I tried to build this SDK on more variants of linux than I care to admit. It only works successfully out of the box on Ubuntu. Specifically, Ubuntu 12.04.5.  I compiled this for use with my AR Drone 2, but I don’t see why it couldn’t be used with the AR Drone as well. There’s nothing here that makes the SDK specific to either model.

  1. Download Ubuntu 12.04.5 32bit. It probably works with 64bit (although I didn’t test it), if you really must use 64bit.
  2. Either install Ubuntu 12.04.5 alongside (dual boot) with another operating system, or in a virtual machine. I installed it in a VMware Fusion virtual machine on macOS. The Ubuntu operating system is agnostic, so it doesn’t really matter how you choose to virtualise it, if you do.
    1. Don’t install Ubuntu 12.04.5 updates during the installation process (leave the option unticked).
    2. Don’t install updates or upgrade Ubuntu to the next release when asked after the first login.
  3. Download the SDK (or copy it from somewhere to the Desktop).
  4. Open a terminal and change to your Desktop directory.
    1. # cd Desktop
  5. Unzip the SDK.
    1. # unzip ARDrone_SDK_2_0_1.zip
  6. Change to the ARDrone_SDK_2_0_1 directory
    1. # cd ARDrone_SDL_2_0_1 directory
  7. Run the following command (using sudo) to compile and install dependencies.
    1. # sudo ARDroneLib/Soft/Build/check_dependencencies.sh
      1. You’ll be asked to confirm installation of some packages, be sure to say Yes (y).
  8. Run the following command (using sudo) to compile the linux binaries.
    1. # cd Examples\Linux
    2. # sudo make
      1. Wait for the SDK binaries to be compiled
  9. The binaries are built in /home/<username>/Desktop/ARDrone_SDL_2_0_1/Examples/Linux/Build/Release/. Move them to you desktop and make them accessible as follows.
    1. # sudo mv /home/<username>/Desktop/ARDrone_SDL_2_0_1/Examples/Linux/Build/Release/ /home/<username>/Desktop/ARDroneApps
    2. # sudo chown -R <username>:<username> /home/<username>/Desktop/ARDroneApps
  10. Run the apps! You’ll need to be connected to your AR Drone 2 WiFi network first of course. Make sure you don’t have the Free Flight app open on any smart phones or tablets at the same time, as this will interfere with communications between your computer and your drone.
    1. # cd /home/<username>/Desktop/ARDroneApps
    2. # ./ardrone_navigation
    3. # ./linux_sdk_demo
    4. # ./linux_video_demo
    5. # ./sym_ardrone_testing_tool