It’s been a year since the release of Bluetooth® Mesh. During this period, a number of products have been released which support Bluetooth Mesh — from embedded chips/modules to smart lighting bulbs to BlueZ.

BlueZ is the official Linux Bluetooth protocol stack. It can be deployed on a Linux platform and provides support for the core Bluetooth layers and protocols.

BlueZ for Bluetooth Mesh

BlueZ started to support Bluetooth® Mesh in its BlueZ v5.47 release and has seen some improvements in subsequent releases, BlueZ v5.48 and BlueZ v5.49. These releases come with Bluetooth Mesh support in the form of a new meshctl tool. Using this tool, it’s possible to provision Bluetooth Mesh devices through the GATT Provisioning Bearer (PB-GATT) and configure them using the GATT Proxy protocol.

Now, you can deploy Bluetooth Mesh devices on Linux platforms, which may be from different Linux distributors, then run meshctl tool to provision and configure a Bluetooth Mesh product. This provides a new option, letting you use the Linux board as a provisioner and configuration client to establish or build up a mesh network. Meanwhile, with the help of meshctl tool, you can learn the Bluetooth Mesh provisioning and model configuration process. Both of which are the first step you confront when you start developing Bluetooth Mesh products, prototypes, or demos.

BlueZ on Raspberry Pi3

Earlier this year, I went through the process of deploying BlueZ v5.49 on my Raspberry Pi3 board. I spent two weeks looking for solutions on the internet and sharing challenges I encountered with Linux experts to make it happen.

As a Developer Relations Manager for the Bluetooth Special Interest Group (SIG), I have a responsibility to share my knowledge and experience, shorten your learning curve, and help accelerate the learning process. So, I summarized the issues, collected the corresponding information, itemized them by a reasonable working flow, verified with my team, and drafted a step-by-step guide that helps you set up BlueZ. This step-by-step guide outlines:

  • Prerequisites before getting started
  • How to configure the Raspberry Pi3 board
  • How to install dependencies for BlueZ v5.49
  • How to get BlueZ’s source code
  • How to compile and install BlueZ on Pi3
  • How to recompile the kernel to make the meshctl tool
  • How to install the recompiled kernel
  • How to verify kernel installation

After following this step-by-step guide, you will get a test and development environment on your Pi3 board and can use it to build an amazing Bluetooth® Mesh network.

Check back for future step-by-step guides, including an overview on how to use the meshctl tool.

If you’re interested in learning more about developing with Bluetooth, check out our other developer resources.

FEATURED DOWNLOAD

Bluetooth Mesh Developer Study Guide

The Bluetooth Mesh Developer Study Guide is a self-study educational resource which covers both the theory and practice of Bluetooth Mesh device firmware development.

INSTANT DOWNLOAD

Enabling the Digital Transformation of Industrial IoT with Bluetooth®

The Industrial IoT is a digital transformation process for enterprises offering them compelling abilities…

Now Available: Auracast™ Developer Best Practice Guides

When Bluetooth® LE Audio was released, it introduced broadcast audio to Bluetooth technology. This…

Automated Emergency Light Testing Through Bluetooth Mesh

During a summer internship at Nordic, I took on a project that focused on…

Coded PHYs + Advertising Coding Selection = Superior Bluetooth® Range

Bluetooth® v5.0 introduced LE Coded PHYs to extend the original range of the 1M…

Channel Sounding: Technical Overview (Pt 1)

Channel Sounding is an innovative new feature coming to Bluetooth technology, enabling distance estimation…

Bluetooth Low Energy Fundamentals

The Bluetooth Low Energy (LE) Fundamentals Course is designed to give you the knowledge…

How to Build an Auracast Assistant

This document covers the basic design principles for building an Auracast™ assistant, explaining the…

How to Build an Auracast Transmitter

This document covers the basic design principles for building an Auracast™ transmitter, explaining the…

Elevating Network Excellence: The Impact of New Bluetooth® Mesh Standard

In September 2023, the Bluetooth SIG announced Bluetooth® Mesh feature enhancements, a significant milestone…

Recently Released: New Trends for Bluetooth Device Networks新たに公開:Bluetoothデバイスネットワークの新トレンド

Though more commonly associated with audio streaming and wearable devices, Bluetooth® technology also plays…

Generic Health Sensor Design and Implementation Guide

The Generic Health Sensor (GHS) Design and Implementation Guide guides implementers of health sensor…

Silicon Labs Provides an In-Depth Look at Bluetooth Trends We Can Expect to See in 2024

A global provider of secure, intelligent wireless technology for a more connected world, Silicon…

Bringing Wireless Controls To The Epicentre Of Connectivity

This year, the time came for the lighting infrastructure at the Bluetooth SIG headquarters…

Smart Lighting And Controls Halve Energy Consumption At Campus Pitzemburg

Campus Pitzemburg has cut its energy usage by 50% thanks to smart controlled energy…

Sylvania Lets Efficiency And Control Fly High At FLYINGGROUP Antwerp

FLYINGGROUP Antwerp was looking for a solution for their meeting rooms that were more…

The Bluetooth® Low Energy Primer

Are you new to Bluetooth Low Energy? Learn about its constituent parts, features, and how it works.

Bluetooth® Technology for Linux Developers

Learn how to use the interprocess communication system D-Bus and the BlueZ APIs to create Bluetooth applications for Linux computers.

2021 Bluetooth® Market Update

Supported by updated forecasts from ABI Research and insights from several other analyst firms, the Bluetooth Market Update highlights the latest Bluetooth trends and forecasts.

Designing and Developing Bluetooth® Internet Gateways

Learn about Bluetooth® internet gateways, how to make them secure and scalable, and design and implement your own...

2020 Bluetooth® Market Update

Supported by updated forecasts from ABI Research and insights from several other analyst firms, the Bluetooth Market Update highlights the latest Bluetooth trends and forecasts.

2019 Bluetooth® Market Update

Supported by updated forecasts from ABI Research and insights from several other analyst firms, the Bluetooth Market Update highlights the latest Bluetooth trends and forecasts.

Lighting as a Platform

See how connected lighting systems are being used as a platform to enable advanced building services like wayfinding, asset tracking, and space utilization to improve the ROI of smart building investments.

Build a Smarter Building with Blue

See how Bluetooth increases reliability, reduces costs, and enhances your smart building ROI.

Overview – Bluetooth Mesh Networking

A quick overview outlining how Bluetooth mesh uniquely meets the reliability, scalability, and security requirements of commerical and industrial markets.

 Get Help