Pidora-Headless-Mode

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What is headless mode?

Security Warning!
If you are going to use headless mode it is critical that you change the root password as soon as possible, because Pidora is set with a default root password that is publicized.

Headless mode is a system configuration which enables access to a raspberry pi, through ssh on a network, without the use of a monitor or keyboard plugged into the raspberry pi. This mode does require another computer to ssh into the raspberry pi. When this feature is enabled, firstboot is bypassed and disabled.

Additionally, Headless Mode will enable services to read your IP Address through plugged in speakers or headphones. It will also flash the IP Address to you on the Raspberry Pi LEDs.

Enabling Headless Mode on Pidora

To enable Headless Mode, create a file named "headless" inside the boot file system on the Raspberry Pi's SD card. Create this "headless" file before you boot your Raspberry Pi.

Enable Headless Mode On Linux

Tutorial Video: http://youtu.be/ALUAmw6Mz_o

Insert the SD card into your system, and create a file named "headless" in the filesystem labelled "boot".

Enable Headless Mode On Windows

Note
If you are using a Windows OS you will need to remove the .txt file extension on the headless file. More information on removing file extensions on eHow

Insert the SD card into your system. Only the boot filesystem will be made available, because Windows will not be able to read other partitions on the card. Create a file named "headless" on that partition

There are two possible configurations for Headless Mode "DHCP" configuration and "Static" configuration.

DHCP Configuration

If you would like to configure the Raspberry Pi to use DHCP, leave the "headless" file empty, and the Raspberry Pi should be assigned an IP Address dynamically.

Optional Configuration

If "RESIZE" is in the "headless" file, the root filesystem will be expanded to the maximum size of the sd card via the service rootfs-resize. If "SWAP"(requires the value in megabytes) exists in the "headless" file, a swap file will be created of the specified size, and then activated.

RESIZE
SWAP=[Size of swap in megabytes]

How do I find my IP Address?

Once Headless Mode has been Enabled, and the Raspberry Pi has finished booting, the IP Address of the Raspberry Pi will be read out through the speakers or headphones that are connected to the Raspberry Pi. Additionally, the IP Address will be flashed through the LED on the Raspberry Pi soon after the IP Address is read through the speakers.

1 - 9 short flashes indicate the digits 1 - 9
10 short flashes indicate the digit 0
a long flash indicates an octet separator (dot)
a brief pause separates digits

For more information about IP Address reading and IP Address flashing, click here

Static Configuration

If you would like to set a static, non-changing, IP Address on your Raspberry Pi, you will need to modify the "headless" file, adding an IP Address, Gateway, and Netmask, to the file for the configurations to work properly(see samples configs below).

Required Configuration

IPADDR=[IP Address of Raspberry Pi]
NETMASK=[Mask to define network subnet]
GATEWAY=[IP Address of router/gateway]

Optional Configuration

If "RESIZE" is in the "headless" file, the root filesystem will be expanded to the maximum size of the sd card via the service rootfs-resize. If "SWAP"(requires the value in megabytes) exists in the "headless" file, a swap file will be created of the specified size, and then activated.

RESIZE
SWAP=[Size of swap in megabytes]

Sample Headless Mode Configurations

Below are sample configurations, they may require you to enter valid ip information specific to the network you are running it on.

Static Configuration(without rootfs resizing or swap creation)

IPADDR=192.168.1.105
NETMASK=255.255.255.0
GATEWAY=192.168.1.1

Static Configuration(with rootfs resizing and swap creation)

IPADDR=192.168.1.105
NETMASK=255.255.255.0
GATEWAY=192.168.1.1
RESIZE
SWAP=512

Dynamic Configuration(with rootfs resizing and swap creation)

RESIZE
SWAP=512

SSH to The Headless Pi

Default User: root
Default Password: raspberrypi
ssh root@{ip_address}

Known Bugs and Features

Two IP Addresses

When switching in between Headless Mode Configuration states, static ip to dynamic ip, or dynamic ip to static ip, both IP Addresses from each configuration will be active for the single boot, until a reboot takes place.

Graphical Mode Not Disabled

Headless Mode does not disable X, and can run in both Run Level 3 or 5. This means that if you are not planning on using X while in Headless Mode, you should switch to Run Level 3 to save memory.

For more information about changing Run Levels on Pidora, click here.

Slower Boot

When running headless mode, the speed of the boot is slowed down, this is due to a network change during boot.

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