I just got my Pi today (the 512 mb model, make in the UK), and I've so far been unable to do anything with it. I plugged it in to my TV using my hdmi cable, hooked up a super simple keyboard, and powered it with my cellphone charger (which supplies 1A). The 4GB SD card was loaded with the Raspbian wheezy image from this page, and followed the directions here to set it up. When it's powered up the LED comes on, but nothing appears on the screen. What am I missing?

  • 3
    Just a passing thought. Did you plug the HDMI in before you powered up?
    – recantha
    Commented Nov 5, 2012 at 6:39
  • Can you connect to the pi over SSH? Televisions are sometimes very particular about refresh rates and may not display anything. PC monitors far flexible in this regard.
    – Lord Loh.
    Commented Nov 8, 2012 at 20:24

3 Answers 3


The Pi will display a blank screen if it is unable to boot from the SD card - mine behaves exactly the way you described if I try to boot it with no SD card inserted. There may be something wrong with your image or it may not be written to the SD card correctly.

The easiest way to check if this is your problem is to unzip BerryBoot to a FAT32 formatted SD card and boot off that. It's quick, easy, hard to mess up and if it lets you boot you can download/install Raspbian over wifi/ethernet/USB. Either way if it loads up you know your Pi is probably O.K.

You might also like to check that the SHA-1 hash of the image you downloaded matches the one displayed on the website to see if it downloaded correctly. If the hash matches you could also try re-writing the image to the SD card; trying a new / different SD card; or testing the imaged card on a different Pi or within a virtual machine.

  • 2
    +1. Addendum: You should see the "activity" LED blinking irregularly several dozen times as the Pi loads the operating system from the SD card. If you see one LED briefly blink once and nothing else, it means the image on the SD card cannot be read. Try a different card and try re-installing the image. Commented Nov 5, 2012 at 17:15

The issue may be with the HDMI display. You need to change the settings in the config file. refer to this link - http://www.raspberrypi.org/phpBB3/viewtopic.php?f=26&t=5851

Hope it helps.


Did you try using a HDMI input without adapters from your Pi to your screen. Mine did not work the first time until I plugged it in a HDMI port. I only had to do that once, and I am now able to use my HDMI to VGA adapter. I guess it probably needed to set itself up....!

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