This is a really inexpensive way to program your Arduino. In fact, it’s a really cheap way to program any ATmega8 chip. However, there are a few drawbacks. It only works with Windows, and you can’t communicate back to the host computer for serial communications. Despite some of the drawbacks, I still like this solution since many people would have all the parts needed to make one right now. Check out the link for the complete build details.


  • Soldering iron
  • Hot glue gun (optional)

You’ll need (parts):

  • (2x) 470 ohm resistor (yellow-purple-brown)
  • (1x) 220 ohm resistor (red-red-brown)
  • (1x) Parallel port cable or parallel-to-serial adapter
  • (2x) Three wire cables with female connectors on one end, unattached wires on the other

More about making a Parallel Port Programmer

In the Maker Shed:


More about the Arduino Mega in the Maker Shed