Zynthian Emulator Setup for Development
The developing+testing cycle for the Zynthian UI can be slow if you have to test everytime in a real Zynthian Box. Using your Zynthian Box as your development environment is not optimal, neither copying & testing in the Zynthian Box all the time. You can access the files remotely, or use a CLI editor like vi, but the SD card is not a reliable media when you make changes all the time and you have the risk or corrupting the filesystem and losing data.
For addressing these problems, i have created a Zynthian Emulation Environment that allows to run the Zynthian UI in a Linux Desktop/Laptop. It emulates the RBPi GPIO (wiringPiEmu wrapper) and the rotary encoders (using POSIX signals), so you run the Zynthian UI code without modifications using a special Wiring Layout.
So you only need to create the right directory structure and compile/install the needed packages for running Zynthin UI. This includes libraries, tools, synth engines, plugins, etc.
Installation / Setup:
There are 2 different setup scripts for 2 flavours of Linux distributions:
These scripts can help you to setup your system, but certainly the scripts are out-dated and you may need to tweak a little bit. I recommend to run line by line from the terminal, trying to understand what you do. You can use the RBPi setup script as a reference, as it will be up-to-date.
Open 3 terminals. Of course, you can use less, but i prefer to use separate terminals:
Terminal 1: Jack Start & Midi Connections
You would need to configure your jackd system if it's not already done. You could test that it's working using some of the synth engines you already have installed.
Terminal 2: Alsa => Jack MIDI bridge
Perhaps you want to add the "a2jmidid -e" command to your qjackctl setup and avoid this terminal ;-)
Terminal 3: Emulator
cd zynthian cd zynthian-emuface ./zynthian_emuface.py
If you set the environment variable "ZYNTHIANX" like this:
Zynthian UI will open the native engine GUI when available.