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An Absolute Beginners Guide To The Intel Edison


by DangerousTim on February 5, 2015

Table of Contents
An Absolute Beginners Guide To The Intel Edison . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Intro: An Absolute Beginners Guide To The Intel Edison . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Step 1: Glossary... . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Step 2: Connect The Edison to the Breakout Board... . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Step 3: Install The Required Drivers... . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Step 4: Download The Intel Arduino IDE... . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Step 5: Flash Your Edison... . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Step 6: Test Your Board with an Arduino sketch... . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Step 7: Play Around A Bit... . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Related Instructables . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

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http://www.instructables.com/id/Absolute-Beginners-Guide-To-The-Intel-Edison/

Author:DangerousTim YouTube Channel


int age = 14; void setup() { set.Name(Tim); set.adjective(Dangerous); set.RealName(Tanmay); set.Passion(Arduino, Electronics,Music);
shareWith(Instructables, YouTube, GooglePlus, Instagram); } void loop() { do.tech(Arduino, Electronics, Hacking, Programming); do.play(Piano, Music,
GarageBand); do.avoid(Studies); music.listen(Queen, TheBeatles, PinkFloyd); delayHours(7); } // that's my life.

Intro: An Absolute Beginners Guide To The Intel Edison


Hey there! I recently received an Intel Edison board from Instructables, as a nice gift. If your wondering what that is, the Intel Edison is a tiny computer the size of an SD
card (that's seriously small), for electronics and computer hobbyists out there. It has dual-core Atom CPU, and includes WiFi and Bluetooth in one heck of a tiny package.
The Edison goes well with its breakout board (which I used), as it makes it easier to program and use. It runs Linux, and supports Arduino, Python, Node.js and other
programming languages as well. The Edison is made specifically for IoT (Internet of Things) projects, and also wearables, taking advantage of its size.
So when I started using my Edison, I found that it has a very small user community (now growing) and hence not as much documentation as I'd like. Simply setting up
the Edison was a tedious procedure, as the people at the forums used bizarre words and very technical terms. It's a headache for newbies like me.
The Edison is a fully-fledged computer. Your Arduino is nothing close. Because of this, the Edison is a little more complicated, so beginners will have a tough time
understanding stuff.
This is why I came up with this Instructable; to help all those newbies out there and explain everything about the Edison in the simplest language possible. So, before we
get started, get the following things:

An Intel Edison with the Breakout board - (get here): I'd recommend you buy the Breakout Board, even though its huge and not cheap. You really cant do anything with
just a plain old Edison. Not even blink an LED. So this Breakout Board is important. Moreover, it is compatible with Arduino shields (yay! for Arduino users).
A Seeed Studio Grove Starter kit - (get here): This I'd recommend especially to beginners, as its really easy to use. No complex circuits involved; just plug n play!
A good computer: Very important. You're Edison may initially drive you crazy with its technical stuff, so a computer with good performance should compensate for that.
So let's begin!
NOTE: Prepare to sit at the computer for a good hour or two. Maybe more. You have no idea of what's ahead of you...

Step 1: Glossary...
Yes, there are so many odd technical terms, that it looks like another language altogether. Therefore it deserves a glossary section:

Linux: This is an Operating System (OS), that a computer uses to interact with users like us. Windows is an operating system too. So is Android.
Developement board: A development board is a printed circuit board with circuitry and hardware designed to facilitate experimentation with electronics. The Arduino is a
development board. So is the Edison (but 1000x times more powerful).
Image: In this context, "Image" refers to the OS (operating system). So when someone says "Linux Image", they mean the Linux OS (nothing to do with pictures).
Flashing: This means loading the OS onto a computer. Like, when the Edison is blank, you have to put an OS onto it. Hence you have to "flash" your Edison.
Corrupted: Nothing to do with politicians. Here, simply, a corrupted file means that the file has errors that make it unable for someone to read the file, or retrieve the
data from the file. It usually is a bad thing. More on it here.
Driver: In the context of computers, a driver is software that allows your computer to communicate with hardware or devices. Without drivers, the hardware you connect
to your computerfor example, a video card or a printerwon't work properly.
This may clear some doubts for you. Now let's get started with the Edison!

http://www.instructables.com/id/Absolute-Beginners-Guide-To-The-Intel-Edison/

Step 2: Connect The Edison to the Breakout Board...


Firstly, you'll have to connect the tiny Edison to the breakout board. Secure with the nuts provided. You don't need to tighten it much; doing it with your hand is enough.
Now, attach the 4 "legs" provided to the breakout board with screws, as shown above in the picture. This is not required, but it certainly helps when handling your Edison.

Image Notes
1. Push it in firmly... But don't press the metal part!

Image Notes
1. Screw in the nuts, with your hand. They dont need to be tight...

Image Notes
1. Attach these supports...

Step 3: Install The Required Drivers...


For the computer to communicate with the Edison, you'll need to install certain drivers (see glossary section). Follow the following steps:
1. Download the FTDI drivers.
2. The file you download will be named like "CDM....". Right click this file (it has a .exe extension), and select "Run as Administrator.
3. A window will appear. Click extract, and it will take you through some steps. I won't insult your intelligence by telling you how to click "next" and "finish". When
completed the 2nd image above will appear.
4. Download the PuTTY Terminal Emulator. What is PuTTY??? - PuTTY is basically a program you will use to communicate via the USB connection (also called
the Serial port). The file you download will be the program itself; you won't need to install it or anything.
5. Download theIntel Edison drivers.
6. Click on the .exe file you downloaded. It will open up a window showing a setup wizard. Again, just keep clicking "next", "I agree", "continue" etc. The drivers will
install.
Yay!!! You've now installed all necessary drivers. You may now proceed to the next step...

http://www.instructables.com/id/Absolute-Beginners-Guide-To-The-Intel-Edison/

Step 4: Download The Intel Arduino IDE...


NOTE:The Intel Arduino IDE is NOT the same as the normal Arduino IDE. You have to download a completely different software.
The Intel Arduino IDE was designed by Intel for the Intel Galileo and Edison boards. This is great, as you get the simplicity of Arduino and the power and features of an
Edison. To install the Edison IDE, follow these steps...
1. Download 7zip, if you don't have it already. This software will unzip the contents of the file that you will be downloading.
2. Download the Intel Arduino IDE from here. Take a break... This will take upto an hour, as the file is about 160MB.
3. Right click on the folder you downloaded, then click "7zip", then in the submenu, click "Extract 'arduino-1.5.3.........'"
>
4. After unzipping, open the new folder created.
5. Open "arduino.exe" by double-clicking it.
You have downloaded your Intel Arduino IDE successfully.

http://www.instructables.com/id/Absolute-Beginners-Guide-To-The-Intel-Edison/

Step 5: Flash Your Edison...


You now have to load the Linux Image onto your Edison. Its quite simple; just follow these steps:
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.

Connect your Edison to your computer with TWO microUSB cables.


Make sure the tiny switch near the USB ports on the Edison Breakout board is turned towards the microUSB plugs.
On your computer, you'll see the Edison come up as an external memory device, with a drive letter (like :F). Keep a note of this drive letter.
Go to Start menu, and type "cmd". Then press Enter. The cmd window should come up. Type out a colon and your drive letter for the Edison.
Type
del *

It'll ask for a comfirmation. Type "Y" and it will remove all files from the Edison.
6. Now type
dir

to see that the deletion was successful.


7. Download the latest image (OS) for the Edison from here.
8. Unzip the contents and move everything to the Edison drive on your computer. It should take a few minutes to upload to the Edison.
9. Now go to the start menu and search "device manager". Open this Device Manager. Go to COM (Ports and LPT). You will see a "USB Serial Port", along with
"COM" and a number in brackets. Keep a note of this number.
10. Now open "PuTTY" that you downloaded earlier. Type in the correct COM number you noted earlier. Enter the baud rate as "115200". Click open.
11. You will see a screen like this:
12. Press Enter twice and you should see a login prompt. Just type "root" and press Enter.
13. Now type
reboot ota<br>

14. You should see something like this...


15. Wait for a minute. You should finally see this screen...
16. You have successfully flashed your Edison!!!

http://www.instructables.com/id/Absolute-Beginners-Guide-To-The-Intel-Edison/

Step 6: Test Your Board with an Arduino sketch...


Open the Edison Arduino IDE. Go to File < Examples < Basics and click blink. Select the correct COM port and upload. The onboard LED should start blinking!

Step 7: Play Around A Bit...


I will not stop here... I'll document whatever I will do with my Edison on Instructables... I will also expand this guide to cover all aspects of using your Edison... so expect
an update every week or so!!!

http://www.instructables.com/id/Absolute-Beginners-Guide-To-The-Intel-Edison/

Related Instructables

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Getting Started
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Comments
21 comments Add Comment

_Rommel_ says:

Feb 26, 2015. 11:26 AM REPLY

Is someone know what is the alternative by AMD?

gtoal says:

Feb 26, 2015. 7:56 AM REPLY


Useful info, thanks. FYI the two references marked "(Get here)" don't actually have links attached, although later links in the doc work OK. Could you update
the text with the live links please or post them in the comments if it's a case of Instructables blocking referral links or something, please? Thanks - Graham

gtoal says:

Feb 26, 2015. 8:39 AM REPLY

I found the Grove kit for Edison: http://www.seeedstudio.com/depot/Grove-starter-kit...

wwachsman1 says:

Feb 26, 2015. 8:27 AM REPLY

Thanks Tim, for taking the time to help the inexperienced.

joat48 says:

Feb 26, 2015. 7:24 AM REPLY


Very interesting instructable. I have been contemplating getting an Arduino, Raspberry PI or the Intel to play around with for quite a while. This helps explain
a lot of the nuts and bolts you don't get otherwise. Not to nitpick, but, in Step 5 Flash Your Edison, steps 3 and 4 should have the colon after the drive letter
and not before. Thanks.

dokworm says:

Feb 25, 2015. 4:27 PM REPLY

Is this the correct product to buy?


https://www.sparkfun.com/products/13097

DangerousTim says:

Feb 26, 2015. 12:09 AM REPLY

Yes :D

HiTechUSA says:

Feb 25, 2015. 7:28 PM REPLY

Great indestructible! I think I may try the Edison out!


Thank you for your hard work!

DangerousTim says:

Feb 26, 2015. 12:07 AM REPLY

indestructible??? XD Autocorrect woes xp Anyways thanks a lot, and yes you'll love the Edison!!!

Tecwyn Twmffat says:


Very good thank you. I was going to vote for it but it doesn't seem to be entered in nothing?

http://www.instructables.com/id/Absolute-Beginners-Guide-To-The-Intel-Edison/

Feb 24, 2015. 8:49 AM REPLY

DangerousTim says:

Feb 25, 2015. 5:09 AM REPLY

I don't think there's any appropriate contests for this i'ble. The best you could do is share and add constructive criticism! ;)

antoniraj says:

Feb 24, 2015. 7:44 AM REPLY


nicely explained... thank you for the instructable. Is the breakout board bundled with Intel Edison or you need to purchase it separately...?

DangerousTim says:

Feb 25, 2015. 5:07 AM REPLY

The Edison comes with the breakout board. ;)

abrahamnwochanwocha says:

Feb 25, 2015. 2:22 AM REPLY

it makes a differents thanks.

dflynn5 says:

Feb 24, 2015. 4:26 AM REPLY

Great post. Thank you for making the effort for us all :) Looking forward to further updates.

DangerousTim says:

Feb 24, 2015. 4:46 AM REPLY

Thanks!

ellij1 says:

Feb 13, 2015. 2:33 PM REPLY

I enjoyed your instructable but the links to the software downloads are not working...

DangerousTim says:

Feb 23, 2015. 6:56 PM REPLY

Oh no :( I'll fix them as soon as possible... Sorry for being late!

mmccormack2 says:

Feb 23, 2015. 6:08 PM REPLY

Sounds like an interesting project...but what would I do with device?

DangerousTim says:

Feb 23, 2015. 6:55 PM REPLY


you mean what you would do with the Edison? Check out the Intel IoT group on Instructables... There are lots of awesome Edison projects there!

tomatoskins says:
Very Detailed!

http://www.instructables.com/id/Absolute-Beginners-Guide-To-The-Intel-Edison/

Feb 13, 2015. 1:41 PM REPLY