Setting Up Your Raspberry Pi Using Only Your Laptop 03 Jan 2014

So you just got your Raspberry Pi and want to get started but remembered you don’t have an extra keyboard, mouse, or even a spare monitor to actually get something done? Well, that’s my case where I only have my laptop available (nope, I don’t own a TV).

Luckily there’s a way around: the latest Debian Wheezy has SSH enabled by default and you can just SSH into your pi once you’re done! Here’s how to go about it:

  • Download the latest version of Raspbian. At the time of this writing, it was 2013-12-20-wheezy.

  • Insert your sd-card, find out its location, and unmount it:
    diskutil list
    diskutil unmountDisk /dev/<sdcard-location>

  • Unzip the file and burn the image (.img) you just downloaded. Don’t worry if it takes a longe time, depending on the speed of your sdcard, it may take anywhere between 20 minutes and 2 hours.
    sudo dd bs=1m if=<your-file.img>.img of=/dev/<sdcard-location>

  • Boot your Pi and search for its IP address so you can SSH into it:
    arp -a

  • SSH into your brand new raspbian:
    ssh pi@<domain-name | ip-address>

  • Run the configuration tool just to make sure you have good defaults:

That’s it! Now you can go enjoy your raspberry pi via SSH or VNC.