Getting Started

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Tutorials → Getting Started




System Requirements

ROBOTC requires basic system specifications to run properly. The development environment is not processor intensive, but the interactive debugger may slow down computer performance on older machines.


System Requirements:
Intel® Pentium® processor or compatible, 800 MHz minimum Windows XP Professional or Home Edition with Service Pack 2 or greater 256MB of RAM minimum Up to 30MB of available hard disk space 1 available USB port Compatible Bluetooth adapter (optional)


ROBOTC will not run natively in any other operating system other than Microsoft Windows. ROBOTC will run with a Virtualization client on a Apple Macintosh. ROBOTC has been tested with VMWare Fusion, Parallels Desktop, and Apple's Boot Camp. You will still need to download/install device drivers found on your purchased CD or on the ROBOTC website.


Uninstalling and Installing ROBOTC

Uninstalling

You must uninstall your previous version of ROBOTC before upgrading to the newest version of ROBOTC.

To uninstall ROBOTC, follow these steps:

1. Open the Control Panel from your "Start Menu"
Uninstall1.gif


2. Inside of the Control Panel, select "Add or Remove Programs"
Uninstall2.gif


3. Navigate through the "Add or Remove Programs" list until you find your version of ROBOTC that you wish to uninstall. Press the "Remove button"
Uninstall3.gif


4. Windows will start the uninstall process. When the window below disappears and you are returned to the "Add or Remove Programs" list, ROBOTC has been successfully uninstalled.
Uninstall4.gif


Installing

To Install the latest version of ROBOTC, follow these steps:

1. Double click on the ROBOTC installer. You will be presented with the Installshield installer for ROBOTC. Click "Next" to proceed.
Install1.gif


2. Before you can proceed, you must read over the accept the End User License Agreement. Click "I accept" and then the "Next" button to proceed.
Install2.gif


3. Choose where you would like to install ROBOTC to. By default, ROBOTC is installed to your "Program Files" folder. Click "Next" to proceed.
Install3.gif


4. The installer will ask you to confirm your settings. If everything looks correct, click "Install" to being the installation process.
Install4.gif


5. The installer will begin copying files from the installer to your computer. Please wait until this is complete.
Install5.gif

6. When the installation is complete, the install will inform you of this. Click "Finish" to complete your install.
Install6.gif

7. Double click the "ROBOTC for Mindstorms" icon to launch ROBOTC.
Install7.gif


Activate Online

To continue using ROBOTC past the 30 day trial period, you must purchase a ROBOTC license and then activate the license on each computer.


To activate ROBOTC, you will need the License ID and Password that was sent to you during the purchase process.

  • If you purchased a ROBOTC license online, the License ID and Password were sent to the email address specified.
  • If you ordered the CD-ROM version of ROBOTC, the License ID and Password are printed on the CD label.

If you are Activating the ROBOTC license on computers with internet access, follow the Activation instructions below. If you are activating the ROBOTC license on computers without internet access, skip to Activate by Web instructions.

NOTE: ROBOTC must be activated on each individual computer.


Follow these steps to activate on a computer with internet access:

1. Open ROBOTC and select "Activate ROBOTC" from the start-up prompt.
Activate Main.gif


2. Select "Activate ROBOTC for MINDSTORMS Online"
Activate Selection Online.gif


3. Enter in your License ID and Password that you received via emaill. Click the "Continue" button to proceed.
Activate Online LicenseIDPass.gif


4. ROBOTC will communicate with the activation server via the internet to verify your License ID and Password.
Activate Processing.gif


5. ROBOTC is activated and ready for use. Click Continue to use ROBOTC for MINDSTORMS.
Activate Success.gif


Activate by Web

Follow these steps to activate on a computer without internet access:

Note: You will need to use a separate computer with Internet access in step 4 at this activation process. You must repeat this process on each computer without internet access.

1. Open ROBOTC and select "Activate ROBOTC" from the menu.
Activate Main.gif


2. Select "Activate by Web"
Activate Selection Web.gif


3. Two user codes will be displayed. Copy both of these down. Take these codes with you to a separate computer with Internet access.
Activate Web UserCodes.gif


4. At a separate computer with internet access, visit http://www.robotc.net/register. Enter your License ID and Password that you received via email and click "Next."
Activate Web EnterLicense.gif


5. Enter User Code 1 and User Code 2 that you copied down in step 3. Click "Next" to proceed.
Activate Web EnterUserCoders.gif


6. A Registration code will be displayed. Write this down and return to the original computer on which ROBOTC is installed.
Activate Web RegistrationCode.gif


7. Enter the Registration code from step 6 into the "Activation Code 1" field.
Note: Leave Activation Code 2 blank.
Activate Web UserCodes EnterReg.gif


8. ROBOTC will be activated and ready for use. Click Continue to use ROBOTC.
Activate Success.gif


Activate by Web

ROBOTC for MINDSTORMS has support for four different platforms:
  • LEGO Mindstorms RCX
  • LEGO Mindstorms NXT
  • LEGO Mindstorms NXT + TETRIX
  • Robot Algebra (NXT)

Before you use ROBOTC, make sure to select which platform you are currently using.

Changing Platform Type: Open the "Robot" menu in ROBOTC and hover your cursor over the "Platform Type" menu option. This will open up the platform select menu. Select the platform you wish you use with ROBOTC. You can change the platform type at any time.


Getting Started with the VEX PIC

Configuring Serial Port

When using ROBOTC for the first time, you may need to specify which Serial Port is used to communicate with your VEX. To change the Serial Port, follow these steps:

1. Open the Preferences menu under the "View" menu.
Robotc view menu.png


2. Select the serial COM port that your controller is attached to from the Communications Port drop-down menu. Click 'OK' to save your settings.
Be sure to also select the correct Platform with the "Platform" drop-down menu.
Robotc preference port.png


Download Master Firmware

The Master Firmware for the VEX is sperate from the ROBOTC Firmware. The Master firmware controls all of the lower-level controls of the VEX controller (such as serial and radio communication). This firmware is supplied by Innovation FIRST and has not been modified by ROBOTC. Every VEX Microcontroller is preloaded with a version of the master firmware, but downloading the latest version will ensure that your robot is compatible with the latest hardware available.


To update the VEX Master Firmware:
1. Open ROBOTC for IFI. Ensure that your VEX controller is connected and turned on.


2. Go to View > Preferences > Detailed Preferences. On the Platform tab, ensure that VEX 0.5 Microchip is selected as the Platform, alsong with the Prolific USB-to-Serial option as the Communication Port.
SS-2010-10-13 14.27.33.png


3. Go to Robot > Download Firmware > Master CPU Firmware > Standard File to download the Master Firmware.
SS-2010-10-13 14.31.58.png


4. A Download Progress window will appear. When the window closes, the download is complete.
SS-2010-10-13 14.05.46.png


Download ROBOTC Firmware

Before you can use ROBOTC with the VEX platform, you have to download the ROBOTC firmware to the VEX.

Prerequisites:

  • Connect the VEX to your computer and power it on.
  • Make sure VEX 0.5 Microchip is selected as the Platform Type

1. Open the Robot menu, select "Download Firmware", "ROBOTC Firmware", and then "Standard File".
SS-2010-10-13 14.35.48.png

2. A Download Progress window will appear. When the window closes, the download is complete.
Vex-firm-download.png


3. Power cycle the VEX so that the new firmware will take effect.


Sample Programs

One of the best ways to start working with ROBOTC and learning how to program is to look at already developed programs. ROBOTC comes with over 75 sample programs to help the programmer learn how to program their robotics controllers.

To access these sample programs, open the "Sample Programs" folder by going to the "File" menu and selecting "Open Sample Program."
Sampleprograms menu.png


Inside of the sample programs folder, there are a number of samples organized by topic. ROBOTC will automatically open the sample programs folder of the platform you currently have selected.
Sampleprogram files.png


Just double click on one of the sample programs to open it up and learn more about ROBOTC programming.


Compiling and Downloading

ROBOTC is considered to be an "Integrated Development Environment." This means that ROBOTC has a custom text editor for developing code that will assist the programmer by color coding different potions of code to differentiate between integers, reserved words, functions and parameters.

Robotc gui.png


ROBOTC also contains a compiler for turning this user generated code in a byte-code language that the different controller platforms can understand. To run the compiler, access the compile function from the "Robot" menu.
Compile program.png


When the compiler runs, ROBOTC will check your program for errors and warnings that would cause your program to not run properly on the robot. Rather than send this broken code to your robot, ROBOTC will inform you of these errors so they can be corrected.

In the example below:

  • The reserved word 'motor' was incorrectly typed as 'Motor', generating a warning. A warning tells the user that they've created an error, but ROBOTC is able to correct this error itself when the program is sent to the controller. A program with warning will compile successfully, but users should use good programming practice to avoid warnings. Warnings are denoted by a yellow "X".
  • The code on line 5 is missing a semicolon, which is generating an error. An error will prevent the program from being sent to the controller. ROBOTC will do its best to explain what the error to assist the user. In this example, ROBOTC is informing the user they left a semicolon off a line of their program which is preventing the program from being compiled. Errors are denoted by a red "X".

Errors and warnings.png


Once your program has successfully compiled, you can send the program to the controller by clicking the "Compile and Download Program" option under the "Robot" menu. Note: Your robot must be turned on and connected to the computer before you can download a program.
Download.png


Once the download starts, a "Download Progress" bar will appear. This bar will show the status of the transfer of the compiled byte-code to the controller.
SS-2010-10-14 11.36.04.png


Once the download starts, a "Download Progress" bar will appear. This bar will show the status of the transfer of the compiled byte-code to the controller.
SS-2010-10-13 14.05.46.png


Once the download finishes, ROBOTC's built in debugger will be launched. There will be a number of windows that launch, such as the Global Variables window, the Devices window and the Program Debug window. You can start your programs execution by clicking the "Start" button on the "Program Debug" window. Learn more about these windows in the 'Debugger' section of the help file.
Compiler.png


Getting Started with the VEX CORTEX

Download Master Firmware

The Master Firmware for the VEX 2.0 Cortex is sperate from the ROBOTC Firmware. The Master firmware controls all of the lower-level controls of the VEX 2.0 Cortex controller (such as VEXnet Communication). This firmware is supplied by Innovation FIRST and has not been modified by ROBOTC. Every VEX 2.0 Cortex Microcontroller is preloaded with a version of the master firmware, but downloading the latest version will ensure that your robot is compatible with the latest hardware available.

To download and update the VEX 2.0 Cortex Master Firmware:

Place your VEX Cortex in "Bootload" Mode Placing your VEX Cortex in "Bootload" mode is necessary before downloading the Master CPU Firmware. Keep the Cortex powered OFF. Plug one end of the USB A-to-A Cable into a USB port on your computer. Do not plug the other end into the Cortex. Note: The order detailed in these steps is crucial. When the Cortex is powered on, it immediately tries to determine how it is connected (over VEXnet, USB, or no connection). Some power is provided to the Cortex over USB, which will allow it to determine that it is connected to your computer.
01.png


Use a paperclip or a 5/64 Allen Wrench to press and hold in the CONFIG button on the Cortex.
02.jpg


While pressing in the CONFIG button, connect the other end of the USB A-to-A cable to the USB port on the VEX Cortex. Keep the CONFIG button pressed in for an additional 5 seconds.
03.jpg


Remove the Allen Wrench or paperclip, releasing the CONFIG button. After a few seconds, the ROBOT and GAME lights should blink green.
04.jpg


Make sure a 7.2V Robot battery is connected and move the POWER switch on the Cortex to the ON position. Your setup should resemble the one in this picture, with the USB A-to-A cable connecting your computer and the VEX Cortex, and the 7.2 Volt Robot Battery powering the VEX Cortex. Note (Optional): You can connect two motors to MOTOR Ports 2 and 3 for testing a sample program later in the sequence. You can connect 3-wire motors directly, or the newer 2-wire motors using Motor Controller 29 cables.
06.jpg


Platform Type and Communication Port
Specify that you are using the Cortex and how it is connected to your computer in ROBOTC. Go to Robot > Platform Type > Innovation First (IFI) and select "VEX 2.0 Cortex" or "Natural Language (VEX Cortex)".
Platform.png


Then go to View and choose Select Communication Port.
Comm port.png


A new window will appear. From the Communications Port dropdown list, make sure that "Automatic Selection" or the "USB Wired Cable" option are selected. If you plan on programming your robot wirelessly over VEXnet, keeping "Automatic Selection" chosen is recommended. Press OK to save your choice.
Comm port select.png


Downloading Master Firmware
Go to Robot > Download Firmware > Master CPU Firmware and select "Standard File" to download the latest Master CPU Firmware to your robot.
Master.png


A Download Progress window will appear and begin the download process.
Download master.png


When the window closes, the firmware download is complete. A ROBOTC Message will appear, and remind you to also download the ROBOTC Firmware.
Master success.png


Note: You only need to download the Master CPU Firmware once, when you first start using a VEX Cortex with ROBOTC, or when you upgrade to a newer version of ROBOTC. Switching programs or download methods does not require a re-download.

Once the Master CPU Firmware finishes downloading, the Cortex will be recognized as a new device, and Windows may ask you to verify the software installation for the Cortex. Press Continue or Continue Anyway to complete the installation.
New hw.png


Note: Once the device driver installation is complete, you should no longer need Administrative privileges on your computer; you should be able to download Master CPU Firmware, ROBOTC firmware, and ROBOTC programs in a permissions-restricted account. Only future updates to ROBOTC and theVEX Cortex Device Driver will require Administrative privileges.



Download ROBOTC Firmware

The ROBOTC Firmware enables you to download ROBOTC programs to your robot and utilize the various debugger windows.

Prerequisites:

  • Connect the Cortex to your computer (over VEXnet or USB) and power it on
  • Make sure VEX 2.0 Cortex is selected as the Platform Type


Go to Robot > Download Firmware > ROBOTC Firmware and select "Standard File" to download the ROBOTC Firmware to your robot.
Tut-dl-robotc-fw-vex2.png


A Download Progress window will appear and begin the download process.
Robotc download-vex2-tut.png


Once the Download Progress window closes, the ROBOTC Firmware download is complete. Your VEX Cortex is now ready to be programmed in ROBOTC over the USB A-to-A cable.
Robotc success.png


Note: You only need to download the ROBOTC Firmware once, when you first start using a VEX Cortex with ROBOTC, or when you upgrade to a newer version of ROBOTC. You do not need to re-download the ROBOTC firmware every time you want to download code.

If you are also using the VEXnet Joysticks, you will need to update its firmware and establish a wireless VEXnet link between it and the Cortex.


Download VEXnet Joystick Firmware

The VEXnet Joystick includes two joysticks (each having an X and Y-axis), 8 buttons on the front, and 4 additional trigger buttons on the top. Inside, there is also 3-Axis accelerometer, capable of providing X-Y-Z acceleration values. Values from the joysticks, buttons, and accelerometer are sent as a constant stream of information over VEXnet to the robot, enabling a user to control the robot in real-time.

You will need to update the firmware on the VEXnet Joystick to ensure that it will operates correctly.

Placing your VEXnet Joystick in "Bootload" mode is necessary before downloading the VEXnet Joystick Firmware. Keep the VEXnet Joystick powered OFF. The process of placing your VEXnet Joystick in Bootload mode is easier if you start by plugging one end of the USB A-to-A cable into the device. Keep the VEXnet Joystick turned OFF, and do not plug the other end of the USB A-to-A cable in yet.
Joy01.jpg


Use a paperclip to press and hold in the CONFIG button on the front of the VEXnet Joystick.
Joy02.JPG


Keeping the CONFIG button pressed in, connect the other end of the USB A-to-A cable to your computer.
Joy03.JPG


After a few seconds, release the CONFIG button. The ROBOT and GAME lights will blink green.
Joy04.JPG


Downloading VEXnet Joystick Firmware
Go to Robot > Download Firmware > VEXnet Joystick Firmware and select "Standard File" to download the latest VEXnet Joystick Firmware to the controller.
Joystick.png


A Download Progress window will appear and begin the download process.
Download master.png


When the window closes, the firmware download is complete.
Joysticksuccess.png


Note: You only need to download the VEXnet Joystick Firmware once, when you first start using it with ROBOTC, or when you upgrade to a newer version of ROBOTC.


Setting up VEXnet Communication

In this section, you will learn how to pair a VEX Cortex Microcontroller to a VEXnet Remote Control, allowing them to communicate over VEXnet. This section assumes that you have already updated the master firmware on the VEX Cortex and VEXnet Remote Control. VEXnet is an 802.11 WiFi communication system between the VEX Cortex and VEXnet Remote Control.

VEXnet features include:

  • Easy to connect (No IP addresses, MAC addresses, passwords, or special security modes)
  • Multiple layers of security built-in and always on
  • No wireless access point needed; each VEXnet pair makes its own private network
  • Hundreds of robots can operate at once; every VEXnet robot has a hidden unique ID
  • Optional tether for wired communication
  • Optional 9V battery backup to maintain wireless link during a main 7.2V power loss
  • LED scheme displays the status of the Robot, VEXnet link, and Game (Competition Mode)


1. Begin by connecting both the Cortex and VEXnet Remote Control to charged batteries.


1a. Connect a 7.2V robot battery to the Cortex, but do not power it ON.
SS-2010-10-13 17.05.00.png


1b. Remove the battery cover plate on the remote control. Install 6 AAA batteries, and replace the battery cover plate. Do not power the remote control ON.
SS-2010-10-13 17.05.16.png


2. Tether the USB port on the VEXnet Remote Control to the USB port on the Cortex using a USB A-to-A cable.


2a. Plug one end of the USB A-to-A cable into the USB port on the VEXnet Remote Control.
SS-2010-10-13 17.05.30.png


2b. Plug the other end of the USB A-to-A cable into the USB port on the VEX Cortex.
SS-2010-10-13 17.05.48.png


3. Power the Cortex ON. After a few seconds, ROBOT and VEXnet LEDs will blink green, indicating that the Cortex and VEXnet Remote Control have successfully paired


3a. Turn the Cortex ON
SS-2010-10-13 17.07.00.png


3b.The ROBOT and VEXnet LEDs will blink green once the Cortex and VEXnet Remote Control have successfully paired. The GAME LED will also blink green if a program is stored on your Cortex.
DSCF8674.jpg


4. Turn the Cortex OFF.
SS-2010-10-13 17.06.15.png


5. Remove the USB A-to-A cable from the VEXnet Remote Control and Cortex.
SS-2010-10-13 17.06.42.png


6. Insert VEXnet USB Keys into both the VEXnet Remote Control and Cortex.
DSCF8692.jpg


Note: It does not matter which VEXnet USB Key you insert into the Cortex versus the VEXnet Remote Control. Pairing the Cortex and VEXnet Remote Control establishes the link; the VEXnet USB Keys act as antennas for the link.

7. Power the Cortex and Remote Control ON. After roughly 15 seconds, the ROBOT and VEXnet LED’s will blink green, indicating that the VEXnet communication link has been established.


7a. Turn the Cortex ON
SS-2010-10-13 17.07.00.png


7b. Turn the VEXnet Remote Control ON
SS-2010-10-13 17.07.19.png


7c. After roughly 15 seconds, the ROBOT and VEXnet status LEDs will start blinking green. With the VEXnet link established, you should power OFF your Cortex and VEXnet Remote Control to preserve battery.
SS-2010-10-13 17.07.33.png


Troubleshooting

Issue: Slow blinking green ROBOT light on the Cortex Solution: Download the Cortex Master Firmware using ROBOTC.

Issue: Slow blinking ROBOT green light on the VEXnet Remote Control Solution: Push and hold CONFIG button for about 5 seconds, until the status LEDs starts blinking green. Release it, wait for another 5 seconds, and then turn the VEXnet Remote Control OFF and then back ON. If that fails, download the VEXnet Joystick Firmware using ROBOTC.

Issue: Yellow or red ROBOT light on the Cortex Solution: Make sure you are using fully charged Robot battery.

Issue: Yellow or red ROBOT light on the VEXnet Remote Control, even though they are both green on the Cortex. Solution: Power cycle both the VEXnet Remote Control and CORTEX.


VEXnet Remote Control Calibration

This document contains the procedure for calibrating the VEXnet Remote Control joysticks. Some steps are time-sensitive, so it’s recommended that you read through the instructions once before following along.

The VEXnet Remote Control includes two joysticks (each having an X and Y-axis), 8 buttons on the front, and 4 additional trigger buttons on the top. Inside, there is also 3-Axis accelerometer, capable of providing X-Y-Z acceleration values. Values from the joysticks, buttons, and accelerometer are sent as a constant stream of information over VEXnet to the robot, enabling a user to control the robot in real-time. To ensure that the VEXnet Remote Control sends out accurate joystick values, the joysticks must be calibrated before their first use, and after any firmware updates are applied to the remote control.

You will need:

  • A VEXnet Remote Control with batteries
  • A VEX Cortex with robot battery
  • A small Allen wrench (1/16” or smaller) or paper clip


1. Power on the VEXnet Remote Control and VEX Cortex. Allow them to sync over VEXnet.
SS-2010-10-13 15.10.44.png


2. Press and hold the 6U trigger button.
SS-2010-10-13 15.12.05.png


3. While keeping the 6U trigger button pressed in, use your Allen wrench or paper clip to press in the internal CONFIG button until the JOYSTICK LED blinks red and green.


3a. While still pressing in the 6U trigger button, use an Allen wrench or paper clip to press in the CONFIG button.
SS-2010-10-13 15.12.19.png


3b. Once the JOYSTICK LED begins to blink red and green, release both the 6U and CONFIG buttons.
SS-2010-10-13 15.12.33.png


Important - Time Sensitive Instructions
There is a 10 second time limit to complete steps 4 and 5. If they are not completed in time, the calibration process will timeout and the VEXnet LED will blink red briefly.

4. Move both joysticks through their full ranges of motion. When the remote control detects that the joysticks have been fully rotated, the JOYSTICK LED stops blinking red and green, and switches to a solid green.

4a. Move the joysticks through their full ranges of motion - Up, Down, Left, Right, and in a circle.
SS-2010-10-13 15.12.49.png


4b. Once the remote control detects that the joysticks have been fully rotated, the JOYSTICK LED switches to solid green, indicating that you can stop moving the joysticks.
SS-2010-10-13 15.13.09.png


5. Press the 8U button to save the joystick calibration on your remote control. The JOYSTICK LED will blink green for a few seconds.
SS-2010-10-13 15.13.27.png


Additional Information

  • If the calibration is not saved, the process will timeout after 10 seconds and the VEXnet LED will blink red.
  • To cancel a calibration, press the 7U button. The calibration process will be discontinued and the VEXnet LED will blink red.
  • Once the calibration is discontinued or saved, all of the remote control LEDs will resume their normal function.
  • The joysticks must be calibrated any time the firmware on the remote control is downloaded.


Sample Programs

One of the best ways to start working with ROBOTC and learning how to program is to look at already developed programs. ROBOTC comes with over 75 sample programs to help the programmer learn how to program their robotics controllers.

To access these sample programs, open the "Sample Programs" folder by going to the "File" menu and selecting "Open Sample Program."
Sampleprograms menu.png


Inside of the sample programs folder, there are a number of samples organized by topic. ROBOTC will automatically open the sample programs folder of the platform you currently have selected.
Sampleprogram files.png


Just double click on one of the sample programs to open it up and learn more about ROBOTC programming.


Compiling and Downloading

ROBOTC is considered to be an "Integrated Development Environment." This means that ROBOTC has a custom text editor for developing code that will assist the programmer by color coding different potions of code to differentiate between integers, reserved words, functions and parameters.

SS-2010-10-14 11.33.22.png


ROBOTC also contains a compiler for turning this user generated code in a byte-code language that the different controller platforms can understand. To run the compiler, access the compile function from the "Robot" menu.
SS-2010-10-14 11.33.57.png


When the compiler runs, ROBOTC will check your program for errors and warnings that would cause your program to not run properly on the robot. Rather than send this broken code to your robot, ROBOTC will inform you of these errors so they can be corrected.

In the example below:

  • The reserved word 'motor' was incorrectly typed as 'Motor', generating a warning. A warning tells the user that they've created an error, but ROBOTC is able to correct this error itself when the program is sent to the controller. A program with warning will compile successfully, but users should use good programming practice to avoid warnings. Warnings are denoted by a yellow "X".
  • The code on line 5 is missing a semicolon, which is generating an error. An error will prevent the program from being sent to the controller. ROBOTC will do its best to explain what the error to assist the user. In this example, ROBOTC is informing the user they left a semicolon off a line of their program which is preventing the program from being compiled. Errors are denoted by a red "X".

SS-2010-10-14 11.34.58.png


Before downloading code to your robot, you should verify that the "VEX Cortex Download Method" matches your setup.
SS-2010-10-14 11.35.39.png


Option 1: Download Using VEXnet or USB
With this option selected, ROBOTC will download ROBOTC firmware and programs to your Cortex using a VEXnet or USB connection. In this mode, when the Cortex is powered ON it will look for a VEXnet or USB connection before running your program. (The Communication Port > Automatic Selection option in the ROBOTC Preferences should be selected if you plan on switching between VEXnet and USB as your download method.)

Option 2: Download Using USB Only
With this option selected, ROBOTC will download firmware and programs to your Cortex using only the USB connection. In this mode, when the Cortex is powered ON it will immediately run your program. This option is NOT recommended if you are using the VEXnet Joysticks to download to the Cortex, or remotely control it.

Option 3: Download for Competition (VEXnet)
This option disables the ROBOTC debugger, and is not recommended for classroom use.

Note: Switching between Download Modes may require you to power cycle your Cortex before it takes effect.

Once your program has successfully compiled and you've selected the appropriate Download Method, you can send the program to the controller by clicking the "Compile and Download Program" option under the "Robot" menu. Note: Your robot must be turned on and connected to the computer before you can download a program.
SS-2010-10-14 11.36.04.png


Once the download starts, a "Download Progress" bar will appear. This bar will show the status of the transfer of the compiled byte-code to the controller.
SS-2010-10-13 14.05.46.png


Once the download finishes, ROBOTC's built in debugger will be launched. There will be a number of windows that launch, such as the Global Variables window, the Devices window and the Program Debug window. You can start your programs execution by clicking the "Start" button on the "Program Debug" window. Learn more about these windows in the 'Debugger' section of the help file.
Compiler.png