03) The Compiler's Environment

Arduino's compiler should already be on all the schools computer's under Karl's special drive.

If you are using your personal computer, download the program:
Windows Mac Linux 32bit, click here for compatibility

Open up the Arduino compiler. You will notice that it opens up to a blank new “sketch” which is Arduino's way of saying a project. It should read “sketch_mth##a | Arduino 0017” as its title of the window with “mth” being replaced with the 3 character month code and ## being the date. The “a” increments if there is another project with that name.

You will get at the top where it reads “File | Edit | Sketch | Tools | Help”.

File has the standard “new”, “open”, “save”, and “save as” commands, but it also has recent sketches and upload I/O to board (which I recommend using the other button for which I'll go over). Also, save the project as something you can remember so you can refer to it again if something bad happens. This does not have auto save. Please archive and save your work.

Sketch has show sketch folder as well as import library. Some useful links.


auto-format → for lazy people

board → choose your board NOW, make sure it is selected before you try to upload. It cannot upload otherwise

port → at school, put this to the highest number. It usually works...

Help has very useful links to arduino.cc! If you need help on something, its probably there. If not there, here.

And finally these buttons:

 = Verify / Compile

This button checks your code. It does not upload it, only checks it.

 = Stop

If it is taking too long to compile, stop it with this button.

 = new
 = open
 = save
 = Export / Upload

This button will upload the code to the board.

 = Serial Monitor

This will monitor all the responses from the Arduino that it was programmed to say. It requires to be on the same port as the Arduino, which is set in Tools → Port. It also requires to be at the same baud rate. When the wrong baud rate is selected it will either not show anything at all, or it will show strange characters.

 = tabs

Tabs are just segments of code that are grouped together when compiling. The use of tabs is to sort out different functions as to find and edit them with ease. The tab on the left is your main tab.

Thats pretty much it!