Board Connectors

The Intel® Edison board provides a wide range of functionality for communicating with your board, uploading your code, updating the board OS image, and more. Refer to the image below for an overview of the various connectors on your board and what each is used for.

Overview of the connectors on the board

  1. Barrel connector for the external power supply: This connector is used for powering your board with an external power supply. For steps, see Powering your Board.
  2. Standard Type-A USB port: This port is for regular connections of USB peripherals, such as mice, keyboards, and more. See Attaching USB Peripherals to your Board.
  3. Microswitch: You can switch between USB host mode and USB device mode using the microswitch.
    • Device mode: In device mode, you can use your board as a computer peripheral using a micro-USB cable. In device mode, you can program the board over USB, mount the on-board flash memory like a disk drive. For steps to connect the board as a computer peripheral, see Programming, Powering, and Writing to the On-board Flash Memory.
    • Host mode: In host mode, you can plug USB peripherals with a standard-sized USB cable (such as mice, keyboards, and the like) in to the board. For steps, see Attaching USB Peripherals to your Board.
  4. Middle USB port (Micro-B type): This port is used for the following:
  5. Edge port (Micro-B Type): This port is used to create a terminal connection by serial over USB only. See Establishing Serial Communications with your Board.

Programming, Powering, and Writing to the On-board Flash Memory

You can use the middle micro type-B USB port on the board for the following:

  • 5 V power supply
  • Programming your board using the Arduino IDE
  • Programming your board using the Intel® XDK or Intel® System Studio IoT Edition via Ethernet over USB (not Wi-Fi*)
  • Writing to the on-board flash memory from your computer

When powering your board using the micro type-B USB port, keep in mind the following:

  • Certain USB ports on your system might not be able to provide enough power to the board. This will ultimately result in some very unpredictable behavior from the board, especially when using Wi-Fi* or driving motors. To avoid this behavior, power your board using an external power supply.
  • If you are connecting your board to a laptop, plug in your laptop's power supply to ensure that your board has enough power.
  1. Find the microswitch in between the USB ports on the expansion board. Switch the microswitch down towards the micro type-B USB ports.
    Example of the microswitch toggled down
  2. Plug in a micro type-B USB cable to the middle USB connector on the expansion board.
    Plugging a micro-USB cable into the middle USB connector
  3. A green LED should light up on the expansion board. If it doesn't, check your connection.
    Example of a green LED lighting up on the expansion board
  4. Wait one minute for the board to finish booting up.

How do you know when the board is ready?

Refer to How do you know when your board is ready?

Establishing Serial Communications with your Board

You can send serial commands to your board via Terminal or PuTTY using the edge micro-type B USB port. You can use these commands to flash the OS image, configure Wi-Fi settings, or identify the IP address of your board. See the section Setting up a Serial Terminal.

Attaching USB Peripherals to your Board

Use the standard Type-A USB port in USB host mode to allow the Intel® Edison board to accept USB peripherals, such as mice, keyboards, and more.

  1. Find the microswitch in between the USB ports on the expansion board. Switch the microswitch up towards the standard-sized USB port.
    Switching the microswitch up.
  2. Plug in the DC power supply to the barrel connector. The USB host mode requires the use of an external power adapter.
  3. Plug a USB peripheral with a standard-sized USB connector in to the standard type-A USB port above the microswitch on the expansion board.
    Plugging in a USB peripheral

Powering your Board

To ensure that you have access to more power-intensive features such as Wi-Fi*, a servo motor, or an Arduino shield, use an external direct current (DC) power supply to power your board. An external power supply is the preferred way of powering the Intel® Edison board. However, you can power your board over the micro type-B USB if you do not have an external power supply. For details, see Programming, powering, and writing to the on-board flash memory.

The details about the power supply are given in the section describing Arduino* expansion board kit content and additional cables required.

Proceed as follows to power your board:

  1. Plug in the DC power supply to the barrel connector on your board.
    Example of powering your board with an external power supply
  2. A green LED should light up on the expansion board. If it doesn't, check your connection.
    Example of a green LED lighting up on the expansion board
  3. Wait one minute for the board to finish booting up.

For more complete information about compiler optimizations, see our Optimization Notice.