The first thing you will need to do is to download the latest release of the Arduino IDE. You will need to be using version 1.6.4 or higher for this guide.
After you have downloaded and installed v1.6.4, you will need to start the IDE and navigate to the Preferences menu. You can access it from the File menu in Windows or Linux, or the Arduino menu on OS X.
A dialog will pop up just like the one shown below.
We will be adding a URL to the new Additional Boards Manager URLs option. The list of URLs is comma separated, and you will only have to add each URL once. New Adafruit boards and updates to existing boards will automatically be picked up by the Board Manager each time it is opened. The URLs point to index files that the Board Manager uses to build the list of available & installed boards.
To find the most up to date list of URLs you can add, you can visit the list of third party board URLs on the Arduino IDE wiki. We will only need to add one URL to the IDE in this example, but you can add multiple URLS by separating them with commas. Copy and paste the link below into the Additional Boards Manager URLs option in the Arduino IDE preferences.
Here's a short description of each of the Adafruit supplied packages that will be available in the Board Manager when you add the URL:
- Adafruit AVR Boards - Includes support for Flora, Gemma, Feather 32u4, Trinket, & Trinket Pro.
- Adafruit SAMD Boards - Includes support for Feather M0
- Arduino Leonardo & Micro MIDI-USB - This adds MIDI over USB support for the Flora, Feather 32u4, Micro and Leonardo using the arcore project.
If you have multiple boards you want to support, say ESP8266 and Adafruit, have both URLs in the text box separated by a comma (,)
Once done click OK to save the new preference settings. Next we will look at installing boards with the Board Manager.