Setting up my Raspberry Pi

Yesterday I got my new Raspberry Pi, which I ordered a couple of weeks back. Raspberry Pi, is a credit card sized computer which costs roughly $35, and runs on Linux operating systems. It cost me a total of INR 2400, and here is the link to book your device.

Raspberry Pi Model B Box

Since, I booked the device, I had been going through many videos to setup the R-Pi. One of the first things I did, was download the OS

for the R-Pi (Raspbian “wheezy”) from the official site.

I had an 8 GB Micro SD card to which I wrote the image using the Win32DiskImager. I had a spare SD card adapter, which I could use for the R-Pi.

Raspberry Pi, with basic connections

The R-Pi is powered with a micro-usb charger. Anything that rates 5V, 750mA or above should do good. I used my Lumia phone charger to power it up. I have a very old and small tv which I rarely use, and was the only option for me (for first time setup). I used the AV cable which was connected between my Airtel DTH set-top-box and the TV, for connecting the R-Pi to the TV. I plugged in my USB keyboard and mouse, and connecting the power booted up the device automatically.

 

Unfortunately, the TV didn’t display any color. This is how it looked.

The GUI of wheezy

I hardly could read text from the TV screen. Until, I could go out and get myself a HDMI cable to plug into my LCD monitor, I decided to control the Pi using my laptop.

I needed a LAN cable for this, which I had earlier bought for playing multiplayer games between my desktop and laptop.

Before I actually connected the Pi to my laptop, I had to do quite a few things.

1. Update the raspbian distro (this was not really required) using the command

sudo apt-get update

2. Then I installed the VNC server, while I still had connection to the internet with TV being used as display. Command

sudo apt-get install tightvncserver

3. Set up a static IP address for the Pi. For this I had to make changes to the /etc/network/interfaces file, using the command

sudo nano /etc/network/interfaces

and changed the file like this

auto lo
iface lo inet loopback
iface eth0 inet static
address 169.254.87.2
netmask 255.255.0.0
gateway 169.254.87.1

also make relevant change in the /etc/resolv.conf file.

Then, came the actual connecting part. Connected the R-Pi with the laptop via the ethernet cable, and then ran the Advanced IP Scanner tool to make sure the R-Pi could be pinged from the laptop. Then downloaded PuTTY, and ran the tool. Entered the static IP address of the RPi, and connected to it, with the default credentials. (username pi, password raspberry), and voila, connected to my Pi.

But wait, I still haven’t done anything to get the desktop version (i.e GUI). This is when I needed to download the UltraVNC and install it on my laptop, to virtualize the GUI of the R-Pi.

Then used the Putty tool to start the vnc server on my R-Pi, using the command

sudo vncserver :1 -geometry 1366×768 -depth 16 -pixelformat rgb565

To automate this on startup of the raspberry pi, I did the following.

sudo nano /etc/init.d/tightvncserver (this creates a new file)

Pasted the following code

# First configure the user you want to run this under – this will generally be pi, unless you’ve created your own users
export USER=’pi’

eval cd ~$USER

# Check the state of the command – this’ll either be start or stop 
case “$1″ in
  start)
    # if it’s start, then start vncserver using the details below
    su $USER -c ‘/usr/bin/vncserver :1 -geometry 1366×768 -depth 16 -pixelformat rgb565′
    echo “Starting vncserver for $USER “
    ;;
  stop)
    # if it’s stop, then just kill the process
    pkill Xtightvnc
    echo “vncserver stopped”
    ;;
  *)
    echo “Usage: /etc/init.d/vncserver {start|stop}”
    exit 1
    ;;
esac
exit 0

Save the file and exit. Then modify the permissions of the file with

sudo chmod 755 /etc/init.d/tightvncserver

Then add the file to the startup sequence

sudo update-rc.d tightvncserver defaults

Then restart the pi, using the command

sudo shutdown -r now

Now, I can open UltraVNC when the R-Pi is booted up and enter the IP address along with the display in the VNC Server field (in my case it would be 169.254.87.2:1). And it prompted me for the password, after which I could see my R-Pi desktop screen.

All this was the initial configuration so that I could connect to my R-Pi without having to connect it to the TV, and have a separate keyboard and mouse for it.

In the meanwhile, waiting for my USB Wi-Fi Dongle to make my R-Pi remotely available.

Planning for something interesting to do with the Pi. :) . Open for suggestions though.

 

 

The sites which were very helpful to me in setting this up were:

http://www.penguintutor.com/linux/raspberrypi-headless

http://myraspberrypiexperience.blogspot.in/p/setting-up-vnc.html

http://myraspberrypiexperience.blogspot.in/2012/08/start-vnc-automatically.html

http://www.raspberrypi.org/phpBB3/viewtopic.php?f=26&t=15923

Windows Azure Developer Camp Experience

 

 

 

 

It has been quite some time since we started hearing about “cloud”. I am pretty sure that most of the people have already attended sessions, and viewed presentations about the very famous “cloud” concept. It is the emerging technology and is already adopted by many of the companies and organizations around the world. It has proved to be the best solution for the changing demands of the clients of the web, as well as for virtualization.

Windows Azure Developer Camps were held last week in India (Delhi, Chennai, and Pune), and our team of MSPs from Chennai attended this camp with a lot of enthusiasm. The camp provided us with an opportunity to learn more about Windows Azure directly from the Windows Azure Team from Microsoft. The keynote was given by Joseph Landes, General Manager –DPE (Microsoft India). He gave an overview about what the cloud technologies of Microsoft aim to deliver to the end user. Then we were provided with an introduction to the Windows Azure platform, portraying the views of various corporates about Windows Azure, and how it has helped in providing them with the solution to their problems.

Most of the sessions focused on the new features in the Windows Azure Spring Release. The new Windows Azure services include Web Sites, Virtual Machines, and Media Services. Yes, now we can host web sites in Windows Azure. We can get started for free with shared instances, and scale as you go using reserved instances for greater isolation and performance. Up to ten shared-instances are free for one year. Virtual Machines give you the application mobility so you can move your existing applications back and forth between on-premises and the cloud. Then, create your own virtual private network (VPN) in Windows Azure and securely connect your VMs to on-premises infrastructure. Virtual Network is available at no charge during preview, while VMs are not.

Media Services offer the flexibility, scalability and reliability of a cloud service to handle high-quality media experience for a global audience. Media services are also free during the preview, but limited to 1 Terabyte of data processing per month which is actually quite sufficient considering it is a free trial.

Local Redundant Storage and SQL Reporting are also new to the Spring Release version. If you want to know more about these features, please visit the Windows Azure blog (https://www.windowsazure.com/en-us/community/blog/) .

I really have to mention that the lunch was awesome. Well, it was part of the camp of course. The closing note was given by Balaji Kesavaraj (Director Cross Audience Marketing – DPE | Microsoft India). Not only do we hope to attend such camps in the future, but we are planning to conduct sessions in order to share our knowledge with others. So, stay tuned to our site(www.cnugstudent.in), and also the Facebook page (www.facebook.com/cnugstudent) for updates on sessions and camps.

Nokia 808 PureView with a 41 Mega Pixel camera

What is the greatest number that you have heard when talking about a mobile phone’s camera resolution (Mega Pixels). Personally I have heard about 5-8 MP cameras on a mobile phone, but what’s this. A 41 Mega Pixel camera phone by Nokia has been announced.

In Barcelona’s Mobile World Congress, Nokia announced the 808 PureView, a Symbian Belle device with a 41 mega pixel camera. This has been achieved by combining Carl Zeiss optics and pixel over-sampling technology. The 41 mega pixel does not mean that the quality of the photos are going to perfect, but a great resolution for each picture.

The 808 PureView also has something called Rich Recording which means extraordinarily clear audio (i.e, upto a thumping 140 decibels)

The other specs of the phone are as found in any other smart phone, 1.3 GHz CPU, a 4-inch 360 x 640 pixel screen, 512 MB RAM and 16 GB of storage.

The device will hit the market this month and the price will be around INR 30000 (even though it might not be released in India so soon).

Looking forward to such a camera. Wondering what do we actually do with such a resolution??? And hey guys, you will be seeing such crazy numbers on many nokia phones’ camera resolution soon, so don’t get shocked.

Sources: http://trak.in

http://mashable.com

iRing, Apple’s bluetooth device as a ring.

The person behind this device is Victor Soto. He has come up with this new concept, what Apple calls iRing. It is basically a bluetooth device with which one can control their i-devices such as iPod, and iPhone’s playback and volume. It also sports a bright OLED status display with touch-sensitive
function strip and a rechargeable battery that offers a life of up to 2
days. A cradle is provided, with which the iRing is charged up, and a locking feature is present on the back of the ring.


 

Nokia Luna, The compact Bluetooth headset

This particular compact bluetooth headset, the Nokia Luna, is being offered in five different colors and offers NFC support.

For the time being Windows Phones lack NFC support but the Luna is still a nice hands free option to consider.

A close competitor to the Luna is the Jabra Stone, but the latter feels more secure when placed in the ear. Anyhow the Luna feels more comfortable in the ear. There is one feature in the Luna which could have been different, which is the tiny multifunction button.

The battery life is definitely a plus in the Nokia Luna. And the cradle is compact enough to carry in your pocket to help give the Luna a healthy amount of standby time.

Now carry Ubuntu in your Pocket

In every dual core phone, there’s a PC trying to get out

-ubuntu.com

Here comes seamless Ubuntu integration into Android. That means a full Ubuntu desktop in your docked Android phone. It doesn’t mean that its going to be a “Ubuntu Phone”. It means that you don’t need to carry your ubuntu desktop with you, instead you can carry it in your phone, and all you need is a screen (actually another desktop). Dock your phone to a computer and get your ubuntu desktop on that computer. This is what we call seamless integration.

This new update could make you think of a cutting edge hardware requirement, but its actually quite straight forward. With a broad range of ARM and x86 hardware support, it can realistically be added to phones already in development.

One of the most interesting feature is the Ubuntu TV.

So watch out, your next desktop could be a phone.  This integration will be first shown at the Mobile World Congress next week.

For complete details, please visit http://www.ubuntu.com/devices/android