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BTstack Port for POSIX Systems with libusb Library


The quickest way to try BTstack is on a Linux or OS X system with an additional USB Bluetooth dongle. It requires pkg-config and libusb-1.0 or higher to be installed.

On a recent Debian-based system, all you need is:

apt-get install gcc git libusb-1.0 pkg-config

When everything is ready, you compile all examples with:



On Linux, the USB Bluetooth dongle is usually not accessible to a regular user. You can either:

  • run the examples as root
  • add a udev rule for your dongle to extend access rights to user processes

To add an udev rule, please create /etc/udev/rules.d/btstack.rules and add this

# Match all devices from CSR
SUBSYSTEM=="usb", ATTRS{idVendor}=="0a12", MODE="0666"

# Match DeLOCK Bluetooth 4.0 dongle
SUBSYSTEM=="usb", ATTRS{idVendor}=="0a5c", ATTRS{device}=="21e8", MODE="0666"

# Match Asus BT400
SUBSYSTEM=="usb", ATTRS{idVendor}=="0b05", ATTRS{device}=="17cb", MODE="0666"

# Match Laird BT860 / Cypress Semiconductor CYW20704A2
SUBSYSTEM=="usb", ATTRS{idVendor}=="04b4", ATTRS{device}=="f901", MODE="0666"

On macOS, the OS will try to use a plugged-in Bluetooth Controller if one is available. It's best to to tell the OS to always use the internal Bluetooth Contoller.

For this, execute:

sudo nvram bluetoothHostControllerSwitchBehavior=never

and then reboot to activate the change.

Running the examples

BTstack's HCI USB transport will try to find a suitable Bluetooth module and use it.

On start, BTstack will try to find a suitable Bluetooth module. It will also print the path to the packet log as well as the USB path.

$ ./le_counter
Packet Log: /tmp/hci_dump.pklg
BTstack counter 0001
USB Path: 06
BTstack up and running on 00:1A:7D:DA:71:13.

If you want to run multiple examples at the same time, it helps to fix the path to the used Bluetooth module by passing -u usb-path to the executable.

Example running le_streamer and le_streamer_client in two processes, using Bluetooth dongles at USB path 6 and 4:

./le_streamer -u 6
Specified USB Path: 06
Packet Log: /tmp/hci_dump_6.pklg
USB Path: 06
BTstack up and running on 00:1A:7D:DA:71:13.
To start the streaming, please run the le_streamer_client example on other device, or use some GATT Explorer, e.g. LightBlue, BLExplr.

$ ./le_streamer_client -u 4
Specified USB Path: 04
Packet Log: /tmp/hci_dump_4.pklg
USB Path: 04
BTstack up and running on 00:1A:7D:DA:71:13.
Start scanning!