I had an 8 GB SD card with Arch ARM installed. I couldn't get the WiFi to work, so I wanted to reinstall via NOOBS. Since then, I've deleted all of the Arch files and extracted the NOOBS ones in their place, which didn't work. I've also messed around with gparted (formatting everything to FAT32), and cleared every partition using sudo dd if=/dev/zero of=/dev/sdbN for every N.

Every time I plug in the power cable, all I see is the red PWR LED turning on. Any idea why it's not booting, and how I can fix that?

2 Answers 2


it's not booting because you've cleared up the partitions and messed around with parted.

you may fix this by downloading a NOOBS installation image and following the instruction about how to copy it to your SD card.

  • I've done that (formatting everything to FAT32 again), but it didn't work. I notice that there's a very small partition at the start (< 100 MiB), which seems fixed in place. Could that be causing problems?
    – mudri
    Mar 25, 2014 at 8:16
  • @JamesWood if you do everything correctly, you don't have to format anything and it does not matter, if there's a formatted partition or not or two or more.
    – lenik
    Mar 25, 2014 at 10:11
  • I don't understand. Step 2 of the NOOBS installation is to format the SD card, so doing the installation right implies having formatted something.
    – mudri
    Mar 25, 2014 at 17:47
  • 1
    @JamesWood oh, they must have changed something since the last time I've read, nowadays you're supposed to delete all partitions, then create one single large FAT partition and unzip the contents of the archive there. Or use raspbian image, that does not care about previous formattings and existing partitions.
    – lenik
    Mar 25, 2014 at 23:52
  • Okay, no worries. I've fixed it now by just copying over an image I had on another card via dd. It's not strictly an answer to my original question, but I'll add it anyway.
    – mudri
    Mar 26, 2014 at 8:00

I had another Pi SD card lying around, so I copied the image from there onto my computer (sudo dd if=/dev/sdb of=img.img), unmounted the SD card (sudo umount /dev/sdb?*), inserted the broken SD card and copied the saved image to it (sudo dd of=/dev/sdb if=img.img).

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