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001 Install the command-line-only version of Raspberry Pi OS

Here are the steps to set up Raspberry PI os on your Pi. These steps show you how to set up your Pi using the Lite version or command line.

What you need for this experiment.

  1. Raspberry Pi Zero W
  2. MicroSD card of 16GB or more. I use the Sandisk Ultra A2 cards now.
  3. MicroSD card reader
  4. Wireless network
  5. Power for your Raspberry Pi Zero. An old 5w phone charger and a micro USB cable are all you need.

Let’s get started.

All these steps are done from a Windows PC and the Pi directly. You will need to google to do it from a Mac or Linux.

Step 1. Get the Pi imager software.

  1. Download Raspberry Pi imager software and install that on your computer.
  2. Plug in your MicroSD card in your card reader
  3. Launch the Raspberry Pi imager
  4. Choose the lite version of Raspberry Pi OS
  5. Pick the correct MicroSD card
  6. Pick write.
  7. That is all there is to it.  Once it is finished imaging your MicroSD card, it will tell you to remove the card.

Step 2: Assemble your Pi

    1. Put the card in the Pi
    2. Connect your monitor
    3. Connect your keyboard and mouse
    4. Plug in the power

Step 3: Configure the Pi

  1. After your Raspberry Pi Zero W boots, it will present you with a login screen. The default username is pi, and the default password is raspberry
    Raspbian GNU/Linux 9 raspberrypi tty1
    raspberrypi login: pi
    Password: raspberry
  2. After logging in, we need to set up the localization and WiFi. To do that, we will use the raspi-config utility.
    sudo raspi-config

When you start the utility, you will be presented with a menu.


  • Use the arrow keys to move up and down the menu.
  • Press enter to select the item
  • Press Tab to move to the bottom options <Select> or <Finish>

Let’s start with System Settings. Here we want to setup:

  • Wireless Lan
  • Password
  • Hostname

After you set up the System Setting, you want to move to Localisation options. You want to set the following settings there:

  • Local, I set mine to en_US.UTF-8
  • Timezone
  • Keyboard
  • WLAN (WiFi) country

Use the arrows and tab keys to finish the utility and allow your Pi to reboot

Once rebooted, let’s see if the network works. Because, you did set up WiFi, right?

Testing internet connection

From the command line type:

ping google.com

If you get a “Name or service not known” it’s not working. Go back to raspi-confg and try again.

If you get time=19.0 MS or some other number you are working.

Press Control-C to stop the ping.

Updating your Raspberry Pi OS

Now to update your Pi with the latest updates. From the command line type:

sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get dist-upgrade

Once that finishes you have a Raspberry Pi ready to start programming with.