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We use Gumstix Overo Computer-On-Module (COM) boards for the Cansat project. For development purposes, the COMs are mounted on a Tobi expansion board.

Overo COM Tobi expansion board

Install Ubuntu

An Ubuntu image can be downloaded from the Catalina document server. It can be copied to an SD card with the Linux dd command.

After a successful boot, the system can be configured for basic usage. A simple console system uses a little less than 1.5 GB. If one wants to upgrade to a newer Ubuntu version, a boot partition of 64 MB and a system partition of 3 GB should be provisioned.


The provided Linux version doesn't support the obsolete iwconfig tool. The ip command has to be used instead.

The COM can be setup to connect to a given wireless network or to be the router of the Wi-Fi network.

Install the basic packages and test the connection:

apt-get install iw wpasupplicant ethtool
iw dev
iw link set wlan0 up
iw list
iw dev wlan0 scan

Connecting to a wireless network

Prepare the configuration file with the wifi credentials:

wpa_passphrase SSID PASSWORD > /etc/wpa_supplicant/wpa_supplicant.conf

Declare the wireless network interface settings in /etc/network/interfaces:

auto wlan0
iface wlan0 inet dhcp
	wireless_mode managed
	wireless_essid any
	pre-up wpa_supplicant -B -i wlan0 -c /etc/wpa_supplicant/wpa_supplicant.conf
	post-down killall -q wpa_supplicant

Restart the network manager:

ifdown wlan0 && ifup wlan0
ifconfig wlan0

Managing a wireless network

Install the required packages:

apt-get install hostapd dnsmasq

Access point manager

hostapd is a user space daemon for access point and authentication servers.

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