EBC Exercise 01 Start Here

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thumb‎ Embedded Linux Class by Mark A. Yoder


There are four major things that need to be done to have the BeagleBoard ready to run for class:

  1. Get your Beagle Hardware together
  2. Update the OS on your Beagle
  3. Set up a host computer, running Linux for code development
  4. Clone the course git repository on both the Beagle and the host

The Hardware

Here's the hardware you will need and where you get it.

You may have, or will have to buy

We are using the BeagleBone Black this year. Since it's only $45 I'll have you buy your your own. There's a few other things you will need to get before the first day of class.

  • BeagleBone Black. See http://beagleboard.org/ for suggestions of where to buy the Black.
  • USB keyboard and mouse
  • HDMI display
  • At least three 4G micro SD cardz. I suggest you have 3 or 4 cards since it's easy to mess up one and it takes some 10 minutes to reload it.
  • micro SD card reader/writer
  • Powered USB hub, at least 4 ports. The Black has only one USB so this will allow you to plug in the keyboard, mouse, web cam, etc.


What you buy from the Instrument Room

  • 5V power supply
  • Proto Plate with full sized breadboard
  • various input devices, sensors, displays, etc.

Updating the Beagle OS

Once you have all your hardware together go ahead and explore the Bone. It should work right out of the box. After you have explored a while, update the image on the Bone so you are running the most current image. Go to EBC Exercise 03 Installing a Beagle OS to learn how to flash your SD card with a fresh OS.

The Linux host computer

The above will get you ready for about the first 4 weeks of class. Around week 5 we'll start looking at the kernel and will need to cross compile. Once we start moving into Kernel development we will need a host computer. Since we are doing Linux development, it's generally agree the host should be running Linux. I suggest you run Ubuntu 12.04 (LTS). The Rose Linux Users Group LUG has instructions on where to get a local copy so you don't have to download some 700M.

There are three options as to how to run Linux.

  1. Native install ([1])
  2. Install in a virtual machine. I've been running Virtual Box recently and it seems to work find. You can also try VMware Player.
  3. Run in the cloud

The Ubuntu site gives good instructions for a native install. I've had good success with running both VMware and Virtual Box, though my installation instructions are a bit dated. (Feel free to update them if they need it.)

I've been testing out the "Cloud" approach and it looks like it will work too. If you want to try the cloud, let me known and I'll ask CSSE to set up a machine for you.

Kernel Development

Once you have Linux running somewhere, you need to install the kernel development tools. Go to EBC Exercise 08 Installing Development Tools to see all the steps you need. Once set up, go back to EBC Exercise 05 Getting Exercise Support Materials to clone the class repository on your host.

Now that you have all these pieces in place you are ready to work with a very power embedded processor.

The class git repository

Once you have an up to date OS running on your Beagle, go to EBC Exercise 05 Getting Exercise Support Materials to learn how to clone the class git repository. Once cloned it's a single command to get the latest materials on your Beagle (or host computer for that matter).

thumb‎ Embedded Linux Class by Mark A. Yoder