Pysense: hardware setup in a virtual machine

PysenseI had to help someone starting a project which includes, among others, a Pysense board.

The development environment is Linux Mint 18.3, running in a VirtualBox virtual machine (VirtualBox version 5.2.26). The host system is a MacBook Pro running macOS Mojave.

One difficulty that the user may face with this environment relates to the USB device redirection. When the Pysense is switched to bootloader mode, for firmware upgrade, it stays in this mode less than 7 seconds, which is not long enough to configure VirtualBox.

In the following article, I describe a procedure that allows to get round this problem, and to perform the firmware upgrade.

How to set display brightness (Linux)

If not installed yet, install the xbacklight package. Then use the command:

xbacklight -set <brightnessPercentage>

Working on several different software development projects

I'm currently working on several different software development projects, for two different companies, and for me. Several different technical domains are involved: embedded, frontend and backend. And for each of them, I have to use several frameworks or toolkits.

As I've got a regular brainpower Smile, I need some tools to keep up. My current way of working:

Headless VirtualBox virtual machine


For all my software development projects, I now use one VirtualBox virtual machine per project. This allows me to isolate my development environment from the physical machine I'm using, not to mix several software environment configurations that could be potentially incompatible, and, when required, to easily provide a colleague with a perfect copy of my development environment.

A few days ago, another need appeared: to make available a demonstration based on a given version of a project. This time, the virtual machine would not run on a desktop PC, but on a server. And it should be kept running for weeks and possibly months.

Black screen from a Linux VirtualBox guest machine

VirtualBoxAs I'm using several very different environments for some projects I'm working on (embedded software, application server, Android, etc.), I set up one VirtualBox virtual machine for each of them. The guest machine OS is Linux, and I run them either on a Linux host, or on a macOS host.


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