Thursday, May 16, 2013

Getting Started with Raspberry Pi

In this post were going to take the fastest route to getting going on the Raspberry Pi. Instead of hooking up a keyboard, mouse and HDMI cable we are going to control the Raspberry Pi from the Terminal window on Mac or by using Putty on Windows via a console cable (uses the Prolific PL2303 as the driver device). Then we're going to install a USB Wifi dongle. Once you've done that, you can connect from your terminal window or Putty via the network using ssh, requiring no cables. We assume Raspbian distro.

Both a console cable and Wifi dongle are included in the oddWires Raspberry Pi Starter Kit .

Connect the leads

  • The red lead to 5V
  • The black lead to GND
  • The white lead to TXD
  • The green lead to RXD

Download software and install it


  • Download Putty from here and install it. You're going to use this to provide a command line window to the Raspberry Pi.
  • Download the PL2303 driver for the console cable from here and install it.
  • Once it's installed, use Device Manager to find out the COM number of the cable. 
  • Once you have that you can start Putty with a Connection type of serial and Serial line of COMx that you found in Device Manager. Once you start the session you will be connected to the Raspberry Pi.


  • Install the PL2303 drivers for Mac – download the package from here and install it.
  • Once you have installed the driver you should be able to list it in a terminal window:
    •  ls /dev/cu.PL2303* 
  • Connect to the Raspberry Pi (you can tab from PL2303 and the rest of the device name will get filled in). But do remember to add the 115200 speed: 
    • screen /dev/cu.PL2303-xxxxxxxx 115200 
  • Once you execute the screen command you will be connected to the Raspberry Pi 

Configure the wireless adapter (this is WPA2  Personal)

First of all we edit the WPA configuration file:
sudo nano /etc/wpa.config


pairwise=CCMP TKIP

And save. 

Set up the wireless interface

Now edit the network interface to configure the wireless network:

sudo nano /etc/network/interfaces

allow-hotplug wlan0

iface wlan0 inet dhcp

wpa-conf /etc/wpa_supplicant/wpa_supplicant.conf

And save. 

Start wireless network

Sudo ifup wlan0 (or restart Pi)

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