ASEE 2013 Workshop

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thumb‎ Embedded Linux Class by Mark A. Yoder

Here are the labs for the afternoon Linux part of the ASEE 2013 Workshop

Warm Up


Before we can interact with LEDs and switches we need to learn some simple Linux commands.

  1. On your host computer, running Windows, start up puTTY.
  2. If you get a Security Warning, click Run.
  3. Enter in the Host Name field and click Open
  4. Login as root with no password.
  5. Enter ls to list what files you have. You shouldn't see much.

At this point you need to learn a few simple Linux commands for creating and displaying files. Once you know these commands it's easy to turn an LED on and off.

First, let's edit a file using the nano editor. Nano is a simple editor that easy to learn. This will edit (and create) the file play.

bone$ nano play

Add a couple of lines of text to the file, it doesn't really matter what and then Exit. You can list the files in the current directory with ls and show the contents of a file with cat.

bone$ ls
Desktop  play
bone$ cat play
A couple of lines
of text.

Use echo to print a line of text.

bone$ echo This is a line of text
This is a line of text

Here's a powerful operator. You can take the output of any command and redirect it to a file with >.

bone$ echo This is a line of text > here
bone$ cat here
This is a line of text

We are almost there. Use cd to change directories. / is the top level directory.

bone$ cd /
bone$ ls
bin   dev  home  lost+found  mnt   run   sys  usr
boot  etc  lib   media       proc  sbin  tmp  var

If you ever get lost, cd alone takes you home.

bone$ cd
gone$ ls
Desktop  here  play

Now you are ready to flash an LED.

Blinking an LED

gpio via the Shell Command Line and sysfs

The easiest way to do general purpose I/O (gpio) on the Beagle is through a terminal window and a shell prompt. In Linux, almost everything is treated as a file, even things that aren't files. In our class we'll use a virtual file system called sysfs. sysfs exposes the drivers for the hardware so you get easily use them.

Try this:

bone$ cd /sys
bone$ ls -F
block/  bus/  class/  dev/  devices/  firmware/  fs/  kernel/  module/  power/

Here we see several directories that represent hardware we can control. Explore a bit and see what you find.

Now try:

beagle$ cd /sys/class
beagle$ ls -F
backlight/  firmware/     lcd/       mtd/           scsi_disk/   ubi/
bdi/        gpio/         leds/      net/           scsi_host/   udc/
block/      graphics/     mbox/      power_supply/  sound/       uio/
bluetooth/  hwmon/        mdio_bus/  regulator/     spi_master/  usbmon/
bsg/        i2c-adapter/  mem/       rfkill/        spidev/      vc/
dma/        i2c-dev/      misc/      rtc/           thermal/     vtconsole/
drm/        input/        mmc_host/  scsi_device/   tty/         watchdog/

Explore some.

The Beagle Black has four user LEDS, user0 - user3, that you can control. Try this:

bone$ cd /sys/class/leds
bone$ ls -F
beaglebone:green:usr0  beaglebone:green:usr2
beaglebone:green:usr1  beaglebone:green:usr3

Here you see the directories for controlling each of the usr LEDs. By default, usr0 flashes a heartbeat pattern and usr1 flashes when the micro SD card is accessed. Let's control usr0.

bone$ cd beagleboard\:\:usr0
bone$ ls -F
brightness  device@  max_brightness  power/  subsystem@  trigger  uevent

See what's in brightness, max_brightness and trigger by using the cat command. For example:

bone$ cat trigger
none nand-disk mmc0 timer oneshot [heartbeat] backlight gpio cpu0 default-on transient

This shows trigger can have many values. The present value is heartbeat. Check the LED, is it beating? You can stop the heartbeat via:

bone$ echo none > trigger
bone$ cat trigger
[none] nand-disk mmc0 timer oneshot heartbeat backlight gpio cpu0 default-on transient 

Did it stop beating? You can now turn it on and off with:

bone$ echo 1 > brightness
bone$ echo 0 > brightness

Is it responding correctly?

The Bone has more trigger options. Try:

bone$ cat trigger
[none] mmc0 timer heartbeat backlight gpio default-on 
bone$ echo timer > trigger
bone$ ls -F
brightness  delay_on  max_brightness  subsystem@  uevent
delay_off   device@   power/          trigger
bone$ echo 100 > delay_on
bone$ echo 900 > delay_off

What does this do?

Reading a Switch

Analog In

Pulse Width Modulation

thumb‎ Embedded Linux Class by Mark A. Yoder