Python wrapper for interfacing with the NXP EXPLORE-NFC shield for Raspberry Pi
C CMake Python
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README.md

nxppy

nxppy is a very simple Python wrapper for interfacing with the excellent PN512-based NXP EXPLORE-NFC shield for the Raspberry Pi. It takes NXP's NFC Reader Library and provides a thin layer for detecting a Mifare (Ultralight, NTAG210, NTAG213, NTAG216, etc) NFC tag, reading its UID (unique identifier), and reading/writing data from/to the user area.

License

All files in this repository are distributed under the MIT license.

External components

NXP now releases the NFC Reader Libary as a Debian package for easy installation on a Raspberry Pi. Start by downloading the DEB file from here:

https://www.nxp.com/products/:PNEV512R?&tab=Design_Tools_Tab

or here:

https://www.nxp.com/products/:NFC-READER-LIBRARY?tab=In-Depth_Tab

Once downloaded, you can install the library by running:

sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install build-essential cmake python3-dev python2.7-dev
sudo dpkg -i NFC-Reader-Library-4.010-2.deb

Installation will take some time as it builds the NXP NFC Reader Library from source.

Compatibility

Tested with both Python 2.7 and 3.4 as installed on Raspian Jessie.

Requirements

The EXPLORE-NFC card relies on SPI being enabled. Please enable SPI using raspi-config prior to installing nxppy.

Installation

nxppy is available from PyPI. To install, simply run:

pip install nxppy

Usage

Currently, the module supports ISO14443-3A/4A cards only:

import nxppy

mifare = nxppy.Mifare()

# Select the first available tag and return the UID
uid = mifare.select()

# Read a single block of 4 bytes from block 10 
block10_bytes = mifare.read_block(10)

# Write a single block of 4 bytes
mifare.write_block(10, 'abcd')

# Read the entire user data area (this relies on byte 2 of the capability container being set to the correct tag size)
user_data = mifare.read()

Example polling for tags:

import nxppy
import time

mifare = nxppy.Mifare()

# Print card UIDs as they are detected
while True:
    try:
        uid = mifare.select()
        print(uid)
    except nxppy.SelectError:
        # SelectError is raised if no card is in the field.
        pass

    time.sleep(1)

NDEF records can be read as bytes, and then passed through ndeflib for parsing

import nxppy
import ndef

# Instantiate reader
mifare = nxppy.Mifare()

# Select tag
uid = mifare.select()

# Read NDEF data
ndef_data = mifare.read_ndef()

# Parse NDEF data
ndef_records = list(ndef.message_decoder(ndef_data))

Authentication example:

This example uses the address layout of a NTAG216 card. Please refer to the specific card manual for the address layout.
NTAG cards remain authenticated until removed from field or an error occurs. Reauthenticate to gain access again.

NTAG216 configuration page layout:

Address Byte 0 Byte 1 Byte 2 Byte 3
0xE3 Mirror RFUI Mirror_Page AUTH0
0xE4 Access RFUI RFUI RFUI
0xE5 PWD PWD PWD PWD

Relevant parts:
0xE3 Byte3 Defines the address from which the password verification is required
0xE4 Byte0 Bit7 Defines access protection: 0 for write protection (read only), 1 for read and write protection
0xE5 All 4 bytes are used to store the password

Values not mentioned here are the cards default values and not altered by this script.

import nxppy

#initilize and select tag
mifare = nxppy.Mifare()
uid = mifare.select()


#Enable protection
####################

#write password 1234
mifare.write_block(0xE5, '1234')

#password protection starting at address D1
mifare.write_block(0xE3, b'\x04\x00\x00\xD1')

#enable readprotection (default is write protection only)
mifare.write_block(0xE4, b'\x80\x05\x00\x00')


#authenticate
####################
mifare.pwd_auth('1234')
#read and write from/to protected address space


#disable protection
####################

#reset password
mifare.write_block(0xE5, b'\xFF\xFF\xFF\xFF')

#set protection addr beyond address space
mifare.write_block(0xE3, b'\x04\x00\x00\xE7')

#reset readprotection 
mifare.write_block(0xE4, b'\x00\x05\x00\x00')

Common Issues

I encounter fatal error: Python.h: No such file or directory during install.

The Python development package is required for nxppy install. If you're using Raspbian, you can install this package using sudo apt-get install python<xx>-dev where "<xx>" is either "2.7" or "3" depending on which version of Python you're using.

I encounter error: [Errno 13] Permission denied: '/usr/local/lib/python2.7/dist-packages/nxppy.so' during install.

Looks like you're trying to install nxppy into the global python site-packages directory. There are many many many blog posts out there about why it's best to develop Python applications using a virtualenv. If you really want to install nxppy into the global package store, you can install with sudo pip install nxppy. It's not recommended.

Feedback

I welcome your feedback and pull requests! This project started as a necessity for my own Raspberry Pi development, but I'm hoping others will find it useful as a way to quickly bootstrap NFC-based projects. Thanks to NXP for the excellent support over the years. Enjoy!