Okay, if you now have all the parts ready to get started with your Raspberry Pi the next step is to flash a MicroSD card with a Pi Operating System (OS) and get cracking. If you’re a bit lost about what I’m talking about or have landed straight on this page then I suggest that you read my introductory article to the Raspberry Pi here:
To make following this guide a bit easier I’m going to break it up into the following steps:
- Preparing the MicroSD Card;
- Installing the Operating System; and
- Basic Raspbian Setup.
Preparing the MicroSD Card
Now in this article I am going to explain how to prepare and flash a MicroSD card using OS X (i.e. an Apple Mac – Macbook Pro to be precise). If you are a Windows user then I suggest that you skip to my article explaining how to use Windows to flash a MicroSD card here:
Back in the day it was quite a convoluted process to flash an image using OS X but thanks to Hans it is now a heap easier using ApplePi-Baker. You can find and download ApplePi-Baker here:
If you are looking for a bit more information about the ApplePi-Baker software check my review out of it here.
(yep still writing this one too………what – man got to work sometime)
First off download and open ApplePi-Baker. You should be presented with a screen that looks like this.
Next plug in your MicroSD card into your card reader and connect it to your Mac. You should see it pop-up in the window below the “Pi-Crust:Select SD-Card or USB drive” title. I have circled what to look for in the screenshot below.
The next thing you need to do is click “Prep for NOOBS”. NOOBS stands for “New Out Of the Box Software” and is an easy to use operating system installation manager for the Pi. As it stands it is the easiest way to install Raspbian. For later reference you can also use NOOBS to install a number of other popular Pi Operating Systems – but for today it’s Raspbian.
Once you have clicked the “Prep for NOOBS” button you’ll be presented with a pop-up warning you that this action will re-partition the drive and erase all current data on the MicroSD card (as below). Go ahead and click OK.
Once the MicroSD Card has been prepared you will get a completed pop-up as per the below.
To double check that the preparation has worked – open finder and you should see the MicroSD Card is now represented in the devices as RASPBERRY or something similar. The screenshot below shows what you should see.
Installing the Operating System
Okay, so we’ve prepped the MicroSD card – next you are going yo need to download the NOOBS.zip file from the following website.
Make sure that it is the NOOBS zip file and not the NOOBS LITE version as this just adds further complications to the install. Unzip the file and copy all the files to your MicroSD card. Your MicroSD card contents should look like the below.
Now its time to put the Mac away and start using the Raspberry Pi. Set up the Pi 2 as per the instructions in my previous post here. Plug the MicroSD card into the Pi 2 and turn on the power. The first thing you will see on power up is a NOOBS menu similar to the one below.
Select the Raspbian option (shown with a X on the left hand side) and then click install in the top left hand corner. You will be asked to confirm this selection as per the pic above. Go ahead and confirm and then your install should start – as per the screenshot below.
Once Raspbian has successfully been installed you will get a pop-up as per the pic below.
Select okay and then your Pi will restart.
Basic Raspbian Setup
Once your Pi has restarted you will presented with the raspi-config main menu – screenshot below.
The first thing you are going to want to do is change your password. Use the arrow keys to navigate through the menu to the “Change User Password” option and press enter once it’s hi-lighted. You’ll then see a prompt to change your password (as per the screenshot below) press enter and change the password to your liking.
Press enter again and you will presented with the raspi-config main menu. Once you are back to the main menu use the arrow keys again to navigate to the “Enable Boot to Desktop/Scratch” option and press enter. You will presented to with the following sub-menu.
Select “Desktop Log in as user ‘pi’ at the graphical desktop” and press enter. You’ll then be sent back to the main menu again. At this point we are going to want to navigate to the “Finish” option (use the left and right arrow keys) and press enter. When prompted to reboot – go ahead and do it. You will then be booted straight into the Raspbian desktop GUI – hopefully it will look like the screenshot below.
Congratulations! you now have a working Raspberry Pi OS to play with. If you connect up your Pi to a wired internet connection you’ll even be able to surf the net.
For now get comfortable with this GUI and overtime I’ll start adding some more articles to help you customise you Pi images and add more functionality to your pi. This will include using wireless, loading different OS images, loading more programs to your OS images, remoting into your Pi and much more. I’ll add the links to this articles as I write them so keep visiting every so often!