Install ESP32/ESP8266 USB Drivers – CP210x USB to UART Bridge (Windows PC)

The CP210x USB chip turns a USB connection into a regular serial port which allows your computer to establish a serial communication with microcontrollers like the ESP32 or ESP8266. To program or exchange information between your computer and an ESP32/ESP8266 chip, you need to install the CP210x USB to UART Bridge Virtual COM Port drivers. This guide shows to install the drivers in a Windows PC.

Install ESP32 ESP8266 NodeMCU USB Drivers CP210x USB to UART Bridge Windows PC

We have a similar guide for Mac OS X: Install ESP32/ESP8266 USB Drivers – CP210x USB to UART Bridge

ESP32/ESP8266 USB Chip – CP2102/CP2104

If it’s your first time using an ESP32/ESP8266, it’s probably that if you plug the ESP board into your computer, you don’t see your ESP’s COM port available. This means you don’t have the drivers installed. Take a closer look at the chip next to the voltage regulator on the board and check its name. For this board, it comes with the Silabs CP2102 chip.

ESP32 Dev Board CP2102 USB Silicon Labs Drivers

For example, the ESP32 DEVKIT V1 DOIT board and many other ESP32 and ESP8266 modules use the CP2102 or the CP2104 chips.

If you install the CP210x drivers as explained in this blog post, you’ll ensure that the USB connection and communication will work for any ESP board that uses those USB chips (starting with ‘CP210’).

Note: another popular USB chip used by many ESP32 and ESP8266 modules is the CH340. Always check the datasheet of your board to make sure you identify the right USB to UART communication chip that’s being used in your board.

Installing CP210x USB to UART Bridge VCP Drivers (Windows PC)

Start by downloading the CP210x USB Drivers from the official website. If you are on a Windows PC, you need to download the CP210x Windows Drivers folder highlighted in the image below.

Installing CP210x USB to UART Bridge Drivers Windows PC

After downloading the CP210x Windows Drivers, right-click the folder and unzip the installation files.

Unzip the CP210x USB to UART Bridge Drivers on Windows PC

Open the unzipped folder and double-click the CP210xVCPInstaller_x64.exe file to start the installation process.

Open the Installation file for CP210x USB to UART Bridge Drivers Windows PC

Follow the installation wizard, click the “Next” button, and agree with the terms of use to complete the installation process.

Complete the Installation wizard for CP210x USB to UART Bridge Drivers Windows PC

The CP210x USB drivers have been installed successfully.

Installation completed success for CP210x USB to UART Bridge Drivers Windows PC

Testing the CP210x USB Drivers

Click the search bar.

Windows PC Search bar

Search for “Device Manager” and open the control panel:

Windows PC search for Device Manager open it

Having an ESP32/ESP8266 board connected to your Windows PC with a USB cable, under the “Ports” section you should see a device “Silicon Labs CP210x USB to UART Bridge (COM5)” (or with a different COM port number).

To program the ESP32/ESP8266 board with Arduino IDE, remember the COM port number, in our case it’s 5, COM5.

Testing the CP210x USB to UART Bridge Drivers Installation on Windows PC Device Manager

In the Arduino IDE, select your ESP32/ESP8266 board COMX Port, as shown earlier. Ours is COM5 Serial Port (USB).

Select ESP32 ESP8266 NodeMCU COM Port Arduino IDE

That’s it! You should now be able to see the COMX Serial Port of the ESP32/ESP8266 in Arduino IDE. You can upload a new code to your ESP board to test it.

Uploading code to ESP32 ESP8266 NodeMCU Serial COM Port Arduino IDE

Wrapping Up

We hope you’ve found this quick guide useful. Want to learn more about the ESP32? We recommend the following ESP32 tutorials to get started:

If you’re serious about learning about the ESP32, we recommend taking a look at our best-selling eBook:

If you like ESP32 make sure you subscribe to our blog, so you don’t miss upcoming projects.

Thanks for reading.



Learn how to build a home automation system and we’ll cover the following main subjects: Node-RED, Node-RED Dashboard, Raspberry Pi, ESP32, ESP8266, MQTT, and InfluxDB database DOWNLOAD »
Learn how to build a home automation system and we’ll cover the following main subjects: Node-RED, Node-RED Dashboard, Raspberry Pi, ESP32, ESP8266, MQTT, and InfluxDB database DOWNLOAD »

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8 thoughts on “Install ESP32/ESP8266 USB Drivers – CP210x USB to UART Bridge (Windows PC)”

  1. Windows 11, Update may replace CP210x driver with Microsoft driver for the CP210x USB drivers. Keep the [url=https://www.silabs.com/developers/usb-to-uart-bridge-vcp-drivers?tab=downloads] Silabs version of the CP210x drive in a folder you can find to re-install[\url].

    If your ESP device quits connecting to Arduino IDE; re-install Silabs version of the CP210x driver; for the step in troubleshooting of the issue.

    Reply
  2. I have already studied the CHIP 2102 a lot, which I consider to be very versatile.
    There is a tool from Sílabs, which allows you to change some data associated with the Chip 2102. For example, you can change the serial number.

    AN721: USBXpress™ Device
    Configuration and Programming Guide
    silabs.com/documents/public/application-notes/AN721.pdf
    silabs.com/documents/public/example-code/AN721SW.zip

    Reply
  3. To see the USP COM port in the Windows device manager, you have to connect the ESP dev board first, otherwise you won’t see the COM port for the CP 210x USB driver.

    Reply
  4. That’s it! You should now be able to see the COMX Serial Port of the ESP32/ESP8266 in Arduino IDE. You can upload a new code to your ESP board to test it.

    which program do you advise?

    Reply

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