio tutorial.
Once the file is loaded into PonyProg, Select Command -> Write Program (FLASH). All of these options can easily be accessed through available icons.
You are again given a warning message which says all your previous content will be lost if you write this program. If you select yes two nicely made progress bar shows the status. One for Writing the contents and the other for Verifying whatever has been written. If everything went well, you will see a happy smiley...I mean you will see a "Write Successful" pop-up message. Whoo!!! You are done.
If something was wrong, then you see messages like "Device missing or unknown device (-24)" or "Device Not Responding" or some other strange messages. Recheck your connections, setup and everything possible. If all fails, write in the forum or search the web. Whatever the problem might be, you are never the first to encounter it. Happy Programming!!!!!