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Thread: Newby Arbotix hassles

  1. #1
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    Newby Arbotix hassles

    Hi guys. I was about to send the question below when I noticed that in the “Tools” pulldown menu of the Arduino program, there was no bootloader highlighted, even though the Arbotix one is in the list. I had the *ahem* smart idea of clicking on the Arbotix one – It is now “Burning bootloader to the I/O Board (This may take a minute)...” – This has been going for over 25 minutes now . . . . . . . . . . I have read posts on here about people that have interrupted it, & destroyed things. There is a black area at the bottom of the Arduino window where the notices appear – There is a number 1 on a highlighted line, that appeared a couple of seconds after I clicked on the bootloader. Moving my curser over the pulldown menus indicates that it is still thinking, & anything I do will interrupt it. Now what? If I disconnect, I brick it.
    Duncan

    OK, I give up - Stupid question time.

    I have the Arbotix & Xbee starter kit from Trossen, with two AX-12 servos, & am trying to get the Arbotix connected directly to my computer, which is running Win 7, 64 bit. I will play with the Xbees if I can get anything to work directly.
    From the instructions on the Arbotix site;
    ... and do the following:
    1. Create a hardware folder in your Arduino sketchbook directory if it doesn't already exist
    2. Copy the arbotix folder from the release into the hardware folder of your sketchbook directory
    3. Copy the libraries folder from the release into your sketchbook directory.
    o These are just the special libraries for the ArbotiX, you'll also want to install the robocontroller library for even more functionality.
    4. You may also want to copy the folders in sketches, especially pypose, into your sketchbook directory
    Looking at steps 1 & 2 above, by “sketchbook” directory, do they/you mean the “sketches” directory that appears when I install Arduino, or do I have to create a new folder called “sketchbook”, or are they referring to the root folder that Arduino was installed into as the ‘sketchbook” folder? (I have called this folder arduino-0018)
    I was going to include a representation of my folders here so you could see what I was talking about, but the thread collapses the tree into a list with no indents. Bah!

    At the moment, I have gone through the “Getting started with Arduino on Windows” instructions, up to & including running the “Blink” program, which didn’t apprear to work – I ran Arduino, opened “Blink”, selected the board “Arbotix“, found that my Serial Port is Port 1, & uploaded to the board, but nothing actually happens. It is compiled, with no apparent errors, but nothing happens.

    I have considered that since the Arbotix is not actually an Arduino, that the “Blink” program may not work on this board for whatever reason, so I have also tried to run the Pypose program – Yes, I know that the Arduino progs should work on the Arbotix, but . . . . Python has also been unsuccessful – A page flashes up on the screen for a millisecond, then disappears, whether it be Python, Pypose, or any over python program. This could be related to the folder setup above, or it could be a Win7 64bit issue, or it could be something completely different. I have worked out how to modify C++ programs to run on my computer, but Python won’t work. I have installed “python-2.5.amd64”, which is apparently the one I am supposed to be using. I would very much appreciate a bit of guidance please!
    Throughout all of this, the Pololu has been frustratingly blinking with a happy little orange light, & both the Pololu & Arbotix have a green light, so I know they are getting power! (11.1v measured with a multi-meter)

    Edit - PS, I have changed the "Programmers" text file in the "Arduino - Hardware - Arbotix" folder.
    Last edited by Slugman; 08-12-2010 at 08:23 PM. Reason: Added more info

  2. #2
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    Re: Newby Arbotix hassles

    Quote Originally Posted by Slugman View Post
    Hi guys. I was about to send the question below when I noticed that in the “Tools” pulldown menu of the Arduino program, there was no bootloader highlighted, even though the Arbotix one is in the list. I had the *ahem* smart idea of clicking on the Arbotix one – It is now “Burning bootloader to the I/O Board (This may take a minute)...” – This has been going for over 25 minutes now . . . . . . . . . . I have read posts on here about people that have interrupted it, & destroyed things. There is a black area at the bottom of the Arduino window where the notices appear – There is a number 1 on a highlighted line, that appeared a couple of seconds after I clicked on the bootloader. Moving my curser over the pulldown menus indicates that it is still thinking, & anything I do will interrupt it. Now what? If I disconnect, I brick it.


    If you've got an ISP (in system programmer) you can never brick your chip! (well, if you burned the way wrong fuse settings, maybe, but within the Arduino environment, it's nearly impossible). Since your ISP doesn't appear to be connected correctly (see below), it'll just get stuck there because it can't communicate with the device.

    Quote Originally Posted by Slugman View Post

    From the instructions on the Arbotix site;
    ... and do the following:
    1. Create a hardware folder in your Arduino sketchbook directory if it doesn't already exist
    2. Copy the arbotix folder from the release into the hardware folder of your sketchbook directory
    3. Copy the libraries folder from the release into your sketchbook directory.
    o These are just the special libraries for the ArbotiX, you'll also want to install the robocontroller library for even more functionality.
    4. You may also want to copy the folders in sketches, especially pypose, into your sketchbook directory
    Looking at steps 1 & 2 above, by “sketchbook” directory, do they/you mean the “sketches” directory that appears when I install Arduino, or do I have to create a new folder called “sketchbook”, or are they referring to the root folder that Arduino was installed into as the ‘sketchbook” folder? (I have called this folder arduino-0018)


    Yes, the "sketches" directory, I'll update that on the wiki. However, just as a note, we've had some issues with (I believe) Win7 -- and you may have to put them in the hardware and library folders found inside Arduino-0018 if they aren't recognized. This is a newer feature of the Arduino environment, and still a bit buggy -- works for some people in the sketchbook, but for some it just doesn't seem to want to work unless hardware configurations and libraries are in Arduino-0018.


    Quote Originally Posted by Slugman View Post
    At the moment, I have gone through the “Getting started with Arduino on Windows” instructions, up to & including running the “Blink” program, which didn’t apprear to work – I ran Arduino, opened “Blink”, selected the board “Arbotix“, found that my Serial Port is Port 1, & uploaded to the board, but nothing actually happens. It is compiled, with no apparent errors, but nothing happens. I have considered that since the Arbotix is not actually an Arduino, that the “Blink” program may not work on this board for whatever reason, so I have also tried to run the Pypose program – Yes, I know that the Arduino progs should work on the Arbotix.


    Again, orange light on ISP means it's not connected correctly, so nothing is getting uploaded. To get blink to work -- make sure it's blinking the LED on pin 1 (not 13, like the regular arduino) -- this means changing one or two lines of code in the example.

    Quote Originally Posted by Slugman View Post
    Python has also been unsuccessful – A page flashes up on the screen for a millisecond, then disappears, whether it be Python, Pypose, or any over python program. This could be related to the folder setup above, or it could be a Win7 64bit issue, or it could be something completely different. I have worked out how to modify C++ programs to run on my computer, but Python won’t work. I have installed “python-2.5.amd64”, which is apparently the one I am supposed to be using. I would very much appreciate a bit of guidance please!


    Try running python in a command line -- so that you can see the debugging output. If you post the output here, I'll see what we can do to get you running (typically it's something silly, like not having wxPython installed, or the wrong version, etc).

    Quote Originally Posted by Slugman View Post
    Throughout all of this, the Pololu has been frustratingly blinking with a happy little orange light, & both the Pololu & Arbotix have a green light, so I know they are getting power! (11.1v measured with a multi-meter)


    Orange is not good. Are you sure that the ISP cable is plugged in the correct way? The wire should hang off the side of the board, not cross over the chip...

    -Fergs

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    Re: Newby Arbotix hassles

    I am also running arduino 018 under windows 7 64 bit. The best python version for me has been 2.6.4 or whatever the last 2.6 was. On my pc, the sketchbook is in "mydocuments/arduino" but mine only worked by placing the arbotix hardware stuff in the working arduino018 folder.

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    Re: Newby Arbotix hassles

    OK, thanks guys. I will work through it again - Probably not today, as I am at the pointy end of the hockey season & have a game in 4 hours time, but I will get back to it in the next few days. Yesterday I tried to set up my old XP machine to try everything using it instead, but discovered the spring-clip holding the heat-sink to the chip had rusted, fatigued & snapped when we moved house, so the heat-sink wasn't on the chip when I turned it on. *sigh* It was just one of those days.

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    Re: Newby Arbotix hassles

    OK, back again. Thanks to a savvy mate who worked out that I was making things hard by trying to use 64bit when 32bit would do, I now can get the Arduino program to work, & run Pypose, but am still unable to download to the Arbotix. I am at the same stage as Suicidal Banana was in the official 'Arbotix - Pypose' thread (Around page 4 or 5 of the thread, I think - I copy whole threads out to word docs for reference when I don't have internet access, but then the page numbers no longer match)

    Binary sketch size: 7798 bytes (of a 65536 byte maximum)

    java.lang.NullPointerException
    at processing.app.debug.AvrdudeUploader.uploadViaBoot loader(AvrdudeUploader.java:71)
    at processing.app.debug.AvrdudeUploader.uploadUsingPr eferences(AvrdudeUploader.java:55)
    at processing.app.Sketch.upload(Sketch.java:1498)
    at processing.app.Sketch.exportApplet(Sketch.java:146 5)
    at processing.app.Sketch.exportApplet(Sketch.java:142 0)
    at processing.app.Editor$46.run(Editor.java:2219)
    at java.lang.Thread.run(Thread.java:619)

    I have tried various combinations of moving folders around, but nothing has worked so far.
    I have -

    avrispmkii.name=AVRISP mkII (arbotix)
    avrispmkii.communication=serial
    avrispmkii.protocol=stk500v2

    - in the "arduino-0018\hardware\arbotix\programmers.txt file, I have made the mod to allow the ISP to work (Uncommenting one line, then commenting the next, or something like that), & I have merged the "Libraries" folder that was in the Arbotix release with the "Libraries" folder that was there after I unzipped the Arduino release to create my "arduino-0018" folder. This may be the problem, as there were conflicts within the sub-folders - I assumed that the Arbotix sourced files were the ones that I should keep, rather than the ones that came with the Arduino, so I overwrote the original Arduino ones. Step 3 of Arbotix Getting Started did say to copy the folder there though.

    BTW, I have the correct LED on the ISP flashing, (The one closest to the cable on the Pololu - Apparently it is yellow, but I think it looks orange. Definitely not red tho.) & green lights on both it & the Arbotix, so I do seem to have connection to the Arbotix.

    Any suggestions? It's gotta be something simple, but I just can't see it.
    Last edited by Slugman; 08-25-2010 at 05:09 PM. Reason: Hadn't typed 'hardware' between '-0018\' & '\arbotix'

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    Re: Newby Arbotix hassles

    Looking at the Arduino source code (where the java.lang.NullPointerException error was generated) tells me that it's still trying to use a bootloader -- not the ISP.

    The two probable culprits are: that either the boards.txt isn't quite right, or that it's not using the correct boards.txt (you did select ArbotiX from the Tools|Boards menu, right?)

    If you hold down the shift key and press upload the little window at the bottom of the Arduino screen will output a verbose build -- it'll be a couple hundred lines of info, if you copy that here, we can probably figure out what's going on.

    -Fergs

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    Re: Newby Arbotix hassles

    I finally found where this mythical Arduino sketchbook directory was – It’s in ‘F:\Users\”Username”\Documents\Arduino’
    I hate the way Windows spreads programs around the place! - Now I know why I was overwriting files in the Library folder – I was copying it to the wrong place – Should have the Arduino Library folder in ‘F:\Program Files (x86)\Arduino\arduino-0018’ & the Arbotix Library folder in ‘F:\Users\”Username”\Documents\Arduino\hardw are\’. I removed everything & started from scratch, working through the instructions which now make perfect sense to me... . . .
    Yes, I have selected 'Arbotix' from the Tools|Boards menu, & the only option in Tools|Serial Port is Com1, which is ticked. I also Sketch|Verify/Compile each time, before trying to Upload.
    Now I get;

    Binary sketch size: 7798 bytes (of a 65536 byte maximum)
    avrdude: ser_open(): can't open device "\\.\COM1": Access is denied.

    Hmmm. That's strange - I tried the 'shift' - 'Upload to I/O Board' & it just spat out the same as I posted above, which also occurs when I try to upload 'Blink.pde'. If I leave it for a couple of minutes, I get the following;
    avrdude: stk500_2_ReceiveMessage(): timeout
    avrdude: stk500_2_ReceiveMessage(): timeout
    ...etc etc etc – about 10 lines deleted....
    avrdude: stk500_2_ReceiveMessage(): timeout
    avrdude: stk500_2_ReceiveMessage(): timeout
    avrdude: stk500v2_getsync(): timeout communicating with programmer
    avrdude: stk500_2_ReceiveMessage(): timeout
    ...etc etc etc – about 40 lines deleted....
    At least it’s different to anything I found in the Arbotix & Pypose thread. It’s nice to be special, but I'd rather not to be spethial. My PC Device Manager says that;
    The drivers for this device are not installed. (Code 28)
    There is no driver selected for the device information set or element.
    - but under ‘Driver Details’ it says “No Driver files are required or have been loaded for this device.”
    Win-7 couldn’t find any drivers for it automatically, & I also cannot see anything on the Pololu website that indicates that I need a special driver.

    So far, I have tried in turn having 'programmers.txt' & 'boards.txt' in my ‘F:\Users\”Username”\Documents\Arduino\hardw are\arbotix', ‘F:\Users\”Username”\Documents\Arduino\hardw are', or ‘F:\Users\”Username”\Documents\Arduino\' folders - Tried to upload with them in each of those locations. I did notice that when I open 'programmers.txt' (My PC defaults to Notepad) it appears in one string -
    avrispmkii.name=AVRISP mkII (arbotix)avrispmkii.communication=serialavrispmkii .protocol=stk500v2
    but 'boards.txt' is spread over 20 lines, as you would expect.
    arbotix.name=ArbotiX
    arbotix.build.mcu=atmega644p
    arbotix.build.f_cpu=16000000L
    arbotix.build.core=arbotix
    # To use an ISP: uncomment the next line, comment out the protocol line
    arbotix.upload.using=avrispmkii
    #arbotix.upload.protocol=stk500
    arbotix.upload.speed=38400
    arbotix.upload.maximum_size=65536
    arbotix.bootloader.low_fuses=0xFF
    arbotix.bootloader.high_fuses=0xDC
    arbotix.bootloader.extended_fuses=0xFD
    arbotix.bootloader.path=atmega644p
    arbotix.bootloader.file=ATmegaBOOT_644P.hex
    arbotix.bootloader.unlock_bits=0x3F
    arbotix.bootloader.lock_bits=0x0F
    arbotix.build.core=arbotix
    arbotix.verbose=false
    Opening them in Wordpad or Word however, shows 'programmers.txt' as being correctly separated on 3 diff lines. I edited 'programmers.txt' & put character returns in to ensure the lines are separate in wordpad, but that didn't seem to make any difference in any of the locations listed above either. (I have since changed it back)
    I have tried putting Pypose.pde in different locations, just in case it makes a difference for where it is looking for libraries etc, but that doesn't work either.
    I guess it might be a security issue, but I cannot find anything that would prevent me accessing COM1. Everything is run with me as Admin.

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    Re: Newby Arbotix hassles

    Yeah, the problem is that it's not opening the port (the fact that it gets there, means that it is compiling correctly, so your ArbotiX hardware & library installation appears to be correct). Sounds like a driver issue -- but I'm not a Windows user. Two places to check are the Pololu guys (about the programmer, and any drivers it needs), and possibly look to see if the Arduino environment has any known issues with opening ports under Win7.

    -Fergs

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    Re: Newby Arbotix hassles

    I set mine up all through windows. I had a problem at the beginning also. I will try to look back through to what I did, see if anything matches up to the problem you are having. Are you using windows 7 or XP?

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    Re: Newby Arbotix hassles

    Using a Win 7, 64 bit Computer - But running 32 bit versions of Python, wxpython & pyserial. Thanks for the assistance!
    Hopefully my stupid questions will help someone else, when they search through here later . . . .

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