STARTERS GUIDE for Raspberry Pi, A, B, A+, B+ and RPI 2 B


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by abishur » Sat Apr 14, 2012 4:15 pm
Starter guide, started by Abishur, post edited and expanded by Mahjongg
Now supporting the A+ and B+ and RPI 2 B models.


if you have not yet bought a PI and/or accessories, there is a pictorial buying guide here
viewtopic.php?f=91&t=83446

If you are only interested in a short quick start guide you can find the latest one here:
http://www.raspberrypi.org/quick-start-guide
this start guide uses the new NOOBS installing system, the latest version only comes with Raspbian to install, to keep the size down, other operating systems can be installed when you connect the PI to an internet connection via the ethernet port.

if you have trouble getting your PI to boot and/or getting any video output, read the boot problems sticky here: viewtopic.php?f=28&t=58151

Before using the SD-card to install NOOBS on it, you must first wipe the card completely clean (and remove all partitions) using the SD Card Association’s formatting tool. Do NOT use it's quick format option, especially if the card has been used before, or the install might fail! Later NOOBS will partition and format the card the way it needs to be, but it needs a completely empty card, (with no extra partitions on it) to start with. Also enable the resize option.

information on how to use the NOOBS installer can be found here:
https://github.com/raspberrypi/noobs/bl ... x-software

after you have put NOOBS, on the card, if you look at the card, (with Linux, Mac OS X or Windows) it should contain these files:

NOOBS.png
NOOBS.png (43.16 KiB) Viewed 85605 times


If you just need to install a single OS, and want to save download time and space on the SD-card you can contemplate using NOOBS LITE instead of NOOBS. NOOBS LITE doesn't come with any OS's included, but the OS to install is downloaded during installation. So you need a working Internet set up running on the PI (that is a Ethernet cable going to your internet modem) for it to work.

Both NOOBS, NOOBS LITE and the SD Card Association’s formatter tool can be found here as free downloads:
http://www.raspberrypi.org/downloads

The old start guide describing the classical DD image writer system for manual installs of (other) OS's can be found here, in several languages :
http://www.raspberrypi.org/archives/2892

Many concrete Questions & Answers can be found in the Raspberry PI Wiki at http://elinux.org/RaspberryPiBoard

If you have you PI going, and want to do more with it, there is some excellent information here: https://learn.adafruit.com/category/learn-raspberry-pi

Lets get started!

First get your Raspberry Pi.

Image

Arrange your board to look like the photo and let's get connecting!

If you have the new B+ model, orient it like this:
Image

Or the older model B. orient it like this:
Image

For a model A+, like this:
Image

On the bottom "edge" in the middle of the board is the HDMI Type A (Full sized) port.  Just connect any HDMI cable from the board to your TV or HDMI Monitor for video and audio, or to a DVI-D monitor for video only.

On the models A and B, If you don't have an TV/Monitor with a HDMI or DVI-D port you can use the yellow phono jack (RCA Jack for those who call it that) located in the middle of the "top" edge, and for audio use the 3.5 mm stereo headphone jack to the right of it.

But the models A+ and B+ have only one connector for both audio and video and its located at the bottom and marked "A/V", to the right the HDMI. For audio only its an improved version of the 3.5mm stereo output of the model B, but for video (and audio) you need an (iPod) A/V adapter cable. As extensively explained here: viewtopic.php?f=91&t=83446

Plug a USB keyboard and mouse into the USB slots located on the right edge.  You can also plug a WiFi adapter into the USB slot for wireless internet access. If you have the older A or B models you will probably need to expand the number of USB ports using an externally powered hub to do that.

Just under the USB ports on the right edge is the ethernet connector for anyone who wants to plug the R-Pi into a wired network.

On the underside of the board on the left edge is a spot to put your full sized SD card (or micro SD card in a full-sized adapter, or micro SD-card when using the B+) You can buy a pre-imaged card, or make one yourself. Instructions are here: https://github.com/raspberrypi/noobs/blob/master/README.md#noobs-new-out-of-box-software Make sure to visit the downloads page to get the Operating System to use with the Raspberry Pi and instructions on how to put it on the card (FYI, you can not just copy and paste).  At the moment Raspbian is the preferred option, but don't be afraid to download all the available options, and test them out for yourself!

Finally, at the very bottom of the left edge is the micro-usb power connector.  Plug in a regulated power supply that is rated at 5V ±5% and at least 700mA (or 0.7A).  Any number bigger than 700 mA (like 1000mA) will also work. Avoid using the smaller chargers used for small GSM phones, as these are often unregulated, even if they claim "5V 1A", they may do "5V" and may do "1A", but not at the same time! A B+ can use adapters up-to 2A, but is actually more frugal than the older models, and will probably work with a 600mA adapter , or maybe even less (depending of how much current the USB and HDMI ports use) If the PWR LED on a B+ goes off you are providing insufficient power!

Not sure if you have a micro-usb? Here's an easy picture to tell the difference
Image
The mini-USB (on the left) is the wrong one. It’s thicker and looks like a trapezoid with its sides pinched in.  The micro-USB (on the right) is the correct one.  It is thinner and also looks like a trapezoid except it’s sides are rounded outward.
This cable is actually important if you want stable power, many of the cheaper cables are no good to power a PI, they use cheap thin wires, sometimes no more than "tinsel foil" inside. Use a short, and reasonably thick cable, and spend a reasonable amount of money on it, (at least a few dollars/euro's).

So with the setup ready is't time to power on the PI, if the PI gets power the red LED marked PWR will light, and all goes well the green LED marked OK (and ACK in later version) will blink in an irregular pattern to show whenever the PI reads from the SD-card.

Note that the PI doesn't have a BIOS (or rather, even the BIOS is stored on the SD-card), so without successful booting the PI will show nothing on screen! If you have trouble getting your PI to boot, read the guide on boot problems I wrote, here: http://www.raspberrypi.org/phpBB3/viewt ... 28&t=58151 it contains all the info available at this time to solve such problems.

HOW TO GET COMPOSITE VIDEO WORKING WITH NOOBS
Note that when you are using NOOBS, and are using a A/V (or composite RCA) video for a regular TV (or mini display with a composite input) you will not immediately get any picture, you need to press 3 (for PAL), or 4 (for NTSC) repeatedly to switch over from HDMI to composite. you can wait a couple of seconds or so before starting to press 3 and/or 4, as not only does NOOBS need to boot, but it also needs to do some work, before it start listening to the keyboard, (if you are curious if NOOBS looks at the keyboard, press caps lock, if you can toggle the CAPs LED NOOBS has booted and is reading the keyboard).
Keep pressing the 3 or 4 key until video appears, (numpad or regular number keys don't matter, but note that on a French keyboard you do not need to press shift for numbers, as the system assumes an UK keyboard). after settling for either PAL or NTSC the system asks if it can make that choice permanent, do that, and continue with the install. (note this choice will be carried over onto the installed OS, because it will be written into config.txt, overriding the HDMI auto detection of the OS).

Note that if the picture is monochrome, you are using the wrong TV standard, (PAL vs NTSC) try the other one.
And If you are using a B+ A/V cable of unknown origin or type then please note that not all similar looking cables work, with some (camcorder) cables its possible the video comes out of the red plug instead of the yellow (video) plug.

If you are using a HDMI connection, NOOBS should give you a picture automatically, but if it does not, or the picture seems wrong, you can try switching between "safe" and "optimal" HDMI video settings by pressing 1 or 2.

After installing (for example) raspbian, the next reboot will start Raspbian not NOOBS, and Raspbian has a slightly different way with coping with composite video, namely it will look if a HDMI device is connected, and if it doesn't see one it will automatically switch to (NTSC) composite (unless you have saved overruling video setting into config.txt, as said earlier).
If you are using an older PAL TV, you will may only get a monochrome picture, and you may want to change the entry in config.txt that says "sdtv_mode=0" to "sdtv_mode=2" for PAL (full options are here: http://elinux.org/RPiconfig#Video_mode_options ).
You can do that from NOOBS, restart with shift pressed and the PI will boot into NOOBS, press 3 again for a composite picture and choose the option to edit config.txt, edit save and reboot.

If all goes well and the OS boots, the PI will now show a "rainbow screen", (actually four pixels expanded and blended to full screen size by the GPU). Shortly later the ARM processor is started, and the installed OS starts. Raspbian starts by showing a long scrolling text that tells you exactly what the PI is doing to get ready to work. If your PI gets stuck ate this point, you are a PI2B user, and are using obsolete firmware, read the instructions at the bottom of this post.

Once the R-Pi finishes loading, you'll need to put in your user name and password (this information is also located on the downloads page).  The default name is "pi", and the default password is "raspberry", but note that when entering the password nothing will be displayed on screen, as a safety measure!
Its possible that this step is skipped the very first time you boot.

After that (but only the first time you boot) you will be presented with the "raspy-config" configuration menu.
Image
you can, (read must) use this to expand the space on your SD-card to the full size of the card, (otherwise not all of the space on the card will be actually used) and to enable overscan for your monitor, and also to set the keyboard configuration, (If you do not use an UK keyboard, but for example an US keyboard, then this is the place where you can switch to an US keyboard layout!) and other basic configuration options such as password and user options.
The menu won't be shown on later boots, but can be recalled at any time by running raspi-config: using:
Code: Select all
sudo raspi-config
To get into the familiar graphical user interface (GUI), after you have logged in, type
Code: Select all
startx
After you are done with the GUI to stop and turn off the PI, exit the GUI, and once again in the text screen enter the text:
Code: Select all
sudo halt
or
Code: Select all
sudo shutdown -h now
This will shutdown the PI safely, (just turning it off might damage the SD-cards file system).
After that you can turn it off.

You now have finished your first session!

Updating & Upgrading Raspbian
If you are using an older Rasbian distribution, (pre-loaded card) and have an internet connection, (just plug in an Ethernet cable to your ethernet modem should do the trick) you might want to upgrade and update Raspbian to the latest version. To do so reboot Rasbian, and just do:
Code: Select all
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get upgrade
and wait a few minutes for the upgrade to finish, then restart your PI.

Info specific for second generation PI2B users
Since the release of the second generation PI 2B, you need releases of NOOBS and Raspbian, that are released after the launch of the PI2B.

If you have a card with raspbian that boots correctly on your old PI, but doesn't boot on the PI2, (gets stuck at the "rainbow screen") the following procedure should result in a card that also works on a PI2
Code: Select all
apt-get update
apt-get upgrade
apt-get dist-upgrade
apt-get install raspberrypi-ui-mods


Other information

A nice starter guide which goes into more details (especially on creating an SD-card) can be found here:
http://www.engadget.com/2012/09/04/raspberry-pi-getting-started-guide-how-to/

An educational guide with focus on learning to program can be found here:
http://www.raspberrypi.org/archives/2965

Finally there is the free monthly magazine, the magpi, which can be found here:
http://www.themagpi.com/

And not to forget, there is an official raspberry PI User Guide, written by RPF members, details can be found here:
http://www.raspberrypi.org/archives/2004

Last edit, March 15, 2015
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by mahjongg » Sun Apr 15, 2012 1:19 am
P.S. I think the "programming the SD-Card" task might be underestimated, its not as simple as drag and drop contents to the card! What I have seen requires the use of the command line tool "DD", (or something similar) its not easy at all, and if you do it wrong the PI won't boot up! Living you in the dark (literally). The PI doesn't have a BIOS ROM, so no video will be generated until the PI can boot from the SD-card.

There should be a simple GUI program created that does the task in a foolproof way, because "fools" (that is adults, I trust little kids to do this fine) will also try to do this.

Luckily some people are selling pre-programmed SD-cards.

with the invention of NOOBS this largely has become obsolete too, although you can still do it wrong!
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by Tass » Sun Apr 15, 2012 9:47 am
mahjongg said:


P.S. I think the "programming the SD-Card" task might be underestimated, what I have seen requires the use of the command line tool "DD", its not easy at all, and if you do it wrong the PI won't boot up! Living you in the dark (literally).


Take a look at this other beginners thread - I've posted a link to a DD tutorial of mine and the OP (itsonlyme) has provided a link to a great utility for managing SD card images:

http://www.raspberrypi.org/for.....e-software
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by mahjongg » Sun Apr 15, 2012 1:58 pm
Tass said:


mahjongg said:


P.S. I think the "programming the SD-Card" task might be underestimated, what I have seen requires the use of the command line tool "DD", its not easy at all, and if you do it wrong the PI won't boot up! Living you in the dark (literally).


Take a look at this other beginners thread - I've posted a link to a DD tutorial of mine and the OP (itsonlyme) has provided a link to a great utility for managing SD card images:

http://www.raspberrypi.org/for.....e-software


Reading that, and following the link to the tutorial, i'm even more convinced that its not a task for unexperienced users. I think a tool to create (and before that wipe the card) an image on an sd-card with a simple tool, requiring no more effort than selecting the image, and the card (with protection against selecting a hard-disk) is badly needed.
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by abishur » Sun Apr 15, 2012 4:16 pm
I know that the win32disk whatever program linked on the downloads page is insanely easy to use.  I mean it's chose the img file you just downloaded, pick your SD drive and click write.  Of course, the limitation with that one is that it really only works once.  Once you write the img file windows can't read every partition on the card anymore, so before you can use it again you have to erase every partition via linux.  I had a devil of a time doing that last night as I don't have an external SD card reader and my linux VM wouldn't see the SD card reader on my laptop.  My final solution came via sticking the SD card in an unused blackberry phone and mounting *that* to my linux box.  Fun times.

Still I kinda glossed over it in this (very basic) guide because of how complicated it is.  There are much more complete guides that can be followed on the downloads page, and I saw no need to re-invent the wheel.  Plus I'm expecting a better guide to come out (maybe one from someone who actually has the pi?), but I wanted a basic guide up to help the people who have already started getting the pi (lucky jerks! :-P )
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by mahjongg » Sun Apr 15, 2012 4:43 pm
perhaps booting a Live CD with Gparted on it will help people to remove the partitions.

Isn't there a simple windows app to remove all partitions on a SD-Card ?
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by Chris.Rowland » Sun Apr 15, 2012 9:00 pm
Does Win32DiskImager really only work once?

I"ve just tried it with a SD card that"s already been written and it appears to write correctly a second (and third) time.

But I don"t have hardware to test on and maybe it"s fooling me.

This is W7 64 and a 4G SD card plugged into the PC"s SD card slot.

I"ve also got a full SD formatter called "SD Formatter V3.0.0.0" It seems to be able to restore SD cards that have had some propriety format applied.  I don"t recall where it came from other than at the end of a Google search.
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by Vindicator » Mon Apr 16, 2012 2:55 am
Try Easeus free home edition that is what I used to delete the partitions on mine, no need to switch to Linux if you do not want too.

http://www.partition-tool.com/.....wnload.htm

I even used this to recover a HDD from an Xbox 360 that had died on me.
If you are more worried about ,spelling, punctuation or grammar you have probably already missed the point so please just move on.
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by itsonlyme » Mon Apr 16, 2012 8:24 am
Agree with Vindicator, this is a very useful and versatile program for any Windows user to have around. (Easeus if you happen to see this, how about a raspberry pi version?!)
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by mahjongg » Mon Apr 16, 2012 10:24 am
We already have a similar partitioning program for the raspi, it's called Gparted.
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by Thorran » Tue Apr 17, 2012 3:02 pm
I've succesfully created my 2GB image (latest Debian Win7)  but have an 8GB SD card – how can I resize the partition to make available all my space, or would it be better to create another blank partition ?  I only have Windows and the one RaspberryPI – no other Linux machine to do this on,  which is how the Wiki details it.

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by frying_fish » Tue Apr 17, 2012 3:09 pm
Thorran said:


I've succesfully created my 2GB image (latest Debian Win7)  but have an 8GB SD card – how can I resize the partition to make available all my space, or would it be better to create another blank partition ?  I only have Windows and the one RaspberryPI – no other Linux machine to do this on,  which is how the Wiki details it.

Chris


The simple option (and I'm sure its detailed on the wiki as well) would be to boot a gparted live disk (on a usb key, or cd) and then use that to resize the partition of the sd card. So boot your windows computer with that disk instead it will go to a live linux, make sure the sd card is in the reader, pull it up in the options and away you go.
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by n31l » Sun Apr 22, 2012 12:14 pm
I think the last poster has lost the plot, since when will motoGp help us fire up our pi's for the first time.

As i'm not currently a Linux user, window C++, C# & microchip pic's I need a single port of call that will have an img and programs that when run on a PC will fire up the PI to a known stable point. From here I can go on to learn my around Linux and the PI.

Every new user can't wait to see it running and a fool proof way of doing this would give a bost to every new user.

PS could the maths test be made a bit harder i'm starting to get it right first time now!!
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by Rory » Sun Apr 22, 2012 1:20 pm
I'm brand new to Linux based OS and i was just wondering how to do the basics such as setting up a new profile eg not having 'Pi' as user id and getting a feel for the programs that come pre-installed if anybody could help or point my in the direction of instructions would be greatly appreciated.(sorry if i said something that makes no sense but as i said i'm brand new to this)
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by JeremyF » Sun Apr 22, 2012 9:22 pm
SH4RK3Y said:


I'm brand new to Linux based OS and i was just wondering how to do the basics such as setting up a new profile eg not having 'Pi' as user id and getting a feel for the programs that come pre-installed if anybody could help or point my in the direction of instructions would be greatly appreciated.(sorry if i said something that makes no sense but as i said i'm brand new to this)



Pre-installed programs are few at the moment as far as I know, just a web browser, Python, and MIT Scratch.

When you get your Pi, to make a new user (as far as I know)

sudo useradd NAME

sudo mkdir /home/NAME

chown NAME:users /home/NAME



{sig} Setup: Original version Raspberry Pi (B, rev1, 256MB), Dell 2001FP monitor (1600x1200), 8GB Class 4 SD Card with Raspbian and XBMC, DD-WRT wireless bridge
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by jonboy » Tue May 08, 2012 8:52 pm
I simply reformatted the SD card in a digital camera and started again when I wanted to change from Arch to Dabien.
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by SN » Tue May 08, 2012 9:27 pm
JeremyF said:


SH4RK3Y said:


I'm brand new to Linux based OS and i was just wondering how to do the basics such as setting up a new profile eg not having 'Pi' as user id and getting a feel for the programs that come pre-installed if anybody could help or point my in the direction of instructions would be greatly appreciated.(sorry if i said something that makes no sense but as i said i'm brand new to this)


Pre-installed programs are few at the moment as far as I know, just a web browser, Python, and MIT Scratch.

When you get your Pi, to make a new user (as far as I know)

sudo useradd NAME

sudo mkdir /home/NAME

chown NAME:users /home/NAME




Don't forget to add your NAME to the sudoers list too (if you want to sudo with it) - there is a post elsewhere on the forums for this, can't see it at the moment
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by pyramid21 » Mon May 28, 2012 1:03 pm
So I flashed a 16gb scandisk x10 card with the debian image(ran the check image program)
Plugged in all the items then the power supply.
Monitor worked but debian seems to get stuck on
'input Genius optical mouse......'
'mmc0: Time out waiting for hardware interrupt.'

I have unplugged the mouse restarted(disconnected power)
It then get stuck on
'input USB keyboard......'
'mmc0: Timeout .....'
I have tried disconnecting everything and still get the same problem
Please help as I would love to move to the next stage
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by dukla2000 » Mon May 28, 2012 5:23 pm
pyramid21 wrote:Please help as I would love to move to the next stage
Sounds like an SD card problem to me - have you got another one you can try? Most importantly check through the troubleshooting page on the wiki but would also check your specific card on the list of known working/not working hardware which is here.
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by pyramid21 » Mon May 28, 2012 5:34 pm
Have tried 2 SD cards now both x 10 will try tomorrow with a x4. WIll also check wiki

Have re flashed the sd card with debian6 19-04-12. Connected every thing and re powered.
All five leds are on.
1.OK=green
2.PWR=red
3.FDX=green
4.lnk=green flickering
5. 10M=yellow
Boot stuck on 'Kernel panic-not syncing:No init found. Try .....'
Have tried 2 SD cards now both x 10 will try tomorrow with a x4.
Could I have a faulty PI? I noticed a loose piece of metal(shaped like an L) where the SD slot connects to the board.
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by bigsi111 » Tue May 29, 2012 10:18 am
Have you tried booting without the Keyboard and Mouse.

The reason to do this is that you could have a power supply problem which will be apparent if you get to the password/login screen without the peripherasl plugged in.
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by pyramid21 » Tue May 29, 2012 10:48 am
Yes with no luck
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by bigsi111 » Tue May 29, 2012 1:48 pm
It's sounding more like a hardware problem. I'd contact the supplier if the $GB SD card does not work.
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by abishur » Tue May 29, 2012 7:08 pm
pyramid21 wrote:Have tried 2 SD cards now both x 10 will try tomorrow with a x4. WIll also check wiki

Have re flashed the sd card with debian6 19-04-12. Connected every thing and re powered.
All five leds are on.
1.OK=green
2.PWR=red
3.FDX=green
4.lnk=green flickering
5. 10M=yellow
Boot stuck on 'Kernel panic-not syncing:No init found. Try .....'
Have tried 2 SD cards now both x 10 will try tomorrow with a x4.
Could I have a faulty PI? I noticed a loose piece of metal(shaped like an L) where the SD slot connects to the board.


There are a couple threads discussing this error (try searching the forum for your No init ;-)) but it boils down to the SD card or the keyboard :-)
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by Sharky » Tue May 29, 2012 8:46 pm
Thanks, Abishur - that was really helpful.
'startx' to get LXDE started is a command easily missed for Newbies.

Cool - thanks.
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