The Start


Hi, What and Why

Compare to Arduino

What do you need to buy ?

It's plugged in, what's first ?

How to install packages.

Recommended packages.

Essential Linux Commands.

How to use the vi editor.

The next step


Set up I2C.

My first program - blink.

VNC - Use your computer to control your Pi.

Samba - copy files.

It's plugged in - what first ?


A lot of what you will be doing is typing commands into the command line. This is the basis of shell programming. The command line in linux is incredibly powerful; much more powerful than the Windows command prompt. If you want to learn about computers, you have to know that typing commands in is much more flexible - and powerful - than any GUI could ever be.

Log in for the first time

After installing from NOOBS for the first time, it will run raspi-config automatically. To save time later, I choose to change the hostname, enable the pi camera, enable I2C and enable SPI and install SSH.
Then, it will reboot and you can log in with the username pi and the password raspberry.

Change your password

You can use raspi-config to do this, or do it manually:

$
$ passwd
$
( note: you will be asked to enter your existing password, and your new password twice. The passwords will not appear on the screen. )
 

Run the GUI

The first thing you will need is internet access in order to update your pi. Once logged in as pi, run startx to run the GUI.

$
$ startx
 

You will notice that the menu bar, which traditionally is at the bottom of the screen, is at the top. To move it to the bottom, right-click on the menu bar, choose 'Panel Settings' and move the menu bar anywhere you wish.

Connect to the internet

Raspbian comes with a basic internet connection package, run it from Menu -> Preferences -> Wifi Configuration.
You will need to know your network name and of course the password.
Click on the 'manage networks' tab, and scan for your network, then double-click this to configure it.
The 'status' tab should now say "connected".

Update and upgrade

The first thing we should do is update the Pi with the latest versions of all the packages, and install a more user-friendly package than apt-get. This will test the internet connection, look at the command prompt, download the list of latest packages (30,000+) and generally be a good start. If you haven't done this yet, then see this page.

The next thing I choose to do is ensure I have a fully working computer - it should play all types of media, and handle images. I've created a list of recommended packages to achieve this.