Category Archives: How To (Pi)

Look, ma, no SD! Boot a Raspberry Pi from USB only

The Raspberry Pi 4 is now capable of booting from a USB Flash drive without requiring an SD card to kick-start the process. Here’s how you set it up.

USB disk, yes (left) — SD card, no (right)
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A cure for Raspberry Pi ‘Slow USB Mouse Syndrome’

I don’t quite know how I missed this, but I’m guessing plenty of Pi users might have missed it too so here it is. If you’re tired of the Raspbian desktop’s too, too laggy mouse performance, there’s a very easy cure. Poor mouse responsivity was the only thing preventing me from using the Raspbian desktop on a regular basis. Here’s how to fix it.

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Easy Ethernet access for a headless Raspberry Pi

This neat trick is implemented on the Raspberry Pi-based Twilio Developer Kit for Broadband IoT, with which I’ve been working a lot of late (as a Twilio staffer). It lets you connect a headless Pi to your main machine via Ethernet just be plugging in a cable. It also maintains the Pi’s own wireless connection to the Internet.

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How to view a Raspberry Pi desktop on an iPad

My exploration of using a mouse with an iPad got me thinking: since I log into my Raspberry Pi remotely using SSH and the app Termius, could I also run a remote desktop session on my iPad too?

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How to use a mouse with an iPad

You don’t need a mouse when you’re using an iPad, right? That’s Apple’s view, but it’s not mine. If you use an iPad as a small, very portable laptop — maybe you have the iPad’s Smart Keyboard add-on — then you don’t necessarily want to be moving your hand up to the screen every time you want to point and click.

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Raspberry Pi Knowledgebase added

I’ve created a page containing simple sets of instructions for some key — and not so widely used — Raspberry Pi setup tasks. The goal is to have a single source that I (and anyone else) can check when they need to look up what they should do to perform a specific action: setting up Node.js, for example, or using Dropbox.

You can find the Knowledgebase here.

Run a Raspberry Pi 4 from a USB 3.0 drive

The Raspberry Pi is notoriously tough on micro SD cards, which were never intended to be used as primary computer storage.

The Pi 4’s USB 3.0 bus presents a high-speed alternative to the SD card… almost. Unfortunately, you can’t yet boot the Pi 4 off a USB 3.0-connected drive (as you could with the Pi 3) but you can at least use USB for your primary storage and retain the Pi’s micro SD card solely for boot duties. This minimizes the risk to this fragile medium.

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