HowTo build the Marlin 3D Printer Firmware on the Raspberry Pi

If you are already running the excellent octoprint as a printserver on a Raspberry Pi it is very convenient to also build Marlin on it. The new Raspberry Pi Zero W with onboard wifi is at only 10$ just perfect for both tasks. If you want to use the camera streaming of octoprint I would recommend a Pi3 though.

I made a script that sets up the necessary build environment and provides commands for building and uploading. It uses the official Arduino toolchain. Everything is standalone, nothing is installed outside the marlintool directory.


here on github:

or download directly as a zip:

Build configuration

Before first use: Rename the marlintool.params.example file to “marlintool.params”

In its default configuration the script is setup to build the official “Marlin” firmware  but can be easily reconfigured to build any Marlin variant.

Several additional parameters in the “marlintool.params” file allow to adapt the script to your needs.

parameter description
marlinRepositoryUrl The marlin git repository.
marlinRepositoryBranch The branch of the configured repo to use.
marlinDependencies A list of dependencies to download in the format:
[name],[repo url],[library directory](optional).
A library directory should only be specified if the library is not in the root of the repository.
hardwareDefinitionRepo If you build for the Anet board this downloads the necessary hardware definition for the Arduino build environment. If you dont need this set it to an empty string.
boardString The Anet board identifier.
arduinoToolchainVersion The Arduino toolchain version to use. The build platform and architecture are auto detected. At the moment Linux 32 Bit, 64 Bit, ARM and OS X are supported.
port The serialport to use for uploading.
arduinoDir Where to put the Arduino toolchain.
marlinDir Where to checkout Marlin sources.
buildDir The build directory.

Reminder: If you are running octopi on you Raspberry you need to disconnect it from your printer before uploading, otherwise the serial port is blocked.

Note: On OS X due to how the Arduino toolchain is packaged the Arduino splash screen will be displayed even when the toolchain is used from the commandline. This will cause the terminal window you launch marlintool from to lose focus. It also means that a build cannot be launched from a remote ssh session.

Building for Anet Hardware

If you are building the firmware for the Anet A6/A8 you can find suitable example configurations in the Marlin sources at: Just replace the “Configuration.h” and “Configuration_adv.h” in the marlin directory with the files your find there for a good starting point of your configuration.


Commandline parameters

-s  — setup

Download and configure the toolchain and the necessary libraries for building Marlin. Also fetches the Anet board hardware definition from github if specified.

-m  — marlin

Download Marlin sources.

-f –fetch

Update an existing Marlin clone.

-v  — verify

Build without uploading.

-u  — upload

Build and upload Marlin. If you are running octopi on you Raspberry you need to disconnect it before uploading otherwise the serial port is blocked.

-b  –backupConfig  [name]

Backup the Marlin configuration to the named backup.

-r  –restoreConfig [name]

Restore the given configuration into the Marlin directory.

-c  — clean

Cleanup everything. Remove Marlin sources and Arduino toolchain.

-p  — port [port]

Set the serialport for uploading the firmware. Overrides the default set in the script.

-h  — help

Show help.

Photo based 3D Reconstruction on Portable Devices

Microsoft Research has released Information about a 3D Reconstruction App that runs on Windows Mobile. As far as the technology is concerned hardly anything new. It’s basically the same as Autodesks 123D Catch that is available on severall platforms with the actual image processing happening on the server.

The App looks very nice though, it comes with an acceleromteter supported visual guide that helps the user to capture all required images for a successfull 3D model construction.