while norns is designed for easily updating to the latest software release, there are several reasons you might wish to recompile the norns programs yourself. you might want to keep on the bleeding edge by building the latest changes made to the code between official releases, either to try new features or get bug fixes as soon as possible. or you might want to make your own modifications to the software or try patches made by community members (for more details, see the extending norns page).
norns (the sound computer) comes with everything you need to edit and recompile norns (the software suite). this page gives a quick guide on how to get the latest changes and recompile. if you are interested in modifying the norns platform or knowing what’s currently in the works, take a look at the github issues to see the list of open bugs and feature requests. new release builds are packaged up and released every few months or so. note that any contributions to the norns system will generally not be widely available for use in scripts until an official release comes out, since typically users update norns through the SYSTEM > UPDATE menu option.
throughout this tutorial we will be running command line programs in a shell session. the entire output printed to the terminal will be included, possibly using a
... to skip long sections we don’t need to see. in particular, the shell prompt
$ will be shown, possibly including username and server information. what this means is when the instructions say something like:
- we run:
email@example.com:~/norns$ ls build crone.sh matron.sh resources version.mk ...
then the only part that you actually type in is
ls, the rest of what’s shown in the docs is just the prompt that the terminal shows you when waiting for input. also, the line(s) with the prompt is the only line we type into – the other output (
build crone.sh ...) is output from the
open a terminal and connect to norns via SSH. then go to the
norns directory using
$ ssh firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com's password: Linux norns 4.19.127-16-gb1425b1 #1 SMP PREEMPT Mon Oct 26 05:39:00 UTC 2020 armv7l ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ | | . | _| |_ -| |_|_|___|_| |_|_|___| monome.org/norns firstname.lastname@example.org:~$ cd norns email@example.com:~/norns$
this directory (
/home/we/norns) contains all the source code for norns – it’s a checkout of the git repository. it’s also sort of the main directory for norns system files, as opposed to user files like scripts and tape recordings, which are in
/home/we/dust. that includes the executable files for the core norns C/C++ programs including
crone. source code for
maiden lives elsewhere
the git repository
/home/we/norns is set up to point at the main norns repo on github. by default the copy of the code that’s on the monome github is nicknamed
origin. to pull the latest changes on github down and merge them into the local copy, we run:
we@norns:~/norns$ git pull origin main From https://github.com/monome/norns * branch main -> FETCH_HEAD Already up-to-date. we@norns:~/norns$
if there are a bunch of changes up on github that haven’t been pulled yet, this will show you a summary of changes as well.
we also need to make sure that the submodules are all up to date. submodules are basically git repos within a git repo that help norns track dependencies on other projects, notably the main softcut library and ableton link support. run:
we@norns:~/norns$ git submodule update --init --recursive Submodule path 'crone/softcut': checked out '7cce02a6f5b58a9c46bd022bd7b572e2b3218dae' we@norns:~/norns$
all the norns C / C++ programs are built with a build tool called
waf. first we need to check that all dependencies are installed and set up the build environment. generally you only need to do this if a new dependency is added, which is fairly seldom. run:
firstname.lastname@example.org:~/norns$ ./waf configure Setting top to : /home/we/norns Setting out to : /home/we/norns/build Checking for 'gcc' (C compiler) : /usr/bin/gcc Checking for 'g++' (C++ compiler) : /usr/bin/g++ ... Checking for libmonome : yes Checking for supercollider : yes Checking for program 'dpkg-architecture' : /usr/bin/dpkg-architecture Checking boost includes : 1.62.0 'configure' finished successfully (2.727s) email@example.com:~/norns$
if there are missing dependencies, you may need to install them using
apt-get. as of the current norns version with the latest image (201023 and above) all dependencies should already be installed.
assuming that you get
'configure' finished successfully we should be already to compile:
firstname.lastname@example.org:~/norns$ ./waf -j 1 Waf: Entering directory `/home/we/norns/build' ... Waf: Leaving directory `/home/we/norns/build' 'build' finished successfully
each file that has been changed since you last compiled will be listed. the
-j 1 option instructs norns to use only one thread – using all the CPU for recompiling (the default) can make norns unresponsive.
assuming you get
'build' finished successfully, you’ve now rebuilt norns and are ready to restart. the easiest way to do that is just to put norns to SLEEP as usual.
to continue from here and learn how to make your own changes to the norns code, see extending norns.