Computer

This is how you configure your Raspberry Pi OS to use it for the first time

Whether it is to set up a personal server, to play retro games, or simply out of curiosity and to learn programming, today we can all get hold of a Raspberry Pi. This microcomputer has earned a great reputation within the IT sector thanks to its construction based on free hardware, the considerable power it offers and, above all, its price. We can install a wide variety of operating systems (especially Linux) on it. But, whatever system we install, we may have to make some configuration to adapt it to our needs. And here the problems can begin.

Raspberry Pi OS is the official operating system for this micro-computer. This system is based on Debian, and it comes specially prepared and optimized to work in an optimized way on this device. However, depending on the use that we are going to give it, we may have to configure some aspect of it as soon as we start it up.

In this way, we find two ways to configure this Raspberry Pi OS to adapt it to our needs.

Use Raspberry Pi Imager

Raspberry Pi Imager is a tool, developed by the people in charge of the micro-computer, to be able to prepare the micro-SD with which to start the device. Instead of having to download NOOBS, or save an image from scratch manually, this tool allows us to access the main available systems, download them and save them to the memory card with just a couple of clicks. Furthermore, if we have an image that is not available in the list (in .img format) we can also record it from this program without having to resort to other tools such as the well-known Win32Imager.

Since version 1.6, this program includes a secret menu from which we will be able to configure our micro-SD during the recording process. We can launch this menu using the keyboard shortcut Ctrl-Shift-X, and will allow us, among other things:

  • Disable overscan.
  • Configure the hostname.
  • Enable and configure SSH.
  • Configure Wi-Fi.
  • Set the language and keyboard layout.

Raspberry Pi Imager 1.6 Wizard

In this way, we can have our system configured from minute zero without even having to connect it to a screen. Thanks to Wi-Fi and SSH we can connect to it remotely without having to do anything else.

Raspi-config, the multipurpose tool

As a basic configuration, the above tool is fine. But if we want to have much more control over the operating system, it is necessary to resort to another well-known tool such as Raspi-Config. This tool is nothing more than a script that we can launch at any time from a terminal and that will allow us to configure many other aspects of Raspberry Pi OS.

To launch it, we will simply connect the Raspberry Pi, we will log in to interface or tty, and we will launch the following command:

sudo raspi-config

Raspi-Config

The options we will have are:

  1. Change the password of the current user.
  2. Configure network parameters.
  3. Configure boot options.
  4. Choose a language and region settings.
  5. Configure peripherals.
  6. Activate one of the overclocking profiles to improve performance.
  7. Access advanced options.
  8. Update Raspi-Config
  9. About Raspi-Config.

Within each of the sections we will find more options with which we can adjust all the parameters of our distro to the maximum and make the most of the Raspberry Pi.

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