Getting Started for Software Developers

Cyclone V SoC Development Kit Setup Tutorial
Follow these step-by-step instructions to set up the Cyclone V development board, license SoC EDS Subscription Edition, and start using ARM DS-5 Altera Edition.

Download and Licensing

To begin software development for Altera SoC devices, you will need to install the SoC Embedded Design Suite.

The same installer works for both Editions. Licensing options are described on this page.

Quartus® Prime Programmer and SignalTapTM II Software

Download and install the stand-alone "Quartus Prime Programmer and SignalTap II" software. If you have already installed the full Quartus Prime or Quartus II software, skip this step. Next, install the USB BlasterTM II driver from the <install_dir>/drivers/usb-blaster-ii directory. This is necessary to use the USB Blaster II cable as a transport for the host tools.

Virtual COM Port Host Driver

The SoC development kit provides a COM port interface for handling STDIO using a FTDI USB-to-serial UART interface. Before you can use this port, you must install the appropriate host operating system (OS) driver from the FTDI Virtual COM Port (VCP) driver. If you are using a recent version of Linux on your host workstation, you may be able to skip this step.


Locate documents for SoC EDS:

Linux related documentation is available on

Community Support

For Linux and open source software support, is a community-centric portal that enhances user productivity on Altera and partners’ SoC-based boards. This portal gives you access to:

  • Technical support mail lists
  • SoC development branch via git repositories
  • Comprehensive documentation on Wiki pages
  • Linux related documents including the following:
    • Getting Started with Embedded Linux for the Altera SoC HPS
    • Altera SoC Linux BSP Release Notes
    • User Manual for Linux BSP on SoC DevKit
    • User Manual for Yocto Danny for SoC Linux
  • Project repositories to experiment with interesting ways of using Altera SoC devices and contribute your own ideas


You have access to a broad range of tools and ecosystem support through our Embedded Alliance partners.