Getting Started with the Raspberry Pi


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by narkshark » Tue Jul 17, 2012 12:59 am
chulek wrote:...what does 10-20VA mean?...


VA probably stands for VoltAmps, or Volts times Amps. It is equivalent to Watts IF the power factor of the device is exactly 1. Since that is never the case with cheap electronic components, it is accurate to say VA instead of W.
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by andylh » Tue Jul 17, 2012 11:52 pm
Here are some ways to change the configuration if you are not in the UK.

First you will probably want to change your keyboard from the default UK one used on the provided Debian image. If you do not do this you will not have the | (pipe) key available on a US style keyboard which I find important. As well as other keys also being moved around from where you expect to find them.

You change this with:-

sudo dpkg-reconfigure keyboard-configuration

you follow the screen prompts using the tab key to move around, space to select and enter to set. Look for the keyboard that suits you.

You may also want to change your time zone, here use this command line:-

sudo dpkg-reconfigure tzdata

Also for some other fine tuning:-

sudo dpkg-reconfigure console-setup

Hope this helps someone.

Andy

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by arm » Wed Jul 18, 2012 2:33 pm
be very careful when following the link "Win32DiskImager" on the download page. I clicked the download button on this link and had 5 or 6 unwanted programs installed on my computer. also closed down several open browser windows without asking. took me at least a half an hour removing the trash programs from my PC. I am disappointed that the raspberrypi org would recommend this type of link.
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by JeremyF » Wed Jul 18, 2012 8:44 pm
arm wrote:be very careful when following the link "Win32DiskImager" on the download page. I clicked the download button on this link and had 5 or 6 unwanted programs installed on my computer. also closed down several open browser windows without asking. took me at least a half an hour removing the trash programs from my PC. I am disappointed that the raspberrypi org would recommend this type of link.

The download button you clicked on was part of a spam ad. Annoying, but not really a problem with Win32DiskImager. Just with softpedia really. I don't know why the downloads page doesn't just link to https://launchpad.net/win32-image-writer/0.5/0.5 . A much safer place... :)
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by Carla » Fri Jul 20, 2012 9:53 pm
arm wrote:be very careful when following the link "Win32DiskImager" on the download page. I clicked the download button on this link and had 5 or 6 unwanted programs installed on my computer. also closed down several open browser windows without asking. took me at least a half an hour removing the trash programs from my PC. I am disappointed that the raspberrypi org would recommend this type of link.


Should be using this link: https://launchpad.net/win32-image-writer No ads, this is the developer's website.

When you do run this application, you MUST had Windows admin rights (does not prompt for admin password).

And it is very easy to use.
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by r4049zt » Mon Jul 23, 2012 3:11 pm
I thought that a picture of a typical arrangement which works could help beginners.
Note the single usb to PS2 splitter cable allowing use of an old keyboard and mouse. The spare usb slot wrote to a usb memory stick and sometimes finds sd cards plugged into the external thing.

When working normally off an approved micro usb power supply, I could not find the +5V supply line but noticed 4.90 volts across component D17 near to the power supply.
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by brgsousa » Mon Jul 23, 2012 11:21 pm
Hi,
just plugging the power cable and HDMI to the tv... should anything be displayed on the tv at all?
no sd card, no keyboard. just power and HMDI cables.

thank you
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by abishur » Tue Jul 24, 2012 1:32 am
brgsousa wrote:Hi,
just plugging the power cable and HDMI to the tv... should anything be displayed on the tv at all?
no sd card, no keyboard. just power and HMDI cables.

thank you


No without an SD card with a Raspberry Pi Image nothing will appear on the screen
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by brgsousa » Tue Jul 24, 2012 1:37 am
Thank you!!
At first, I thought an error BIOS message would show up.
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by itimpi » Tue Jul 24, 2012 5:42 am
brgsousa wrote:Thank you!!
At first, I thought an error BIOS message would show up.

The Pi does not have a bios :)
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by markflip » Fri Jul 27, 2012 5:20 pm
RE: Power supply issues:

I experienced a problem with a cheap microUSB lead not being able to cope with the current required, the power source was fine but stick to a good quality microUSB lead (like one supplied to recharge a smartphone) or you might experience problems [my ethernet/external drives wouldn't fire up using the cheap lead]
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by Montala » Fri Jul 27, 2012 5:38 pm
I agree, but cheap powered hubs can cause problems also, as despite an apparently higher rated output, they can not always deliver an acceptable level of 'power'.

I have one which is supposed to have a 3A output, but I still experience problems with repeated characters when typing, and rebooting whenever I plug in an additional USB device.

If you have access to a multimeter, then it is also a good idea to check the voltage across TP1 and TP2 to ensure that it is at least 4.8v. (See http://elinux.org/R-Pi_Troubleshooting#Troubleshooting_power_problems for details.)
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by one_and_zero » Sat Jul 28, 2012 1:28 pm
I'm an absolute beginner on the Raspberry pi, and I have set up my Raspberry Pi using a mac keyboard and a bog-standard corded usb mouse. I bought the Raspberry Pi OS from RS Components, and have plugged in successfully my power cable. My monitor however is VGA and so, I bought a HDMI to VGA Cable, and has yet to show login details etc on the screen. It would be great if someone could help me a bit, so I can get on to learning to code.Thankyou!
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by Montala » Sat Jul 28, 2012 4:26 pm
one_and_zero wrote:I'm an absolute beginner on the Raspberry pi, and I have set up my Raspberry Pi using a mac keyboard and a bog-standard corded usb mouse. I bought the Raspberry Pi OS from RS Components, and have plugged in successfully my power cable. My monitor however is VGA and so, I bought a HDMI to VGA Cable, and has yet to show login details etc on the screen. It would be great if someone could help me a bit, so I can get on to learning to code.Thankyou!

I think you will need something more than just a simple HDMI to VGA cable, but more of an 'adapter, like the one shown at http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B007KEIRNG

You will see from the reviews that some customers have used this successfully with a Raspberry Pi, and you can read more on this subject in the wiki at: http://elinux.org/RPi_Verified_Peripher ... rter_boxes

Hope this helps... and good luck!
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by ED Nurse » Tue Jul 31, 2012 8:37 am
This is my configuration:

Raspbian on a Sandisk 16Gb SDC
HDMI to a Samsung 32" TV,
USB keyboard and mouse,
Ethernet connected to Sky wireless box for internet access

all powered by a Blackberry PSU.
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by Smelter » Sat Aug 04, 2012 11:39 am
Sharky wrote:'startx' to get LXDE started is a command easily missed for Newbies.


Newbie to Raspbian, silly question. At what stage is it safe to power down the PI?
'startx' gets you into the desktop, but do you have to return to the command line (I read somewhere you hit Ctrl-Alt-Backspace to get back). I am used to "closing down" a desktop before powering down, so I'm concerned that I make sure all the running programs and desktop are put to bed before power down.
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by tsh » Sat Aug 04, 2012 12:05 pm
I don't see a link to the instructions for using dd anywhere. If this is supposed to be a beginners guide, that seems like a major omission. Not everyone is a M$ slave...

http://elinux.org/RPi_Easy_SD_Card_Setup

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by abishur » Sat Aug 04, 2012 1:45 pm
tsh wrote:I don't see a link to the instructions for using dd anywhere. If this is supposed to be a beginners guide, that seems like a major omission. Not everyone is a M$ slave...

http://elinux.org/RPi_Easy_SD_Card_Setup


That's a somewhat offensive comment and a completely inaccurate one. You might have missed the hyperlink if you're using the default forum theme, but I provide a link to the downloads page and say "Make sure to visit the downloads page (<-that's where the hyperlink is) to get the Operating System to use with the Raspberry Pi and instructions on how to put it on the card"

Smelter wrote:Newbie to Raspbian, silly question. At what stage is it safe to power down the PI?


Honestly, I've been hitting a reset button I made for it and just pulling the power on it for a couple months and I've never had any negative side effect from it. That said, there are many, many, many purists who would (correctly) say that the way you should shut it down is by issuing this command from the command line interface (CLI)

Code: Select all
 sudo shutdown -time now


You should be able to do this from withing lxde by opening up a terminal and inputting it there, but you can just as easily leave the x environment and then turn it off.
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by alexchamberlain » Sat Aug 04, 2012 1:49 pm
abishur wrote:Honestly, I've been hitting a reset button I made for it and just pulling the power on it for a couple months and I've never had any negative side effect from it. That said, there are many, many, many purists who would (correctly) say that the way you should shut it down is by issuing this command from the command line interface (CLI).


Why doesn't your reset button shut the Raspberry Pi down properly?
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by tsh » Sat Aug 04, 2012 9:02 pm
Hmm... the download page says 'use dd' and not much else. I don't see that being much use to a lot of people. I kind of expected a step by step walk-through, without needing to jump between different pages to find the info.
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by abishur » Sun Aug 05, 2012 12:48 am
tsh wrote:Hmm... the download page says 'use dd' and not much else. I don't see that being much use to a lot of people. I kind of expected a step by step walk-through, without needing to jump between different pages to find the info.


The downloads page also includes "If you’re still not clear on what to do, the community on the Raspberry Pi Wiki has written a guide for beginners on how to set up your SD card." which links to the page you linked to. Seeing as how people *have* to go to the downloads page regardless, it doesn't seem to make sense to duplicate the info ;-)

alexchamberlain wrote:Why doesn't your reset button shut the Raspberry Pi down properly?


The reset button I made it a simple momentary disconnect that I put in-line with the PSU. When I hit it, it disrupts the power and resets the device. Nothing fancy there :-)
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by JeremyF » Sun Aug 05, 2012 12:55 pm
abishur wrote:
alexchamberlain wrote:Why doesn't your reset button shut the Raspberry Pi down properly?


The reset button I made it a simple momentary disconnect that I put in-line with the PSU. When I hit it, it disrupts the power and resets the device. Nothing fancy there :-)

I think Alex is saying "couldn't that corrupt your files?" and "why not attach a button to GPIO which a script is always listening for and then if the button is pressed, issue a restart command"

Although I suppose a reset button is more helpful if your Pi is actually completely frozen.
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by alexchamberlain » Sun Aug 05, 2012 12:58 pm
JeremyF wrote:
abishur wrote:
alexchamberlain wrote:Why doesn't your reset button shut the Raspberry Pi down properly?


The reset button I made it a simple momentary disconnect that I put in-line with the PSU. When I hit it, it disrupts the power and resets the device. Nothing fancy there :-)

I think Alex is saying "couldn't that corrupt your files?" and "why not attach a button to GPIO which a script is always listening for and then if the button is pressed, issue a restart command"

Although I suppose a reset button is more helpful if your Pi is actually completely frozen.


That's what I meant!!
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by abishur » Sun Aug 05, 2012 4:59 pm
alexchamberlain wrote:
JeremyF wrote:I think Alex is saying "couldn't that corrupt your files?" and "why not attach a button to GPIO which a script is always listening for and then if the button is pressed, issue a restart command"

Although I suppose a reset button is more helpful if your Pi is actually completely frozen.


That's what I meant!!


Ah, the truth is I'm just not worried about corrupting the card. I mean unless I was actively writing to the card when I hit the reset button then there wouldn't even be a possibility of corrupting it. And even if it was writing, it's somewhat unlikely that it would be writing a critical system file, at worst it would have been writing to a personal file and the solution from corrupting that is to not hit reset when I have a personal file open :lol:
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by Eyeball_Kirkenbach » Mon Aug 06, 2012 6:24 am
There have been some great, patient replies to basic questions here, so here's hoping for more of the same: is a 5V charger rated to 2 amps OK to use?
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