Installing Arduino 0023 on Ubuntu 11.10 (Oneiric Ocelot)

I recently installed Ubuntu 11.10 on a old laptop to be used as a dedicated robotics machine (I’m hoping to play with MOOS or ROS in the near future), and the first thing I wanted to do was install the latest Arduino IDE (0023).  A quick look in the Ubuntu repository told me that the latest package for Ubuntu is the older 0022 version, so I decided to install the software directly from the Arduino website.  It turns out that this process is not as ‘point-and-click’ at it should be, so I decided to document the installation process.

First, download and extract the Linux version of the Arduino software from the Arduino website. I’m using the 32 bit version and I extracted it to /home/matt/arduino-0023

I then tried to launch the IDE but received an errror about missing Java.  Oh yeah, this is a new install of Ubuntu, I guess I need to install Java.

sudo apt-get install openjdk-7-jre

OK, now the IDE launches properly. I tried to compile Blink and immediately received a complaint about a missing compiler.

“Cannot run program “avr-g++”:j No such file or directory”

A quick Google search got me to this (somewhat outdated and only sort of correct) page on the Arduino site where I learned that I had to install the AVR C library and the AVR C cross-compiler.  It also claimed to require the C++ compiler for AVR, but it seems that this package doesn’t exist (maybe it’s included in gcc-avr now?).

sudo apt-get install avr-libc gcc-avr

Let’s try compiling again.  Surprise – a compilation error!

In file included from /usr/lib/gcc/avr/4.5.3/../../../avr/include/util/delay.h:44:0,
                 from /usr/lib/gcc/avr/4.5.3/../../../avr/include/avr/delay.h:37,
                 from /home/matt/arduino-0023/hardware/arduino/cores/arduino/wiring_private.h:30,
                 from /home/matt/arduino-0023/hardware/arduino/cores/arduino/WInterrupts.c:34:
/usr/lib/gcc/avr/4.5.3/../../../avr/include/math.h:426:15: error: expected identifier or ‘(’ before ‘double’
/usr/lib/gcc/avr/4.5.3/../../../avr/include/math.h:426:15: error: expected ‘)’ before ‘>=’ token

Some more Google-fu pointed me to a solution here. Apparently the Arduino folks used their own implementation of the math function ’round’ as the old versions of the gcc-avr math.h library didn’t include one.  The Arduino version of this function breaks the current gcc-avr math.h and needs to be commented out.  I edited /home/matt/arduino-0023/hardware/arduino/cores/arduino/wiring.h (your path will vary based on your install location) and commented out this line (79):

// #define round(x)     ((x)>=0?(long)((x)+0.5):(long)((x)-0.5))

One more compilation attempt, and…success, it builds!  I then tested uploading code to a Duemilanove (appears as /dev/ttyUSB0) and an Uno (appears as /dev/ttyACM0).  Both boards connected successfully.  OK, time to write some code – I’ll be working on a servo controlled pan-tilt rig for a pair of webcams.  Stay tuned for more on that project!


About Matt Greensmith
Sysadmin, robot-builder, linux geek, etc.

18 Responses to Installing Arduino 0023 on Ubuntu 11.10 (Oneiric Ocelot)

  1. Muff says:

    Thanks mate! LIFESAVER!

  2. Kev says:

    Hi Matt, just posted in the Ubuntu and Arduino Forums but wanted to say that I tried your tutorial on my Arduino Uno and unfortunately, I didn’t get it to work 😦 (The IDE is really slow and doesn’t recognize the correct COM port).

  3. Pingback: [ubuntu] Arduino and Ubuntu 11.10 | Coders & Admins

  4. Stoffel says:

    Thank you so much. This post is essential and should be available in Arduinos Playground

  5. Danilo says:


  6. Pingback: Installare Arduino 0023 su Ubuntu 11.10 (Oneric Ocelot) | Michele Maffucci

  7. Jovin says:

    thanku so much……

  8. Ryan (Minnesota) says:


  9. Pingback: Ubuntu 11.10, Arduino 0023 complie problem « xiaolabaDIY

  10. robb says:

    Hey, I get so pissed everytime I use the arduino ide…I installed it from the ubuntu software center and everytime I want to do something like add a lib or edit files…i can’t and have to log out and log in as root to change anything…is there any way to set the permissions on the whole usr dir so I don’t hacve to do this….arrrrhghgh!

    • Sure, you can modify the permissions on any folder as long as you have root access. Look into the ‘chmod’ command.
      chmod +w /path/to/arduino/libraries
      I probably wouldn’t add global write access to your whole /usr folder though…
      You may also want to learn about the ‘su’ command – it allows you to switch to root without logging out and back in.

  11. Pingback: [Solved] Arduino Saya Kok Error Saat Mengcompile? « Insan Sains Projects

  12. mehar waqas says:

    i want to serial communicate arduino with the ubuntu 11.10…can any one help

  13. Jim says:

    No workie… I’m totally baffled over this. This morning I had it working. Uploaded the blink sketch to 3 different Uno’s, without problems. Then-POOF…. problems have come back. Cannot compile. I have tried different versions of Arduino IDE, some of which have no wiring.h file to edit. I succeeded earlier by running sudo ./arduino in a terminal. Not anymore! Any ideas?

    • Jim says:

      Maybe I have a solution… I had changed the location of my sketchbook in preferences, and the Arduino IDE was looking for the file “wiring.h” in the wrong folder. Check that you have your sketchbook located in the same folder as your Arduino files.

  14. !3runo says:

    Worked as expected on Ubuntu LTS 12.04, thank you!

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