Setting up a Raspberry Pi with Raspbian

Just recently I bought a new toy: Raspberry Pi B+ and a 16GB SD card. The card is quiet large, however, keeping in mind that SD cards have limited write cycles I decided to buy a large one. I plan to set up a web-server on it running nginx under Raspbian in the DMZ (between my own router and the one of my provider) on it. The server should be accessible from the internet for me. Nevertheless, that will become another story. Here I will describe, how I set up the Raspberry Pi. As operating system on my PC I use a mix of Debian testing and unstable. The PC has a (micro-) SD card reader.
Once you have the hardware, you can download the image at Enter the SD card in the reader and find out which disk is your SD card, in my case it is /dev/sdg. As root (or sudo) write the image to the card by executing

> dd bs=4M if=Downloads/2014-09-09-wheezy-raspbian.img of=/dev/sdg

In other blogs I found that you might need to set bs=1M, however, for me the previous worked. Make sure the buffer is written to the card by syncing.

> sync

Increasing the partition size as described elsewhere to the full size of the card is not necessary, since that can be done once you start up Raspbian.
That’s it already, now you can power up the Raspberry Pi. I connected the Raspberry Pi to my router to start it headless (without keyboard, mouse and monitor). If you have local network with DHCP, and the server accepts “send host-name” from the client (in /etc/dhcp/dhclient.conf), you can log in via SSH immediately. Otherwise, you have to find out the IP address, p.e. with nmap, scanning a subnet for the open port 22 (SSH), including some details:

> nmap –sV -p 22
Starting Nmap 6.47 ( ) at date time
Nmap scan report for raspberrypi (
Host is up (-0.076s latency).
22/tcp open ssh OpenSSH 6.0p1 Debian 4+deb7u2 (protocol 2.0)
MAC Address: B8:27:EB:00:00:00 (Raspberry Pi Foundation)

This gives you the IP address of your Raspberry Pi, and maybe some unexpected results for other devices in your network. Note: the MAC address is only displayed if you are on the same subnet and in my case only if you execute nmap with root privileges. If the MAC address is returned, the Raspberry Pi can be identified by the first 24 bits (Organizationally Unique Identifier: B8:27:EB). Now you can login, but don’t forget to replace the IP address with yours.

> ssh pi@raspberrypi


> ssh pi@

The default username is “pi” password is “raspberry”, which you should as a matter of course change immediately. Also increasing the partition size to fill up the whole disk can be done now. Both is possible with the command:

> sudo raspi-config

I will continue running the Raspberry Pi headless, therefore I uninstalled almost al X stuff (p.e. packages starting with “lx”). And since I plan to install a web server with a SQL database I decided to connect an external hard disk for the /tmp and /var directories. However, I didn’t find a way switching to init 1 without loosing my ssh connection, so that there is no process with open file handles on /var 😦 So I only moved /tmp, /var/www and /var/lib/mysql to the external hard disk.