About mBlock 5 Block-Based Editor

Foreword

Thank you for choosing mBlock 5!

mBlock 5 is designed for the Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics (STEAM) education. Inspired by Scratch 3.0, it supports both graphical and textual programming languages. Currently, more than 10 million people are using it to learn programming, create their own projects, and share their creations. With mBlock 5, you can design engaging stories, games, and animations, and program devices such as Makeblock robots and micro:bit. On mBlock 5, you can switch to the Python mode simply with one-click. In addition, mBlock 5 integrates cutting-edge technologies including Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Internet of Things (IoT).

This document describes basic operations, provides software and hardware programming guidelines, and shares tutorials and example programs, which helps you explore the functions of mBlock 5 and thus use mBlock 5 to learn or teach programming.

What Is mBlock 5?

mBlock 5 is designed for the Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics (STEAM) education. Inspired by Scratch 3.0, it supports both graphical and textual programming languages. Currently, more than 10 million people are using it to learn programming, create their own projects, and share their creations. With mBlock 5, you can design engaging stories, games, and animations, and program devices such as Makeblock robots and microbit. On mBlock 5, you can switch to the Python mode simply with one-click. In addition, mBlock 5 integrates cutting-edge technologies including Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Internet of Things (IoT).

Software versions

Currently, the following versions are available:

  • For PCs (software required): Visit
  • Web version (no software required): https://ide.mblock.cc/
  • For Android and iOS: Search for mBlock on any app store to download it

By signing in to mBlock 5, you can have your projects automatically stored in the cloud. Try synchronizing your projects across devices (such as PCs and mobile devices) now!

Get Started with mBlock 5

mBlock 5 can be used on multiple platforms. This section describes how to download the PC and mobile clients and how to get started with it on the web.

Official website

https://mblock.makeblock.com

Computers

mBlock 5 can run on Windows and Mac operating systems (OSs). You can download and install mBlock 5 on your PC to have fun with programming.

OS requirements

Windows 7.0 or later; Mac OS X or later

Quick installation

1. Visit https://www.mblock.cc/en-us/download and download the PC client to your PC.

2. Install the mBlock 5 client

Windows

(1) Double-click the installation file and follow the installation wizard.

(2) After the installation is complete, the mBlock 5 icon is displayed on desktop.

macOS

(1) Open the installation file and follow the installation wizard.

(2) After the installation is complete, the mBlock 5 icon is displayed on the launchpad and taskbar in the upper right corner.

In macOS 10.15 or later systems, a warning message may be displayed after you double-click the installation package. You can install mBlock 5 in one of the following ways:

Option 1:

1. Click OK.

2. Choose System Preferences > Security & Privacy.

3. Click Open Anyway.

4. Start the mBlock 5 installation process.

Option 2:

1. Right-click the installation package and choose Open.

2. Click Open.

3. Start the mBlock 5 installation process.

Web Browsers (mLink 2 Required)

You can also use mBlock 5 on the web without downloading it.

mBlock 5 on the web

To connect a device to mBlock 5 on the web, you need to install mLink first.

Quick start guide of mLink 2

Preparation for the installation
  • PC system: Windows 7 or later (64-bit systems recommended); macOS 10.10 or later; 64-bit Linux
  • Browser: Chrome recommended
  • mBlock 5 on the web: https://ide.mblock.cc
  • Devices supported: CyberPi, Bluetooth Controller, Codey Rocky, HaloCode, mBot, MotionBlock, Neuron, mBot Ranger, Ultimate 2.0, Arduino Uno, Arduino Mega2560, Nova Pi, MegaPi Pro

1. Download mLink at this link: Download mLink

2. Choose the operating system you are using on your computer.

Windows

1.. Open the downloaded .exe file, and click “Yes” at the User Account Control pop-up.

2.. The installation will start automatically.

3.. A pop-up will be shown during the installation, which indicates the installation of the driver CH341. This driver is used for communication via USB ports between computers and devices. Click help button to know more about it. Click “Install” to install the driver.

It is essential to install this driver, otherwise mBlock will not recognize and communicate with any hardware devices.

Close this window of driver installation, the installation of mLink will continue until it is finished.

4.. After the installation is complete, the mLink icon is displayed on the desktop and the toolbar in lower right corner.

5.. Run mLink 2, you will be able to see the operation window of mLink 2.

macOS

1.. Download and run the installation package.

2. Open the installation file and follow the installation wizard.

3. After the installation is complete, the mLink icon is displayed on the launchpad and the taskbar in the upper right corner.

In macOS 10.15 or later systems, a warning message may be displayed after you double-click the installation package. You can install mLink in one of the following ways:

Option 1:

1. Click OK.

2. Choose System Preferences > Security & Privacy.

3. Click Open Anyway.

4. Start the mLink installation process.

Option 2:

1. Right-click the installation package and choose Open.

2. Click Open.

3. Start the mLink installation process.

Linux

1. Download mLink.

Note: Only 64-bit Linux OS is supported.

2. Install mLink through command lines.

Install .rpm on Red Hat, Fedora, SUSE, CentOS

(1) Open Terminal, enter the following command, and press Enter:

sudo rpm -ivh --force mLink-1.2.0-1.el7.x86_64.rpm

(2) Enter the following command to start the program:

sudo mblock-mlink start

Note: Do not close Terminal After opening the program. Otherwise, the device communication is disconnected.

Enter the following command to stop the program:

sudo mblock-mlink stop

Install .deb on Debian and Ubuntu

(1) Open Terminal, enter the following command, and press Enter:

sudo dpkg -i mLink-1.2.0-amd64.deb

(2) Enter the following command to start the program:

sudo mblock-mlink start

Note: Do not close Terminal After opening the program. Otherwise, the device communication is disconnected.

Enter the following command to stop the program:

sudo mblock-mlink stop

Device connection (using Codey as an example)

1. Use a USB data cable to connect your device and PC.

2. Ensure that the device is turned on.

3. Double-click the mLink icon on the desktop to run it.

Note: If mLink runs on Windows for the first time, the following alert may be displayed. Click Allow access.

4. Visit the mBlock 5 webpage and click Connect to connect your device.

Note: COM3 is a serial port number that varies according to system and PC. Use the default port number and click Connect.

Chromebook (mLink 2 Required)

You can also use mBlock 5 on Chromebook. You can start programming after opening mBlock 5 on the web on Chromebook.

mBlock 5 on the web

To connect a device to mBlock 5 on the web, you need to install mLink first.

Install mLink through chrome web store

(1) Open mLink detail page.

(2) Click Add to Chrome, and then click Add app in the dialog box that appears.

(3) After the installation is complete, the mLink icon is displayed on the Extensions page. Ensure that mLink is toggled On.

Install mLink by downloading the CRX file

(1) Download the mLink CRX file: mLink Extension

(2) Open the Extensions page and toggle on Developer mode in the upper right corner.

(3) Drag the mLink CRX file to the Extensions page, and then click Add app in the dialog box that appears.

(4) After the installation is complete, the mLink icon is displayed on the Extensions page. Ensure that mLink is toggled On.

Connect a device

Refresh the mBlock 5 webpage and start to connect your device.

For Android and iOS

mBlock 5 can also run on mobile devices. You can search for mBlock on any app store to download and install it.

System requirements:

  • Android: 5.0 or later (ARM-based devices only)
  • iOS: 9.0 or later

Get to Know the UI

Toolbar

  1. Language: Click it to change the UI language.
  2. File: Click it to create, open, save a project, import a project from your PC, or export your project to PC.
  1. Edit: Click it to turn on/off the stage turbo mode or hide/unhide the stage.
  1. Title: Click it to set or change the title of the current project.
  1. Save: Click it to save the current project to My Projects.
  1. Publish: Cick it to publish the current project to the mBlock community.
  1. Competition: Click it to visit the website of MakeX competitions.
  1. Tutorials: Click it to view the online mBlock 5 help documents and example programs.
  1. Feedback: Click it to give your feedback to us. Your experience is what we care about. Any feedback is welcome.
  1. Sign up/Sign in: Click it to sign up an mBlock account or sign in. After signing in to mBlock 5, you can click it to view your projects, profile, account center, and cloud service authentication code, or click to sign out.
  1. Python Editor: Click it to enter mBlock-Python Editor.

Editing area

  • Stage area: You can present your designs, connect devices, and set your sprites and backdrops here.
  • Blocks area: You can find the blocks you need by category and color here.
  • Scripts area: You can compile your program by dragging blocks to this area.

Sign up/Sign in to mBlock 5

To save or share your projects, you need to sign in to mBlock 5. Sign in to mBlock 5 if you haven’t got an mBlock 5 account.

In addition, you can sign in to the mBlock community with the same account to share your projects or view others’ projects.

1. Click Sign up/Sign in on the right of the toolbar.

2. Follow the on-interface instructions to sign up/sign in.

Note: To sign in to the global community, you need to use a global account.

3. After signing in, you can manage or publish your projects, and use cloud services.

My Projects: Choose it to view all the projects you have saved.

Profile: Choose it to enter your homepage in the mBlock community.

Account Center: Choose it to enter the account setting page.

Cloud service authentication code: Choose it to view your cloud service authentication code, which is required for some cloud services.

Sign out: Choose it to sign out from mBlock 5.