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Sobota, Wrzesień 12, 2020, 17:26

Installing linux and linuxcnc from prepared .iso files is very simple and should not cause problems even for less advanced computer users, because there are plenty of instructions and guides on the Internet on how to do it. Ready distributions can be found at, however either they are quite old Linux distributions (e.g. debian wheezy) or they are debian 9 or 10 which may not suit everyone.

An alternative to using ready-made distributions is compiling a real-time kernel on your own system and compiling and installing linuxcnc. It sounds quite simple, there are even quite a few instructions on it. The most interesting (in my opinion) instructions can be found at, however, as it turns out, this can be a problem, because compilation is preceded by downloading and installing various system packages. And here is the problem, because the ones change every now and then, rename or simply disappear and cannot be downloaded. The instruction that worked a month ago does not have to work today, which will become an insurmountable barrier for unfamiliar users.

So I prepared a ready working distribution for installation by everyone.

The operating system is Xubuntu 4/18.5

Kernel 5.6.19 with realtime patch 5.6.19 rt12

Additionally, support for the USB-LPT adapter, i.e. Linumeric-LPT v1, is already installed

The system allows you to install LinuxCNC version 2.7, 2.8 or 2.9 and everything is done by clicking the installation icon on the desktop.

What will the installation involve?

1. Download the .iso image

2. Recording an image on a USB device (pendrive)

3. Boot the computer with the USB boot option

4. The Xubuntu 20.04 system will start with the installer prepared

5. Clicking the Install icon on the desktop

At this point, a special script will prepare the hard disk. The sdx or hdx hard drive is searched. The first hard drive will be used, i.e. sda or hda. The script will wipe the disk and create a system partition on it, clone the system image onto the partition and finally enlarge it to the full disk size. You don't need to do anything during this time, just click the installation icon and you can go for a coffee :)

6. After the installation is complete, the message Done will appear

7. Turning off the system, removing the flash drive and starting the computer with the new operating system

That's all! LinuxCNC has never been so easy to install!

Installation Instructions for Xubuntu 18.04.5 with kernel 5.6.19rt12 and LinuxCNC

Download the iso image of the MachMaker_Xubuntu_18_04_RT_LCNC_complete.iso system

To create a bootable USB drive, I strongly recommend the Rufus program. Rufus is a free software and probably the best solution for this, so don't experiment with others.

We run Rufus and install a USB flash drive (at least 8GB) in the computer

Then select our flash drive from the list

 Click the Select button to select the system image

Select the downloaded system image and click Open

Check the option so that you can also run on computers with an older bios

We introduce ourselves a name

Click the START button. The pen drive preparation starts.

After completing the action, click the Finish button.

We install the flash drive in the computer on which the system will be installed. Make sure boot from USB is enabled on your computer.

After starting the computer, a menu will appear. We just click Enter.

Xubuntu will boot on 20.04

To install xubuntu 18.04 with RT kernel and LinuxCNC, click the Install Xubuntu 18.04 RT LinuxCNC icon on the desktop

The installer will start. You don't have to do anything but wait for it to finish.

Done appears when the copying is complete

Now turn off your computer. Remove the installation flash drive and restart the computer.

The computer will boot to Xubuntu 18.04 with kernel RT 5.6.19 RT12 and linuxCNC.

Username: machmaker

password: 12345678

Still a little optimization. Because real-time processes use the processor cores in the order from the last one, if we have more than one core, it is worth excluding it from use for the system so that it remains completely available to the RT process. So we start the terminal

In the terminal, type the nproc command and hit enter

The number of processor cores will appear.

We close the terminal and run the Grub-customizer program

He will ask for a password, so we enter 12345678 and hit enter

 Go to the general settings tab and enter which core to isolate. The isolcpus command is responsible for this. Note, the cores are numbered from 0, so if we have, for example, 4 cores, they have the numbers 0, 1, 2, 3 and then enter the number 3. If the processor has, for example, 4 cores and each core supports 2 threads, we have 8 cores and then we enter the last 2 numbers, i.e. 6.7.

Click the Save button to make the grub update. We close the program. Now it's worth restarting your computer.

LinuxCNC installation

By default, LinuxCNC 2.9 is installed.

To install LinuxCNC, click the Install LinuxCNC icon on the desktop

The installer will start. Choose LinuxCNC version by entering 2.7 or 2.8 or 2.9 and confirm with enter.

Next, the installer will ask whether to install Linumeric-LPT support. We enter yes or no and approve with enter

The installer will then ask for a password. We type 12345678 and hit enter.

The installation will begin. Hit enter when finished.

And finally, two comments:

1) For reasons so far unknown, Linumeric-LPT does not work properly on LinuxCNC 2.8. At the moment, to use Linumeric-LPT, LinuxCNC version 2.9 must be installed.

2) LinuxCNC version 2.7 won't start on this system (it boots correctly in simulation mode). Perhaps the problem is with this particular kernel or because the system is 64 bit.

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