Re: New user, startup issues

Mark Griffith

How in the world are you "adding files" to the Raspbian image or editing files when the thing won't boot up?

This is all pretty simple.  Get a NEW SD card, 32GB or even 128GB if you want to have that much space.  It's not a money issue, a 16GB decent card from WalMart is only about $8.

DON'T format it.  That doesn't make any difference as you are applying a completely new image on there and Windows formatting doesn't make any difference at all.  I have built a couple hundred SD cards with different Raspbian images and have had problems with pre-formatted cards.  Don't do it, not necessary.

Connect it to a HDMI TV and a USB keyboard/mouse.

Apply power.  The RED LED should never blink.  If it does, and randomly blinks, the power supply is bad.  Get a new one.  If it is steady on all the time, this is good.

Make sure you have the correct OS.  I'm assuming you are trying to boot the latest Raspbian OS for the Pi.  If not, you'll have to figure it out.

If there are errors during the boot, the problem should be obvious.  If they are random errors, or it boots and then hangs or other weird stuff, get a NEW Pi Zero.  It's only $10.

Try all that and see if it works.

Once booted then you can set up your WiFi from the GUI or from the command line if you want, enable SSH, etc.  Read the Pi docs.


On Sun, Jan 31, 2021 at 4:21 AM Vic WA4THR via <> wrote:
Thanks for all the replies. I did send a note to Vilros with some questions.

I was checking to see if i had any empty MicroSD cards around, and all I had were either double the size or too small. The card I am using is a 32GB Samsung EVO select and it does pass the verification when I write to it. Is that good enough for this application? Among the imagers I used was the Raspberry Pi imager on their website. It didn't act any different from the others as far as performance.

However, I do notice something a bit odd. When I reinsert the SD card into the desktop, now there is a "new" empty drive showing and saying it needs to be formatted, one letter higher than the Boot drive on the card. I saw that before and thought it meant the card was bad, so it was reformatted and a new image copied over. It looked fine before I used it in the Pi, no phantom drive, so I wonder if the Pi is creating that new drive on the card? Although I think I have done this a couple of times, I may try erasing and reformatting the SD card again.

I started the process before I had an HDMI cable to connect to the monitor, so I was trying to use the built-in WiFi and run "headless". I added the needed files to the SD card (adding and empty SSH file and the filled out wpa_supplicant.conf file for my WiFi), but when trying to run the green LED on the pi would flash for a while, then go steady, but no signal ever showed up on the network. That's when I decided to wait for the USB hub and try to run it directly. On the one time it got as far as logging on to the WiFi, I did find it on the network.

I'll look at trying the Pi plugged in to the USB port, if I understand that technique, and good thought about watching the WiFi on the phone monitor. The power supply is the one supplied by Vilros, but another good idea to monitor the voltage, although nothing seems to be dimming under use. Among my many start attempts were efforts plugging only the mouse or only the keyboard in to the Pi, in case the load was too much. Those didn't make any difference except an inability to either select things or type in things when needed.


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