12oclocker
Posts: 39
Joined: Mon Oct 07, 2013 9:55 pm

moving SD card between different Raspberry Pi models

Wed Nov 15, 2017 1:54 pm

Is it possible to install headless Raspbian on a 2B unit, make a copy of the SD card image, and clone that image to other raspberry pi units of different hardware variations (version 1, 2, 2B, and 3).
I have about 15 raspberry pi units I want to installed a customized image on, would rather this be as easy as coping the SD card image. I have seen 3rd party images that have different versions for different hardware. I did not know if once you run updates for the first time, if that downloads hardware specific firmware onto the SDcard or if anything hardware specific happens. Thanks in advance!

SkyRise
Posts: 179
Joined: Tue Jan 24, 2012 1:20 pm

Re: moving SD card between different Raspberry Pi models

Wed Nov 15, 2017 1:56 pm

Yes, that is entirely possible, as long as you're running the latest updated Raspbian.

Each of the newer boards require newer kernels, but all are backwards compatible.

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HawaiianPi
Posts: 4871
Joined: Mon Apr 08, 2013 4:53 am
Location: Aloha, Oregon USA

Re: moving SD card between different Raspberry Pi models

Thu Nov 16, 2017 11:02 am

The most recent Raspbian image is always designed to be compatible with all models. People actually take advantage of this as an easy way to setup headless boot on another Pi. You boot up a freshly imaged card on your Pi that has a keyboard, mouse and monitor, configure WiFi, enable SSH, VNC and other interfaces you'll need, change the default password and hostname, run updates, add users or whatever else you need, then shutdown and move the card to the headless system, ready for remote access.

When Raspbian firmware is updated, it's updated for all models. So you can configure a card in a Pi3 and move it to a Pi Zero without any problems. Just be careful about adding 3rd party software that is model specific.
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