Installing MSPGCC4 and MSPDEBUG on Kubuntu 10.04

A few weeks ago I decided to upgrade my PC from an older version of OpenSuse to Kubuntu 10.04. Here are my steps to install on Kunbuntu 10.04.

I installed following packages via System Settings->Add and Remove Software but I believe it would just as easy to use apt-get on the command line.

  • subversion
  • gcc-4.4
  • texinfo
  • patch
  • libncurses5-dev
  • zlibc
  • zlib1g-dev
  • libx11-dev
  • libusb-dev
  • libreadline6-dev

With those packages installed I could install mspgcc4 with following steps:

  1. check out mspgcc4 from sourceforge via “svn checkout”
  2. change directory into newly created mspgcc4 via “cd mspgcc”
  3. run the build script via “sudo sh”
    I basicly used all the default answers by pressing ENTER only selecting “Build now” with yes (default there is no)
    This installed all the tools under /opt/msp430-gcc-4.4.3.
  4. Next I added /opt/msp430-gcc-4.4.3/bin to the path in /etc/profiles (“export PATH=${PATH}:/opt/msp430-gcc-4.4.3/bin”)

Next I downloaded the tar file for mspdebug from sourceforge ( ).

Then I was able to install the mspdebug via:

  1. tar xvfz mspdebug-version.tar.gz
  2. cd mspdebug-version
  3. make
  4. sudo make install

I can start mspdebug for the ez430F2013 with “mspdebug -u /dev/ttyUSB0” Update: in version 0.10 the -u option is not there anymore. Instead I had to use “mspdebug -d /dev/ttyUSB0 uif” to connect to my EZ430

Next to come build the blinking LED example for the ez430F2013.


If you don’t like the msp-insight you can use ddd with msp430-gdb via installing the ddd package and starting it with “ddd msp430-gdb”.

10 Responses to “Installing MSPGCC4 and MSPDEBUG on Kubuntu 10.04”

  1. miriam says:

    thank you for the information, but i have a problem with my old version when I install the mspgcc4 like you did it still gives me the old one:
    msp430-gcc –version
    msp430-gcc (GCC) 3.2.3
    how can I solve this problem
    thanks a lot

  2. admin says:

    Miriam, sorry for the late reply. If you still have this problem my guess would be that you have the old msp430-gcc in your path.

    You can verify this by executing ‘which msp430-gcc’ this will tell you what executable is actually executed as msp430-gcc. Also take a look at your PATH environment variable via ‘echo $PATH’. If your old install is listed before the new it will be found first and be executed.

    Here is my output:

    # which msp430-gcc
    # echo $PATH

    Hope this helps.

  3. errol says:

    Thanks so much for this tutorial. I’ve been struggling with building mspgcc4 for several days. It was your list of build dependencies that clinched it. I had less than half of what I needed. I seem to have got away with libreadline5-dev instead of libreadline6-dev though.
    The path info saved me time as well, no doubt.
    Good effort.

  4. Mike Goldberg says:

    Hey, thanks for sharing this information. I had one of these sitting around in my desk for a while because I thought there was no Linux support. I’m glad I was wrong. I just built the tools and now the led is flashing.

  5. Jurgen says:


    just to help people out… I’m running Ubuntu 10.10 here – and I had to use /dev/ttyACM0 instead of /dev/ttyUSB0

    Hoping to help someone out with this clue 😀

  6. Can you suggest a place where I can find examples of assembly language programs
    for the msp430, including assembler directives and header files. I’m familiar with machine languages and the assembly process, but I can find next to no documentation on the msp430 “flavor” of mspgcc assembler. What assembler coding styles are accepted? What other quirks, like colon or tab after a label, semicolon before a comment, and so forth? What assembler directives? What is a minimal set of header files?

    Even a single well-documented representative program would be extremely useful.

    Incidentally, I’m producing some professional-grade documentation for what I’m learning
    about the use of the mspgcc chain and mspdebug. Ask me if you are interested.

    Many thanks,
    Tommaso Toffoli

  7. SubMicro says:

    Hello I’m running Ubuntu 10.10 Maverick kernel ver. 2.6.35-28 generic. I followed your blog but was unsuccessful. I get this error “Trying to open UIF on /dev/ttyUSB0… uif: can’t open serial device: /dev/ttyUSB0: No such file or directory”.

    Any help would be appreciated. Since I can’t use it untill I fix this, because I’m a Linux only Op system.


  8. admin says:


    I am still on 10.04. but Jurgen posted a comment above that he had to use /dev/ttyACM0.

    Anyway if you look at /var/log/messages you should see a message that the ez430 programmer is detected.

    Here is what I see when I plug the programmer in:
    Mar 21 22:51:20 linuxDesk kernel: [192718.153894] ti_usb_3410_5052 4-1:1.0: TI USB 3410 1 port adapter converter detected
    Mar 21 22:51:20 linuxDesk kernel: [192718.153930] ti_usb_3410_5052: probe of 4-1:1.0 failed with error -5
    Mar 21 22:51:20 linuxDesk kernel: [192718.158872] ti_usb_3410_5052 4-1:2.0: TI USB 3410 1 port adapter converter detected
    Mar 21 22:51:20 linuxDesk kernel: [192718.159093] usb 4-1: TI USB 3410 1 port adapter converter now attached to ttyUSB1

    As you can see in this example it was actually using /dev/ttyUSB1 instead of /dev/ttyUSB0.

  9. Daniel says:


    Following this great tutorial, I’m trying to install MSPGCC4 on my Ubuntu 10.04 64-bit PC but I always get this error:

    sh “/opt/msp430-gcc-4.4.5” “4.4.5” “” “build” “gcc-4.x” “4.3.1” “2.4.2” exited with status code 2.
    Failed to execute sh “/opt/msp430-gcc-4.4.5” “4.4.5” “” “build” “gcc-4.x” “4.3.1” “2.4.2” at ./ line 248, line 9.

    Has anyone successfully installed the toolchain on Ubuntu 64-bits?


  10. Fer says:

    Hi there! I’ve followed all the steps, but I get the message
    “uif: can’t open serial device: /dev/ttyACM0: Input/output error”
    I’m using kubuntu 11.04 nd a LaunchPad with a MSP430G2231
    any idea??