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Thread: Getting ODB2 (OBD-II) scanner working in Linux

  1. #1
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    Getting ODB2 (OBD-II) scanner working in Linux

    I have a cheap USB ODB2 scanner that I got off ebay straight from Hong Kong. I has no brand or any other info, so I'm not sure what kind of chip it has. Do nghost and other Linux OBD2 software usually have the drivers for most OBD2 scanners included, or do you need to get them separate? If they're separate, how would I go about finding the drivers for my scanner?

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    Constant Bitrate tdb30_'s Avatar
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    I might be mistaken, but I think the chips that linux needs to deal with isn't the obd-II chips, but rather the serial port chip or serial to usb chip.

    How does your scanner hook up to your computer, is it usb or serial?

    chances are pretty good if it is usb you should get a /dev/ttyUSBx where x is generally 0 but could be another number if you have other usb serial devices like gps.

  3. #3
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    Bugbyte's Avatar
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    I think most of the inexpensive OBD cables will be ELM knockoffs. They will usually need a USB to serial port driver. Not really sure which one that is, though. Maybe FTDI?

    Then, they appear as a device on the com port.
    Quote Originally Posted by ghettocruzer View Post
    I was gung ho on building a PC [until] just recently. However, between my new phone having internet and GPS and all...and this kit...Im starting to have trouble justfiying it haha.
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    It's USB and when I plug it in, a device gets added:
    /dev/ttyUSB0
    So how would I install this USB to serial driver?

    Slightly off topic question: What are considered to be the best OBD2 software packages in Linux these days?

  5. #5
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    Oops, I was thinking of windows. If it shows up in the /dev folder, then I believe it is recognized. You'll just have to point the software to it.
    Quote Originally Posted by ghettocruzer View Post
    I was gung ho on building a PC [until] just recently. However, between my new phone having internet and GPS and all...and this kit...Im starting to have trouble justfiying it haha.
    Want to:
    -Find out about the new iBug iPad install?
    -Find out about carPC's in just 5 minutes? View the Car PC 101 video

  6. #6
    Constant Bitrate tdb30_'s Avatar
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    Yeah if it created the /dev/ttyUSB file then your drivers are already installed. As the poster above pointed out, you just need to point your software to /dev/ttyUSB0

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