The Raspberry Pi is a credit-card sized computer. It’s a capable little PC which can be used for many of the things that a desktop PC does. You can find details from its official website: http://www.raspberrypi.org/.
There are two models available. Model A has 256MB RAM, one USB port and no Ethernet (network connection). Model B has 512MB RAM, 2 USB port and an Ethernet port. of course, the price is different too. The Model A will cost $25 and the Model B $35.
I ordered one raspberry pi of Model B three weeks ago from RS components. I got the tiny computer this Wednesday. In the package, there is a small Raspberry(color) box containing the credit-card sized computer. Besides, there is one page of “quick start guide” and a page of “regulatory compliance and safety information”.
To start, i need to prepare at least:
1. an SD card for loading operation system. the minimum sized SD card you can use is 2GB, but it is recommended at least 4GB.
2. Micro USB power supply. capable of providing at least 700mA at 5V. Do not attempt to power your Raspberry Pi by plugging it into a computer or a hub. I have got a power supply for my nexus 7, which is capable of providing 2.0A at 5V. so it is good for Raspberry Pi too.
3. Ethernet LAN cable. so i can remotely log onto the Pi with SSH. As i don’t have an HDMI/RC TV, i can not connect the raspberry to a monitor. the easiest way to use the pi is to control it remotely with putty.
Step 1: set up my SD card. as a beginner, i chooses Raspbian “wheezy” as recommended. i am a windows user, so i download the Win32DiskImager for writing the image to my SD card. This step is quite simple, the Win32DiskImager is straight forward to use. But please pay high attention to the driver you choose. make sure you write the image to the SD card, not other windows drivers.
Step 2: plugin the SD card, Ethernet LAN cable, power supply. there is no on/off switch on the raspberry Pi, so when you just plugin or remove power for turn on/off. the LED lights on the raspberry turns on and start blinking, once the computer is on. the raspberry pi obtains an IP address automatically via DHCP. you can log onto your router to find out the IP address assigned to your raspberry. take my TP-Link for example. log onto the router with the browser http://192.168.1.1. and then select DHCP Server -> clients list. there is one item for raspberry.
step 3: log onto the raspberry with putty. If you don’t have putty, just download one from the website. and input the ip address and select “SSH” in the putty configuration and click open. it prompts for username and password. for Raspbian “wheezy”, the init username and password is provided in the download page.
Hooray, now the journey starts: