TinyOS > TinyOS installation guide on Ubuntu
Date: Thursday, September 13, 2012 - 13:03
Difficulty: Intermediate
Views: 15591
Pages: 4

Author: Saeid Yazdani

TinyOS is an open source, BSD-licensed operating system designed for low-power wireless devices, such as those used in sensor networks, ubiquitous computing, personal area networks, smart buildings, and smart meters. This article will guide you how to install TinyOS in Ubuntu.
Page 1:  Preparation

UPDATE 1/4/2014

As many users started having trouble following the tutorial below, since ofcourse this article is almost 2 years old and many things has changed since then, such as moving of tinyos reporisotory to another address and fork and stuff like that, The easiest way to start using tinyos is download the premade VIRTUAL BOX image file. Please simply follow these steps:


1- Install VirtualBOX latest version
2- install VirtualBOX extension pack from  https://www.virtualbox.org/wiki/Downloads
3- Download the image from this link: http://www.eetutorials.com/upload/file/tinyos/tosvbox.tar
4- extract the tar file
4- Go to virtual box and import the content of the file as new virtual machine
5- if asked for user and password:
user is :
password is:

The full guide can be find here: http://tinyos.stanford.edu/tinyos-wiki/index.php/Installing_TinyOS

I just uploaded the image file to my own server which appears to be much faster from the link in tinyos website.


For reference, you can still see the old article below:-------------------------->

Note: This installation process has been tested succesfully for installing latest version of TinyOS, that is 2.1.2, on 32-bit Ubuntu 12.04. I can not guarantee that this guide would work on older versions of Ubuntu but the chances are there will be no problem, unless your OS version is very old!

I have recently (24 Dec 2012) added a video on youtube that uses this article for performing the installation. If you have any problem try to see the video:


You can skip this step if it is the first time you are installing TinyOS. If you have an older version of TinyOS (e.g. version 2.1.1) you have to remove both TinyOS and any older version of gcc-msp430 toolchain, because TinyOs 2.1.2 works best with gcc-msp430 compiler version 4.6.3 or higher.

To remove older version of TinyOS run the command below at terminal prompt (replace the version with your already installed version):

 sudo apt-get remove tinyos-2.1.1

Similarly, to uninstall gcc-msp430 compiler, use the command below:

 sudo apt-get autoremove --purge msp430*


Now you have to add the TinyOS package link from its distributor (Stanford University) in your Ubuntu package list file. To do so run the command below:

 sudo gedit /etc/apt/sources.list

This will bring the text editor, now paste the code below into opened file, then save and close:

# TinyOS Repository
deb http://tinyos.stanford.edu/tinyos/dists/ubuntu lucid main

Now, you have to update and install the latest version of TinyOS by executing:

 sudo apt-get update
 sudo apt-get install tinyos-2.1.2

If you happen to see any error during execution of commands above, change the word lucid in the file to your current Ubuntu release name for example this should be changed to:

# TinyOS Repository
deb http://tinyos.stanford.edu/tinyos/dists/ubuntu kramic main

So far the installation files of TinyOS has been copied into your system and some basic OS related configuration has been done. Now its time to do final configuration of TinyOS and then preparing required compilers.

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