How To Use Can In Linux

Linux, a powerful open-source Unix-like operating system, is enriched with a plethora of commands that allow users to perform an array of operations. One such command that we are going to delve into in this blog post is the can command. However, please note that there is no direct ‘can’ command in Linux. ‘can’ is often used as an abbreviation for certain operations, the most common one being the Controller Area Network (CAN) interface.

The Controller Area Network

The Controller Area Network (CAN) interface is a standard designed to allow microcontrollers and devices to communicate with each other’s applications without a host computer. The CAN interface is commonly used in automotive applications, allowing various in-vehicle systems to communicate with each other.

Using SocketCAN

SocketCAN, a set of open-source CAN drivers and a networking stack, is contributed by Volkswagen Research to the Linux kernel. In Linux, you can use SocketCAN to access the CAN interface.

Setting up a virtual CAN interface

You can set up a virtual CAN interface using the following commands:

sudo modprobe vcan
sudo ip link add dev vcan0 type vcan
sudo ip link set up vcan0

The first line loads the vcan module, the second one creates the virtual CAN interface, and the third one sets up the CAN interface.

Using cansend and candump

With the virtual CAN interface set up, you can use cansend and candump.

cansend allows you to send a single frame to the CAN bus. For example:

cansend vcan0 123#abcd

This command will send a frame with identifier 123 and data abcd to the CAN bus vcan0.

candump allows you to display the data being sent on the CAN bus. For example:

candump vcan0

While the above command is running, any data sent on CAN bus vcan0 will be displayed.

With these tools and techniques, you can effectively use the CAN interface for your projects in Linux. As you uncover more about Linux, you’ll realize its extensive capabilities and potential in providing solutions to various technical needs.

Happy exploring!