A Slice of Pi – Part 1

In case you missed it the start of this little adventure began here. The Raspbmc server is no more, but mourn not its loss, for from its ashes rise a leaner more breakable beast!

We start with the Model B Raspberry Pi, with its fantastic 512MB memory. I am also using a 4GB SDHC card for the operating system.  We won’t mention the AWESOME rainbow coloured case its sat in thou….

pi2
Since the Pi was assembled in its previous life there isn’t much putting together to do. The first step was to wipe the existing installation on the SD Card. A simple removal of partitions via Disk management in Windows prepared the card for impending imaging.

There are various images available for the Pi for general Operating systems, the best source for these would be the Raspberry Pi downloads page. We are going to be using the Raspbian “Wheezy” OS which is based on Debian. Once downloaded we are left with a Disc image file. However simply dragging this onto the SD Card will not work.

Being Primarily a Windows user the tool of choice for hooking up the Pi’s SD Card with the image is the Win32DiskImager. I was slightly worried by the readme file, it offers no warrenty rather than warranty that it would cause the end of the universe. Luckily for me nothing imploded and the process was quick and easy.

So the SD is loaded and its time to fire this beast up. A quick boot brings me to the Raspberry Pi config screen.raspi config
Before doing anything else we need to hit the “Expand_rootfs”. This expands the root Filesystem on the pi to cover the whole of the SD Card. If you want any space you will need to do this. I also changed my default password and enable SSH for a later project.

With SSH turned on I can control the Pi from any machine that can tunnel Via Secure shell or SSH. This means the pi can be placed behind the cabinet out of sight and continue its work. Now to make sure that its working, I connect the Pi to the TV. By default the Pi starts in Command line mode, assuming of course you didn’t tell it so start with a GUI on the Raspberry Pi Config Screen earlier. Since I want to be running the Pi headless, IE without a screen or other peripherals I left this off. A quick command of “Startx” should bring up the Raspberry Pi Desktop screen similar to the windows desktop.

Thus ends part 1 of the adventure, remember we turned on SSH. Next time we cover the basics of connecting to the Pi using the SSH client Putty for windows and how to run programs via X tunnels. That’s enough pi for you today!

Sneak Preview of SSH/Putty

pi ssh

Author: Jon

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