ev3console001w300Mindsensors have released a special EV3 Console Adapter that lets you connect your EV3 console to a PC or Linux. What’s missing so far is a Mac OS X driver, so in this tutorial I show you how to configure the standard FTDI driver to work with the Mindsensors EV3 Console Adapater.

Why do you need this useful dongle? If you want to try to work with the low-level firmware and hardware on the EV3 you will need access to the console of the device. This will give you a command prompt to enter standard Linux commands – just like a regular Linux PC. The Console Adapter plugs into port S1 on the EV3.

Linux users: Xander has a great tutorial on getting this to work on his blog at http://botbench.com/blog/2013/08/18/tutorial-using-the-mindsensors-ev3console-in-linux/.

Step 1: Download and install the FTDI drivers

You can download the drivers at:

http://www.ftdichip.com/Drivers/VCP.htm

Step 2: Plug in the EV3 Console Adapter

Plug the EV3 Console Adapter into port S1 and into a USB port on your Mac. Open System Profiler (typically by choosing the “About this Mac” from the Apple menu and then clicking on the “More Info” button):

profiler

 

Click on “USB Hardware” and then choose the “EV3 Consol” entry. The key figure you need is the Product ID, which is the value oxabb9 for the Console Adapter. Make a note of this number for later.

Step 3: Download the FTDI app note on how to modify the FTDI driver

We’ll follow along this document, so if you need the original it is here: http://www.ftdichip.com/Support/Documents/TechnicalNotes/TN_105%20Adding%20Support%20for%20New%20FTDI%20Devices%20to%20Mac%20Driver.pdf 

Step 4: Modify the FTDI kext Info.plist file

We’re going to go hardcore here; open Terminal and type:

mkdir tmp
cd tmp
cp /System/Library/Extensions/FTDIUSBSerialDriver.kext/Contents/Info.plist .
vi Info.plist

Jump to line 3126 of that file and you will find an entry for the Mindsensors Camera Sensor. We can copy this and modify it to work for the Console Adapter by simply entering the Product ID we copied from System Profiler.

                <key>Mindsensors EV3 Console Adapter</key>
                <dict>
                        <key>CFBundleIdentifier</key>
                        <string>com.FTDI.driver.FTDIUSBSerialDriver</string>
                        <key>IOClass</key>
                        <string>FTDIUSBSerialDriver</string>
                        <key>IOProviderClass</key>
                        <string>IOUSBInterface</string>
                        <key>bConfigurationValue</key>
                        <integer>1</integer>
                        <key>bInterfaceNumber</key>
                        <integer>0</integer>
                        <key>idProduct</key>
                        <integer>43961</integer>
                        <key>idVendor</key>
                        <integer>1027</integer>
                </dict>

Save this change to the file.

sudo cp Info.plist /System/Library/Extensions/FTDIUSBSerialDriver.kext/Contents/

Enter your Mac’s password when prompted by sudo

Step 5. Reboot your Mac.

Step 6. Plug the USB cable into the Console Adapter.

Step 7. Open CoolTerm and connect at 115200 8N1

Step 8. Power on the EV3 and enjoy the grooviness!