Toolchain Installation

No toolchain? No problem! Get coding in no time with our simple toolchain installation.

Before you can build any software for the rosco_m68k, you'll need a toolchain. Specifically, we use VASM and GCC, both of which are free and open-source.

If you already have GCC built as a cross-compiler for m68k, then as long as it's reasonably recent (i.e. supports C11) you can go ahead and jump right in to the code. If not, it's easier than ever to get started with a cross-compiling toolchain for m68k thanks to our Homebrew tap.

Step One - Install Homebrew

Homebrew, billed as The Missing Package Manager for macOS (or Linux), makes it really easy to install a complete, locally-built-from-official-sources VASM/GCC/Binutils cross-compiling toolchain, and it's our recommended way to get started with coding for the rosco_m68k.

If you don't already have Homebrew installed, visit https://brew.sh for a one-line install.

In a nutshell, it involves running the following command in a terminal:

/bin/bash -c "$(curl -fsSL https://raw.githubusercontent.com/Homebrew/install/master/install.sh)"

And if, like us, you're a bit wary about running arbitrary scripts downloaded straight from the web, take a look at their alternative installation instructions for more options.

Step Two - Install the Toolchain

Now that you have Homebrew installed, installing the toolchain is a breeze. The best way to do this depends on your platform.

On MacOS®

If you're on MacOS®, you can install the whole toolchain with two commands:

brew tap rosco-m68k/toolchain
brew install gcc-cross-m68k@7 vasm-all srecord minipro

This will automatically download, build and install all the dependencies that you would normally have to build manually. Homebrew will also keep a record of what's installed, enabling you to easily remove everything if you need to later, and allowing you to receive updates when we update the formulae (this should be pretty rare as we're not using the latest versions of anything to ensure the best m68k development experience).

Specifically, this adds the rosco_m68k tap to Homebrew, and then grabs our custom formulae from that tap. If you're curious about how we're building the cross toolchain or just want to see what it's going to do before you run it on your machine, check out the formulae at https://github.com/rosco-m68k/homebrew-toolchain

Grab a coffee because this'll take a few minutes - as it builds VASM, binutils and GCC from source. Once it's done, you're ready to rock.

On Linux®

On Linux, installing the toolchain is a bit more involved, but still pretty simple - a lot is still handled automatically by brew.

Note: These steps specifically target Debian-based distributions (particularly, Ubuntu 20.04 at present). If you are using a different distribution, you may need to replace apt-get with e.g. yum or dnf in these steps.

Firstly, you'll need to install some essential build software, and then install the cross-compiler and VASM assembler (you'll probably be asked for your password at the sudo step):

sudo apt-get install gcc g++ srecord
brew tap rosco-m68k/toolchain
brew install gcc-cross-m68k@7 vasm-all

This will automatically download, build and install the toolchain dependencies that you would normally have to build manually. Homebrew will also keep a record of what's installed, enabling you to easily remove everything if you need to later, and allowing you to receive updates when we update the formulae (this should be pretty rare as we're not using the latest versions of anything to ensure the best m68k development experience).

Specifically, this adds the rosco_m68k tap to Homebrew, and then grabs our custom formulae from that tap. If you're curious about how we're building the cross toolchain or just want to see what it's going to do before you run it on your machine, check out the formulae at https://github.com/rosco-m68k/homebrew-toolchain

Grab a coffee because this'll take a few minutes - as it builds VASM, binutils and GCC from source.

Once that's done, we'll need to install Minipro. This step is optional - you only need to do this if you want to burn your own EEPROMs. If you just want to build the example software (and maybe your own!) then you can safely skip this step.

If you want to install minipro, do this (you may be asked for your password again at the sudo steps):

sudo apt-get install build-essential pkg-config git libusb-1.0-0-dev
wget gitlab.com/DavidGriffith/minipro/-/archive/master/minipro-master.tar.gz
tar xf minipro-master.tar.gz
cd minipro-master
make
sudo make install

This will grab the Minipro source, build and install it locally on your machine. 

Once all that's done, you're ready to rock.