How to Install the Arduino IDE on Linux

Arduino offers students, hobbyists and organizations a solid platform for electronic project development and prototyping at a very low cost.

Linux is a great operating system for developing your Arduino project, but first you need to install the Arduino IDE on your system. The Arduino IDE will help you write code, run it, and finally load it onto your Arduino board.


Why use Arduino?

Arduino is the perfect platform to get started with robotics and electronics. It is widely used in schools and other organizations because it is very accessible and affordable. You can use it to create a wide range of projects ranging from small-scale to complex ones.

Arduino is cross-platform and therefore easy to use, no matter what platform you are on. It is supported on Unix, macOS, Linux, and Windows, while most of the microcontroller competitors are only supported on Windows.

Another big advantage is that Arduino is open source. Most people associate open source with software alone, but Arduino includes both open source hardware and software. This allows contributions from a large audience to make the platform even better.

Step 1: Download the Arduino IDE archive on Linux

You can get the latest Arduino IDE from the Arduino website. The Arduino IDE is available on all major operating systems and architectures, including ARM and 32-bit architectures.

Download: Arduino IDE

The IDE comes in the form of a tar archive. Tar files are archived compressed files widely used for software distribution on Linux. They usually have the following file extensions: TAR.XZ and TAR.GZ.

Use the GNU tar utility to extract the downloaded archive file on Linux. To do this, go to the Downloads directory or wherever you have downloaded your IDE using the cd command:

cd ~/Downloads

Then, extract the archived file using tar. Remember to replace the file name with the correct one in the following command:

tar xvf arduino-*.tar.xz

The files are extracted to the folder arduino-1.8.19. The version number will differ depending on the IDE version you downloaded.

Step 2: Installing the Arduino IDE on Linux

To start the installation, go to the extracted folder, which will have a name similar to arduino-xxxwith xxx being the version number. In this case, the name of the extracted folder is arduino-1.8.19.

cd arduino-1.8.19

Run the install.sh installation script using the following command:

sudo ./install.sh

The script will install the IDE for you and notify you when it’s done.

Step 3: Configure the IDE and device

After the installation is complete, you can connect your Arduino device to the USB port of your PC.

press the Super key and search for “arduino” to start the Arduino IDE from the GUI. Alternatively, just run the command arduino in your terminal

The first time you start the IDE you will get a permissions checking dialog similar to the one below. Click on To add button to proceed. This will add your user to the dialout group, which allows you to upload execution code to your Arduino device.


Alternatively, you can manually add your user to the dialout group, using the command:

sudo usermod -aG dialout $USER

Log out of the terminal and the PC, then log in again for the changes to take effect. Only the root user and members of the dialout group can upload the code to the Arduino devices connected to your PC.

In your Arduino IDE, go to Instruments > Bringsand you will find your Arduino device listed under the file Serial ports label as shown below.

If it’s not listed yet, try reconnecting your Arduino device.

Run your first program using the Arduino IDE

The Arduino IDE comes with some basic examples that contain ready-to-run code. Click on File > Examples > 01. Basics > Blink. This will open a flashing basic code project, which basically turns the light on your Arduino on for a second, then goes off and on indefinitely.

As a good practice, you need to verify or compile your code before uploading it to your device. This way you will catch errors in the IDE. Click on Sketch in the menu then select Verify / Fillor just press CTRL + R. If your code compiles correctly, you are ready to upload your code to the Arduino device.

Click on Sketch the menu option again and select Loading. You can also use the keyboard shortcut CTRL + U.

The TX and RX lights on your Arduino microcontroller will flash as the IDE loads the code. Then, the main light on the Arduino will start blinking according to the given instructions.

Arduino IDE on Linux is great for beginners

With the Arduino IDE installed, you are ready to create amazing robotics and automation projects. Arduino is a robust platform with a large community of users and is relatively inexpensive at first.

To get the most out of your Arduino, start with small projects that don’t require that much equipment, and move on to complex projects over time.

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