Complete Numpties Guide to Arduino on Ubuntu 32 & 64 bit

Big on Pictures, low on words, apologies to those without a decent internet connection. This is a blow by blow walkthrough on installing the latest official Arduino IDE on Ubuntu 10.10. Do not use the one in the repositories especially if you have a later Arduino (Uno or Mega2560) as its out of date and does not work with these later boards. This is a newly installed,all default options, fully updated Ubuntu 10.10 32bit running on a 10 year old heap of junk. (650 Mhz AMD Duron, 256Mb of Ram, 20Gb HDD) It ran Windows XP like a slug on Valium, its not exactly greased lightning running Ubuntu but it borders on usable. Since I first produced this, I have confirmed that the same process works for 64 bit Ubuntu 10.10 with the 64 bit Linux Arduino IDEs

This works on a new install, it may not if it has a lot of stuff already added to it,especially if you've been messing around with the repository version or trying to do installs involving root (sudo). The same procedure (looks slightly different obviously) also works on Ubuntu 10.04 and should also work on 9.04 and 9.10. The nearest this install gets to root is authenticating Synaptic Package Manager. It installs JRE,gcc-avr and avr-libc from the Ubuntu repositories, but Arduino itself comes from the official Arduino site. There are no problems downloading earlier versions of the IDE leaving the rest as is and you can run any of the installed versions. I currently have all versions from 0018 to 1.0.1 on my working machine and can run any at will. With a bit of lateral thinking, this same basic process will work on Ubuntu 12.04, using the Ubuntu software centre instead of Synaptic, creating an icon to run it from can be problematical, but it can be done with a bit of googling. I also needed to add my user to the dialout group to get it to recognise the Arduino ports in the IDE. If you added the addons during install, you'll find Java is already installed

On with the plot. Ubuntu 10.10 :


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Fire Up Synaptic Package Manager (System,Administration, Synaptic Package Manager)


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Put the password in when it asks and it gets to here :


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Enter 'jre' in the quick search box and find Openjdk-6-jre(Java Runtime Environment)


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Click in it's 'Radio button' box and Mark for Installation


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It wants to bring in a lot of other stuff - let it and Click 'Mark'


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Enter 'gcc-avr' into the quick search box


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You know the routine : Mark gcc-avr


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and let it bring in what it wants and 'Mark'


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One more time : Enter 'avr-libc'


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And again :


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When it's marked avr-libc, Click on Apply


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It then downloads everything from the internet :


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And Installs it all :


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When its done, Click close (it took a couple of minutes to install on this junk heap)


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All done, you can close down Synaptic Package Manager


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and restart the computer (OK, it says Shutdown, but you get the idea)


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Once its restarted we'll check the Arduino and cable are OK. First off, unplug the Arduino and run a Terminal screen (Applications, Accessories, Terminal)


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type 'dmesg' into terminal


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and press enter - this is to get the state of affairs before we plug the arduino in


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Plug the Arduino into a USB port and repeat the process :


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This is what I got with an Arduino UNO plugged in :


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I repeated the process after Removing the UNO and plugging in a Duemilanove. The terminal screens have no part in installing anything, its purely to check that the computer is recognising the arduino. The terminal part could be done before the Synaptic Package Manager part if you wish.


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Fire up 'Firefox' (you know this bit - its on the top line) and go to the main Arduino site and download the 32 bit or 64 bit Linux as appropriate


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Open it with Archive Manager :


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And Extract it :


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Just stick it in the default home folder with the default options (my user is called 'user') :


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Let it do its stuff :


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You can close down Firefox and go find your home folder (Places, Home Folder) :


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Double Click on the Arduino folder :


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Double Click on the Arduino program :


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You want to 'Run' it :


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it runs (took a while on this junk heap) :


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Go to Tools, Serial Port and select the serial port. (this should have said /dev/ttyACM0 with the Uno but I mistimed the screen shot...) :


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Go to Tools, Board and select the board type. (Uno in this case) :


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Load in your Sketch (This is 'Blink without delay' in the digital section of examples) :


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Click the Upload Button :


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Success !! :


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That proves it all works, Now we tidy it up a bit. Right click on the Top Panel and select 'Add to Panel' :


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Select 'Custom Application Launcher' and Click 'Add' :


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Give it a name :


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Click Browse :


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Select the Arduino folder and click 'Open'


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Select the Arduino application and click 'Open'


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Click 'OK' :


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You can now close the 'Add to panel' box. You can run the Arduino Application by clicking on the new Icon on the top panel. You're done !!


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Written by 'Pluggy' of the Arduino Forum. This should work on a clean Ubuntu install as this was done for real by me, as I said earlier if its not clean and especially if you've screwed around with other Arduino install routines before coming here, there are no guarantees.