Connecting Roomba to Your Computer
This page covers the various ways that the roomba can be connected to the computer -- namely by Bluetooth (RooTooth) and Serial (RooStick). In this lab, you should have been given a 7-pin serial cable and a Roostick (a USB to serial converter).
Serial & RooStick
- Connect the computer to the internet
- Plug the RooStick into the computer
- A "Found New Hardware" bubble should appear and install the necessary drivers
- If this does not happen, the drivers can be found by allowing Windows to search for them on the internet
- You can also manually install drivers found at http://www.roombadevtools.com/productcart/pc/viewPrd.asp?idcategory=4&idproduct=3
- When the USB (CP2103) to Serial (UART) Converter is installed, you can now connect your Roomba to your computer via the serial cable.
- This next step is important. You must now find the Serial Port Number, a.k.a. Roomba Port. The serial port number is used to tell applications through which port must be used to talk to your Roomba. This can be found by accessing Device Manager, which is Window's interface for managing hardware communicating with Windows. To access Device Manager, follow these steps:
- Right-click on "My Computer" and select Properties (you can also open My Computer Right-click somewhere in the folder, then Properties)
- A dialogue box should now appear. Click on the "Hardware" tab near the center top of the dialogue box.
- Select "Device Manager"
- If the Converter was installed correctly, in the list of devices, there should be a "Ports (COM & LPT)" Expand this menu
- Once exanded, there should be a device called "CP210x USB to UART Bridge Controller" Next to this is your Serial Port Number; Example: (COM3), (COM4), (COM6)
- Remember this port for Future reference. This is your Roomba Port.
As of now, there is no driver for Intel-Macs, only Power PC based Macs. However, Intel-Macs have blutooth and can be used with RooTooth.
BlueTooth & RooTooth
Run Bluetooth Setup Wizard
- Select 2nd Option ("I want to find a specific Bluetooth device and configure how this computer will use its services")
- Windows Searches for BT devices in Neighborhood (have rootooth plugged into roomba and powered on)
- Select RooTooth
- Use "default" for pincode
- Click Initiate Pairing
- Select COM0 Service (check mark)
- Click Configure (windows will install drivers)
- Windows Selected COM6 as the Virtual Serial Port
- Click Finish
- In "My Bluetooth Places", right-click on "Rootooth COM0" and click Connect
- open cmd.exe and run 'java -Djava.library.path=rxtxlib -classpath ".;rxtxlib/RXTXcomm.jar" roombacomm.RoombaCommTest' from the roombacomm directory
- Select "COM6" at the top and hit connect
- Have fun (you might have to use reset to get it going)
- Plug the Roostick into Roomba
- Go into your Mac System Preferences.
- Under the Hardware category, select Bluetooth.
- There should be three tabs that appear at the lower top center of the box, "Settings," "Devices,", and "Sharing." Select "Devices."
- Now, click on the "Setup New Device" on the lower right of the box.
- Great, you have located the new-bluetooth-setup wizard... and it welcomes you.
- Go ahead and select "Any device," because no other option is for programming robot vacuum cleaners (why, Apple, why!?)
- The wizard now searches for the RooTooth. Depending on your RooTooth, it may say "RooTooth," as it appears in this screen-shot, or it may say "BlueRadios," which is the bluetooth chip used in the newer RooTooths (RooTeeth?). There will be many other bluetooth devices that appear, but just fish through the options, find RooTooth, and continue.
- So the wizard finishes gathering information on the RooTooth device. Yay. Continue.
- In order to "pair" RooTooth with your computer (connect RooTooth with only your computer), you must enter its password. This password may be different for each RooTooth, so consult your instructor about the matter.
- Great, you are now paired. There are no services found -- this is normal.
- Congratulations! You have finished with the wizard...! But you are not quite finished :(
- This next step is important. Now you must find your Roomba Port. The Roomba Port is used to tell applications through which port must be used to talk to your Roomba. The Roomba Port can be found through several methods... which will now be covered here: