I have just got a Raspberry PI B+ and I don't really know how to set it up. I have read some guides and they say that you need a monitor and a mouse, I only have a laptop.

Can someone please help me with setting up a raspberry pi b+ with just a laptop, I do have a micro SD card and mainly all of the required things, I just don't know how to do it with a laptop.

  • when you say "set it up" what do you want to use it for?
    – rob
    Commented Dec 11, 2014 at 8:34
  • As in I just got it and want to at least start it up, just the basic UI and other basic stuff. Probably raspbian aswell, but I don't know that much about that.
    – Random guy
    Commented Dec 11, 2014 at 9:49
  • I used the term 'headless' in my web searches. Seems most tutorials assume you want to connect with a monitor, keyboard and mouse. Just search for something like 'raspberry pi headless setup'
    – Matt Long
    Commented Dec 12, 2014 at 5:43
  • Follow these instructions mattsweb.ddns.net/gettingstarted.php to get started with a raspberry pi. Commented Mar 11, 2015 at 22:35
  • Check this link circuitbasics.com/… This helped me a lot
    – user31614
    Commented Jun 7, 2015 at 18:44

4 Answers 4


I'd comment (reputation)

Connect your pi to your router via ethernet cable.

If you're using OS X, you can open the Airport Utility to view the settings and wireless clients connected which will also show the IP address os the pi

If not you can use a multitude of commands to view the same details above on other OS's/network setups.

Then simply run this in your terminal/cmd:

ssh pi@The_IP_Address

Then enter the password:


raspberry is the default password

  • @Random guy - did you get it to work?
    – 1''
    Commented Dec 12, 2014 at 3:37

It's far easier with a keyboard and screen.

I don't know how a NOOBs install will work. If you have the Raspbian image written to the SD card you could try the following.

  1. Connect the Pi to a router with an Ethernet cable. This assumes that your laptop is also connected to the router via wireless or cable.
  2. Power the Pi. You should see a minute or so of green LED activity.
  3. Login to the router and check to see if the Pi has been assigned an IP address, say
  4. Use putty (Windows) or ssh (Linux) to log in to the Pi from the laptop, e.g. ssh [email protected] (password raspberry).

Good luck.

  • Thank you for answering, but I'd rather use NOOBs because it is the first time setting up.
    – Random guy
    Commented Dec 11, 2014 at 10:50
  • AFAIK You cannot setup NOOBS without a keyboard and some form of display. You MUST have a TV with hdmi or CRT input.
    – Milliways
    Commented Dec 11, 2014 at 11:07
  • Ok, I'm doing this and when I get up to puTTY what do I do? I've put the IP address in it and when it comes up to login I put ssh [email protected] ( is its IP), but when it comes up with password, it won't let me type anything!? Please help me with this.
    – Random guy
    Commented Dec 12, 2014 at 11:03
  • No, ssh is when you login from a *nix system. Do the putty. If it asks for a user name enter pi (then return). If it ask for a password enter raspberry (then return). The password will NOT be echoed to the screen.
    – joan
    Commented Dec 12, 2014 at 11:10
  • Thanks, but what do I do after that? Do I need to set things up through it, I'm pretty clueless
    – Random guy
    Commented Dec 12, 2014 at 11:11

See my answer on another question : https://raspberrypi.stackexchange.com/a/4065/3290

Some linux distro, such as Occidentalis, have a avahi daemon configured, so you don't need to know the IP address to connect to the raspberry.


As you have indicated in your comments you are inclined to use Raspbian. If you want to use raspbian, Follow this:

  1. Download and image latest raspbian on SD card - Guide
  2. Mount the SD card in Linux (assuming your laptop has Linux or a VM with Linux) and edit the /etc/network/interfaces file assuming is the IP you want to assign and is your gateway.
#iface eth0 inet dhcp
iface eth0 inet static 
  1. Safely unmount the SD card and insert into the Pi
  2. Connect ethernet cable to your pi and power it up
  3. ssh into the Pi using your laptop

ssh [email protected]

  1. If you would like to use graphical applications in raspbian, you can install Xserver on your laptop and use X11 forwarding with ssh.

This way you can avoid using a monitor, keyboard and mouse to setup your Pi.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.