Use .so File With LabVIEW Real-Time or VeriStand on NI Linux RT Target

Updated Feb 2, 2021



  • LabVIEW Real-Time Module
  • C/C++ Development Tools

I have written code in C or C++ and want to use it as a .so file on my NI Linux RT target with LabVIEW or VeriStand. How can I compile my written code into a .so file?

If you want to call a function from a .so file in LabVIEW, that will be possible using a Call Library Function Node. However, the .so file will have to be compiled specifically for the real-time target you are using. This can be done from C or C++ code with a free tool, C/C++ Development Tools for NI Linux Real-Time. You can check the operating system of your Real-Time target from Real-Time Controllers and Real-Time Operating System Compatibility.

Following you find an instruction, what you have to do in order to compile your code into a .so file:
  • Install Java (Java SE 6 or greater is recommended), which you can download at the Java Download page .
  • Install C/C++ Development Tools for NI Linux Real-Time, Eclipse Edition.
  • Launch C/C++ Development Tools for NI Linux Real-Time, Eclipse Edition.
  • When prompted, select a folder in which to store Eclipse projects and click OK.
  • In the Eclipse welcome screen, select the Workbench icon on the far right to open the workbench view.
  • Create a new project in the C/C++ perspective by navigating to File>>New>>C Project and choosing a Shared Library project and the Cross GCC Toolchain
Project Setup.PNG
  • Select both Debug and Release configurations for creation
  • When prompted to configure the Cross GCC prefix and path, select the appropriate path and prefix for your NI Linux Real-Time target from the list below and displayed in the following screenshot for an Intel x64 target:
(ARM-based targets, 2013 software stack)
(ARM-based targets, 2014 and 2017 software stack) arm-nilrt-linux-gnueabi-
(Intel x64-based targets, 2014 and 2017 software stack) x86_64-nilrt-linux-
(ARM-based targets, 2013 software stack) \<National Instruments>\Eclipse\toolchain\gcc-4.4-arm\i386\bin
(ARM-based targets, 2014 software stack) \<National Instruments>\Eclipse\14.0\arm\sysroots\i686-nilrtsdk-mingw32\usr\bin\armv7a-vfp-neon-nilrt-linux-gnueabi
(ARM-based targets, 2017 software stack) C:\build\17.0\arm\sysroots\i686-nilrtsdk-mingw32\usr\bin\arm-nilrt-linux-gnueabi
(Intel x64-based targets, 2014 software stack) \<National Instruments>\Eclipse\14.0\x64\sysroots\i686-nilrtsdk-mingw32\usr\bin\x86_64-nilrt-linux
(Intel x64-based targets, 2017 software stack) C:\build\17.0\x64\sysroots\i686-nilrtsdk-mingw32\usr\bin\x86_64-nilrt-linux
  • Now import your .c file by right-clicking on your project folder and choosing Import. Here you can now choose your file and it is added to your project.
  • When completed, your Project Explorer pane should look like the screenshot below. In this example engine.c is the C File we want to compile into a .so file. If you are compiling the .so file for a Veristand model, you need to include ni_modelframework.c and ni_modelframework.h.
Files Added.PNG
  • Right-click your project in the Project Explorer tab and select Properties.
  • Select C/C++ Build in the left pane of the Properties dialog box.
  • Select Internal builder from the Builder type pull-down menu for the Debug configuration.
  • Select Settings under C/C++ Build in the left pane of the Properties dialog box.
  • Select Miscellaneous under Cross GCC Compiler in the Tool Settings tab. In the Other flags text box, add a space after the existing text and enter one of the following values:
(ARM-based targets, 2017 software stack) --sysroot=C:\build\17.0\arm\sysroots\cortexa9-vfpv3-nilrt-linux-gnueabi
(Intel x64-based targets, 2017 software stack) --sysroot=C:\build\17.0\x64\sysroots\core2-64-nilrt-linux
  • Select Miscellaneous under Cross GCC Linker in the Tool Settings tab and enter one of the following values into the Linker flags text box:
(ARM-based targets, 2017 software stack) --sysroot=C:\build\17.0\arm\sysroots\cortexa9-vfpv3-nilrt-linux-gnueabi
(Intel x64-based targets, 2017 software stack) --sysroot=C:\build\17.0\x64\sysroots\core2-64-nilrt-linux
  • Navigate to C/C++ General>>Paths and Symbols in the Project Properties window. Go there to the Symbols tab and select Add. Enter a symbol of Name kNIOSLinux , press OK and afterwards Apply.
  • In the project properties window, choose C/C++ Build>>Settings and then go the Tool Settings>>Cross GCC Compiler>>Miscellaneous section. Select the Position Independent Code option and press Apply.
  • Still in C/C++ Build>>Settings, go the Tool Settings>>Cross G++ Compiler>>Miscellaneous section. Select the Position Independent Code option too and press Apply.
  • Go the Error Parsers tab. Make sure that only the GNU Assembler Error Parser, GNU gmake Error Parser 7.0, and the GNU Linker Error Parser options are selected and press Apply:
error parsers.PNG
  • Go to C/C++ Build>>Settings>>Cross GCC Compiler and add the compiler command -fvisibility=protected to instruct GCC to set the symbol visibility to protected. Press Apply and afterwards OK to close the Properties window.
  • Select Project>>Build Project in the menu bar in order to build an executable of your project.
If you are using LabVIEW, the resulting .so file must be placed in a directory on the Linux RT target with proper permissions via FTP or WebDAV and referred to in the LabVIEW code with the correct file path on the target.
If you are using VeriStand, the .so model will be copied to the Linux RT target from host PC during the deployment of VeriStand project.