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Texas Instrument Launchpad MSP430 and Linux II

So, thanks to very helpful Rickta59 on #43oh IRC channel, I got my Launchpad v1.5 serial communication working. The key piece of information I was missing:

If you are using hardware UART,
you must rotate the RX-TX jumpers by 90 degrees!

This is even drawn on the board, but it just didn’t occur to me that I need to do this simple thing. Most examples seem to use hardware UART, and Energia Serial class also uses hardware UART.

It is still very flaky:

  • For the first ten seconds, communication is impossible. Wait for timeout messages to appear in dmesg, then you can start communication.
  • When the board is sending data, something must be reading them on the host side. If not, the driver collapses and you need to replug the device.
  • The latter might be circumvented by direct USB communication without involving the tty driver.

So, it is rather fragile, but usable! Let’s enjoy our Launchpads for projects where this is not a big issue…

  1. loles
    June 17th, 2012 at 08:28 | #1

    Dude, i was kind of in the same situation but i found this tutorial
    http://dbindner.freeshell.org/msp430/index.html#Talking_to_MSP430

    Basicaly just>
    -disconnect and connect launchpad
    -mspdebug rf2500 exit
    -stty 2400 -F /dev/ttyACM0
    -cat /dev/ttyACM0

    That-s just for receiving data. There are other ways for sending.
    That fixed almost all the problems (couldnt find a way around the dmesg timeout) and having to reconnect every time is kind of a bummer. But other than that its working now.

  2. Long Cao
    June 29th, 2012 at 15:55 | #2

    Hi guys, thanks for the solution. I’ve just migrated to Linux OS and searching for a way to work with my Launchpad. There’re many IDEs to choose on the Internet, could you suggest me the most suitable one for Ubuntu? Is that CCSv5.2, mspgcc or Eclipse?

  3. pasky
    July 1st, 2012 at 19:41 | #3

    @Long Cao
    mspgcc is not an IDE, it is just a compiler. I admit that I can’t help you myself since I just use vim as my editor and I don’t use IDEs.

  4. pasky
    July 4th, 2012 at 00:04 | #4

    In other news, the serial communication in the Energia sketch I already had debugged stopped working again inexplicably. I don’t know why… The symptoms are the same as before. Even with rotated jumpers etc.

    So my recommendation still is, for serious applications involving Linux, avoid MSP430. It’s very nice hardware but the support just isn’t there.

  1. June 13th, 2012 at 20:53 | #1


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