If you need more permanent solution than BigClown Playground you can install all the services yourself in your system. This guide will help you to install and configure these services:

  • BigClown Gateway bcg
  • BigClown Firmware Tool bcf
  • BigClown Host Tool bch
  • Mosquitto MQTT broker
  • Node-RED
  • The process manager pm2

Playground Setup on Ubuntu

  1. Open the Terminal application.

  2. Upgrade all packages:

    sudo apt update && sudo apt upgrade
  3. Install Mosquitto server and clients:

    sudo apt install mosquitto mosquitto-clients
  4. Install Node.js version 6 (required by Node-RED).

    sudo apt install nodejs nodejs-legacy npm
  5. Install Node-RED:

    sudo npm install -g --unsafe-perm node-red
  6. Install node-red-dashboard for graphs, gauges, buttons

    cd ~/.node-red/
    npm i node-red-dashboard
  7. Install PM2:

    sudo npm install -g pm2
  8. Tell PM2 to run Node-RED:

    pm2 start `which node-red`
  9. Tell PM2 to run on boot:

    pm2 save

    pm2 startup systemd
  10. Install Python 3 (required by the BigClown Firmware Tool and BigClown Gateway):

    sudo apt install python3.5 python3-pip
  11. Update pip (Python Package Manager) to the latest version:

    sudo pip3 install --upgrade --no-cache-dir pip
  12. Install the BigClown Firmware Tool:

    sudo pip3 install --upgrade --no-cache-dir bcf
  13. Install the BigClown Gateway:

    sudo pip3 install --upgrade --no-cache-dir bcg
  14. Add yourself to the dialout user group:

    sudo usermod $USER -a -G dialout
  15. Plug the BigClown Radio Dongle into a USB port.

  16. List the available devices:

    bcf devices
  17. Upload the latest firmware into the BigClown Radio Dongle:

    bcf update

    bcf flash bigclownlabs/bcf-gateway-usb-dongle:latest
  18. Start the BigClown Gateway as PM2 service:

    pm2 start `which python3` --name "bcg-ud" -- `which bcg` --device ...
  19. Open your web browser with the URL:


Playground Upgrade on Ubuntu

  1. Upgrade all the packages:

    sudo apt update && sudo apt upgrade
  2. Upgrade Node-RED:

    sudo npm update -g node-red
  3. Upgrade PM2:

    sudo npm update -g pm2
  4. Upgrade the BigClown Firmware Tool:

    sudo pip3 install --upgrade --no-cache-dir bcf
  5. Upgrade the BigClown Gateway:

    sudo pip3 install --upgrade --no-cache-dir bcg
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