Thursday, March 23, 2017

Linux - fun with the Raspberry Pi Zero W - setup

You need to buy a starter kit from Canatech, or whatever.  The kit has the good charger, a micro to regular usb converter, and a micro to regular hdmi adapter.  They also include a micro sd card with the operating system right on it.  I borked that right away, and loaded a new raspberrian system.

The raspi foundation is desperate for money, and loads a huge amount of bloatware on the system.  Good for an r3 but not so good for the zero.  But you have to use the full system for the rzw, because you need to set up the wifi and that's miserable from the command line.

So, fire it up while connected to your hdmi monitor, and usb keyboard-mouse.  Works great.  Immediately attack the bloatware with their software removal tool.  Kill wolfram and real-vnc.  These are horribly complicated and screw everything up.  They pay big bucks to put this on as an introduction.

Use raspi-config to activate ssh and i2c.  Set up the wifi.  Now you can get your big computer back.  Just keep the rzw plugged in and you can ssh in.  Install tightvncserver, and xfonts-base.  Fire up vncserver, and you get a full screen.  Great!  The thing is a 'dancing bear', slow but amazing that it works!

Now I have to solder on the i2c pins.  I intend to get at least 2 accelerometers on it.  Subsequent rzw's should cost less because you just need the naked boards, and I have a million micro usb chargers.

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