The Mac Deploy Stick Automaton is used to automate keystrokes for fast and easy setup of a large number of Macs. The hardware is an Arduino Micro or compatible device, and the firmware that runs on it is programmed by the Mac Deploy Stick App. Once the Arduino Micro has been programmed, it can be configured.
We are now offering all the parts needed as a bundle. Visit Mac Deploy Stick bundle to learn more.
We recommend the following hardware for creating a Mac Deploy Stick Automaton:
Arduino Micro (Arduino, $19.99). The Arduino Micro is the smallest, least expensive Arduino that uses the 32u4 ARM processor. This processor has USB built in, which is important to act as a keyboard in a pre-boot environment. You can purchase it with or without header pins and will need a micro USB cable that supports both power and data (usually the thicker ones).
Adafruit ItsyBitsy 32u4 – 5V (Adafruit, $9.95)
The ItsyBitsy uses the same ARM processor as the Arduino Micro and works well with Mac Deploy Stick. It has a programming button like the Arduino Micro, but you need to press it two times quickly to enter programming mode.
We have created an enclosure for the ItsyBitsy that can be printed on any 3D printer. See Thingiverse for the files to download and print.
The USB cable must have the correct connectors on both ends and support both data and power. Depending on your Mac, you may a USB-C or a USB-A end for the computer. For the Automaton side, you will need a micro-USB connector.