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Chapter 11 - Embedded Linux

The steps are as follows on a Windows PC:

  • Browse to the USB drive that appears after you plug in the Beaglebone Black to your USB port on your PC.
  • Install the driver for the correct system e.g. on Windows 7 (x64) choose the appropriate version.
  • A new network adapter will appear under Control Panel -> Network and Internet -> Network Settings.
  • The Beaglebone will have the address (the PC will be on this subnet)
  • You can open your web browser and type in to see the web server on the Beaglebone.
  • Install Putty and you can SSH to login as root/root under Angstrom
  • If you can ping www.beaglebone.org then you are ready to go... if not, follow the next steps.
  • Go to Control Panel -> Network and Internet -> Network Settings and find your main network adapter. Right-click it and choose Properties. Then under the Sharing tab you will see the option "Allow other network users... " - check the box and in the drop down option choose your Beaglebone USB Network adapter (on my machine this is "Local Area Connection 5"). Your Putty terminal connection may close - if it does, do the next step.
  • Go back to the Beaglebone USB adapter. For some reason the settings are changed on my machine. Right-click the adapter and double-click "Internet Protocol Version 4". In the dialog choose "Obtain an IP address automatically" and "Obtain DNS server address automatically"

On the Beaglebone Black:

  • Use Putty to SSH into your Beaglebone and type:
    • route add default gw
  • edit /etc/resolv.conf using nano and change the nameserver to or depending on the network. I found that I needed the setting in my office, but (google DNS) at home.
See the attachments at the bottom of the page, which include a basic Linux commands guide.


  • I have noticed that sometimes after a reboot of the PC that the Network adapter is no longer working. Symptoms of this problem include: The beaglebone cannot "ping www.google.com"; or a message appears under windows of the form "Internet Connection Sharing cannot be enabled. A LAN connection is already configured with the IP address that is required for automatic IP addressing". The solution that I have found to both of these problems is to 1) disable sharing on your network adapter 2) right-click and choose "Disable" on both your network adapter and Linux USB Ethernet/RNDIS adapter. 3) Enable the USB adapter, then enable the main Ethernet adapter and follow the steps above.
  • I have seen on some networks that even though you can "ping" that you cannot still resolve names such as "ping www.google.com" fails. In this case try editing the /etc/resolv.conf and changing the nameserver from to, which directs name resolution to your desktop PC. 

Setting up Java on the Beaglebone black:

Please follow the steps in the video above. If you want to connect a monitor to the Beaglebone Black and build Java applications with user interfaces then you would not install the headless version. The plan is that you are building applications with no user interfaces.

These notes are copyright Dr. Derek Molloy, School of Electronic Engineering, Dublin City University, Ireland 2013-present. Please contact him directly before reproducing any of the content in any way.