Raspberry Pi — Initial Setup

I’ve received and setup my first Raspberry Pi; I am planning a dedicated media server, and otherwise to just experiment with CS topics from Scratch to Python, on the Debian version.

This entry will note minor issues and resolutions to getting up in running with a “B” version (two USBs).

  1. The keyboard defaults to “UK” — which makes typing a “pipe” key, required on many command lines for Linux, impossible (for me).  I found instructions for reconfiguring the keyboard for US (or any other country) on (surprise?) stackexchange.
  2. Despite some users reporting good luck with “wireless” keyboards for the RPi, not via bluetooth adapters but via those pre-configured usb-dongle and keyboard/mouse (either / both) combinations.  I should have been skeptical (every cycle counts…) but the short version of my experience is that this is bad idea — simple wired mice and simple wired keyboards used in the USB ports work best. And for me the pre-wired ones (including Microsoft-branded items like the wireless desktop 800) made the entire machine unworkable.
  3. I nice idea is to get a powerful USB (externally powered) hub, and use one of its USB ports (via a usb-to-micro-usb-connector to power the RPi as well, reducing your “cord count” by 1.
  4. A useful place to check if your powered USB device will work or not, or provide enough power, is here.  In general USB 2.0 devices can draw up to 500ma, and the RPi needs 700 to run reliably, but many powered multi-ports can deliver 2500 ma + of power (per port limits? hmm) so (particularly if you want to power the device AND all the USB peripherals) most people recommend a solid, hefty device to insure constant power.
  5. My own “bill of material” for my Raspberry Pi setup, including my “$22 Ikea standing deskcan be found here.

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