Finally, here is the ‘Full Up’ installation procedure…In this thread, I’ll provide the information how to set up the more simplified version of the Ubuntu 15.1 Environment for LimeSDR ‘from the ground up’ for either an HD install or into a VirtualBox session. That covered, here’s how that’s done:
Simplified Installation for LimeSDR on Ubuntu 15.1:
DISCLAIMER: This assumes that you either have a Ubuntu 15.1 DVD already prepared for loading, or that you have the Ubuntu 15.1 .iso file available for loading onto VirtualBox the same way.
1.) Start with a blank hardrive. Load the Ubuntu 15.1 (Wily) DVD into your PC, boot your PC and allow the DVD to load. Go through a normal installation of Ubuntu to load the OS onto your HD. If you’re doing this with VirtualBox, start with a blank VirtualBox Machine and perform the same steps to load the Ubuntu 15.1 OS. All the steps that follow will be the same for either installation.
2.) Once the OS is installed, proceed to install GQRX by adding the following repositories to your system. Left-click the desktop and click on ‘Open Terminal’ and then type in the following (individually adding each repository):
sudo add-apt-repository -y ppa:bladerf/bladerf
sudo add-apt-repository -y ppa:ettusresearch/uhd
sudo add-apt-repository -y ppa:myriadrf/drivers
sudo add-apt-repository -y ppa:myriadrf/gnuradio
sudo add-apt-repository -y ppa:gqrx/gqrx-sdr
sudo apt-get update
…And allow the system to update - this may take 8 or more minutes to accomplish.
3.) Once you have the repositories added, then in the Terminal window type the following at the command prompt:
sudo apt-get install gqrx-sdr
Answer ‘Y’ to installing the nearly 528MB of content. This will take awhile - about 20 mintues to download the and install GQRX.
4.) Once GQRX is installed, perform a check of it with any other SDR that you have available (RTL, SDRPlay, HackRF – NOT LIMESDR AT THIS POINT) and see if you can launch that SDR with GQRX. Connect the SDR and then type: gqrx at the command prompt and press Return/Enter. Allow GQRX to come up and then click on the little circuit board icon on the GQRX GUI. This will launch the device selector. Look for the driver in the list and then commit it by clicking ‘OK’. Press the 1/0 button on the GQRX GUI and ensure that your SDR plays on that app. Once you’ve confirmed that GQRX works, you can proceed to Step 5.
5.) At this point, install the remaining libraries needed by typing the following at the Terminal command prompt:
sudo apt-get install gnuradio-dev gr-osmosdr libsoapysdr-dev soapysdr libsqlite3-dev
and then press Return/Enter to allow those packages to be downloaded and installed.
6.) Now you can refer to the Ubuntu Software Center application within the OS (the icon looks like a little orange suitcase with the letter ‘A’ in the middle of it). Click on this application to launch it and allow it to come up.
7.) Once the Ubuntu Software Center GUI comes up, refer to the upper right corner and look for the search bar. For the first set of files to additionally load to your system, type ‘Lime’ (without the quote marks) into the search bar and then hit the Return/Enter key. Once you populate a list, you will want to install the following apps:
LimeSuite - USB rules for udev
LimeSuite - LibraryApplications
LimeSuite - development files
LimeSuite - shared library
LimeSuite - SoapySDR bindings
…It’s just a matter of clicking on each one and then clicking on the ‘INSTALL’ button on each to install that library or function. Do this for each one listed here.
8.) Now it’s time to go back to the search bar and type the following: ‘Soapy’ (without the quote marks). Allow the Software Center to search for the Soapy apps and the list should include:
Soapy BladeRF - BladeRF device support for SoapySDR
Soapy HackRF - HackRF device Support for SoapySDR
Soapy RedPitaya - RedPitaya device support for SoapySDR
Soapy Remote - Remote device support for SoapySDR
Soapy UHD - UHD Devices for SoapySDR
SoapyRTL-SDR - RTL-SDR device support for SoapySDR
Now, one could argue that these files don’t have a lot of bearing on LimeSDR and don’t need to be installed. I chose to install them all because I acually have a lot of these SDRs and may at some point use them with SoapySDR. Use your own judgement on this, but I chose to install them all - - it doesn’t hurt to have them along for the ride. Perform the same button presses for each of these if you install them.
9.) Finally it’s time to go back to the search bar one last time and type the following: ‘SDR’ (without the quote marks). Allow the Software Center to search for the SDR apps and the list should include:
Soapy SDR - python bindings
SoapySDR - python3 bindings
SoapySDR - development files
Gnuradio blocks from the OsmoSDR project
GNU Software Defined Radio toolkit development
Again, install these to finalize the setup. There could be instances where there’s already some with a green checkmark. If that’s the case, you don’t need to install those - they’re already there.
10.) At this point you have your system fully configured to run GQRX with your LimeSDR and you didn’t need to download and compile anything - that’s the beauty of this version of the setup. You are now ready to try launching your LimeSDR with GQRX for the first time. If you have your LimeSDR at hand, connect it now to the USB 3.0 port and continue to step 11.
11.) With the LimeSDR connected, right-click on the Ubuntu window and select/click the ‘Open Terminal’ option to open a Terminal window. Type the following in the Terminal window at the prompt: SoapySDRUtil --find and then hit the Return/Enter key.
12.) In the Terminal window, you should see the following information (it may be slightly different with address, but all the other info must match):
Found device 0
addr = 241:1204
driver = lime
media = USB
module = STREAM
name = USB 3.0 (LimeSDR-USB)
If you have this readout, then you’re ready to launch GQRX…!
12.) At the Terminal window prompt, type the following: gqrx and then hit the Return/Enter key. Allow the app to load.
13.) When GQRX comes up for the first time, a GUI may pop up (the Configure I/O devices GUI) it may ask you to determine the device. If it does, there is a ‘Device string’ in the settings that will allow you to enter text. Please enter the following exactly has shown below:
…At the same time, in the ‘Input rate’ entry type the following:
…Click the ‘OK’ button to commit those changes.
14.) Click on the Input Controls tab on the GQRX GUI and then click on the ‘Antenna’ button. Set it to the place where you have your antenna connected to the LimeSDR (if I recall right, mine is set to the ‘LNAL’ antenna position).
15.) There are tabs that will configure the ‘Input Controls’, ‘Receiver Options’ and the ‘FFT Settings’. My guidance to you is to set the slider controls in the ‘Input Controls’ setting to the far right to start with the highest gains for each setting, ensure that you have the ‘WFM (stereo)’ demod selected, and then adjust the slider controls on the ‘FFT Settings’ to ALMOST the right for each one. You will HAVE to perform finer adjustments once you acutally use your LimeSDR with your system for optimal settings for display and audio quality.
16.) On the GQRX GUI, click the 1/0 button at the far upper left part of the GUI and then watch the spectrum display and listen to the audio. You may have to readjust the tuning for your own FM station, but once you do get it set up you will be running your LimeSDR on Ubuntu 15.1…!!
17.) Congratulations…You have installed everything and made it all work using the most painless method of getting your LimeSDR working with Ubuntu 15.1…!