Some useful (at least for me) libraries for Intel Galileo
C++ Arduino C

GPS/CLI/YAHL Libraries for Intel Galileo

Some useful (at least for me) libraries for Intel Galileo:

  • MtkGps - for communication with GPS modules which talk MediaTek PMTK protocol. MtkGps examples use two other libraries, so short intro to YAHL and PrintTerminal required.
  • YAHL - two helper objects
  • PrintTerminal - implements formatted printing to a serial port and parsing of a few VT100 escape sequences, so you can do something very special with all these very functional F1 to F12 keys.

To try it out put MtkGPS, PrintTerminal and YAHL folders to your Arduino libraries as usual.

MtkGps - library for GPS modules compatible with MediaTek $PMTK protocol

Galileo library for GPS modules compatible with MediaTek PMTK protocol. Tested with the Adafruit Ultimate GPS GTop module using MTK3399 chipset:

To use Adafruit Ultimate GPS with Galileo connect GPS RX to Galileo TX1, GPS TX to Galileo RX0, GPS Vin to Galileo 5V, GPS GND to Galileo GND. Easy... Someday I will install Fritzing again and add nice and colorful picture here. Someday.

MtkGps should work with other GPS modules as well, but PMTK packet types might be different and changes in MtkGps.h required, use gps_terminal example to send PMTK commands to your module and check how it replys to them.

Have not implemented data logging (LOCUS) commands, maybe in future. Adding callbacks to parse log data should not be a problem, right?

MtkGps Includes the following examples:


Connects to GPS module, parses NMEA messages and prints most common GPS data. Uses led_t and ticker_t from YAHL library, SimpleCli and SerialTerminal from PrintTerminal.

Startup window after command help was executed:

GPS terminal

First thing it does when starts - tries to detect current baud rate of the GPS module. You can always change it with gps baud command, but some packets like 9600 only, for example PMTKCHN sentence can force module to reset and switch to 9600. At least it happend a few times with my GPS. By default all data output is off, use corresponding commads to turn it on or change gps_terminal.ino.

Understands a few commands:

* gps data [on|off] - on/off some general GPS data: time, date, lat, lon, etc...
* gps nmea [on|off] - on/off NMEA sentences from GPS
* gps pmtk [on|off] - on/off PMTK sentences from GPS
* gps baud          - set communication speed, 14400 not supported
* gps release       - prints GPS module firmware information
* pmtk <command>    - sends specified command to GPS module, see example and note below
* set time          - set system time using GPS time of the last fix, use MtkGps::setTimeZone() to add offset to UTC time
* system [cmd]      - system command line fun

See MtkGps.h for the list of PMTK commands I've found so far. pmtk commands session example:

GPS terminal

Note: pmtk can be used in two different ways:

pmtk 402         // will add $PMTK in front a command and add *crc
pmtk $PGCMD33,0  // will send provided string as it is adding *crc 

With gps data turned on:

GPS terminal png


Just a simple example how to configure NMEA output and use parsed data. Collects and shows information about visible satellites on Serial2:

Satellites in view png


Creates a bridge between RX0/TX1 serial port and USB serial port, so external software running on a PC can be used. Useful if you want to view skyplot, upload EPO or upgrade firmware. Also can monitor what is happening on the bridge and display communication log on system console (connected to RS232 on Galileo v1 or TTL serial headers on Galileo v2). Will automatically detect if PC application turns on NMEA binary format and switch to dumping mode. For example, hex dump of EPO being uploaded:

hex dump of EPO being uploaded

Tested with MiniGPS and MT3339 GPS Tool from Adafruit. Works fine with any general GPS NMEA parsing applications as well.

I was able to upgrade firmware to the latest version you can find at Adafruit Ultimate GPS F.A.Q page. Just in case if you want to repeat this exercise as well, use the force 9600 baudrate and if you brick your GPS module it is your life brick.

YAHL - yet another helper library

Contains only two files:

  • led.h - led.on() looks better than digitalWrite(13, HIGH), isn't it?
  • ticker.h - ticks every N milliseconds and calls specified function. Tick, tock...

Includes the only one example: everybody's favourite blink


Why? Just compare:

term.print("Date: %02d/%02d/20%02d\n", tfix.tm_mday, tfix.tm_mon, tfix.tm_year);


Serial.print("Date: ");

Contains SerialTerminal, SimpleCli objects and cli example showing how to use them:

cli example

system with no argument will show uname -a output. system top -n 1 - one page of top output, and so on and so forth... Don't forget to add -n 1 for system top or it will run until you re-upload the sketch.

reset console command will reset system console (Serial2) and return it back to the system. Useful if you switch between different examples and eventually system console got blocked because Serial2.end() was not called.

In addition to just printing it can dump hex data, see bridge example above. SerialTerminal::getch() converts <CR> to <LF>, so you can use either Newline or Carriage Return in Arduino's Serial Monitor window.

Have fun!