Step by Step Install

  1. Install latest Raspbian “wheezy” from here  After imaging - you should boot at least once with a monitor, an auto-config script will run and you will be ablet to expand the file system.  This is important as the default size is to small to have much fun.  After all the Raspbian installs installs and updates plus Java, MRL and all its services I am at 74% on a 2 Gig drive.

    MRL runs on all sorts of hardware platforms, Raspberry Pi is identified as armv6.hfp.32.linux
    The following is an install only using ssh or putty from a remote system. And the raspi is only connected to an ethernet cable.  After imaging my raspi I did not know what IP address it obtained.  So I used a IP Scanning utility to find it on my local subnet. But all this could be done through a terminal on the RasPi desktop too.

  2. Update your system
    sudo apt-get -y update
    sudo apt-get -y upgrade
  3. Installl openjdk 7 and other dependencies with the following command line
    sudo apt-get -y install openjdk-7-jdk libunicap2 libjpeg8-dev libv4l-dev libjpeg62-dev libv4l-dev libavcodec-dev libavcodec libjpeg62-dev libv4l-dev libdc1394-22-dev libavformat53 libswscale2 
  4. Download latest complete package, unzip and install MRL you can find the latest release here -

    cd myrobotlab.1978.20140218.1942
    chmod +x *.sh


  5. Point browser @ http://<raspberry ip address>:7777

If you can see a web page ... YaY !   You did it !  The Bare Bones MyRobotlab comes with a GUIService, WebGUI, Python, and a few other services, however, I usually like to install everything.  This can be done with a single REST URL command 

http://<raspberry ip address>:7777/services/runtime/updateAll

The screen should start scrolling as MRL is busy installing all the services and eventually updating the myrobotlab.jar

This will take a while but when  its completed all services should be installed an you will have the latest code.

ONE PROBLEM - which I will fix soon is at the end of the update MyRobotLab will needs to be restarted.  It does this automatically, but when it restarts it starts the inappropriate instead of the which we have been using.

So kill it with

killalll java

and restart the


You should be able to get back to the REST API.


Start OpenCV and Stream the Video to a Web Page

  1. Make sure your camera is plugged into the RasPi and you can see it with this command
    ls /dev/video*

    if you have 1 camera typically /dev/video0 will return

  2. Start an OpenCV Service - this can be done with the following URL
    http://<raspberry ip address>:7777/services/runtime/createAndStart/opencv/OpenCV

    Lets look at the URL.  The first part is just a host and port name.  The /services means you are interested in the currently running services.  /runtime means you are interested in a service named "runtime" which happens to be the Runtime service. /createAndStart is a two parameter Runtime method which is used often to create and start services in mrl. The two parameters are the unique "name" of the service, and the type of service.  The unique name we are going to call this service is opencv, its type is OpenCV.

    It takes a while to process, but eventually a new OpenCV instace is created and the result of that service is passed back to the brower encoded into a JSON object.  The content is not really important at the moment, but it represents all the data in an OpenCV service.  JSON is an effecient and readable form of data which is often used to serialize information over the network.

  3. If you go back to 
    http://<raspberry ip address>:7777/services
    you should be able to see the newly created opencv service

  4. To stream the video data over the web we need the VideoStreamer service.  Create one with the following URL
    http://<raspberry ip address>:7777/services/runtime/createAndStart/streamer/VideoStreamer

    Next we need to attach the VideoStreamer to the OpenCV service. Do this with the following URL

    http://<raspberry ip address>:7777/services/streamer/attach/opencv

    Start the opencv capturing
    http://<raspberry ip address>:7777/services/opencv/capture

    And if everything went correctly
    You'll be able to see a video stream
    http://<raspberry ip address>:9090

    Here's looking at you. The stream will be high latency and low fps - but its a start.  Play around with the OpenCV's methods - addFilter - you can "PyramidDown" and change to "Gray" -- Canny also makes the stream faster..  640x480 color is pretty heavy to be send through OpenCV and a mjpeg streamer.  You can try the ever-popular face finder filter too. 


Additional RasPi Dependencies For MyRobotLab Services

Arduino Service

need this if your going to use an Arduino

sudo apt-get -y install gcc-avr avr-libc

OpenCV Service






svn checkout svn:// mjpg-streamer-code
<<todo - compile and install>>


usb drive

mkdir /media/usbdrive
sudo mount -t vfat -o uid=pi,gid=pi /dev/sda1 /media/usbdrive


sudo apt-get install libjinput-jni libjinput-java

MRL does not require OpenCV to be built on a raspi - it comes with its own version in the repo.

mkdir build
mkdir build/opencv
cd build/opencv


 tar xvzf opencv-

cd opencv-

mkdir relase

cd relase



sudo make install

sudo ldconfig

Auto Start MRL on Boot

This was lifted from the excellent write up here -

# move or copy your mrl installation under /opt
sudo myrobotlab.1660.20130826.0701 mrl
sudo mv mrl /opt/
# copy a script you want to use as your daemon boot script
sudo cp
# create and edit the new script
sudo vi /etc/init.d/
#! /bin/sh
# /etc/init.d/
# Provides:          mrl
# Required-Start:    $remote_fs $syslog
# Required-Stop:     $remote_fs $syslog
# Default-Start:     2 3 4 5
# Default-Stop:      0 1 6
# Short-Description: Simple script to start a program at boot
# Description:       The MRL start stop script - originally from
# If you want a command to always run, put it here
# Carry out specific functions when asked to by the system
case "$1" in
    echo "Starting mrl"
    # the optional "big hammer" which kills all zombies
    # if you have other java processes don't use this
    killall java
    # run application you want to start
    # its important to cd to the proper directory and start it there
    cd /opt/mrl
    # this can be any script which starts mrl
    ./ &
    echo "Stopping mrl"
    # kill application you want to stop
    killall java
    echo "Usage: /etc/init.d/mrl {start|stop}"
    exit 1
exit 0

# make it executable
sudo chmod 755 /etc/init.d/
# test it - this is important, if you get a script to hang on boot.. guess what?  Your raspi will get stuck :(
# make sure there are no problems and mrl is forked off like a good service
sudo /etc/init.d/ start
sudo /etc/init.d/ stop
# install it
sudo update-rc.d defaults
picture from
Enabling I2C in the RPi
Excellent configuration guid from Adafruit - Configuring Pi for I2C
This is very useful to quickly look at what is on the bus.
sudo i2cdetect -y 0 #(if you are using a version 1 Raspberry Pi)
sudo i2cdetect -y 1 #(if you are using a version 2 Raspberry Pi)  
First go to:  /etc/modules and add the following lines:
Install i2c-tools.  This is not required, but it's very handy for detecting devices and making sure everything works properly.
sudo apt-get install python-smbus
sudo apt-get install i2c-tools
There is a file called raspi-blacklist.conf, and by default SPI and I2C are part of this black list! 
Edit /etc/modprobe.d/raspi-blacklist.conf  and comment out the lines
blacklist spi-bcm2708
blacklist i2c-bcm2708
sudo i2cdetect -y 1
Changing I2C Speed
If you need or want I2C to be at a different rate that the default 100Khz
you can edit or create this file - /etc/modprobe.d/i2c.conf
with the following line :
options i2c_bcm2708 baudrate=80000
If you only want to temporarily change it you can issue these commands to
the i2c driver
sudo modprobe -r i2c_bcm2708
sudo modprobe i2c_bcm2708 baudrate=80000

References :


10 years 11 months ago

Worky :)

Although there are some issues - the red light should be green, and on Arduino the drop down never populates for ports - so the only way to connect is through Python - but there is DATA !! - Yay !


10 years 11 months ago

In reply to by GroG

When I've been doing my testing for the Xbee stuff I too have the red light in the serial console. I've probably seen it in both Firefox and Safari on my MacBook but I can test both if you need a definitive list.