Processing programming language – on Ubuntu Netbook Remix Karmic

I have recently been having a go with the Processing programming language.

You can see my first attempt in the Interactive Diode circuit demonstration – Processing / Java applet on

I really do like the language. It was ideally suited to the applet that I have created and I hope to add a few more soon.

I did come across a problem running on Ubuntu Netbook Remix 9.10 (Karmic). It only seamed to apply to my netbook (it worked fine in a VM running UNR 9.10), so I’m guessing it may be a problem with Java and / or the video driver on the netbook. The problem was that when running a Windowed application compiled in the Processing Development Environment (PDE), but not an applet or fullscreen app, then X would restart leaving me back at the login prompt.

I tried the Ubuntu Forums: Solved – Re: Processing restarts X on UNR Karmic, but with no response I also posed to the Processing bug tracking tool.

The response directed me at a FAQ page – which I had seen before, but this time I noticed that Processing required Java 1.5, but I’d got 1.6 installed. My other machines also had 1.6 installed and worked fine, but I tried installing 1.5 and it now works fine.

If you find similar problems here are the steps I took to get Processing working:

To get it working I had to install JDK 1.5 and then link to that instead. You have to jump through a few hoops to get to the appropriate download page on the Java site which I found at:

I then had to register to get a link to actually download the JDK (note must be JDK – JRE is not sufficient).

Once downloaded I ran the .bin file as root into the /opt directory. Then deleted the java directory in processing and replaced it with the following symlink:
sudo ln -s /opt/jdk1.5.0_21/ /opt/processing-1.0.9/java

There is now a new pre-release version of Processing – released this weekend, so I’ll give that a go and see if that works better with 1.6.

It looks like the future will see Processing for the Android smart phone which sounds exciting as well.