Install Arm GNU Toolchain on Ubuntu 22.04

Install Arm GNU Toolchain on Ubuntu 22.04

The Arm GNU toolchain (previously known as GNU Arm Embedded toolchain) is a collection of packages such as GCC (GNU Compiler Collection), Binutils, GDB, and other. It is used for embedded systems software development. This toolchain targets the 32-bit ARM Cortex-A, ARM Cortex-M, and ARN Cortex-R processor families.

This tutorial shows how to install Arm GNU toolchain on Ubuntu 22.04.

Install toolchain

There is no straightforward way to determine the latest version of toolchain via command line. So download web page and extract the latest version of toolchain as follows:

ARM_TOOLCHAIN_VERSION=$(curl -s | grep -Po '<h4>Version \K.+(?=</h4>)')

Next, download archive file from official website:

curl -Lo gcc-arm-none-eabi.tar.xz "${ARM_TOOLCHAIN_VERSION}/binrel/arm-gnu-toolchain-${ARM_TOOLCHAIN_VERSION}-x86_64-arm-none-eabi.tar.xz"

Create a new directory to store toolchain files:

sudo mkdir /opt/gcc-arm-none-eabi

Extract toolchain files to specified directory:

sudo tar xf gcc-arm-none-eabi.tar.xz --strip-components=1 -C /opt/gcc-arm-none-eabi

Add /opt/gcc-arm-none-eabi/bin directory to the PATH environment variable.

echo 'export PATH=$PATH:/opt/gcc-arm-none-eabi/bin' | sudo tee -a /etc/profile.d/

To make changes to take effect, logout and login to your system or run the following command to apply the changes immediately:

source /etc/profile

We can check version of compilers:

arm-none-eabi-gcc --version
arm-none-eabi-g++ --version

Remove unnecessary archive file:

rm -rf gcc-arm-none-eabi.tar.xz

Testing toolchain

Create a main.c file:

nano main.c

Add the following code:

#include <stdio.h>

int main() {
    printf("Hello world\n");

    return 0;

Compile a code:

arm-none-eabi-gcc --specs=rdimon.specs main.c -o test

The file command can be used to verify that executable file is for ARM architecture.

file test


test: ELF 32-bit LSB executable, ARM, EABI5 version 1 (SYSV), statically linked, with debug_info, not stripped

Uninstall toolchain

If you want to completely remove GNU Arm Embedded toolchain, delete the installation directory:

sudo rm -rf /opt/gcc-arm-none-eabi

Remove file that is used to set environment variable:

sudo rm -rf /etc/profile.d/

GNU Debugger (GDB) dependencies

Read this section if you want to use GNU Debugger (GDB). It requires installing additional dependencies.

  • If you are receiving an error about missing library:
arm-none-eabi-gdb: error while loading shared libraries: cannot open shared object file: No such file or directory

Then install libncursesw5 package:

sudo apt install -y libncursesw5
  • On Linux, Arm GNU toolchain provides GDB with Python support. It requires installation of Python 3.8. If you are receiving an error regarding Python, such as:
Could not find platform independent libraries <prefix>
Could not find platform dependent libraries <exec_prefix>
Consider setting $PYTHONHOME to <prefix>[:<exec_prefix>]
Python path configuration:
  PYTHONHOME = (not set)
  PYTHONPATH = (not set)
Fatal Python error: init_fs_encoding: failed to get the Python codec of the filesystem encoding
Python runtime state: core initialized
ModuleNotFoundError: No module named 'encodings'

Then install Python 3.8 using the separate post. See section "Install older versions".

When installation finished, check GDB version:

arm-none-eabi-gdb --version

If everything installed successfully, you will get output similar to the following:

GNU gdb (Arm GNU Toolchain 12.2.MPACBTI-Bet1 (Build arm-12-mpacbti.16))
Copyright (C) 2022 Free Software Foundation, Inc.
License GPLv3+: GNU GPL version 3 or later <>
This is free software: you are free to change and redistribute it.
There is NO WARRANTY, to the extent permitted by law.

The 15 Comments Found

  1. Avatar
    Gin Reply

    sudo mkdir /opt/gcc-arm-none-eabi
    Can I change directory this extract file to the Home folder and PATH environment variable in this folder without any error??
    Thank you so much for your help

    • Avatar
      lindevs Reply

      There are no requirements for installation directory. So, you can extract archive file to home directory and set corresponding PATH environment variable.

  2. Avatar
    armin Reply

    You are doing a bit more than only extend the PATH variable.
    You are echoing the command to extend the PATH variable onto stdin then capture it via tee and put it (append it) into a file called which resides in the path /etc/profile.d/.

    This enables you to have the PATH variable dynamically set on each system boot up by the system's profile mechanism.

  3. Avatar
    Mark Reply

    Thanks for this tutorial. It helped me install one of ARM's toolchains on GitHub Actions. Wanted to show my appreciation. Will be checking out more of your content. Cheers.

  4. Avatar
    Sean Reply

    It seems that you need additional step: to "export ARM_TOOLCHAIN_VERSION=12.2.Rel1" or whatever version.
    Thanks for the very detailed steps.

    • Avatar
      lindevs Reply

      The tutorial provides a command which downloads the web page, extracts the latest version of toolchain and assigns version to the ARM_TOOLCHAIN_VERSION variable. Of course, version can be specified manually like you did.

  5. Avatar
    ngdl Reply

    Hi, can I ask a question?
    This toolchain is used to developing apps on arm, right? I will not build again?

    • Avatar
      lindevs Reply

      Arm GNU Toolchain is a collection of tools that are used to create applications for ARM-based devices such as Raspberry Pi. Once you have built your application using the toolchain, you can run it on your ARM-based device.

  6. Avatar
    syddo Reply

    Hi! This article really helped me today. thanks for sharing!

    any tips on how to configure vscode to do gdb debugging on ARM embedded code?

    • Avatar
      lindevs Reply

      I'm glad to hear that the article assisted you in setting up the Arm GNU Toolchain on your system.

      Visual Studio Code offers a range of extensions designed to enhance the debugging capabilities for embedded systems based on ARM Cortex-M. To access these extensions, you can explore the official Visual Studio marketplace, where you'll find a selection of options. Take the time to review the descriptions of each extension to understand how to configure and utilize the debugging features effectively.

  7. Avatar
    Ram Reply

    I followed the same procedure, but getting the error "/usr/bin/arm-none-eabi-gcc: No such file or directory". How to fix this issue?

    xyz:/$ which arm-none-eabi-gcc
    xyz:/$ arm-none-eabi-gcc -v
    -bash: /usr/bin/arm-none-eabi-gcc: No such file or directory
    • Avatar
      lindevs Reply

      Perhaps you forgot to add /opt/gcc-arm-none-eabi/bin directory to the PATH environment variable. Also, you need to run source command to make changes to take effect.

  8. Avatar
    Serg Reply

    If you have Ubuntu 23.10, not for you.
    Ubuntu Mantic 23.10 required libncursesw6.
    I trying install GDB from source.

    • Avatar
      lindevs Reply

      The provided instructions in the post are specifically designed for the most recent Ubuntu LTS version. In the case of other versions, as you noted, additional custom actions may be necessary.

Leave a Comment

Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published.