Raspberry PI Game Console Project: Getting an OS to run on it.

April 10th, 2013 7 minutes reading time.


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(My previous post)

So now that we have a Raspberry PI we need an ARM based Operating system to go on it.

My original idea is to run Jelly Bean on it, but I couldn’t quickly find an image for the Raspberry PI (which means I’ll either have to find harder or I’m gonna have to bust my ass and build one myself and add all the drivers necessary so that it runs like charm)

At this point I just need to know that my hardware is good to go, so the quickest, easiest way to put an OS on the Raspberri PI that I found was to get a Debian based Linux on it called Raspbian “wheezy”.

You can download the .zip file that contains the image file via http or you can help seed a torrent of it after you get it.

Once you download that you will end up with a 493.6MB .zip file, unzip it, and you will see the 1.96GB 2013-02-09-wheezy-raspbian.img file.

Now you have to put that .img file inside the SD card that will go into the Raspberry PI.

I’ll teach you how to do that on a Mac (on a linux box is quite the same, the file and mount locations are probably the only thing that’ll change)

1. Stick the SD card on the SD slot of your macbook.
2. On the Finder, Eject the SD card as soon as it comes up.
3. Open a Terminal
4. Execute sudo diskutils list, you should see something *like* this (this is actually how it’ll look when you’re done)

$ sudo diskutil list
/dev/disk0
   #:                       TYPE NAME                    SIZE       IDENTIFIER
   0:      GUID_partition_scheme                        *500.3 GB   disk0
   1:                        EFI                         209.7 MB   disk0s1
   2:                  Apple_HFS Macintosh HD            499.4 GB   disk0s2
   3:                 Apple_Boot Recovery HD             650.0 MB   disk0s3
/dev/disk1
   #:                       TYPE NAME                    SIZE       IDENTIFIER
   0:     FDisk_partition_scheme                        *2.0 TB     disk1
   1:                  Apple_HFS Time Machine            2.0 TB     disk1s1
/dev/disk2
   #:                       TYPE NAME                    SIZE       IDENTIFIER
   0:      GUID_partition_scheme                        *1.0 TB     disk2
   1:                        EFI                         209.7 MB   disk2s1
   2:                  Apple_HFS PICS_AND_MOVIES         999.9 GB   disk2s2
/dev/disk4
   #:                       TYPE NAME                    SIZE       IDENTIFIER
   0:     FDisk_partition_scheme                        *15.9 GB    disk4
   1:             Windows_FAT_32                         58.7 MB    disk4s1
   2:                      Linux                         1.9 GB     disk4s2

I want you to notice the “/dev/disk4“, judging by the size, that’s our 16 GB SD card right?

5. Now that we know where it is, let’s copy the image file into it. First make sure to unmount the partitions that are on the SD Card so you can write on it, for example, I have there a Windows_FAT_32 partition I don’t want to loose (disk4s1), you unmount it like this:

sudo diskutil unmount /dev/disk3s1

Then copy the image using the awesome dd utility, if the .img file was in your “Downloads” folder the command would look like this. (“if” stands for “input file”, make sure you put the full path to the file, or go to that folder and execute the command below)

sudo dd bs=1m if=~/Downloads/2013-02-09-wheezy-raspbian.img of=/dev/disk4

This will take a few minutes, be patient.

Once done, take the SD card, put it in the Raspberry PI SD Slot, hook it up to a monitor and power, snap a mouse and keyboard, and boot. It should work.

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One Response to “Raspberry PI Game Console Project: Getting an OS to run on it.”

  1. What do you carry in your backpack? - Gubatron.com Says:

    [...] Snes-like USB gamepad (for the Raspberry PI video game console project) [...]

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