This is guide is for the first steps to get started with the Raspberry Pi, I will be working with the Raspberry Pi Model B (

OS Config:

The first thing you should do, while waiting for the Raspberry Pi to be shipped is to burn the OS in a SD card. When you get a SD card or any piece of hardware or peripheral for the Raspberry Pi be sure to check

Download an OS to install on the SD card from
For this guide I am using Raspbian ‘Wheezy’ – which is based on Debian.

To burn the OS on the SD card, on a Mac:
Insert the SD card and find its devide node:

john@mac.local:~/Downloads/raspberry_pi$diskutil list
   #:                       TYPE NAME                    SIZE       IDENTIFIER
   0:      GUID_partition_scheme                        *251.0 GB   disk0
   1:                        EFI                         209.7 MB   disk0s1
   2:          Apple_CoreStorage                         250.1 GB   disk0s2
   3:                 Apple_Boot Recovery HD             650.0 MB   disk0s3
   #:                       TYPE NAME                    SIZE       IDENTIFIER
   0:                  Apple_HFS Macintosh HD           *249.8 GB   disk1
   #:                       TYPE NAME                    SIZE       IDENTIFIER
   0:     FDisk_partition_scheme                        *4.0 GB     disk2
   1:                 DOS_FAT_32 NO NAME                 4.0 GB     disk2s1

# Unmount the ‘automatically’ mounted partition (e.g. disk2s1)
john@mac.local:~/Downloads/raspberry_pi$sudo diskutil unmount /dev/disk2s1
Volume NO NAME on disk2s1 unmounted

# Unzip OS img
  inflating: 2013-05-25-wheezy-raspbian.img

# Install image into SD card using ‘dd’ - go watch a movie, it takes a while...
john@mac.local:~/Downloads/raspberry_pi$sudo dd bs=1m if=~/Downloads/raspberry_pi/2013-05-25-wheezy-raspbian.img of=/dev/rdisk2
1850+0 records in
1850+0 records out
1939865600 bytes transferred in 107.348874 secs (18070666 bytes/sec)

# Eject the card
john@mac.local:~/Downloads/raspberry_pi$sudo diskutil eject /dev/rdisk2
Disk /dev/rdisk2 ejected

At this point you should have the OS ready on the SD card, if you will be using a TV with HDMI as the display for your Raspberry Pi, skip the next section(HDMI-VGA Adapter Display + Sound Config), otherwise see the ‘HDMI-VGA Adapter Display + Sound Config’ section for how to configure a non-HDMI display

HDMI-VGA Adapter Display + Sound Config::

The raspberry Pi conveniently comes with an HDMI port and also an RCA video port to allow to use a TV to display its output. That is great, but I wanted to use my PC monitor (or one I had lying around) to play with my raspberry Pi.

For those of you who have older monitors and want to use one, know this:
1) If the monitor has a HDMI port, you are all set
2) If the monitor has DVI, you can buy a HDMI to DVI cable
3) If the monitor has VGA, you CANNOT buy a HDMI to VGA cable. This was my situation and what I wanted to do, I wanted to use a small DELL monitor that only had a VGA port.

So, I needed to buy a HDMI to VGA adapter, there are several out there that look like a regular HDMI to VGA cable and they indeed do work with the raspberry Pi, but keep in mind that it will use power to feed the digital to analog conversion, and power is a scarce resource in the Raspberry Pi.

I am using the following adapter, which comes with external power, from Amazon:
Generic PC DVD HDMI to VGA & Audio For HDTV CRT Video Converter Box Adapter 1080P New

To be able to use a HDMI-VGA adapter, you will need to edit a config file, most likely on another computer because the Pi is not available yet due to display not available.

Put the SD card on another computer and edit config.txt

# To enable display through the HDMI-VGA adapter:

# To enable sound through the HDMI-VGA adapter

*** To test sound once the Raspberry Pi starts up, plug in speakes to the HDMI-VGA adapter, then type:

pi@raspberrypi ~ $ aplay /usr/share/sounds/alsa/Front_Center.wav

Keyboard/Mouse Config:

The Raspberry Pi comes with 2 USB ports, which will be taken by the keyboard and mouse, but I needed another one for the Wifi. So I got the following keyboard which includes a TouchPad, so I don’t need an extra mouse and works perfectly with the Pi and Raspbian:
Smart Touch Mini USB TouchPad Keyboard

Network (WIFI) Config:

On the other USB port I plugged a Edimax EW-7811Un 150 Mbps Wireless 11n Nano Size USB Adapter which works out of the box with Raspbian. You can use the graphical interface to scan and connect, or edit the config file:

pi@raspberrypi ~ $ cat /etc/network/interfaces
auto lo

iface lo inet loopback
iface eth0 inet dhcp

allow-hotplug wlan0
iface wlan0 inet manual
wpa-roam /etc/wpa_supplicant/wpa_supplicant.conf
iface default inet dhcp

pi@raspberrypi ~ $ sudo cat /etc/wpa_supplicant/wpa_supplicant.conf
ctrl_interface=DIR=/var/run/wpa_supplicant GROUP=netdev


Start Up:

After booting your Raspberry Pi you will see a menu, the important things to do are:
1. Expand Filesystem so that the whole SD card is available
2. Change User Password
3. Enable Boot to Desktop – THIS DEPENDS IF YOU THINK YOU WILL BE USING THE DESKTOP MOST OF THE TIME, otherwise dont enable it, and know that from the command line you can start the graphical environment by executing ‘startx’
4. Internationalisation Options
I1 Change Locale – Change to en_US.UTF-8
I2 Change Timezone – US/Eastern
I3 Change Keyboard Layout – English (US)

8. Advanced Options
A2 Hostname
A4 SSH – if you need to enable SSH


// If later you want to go back to this menu, from a terminal type: ‘raspi-config’

You will be left in a command prompt, you can type startx and you will be taken to the graphical interface

That is it, you are all set, enjoy your Raspberry Pi