Raspberry Pi for Kids: Boot Raspbian

By Richard Wentk

After NOOBS (New Out Of the Box Software) finishes, your Raspberry Pi restarts automatically. This time, it doesn’t start NOOBS. It starts — the technical word is boots — Raspbian.

Has NOOBS gone? Mostly. From now on, if you don’t touch anything while the Pi boots, you’ll see Raspbian.

The Raspbian boot sequence lists a lot more stuff on the screen than NOOBS does. You get a complete list of everything Raspbian is doing, with details, as shown in the following figure.

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You don’t need to watch this sequence, or remember it, or pay any attention to it — although it does look kind of cool.

If you’re an expert Linux user, you can learn something about the settings and state of Linux by reading this text as it scrolls by. If you’re not — no big. None of it is essential.

The important part happens at the end, when all the scrolling stops. You’ll see a message about Debian/Linux at the very end, and under that is a line of green and blue text that looks like this (without the green and blue):

pi@raspberrypi ~ $

After it, you can see a flashing green rectangle.

This is the command prompt. Because the Pi is an old-fashioned computer, you can tell it what to do by typing commands on your keyboard.

Mouse? No. Menus? Uh. Keyboard typing only.

The prompt tells you the Pi is waiting for your command. It also reminds you that your name on the Pi is pi, and that the computer is called raspberrypi — just in case you’ve forgotten already.

Some commands take a while to work. If you can’t see the prompt, there’s no point typing a command. The Pi is still thinking about the last thing you told it to do. It’s not ready to do something else yet.