Should I just pull the plug? Or is it best if I exit LXDE and any other running processes first?
You definitely don't want to just pull the plug. This can cause problems with the SD card and file system.
From the command line
When using the command line or a terminal window, you can enter the following to do a clean shutdown:
sudo shutdown -h now
From the LXDE GUI
- Click the shutdown button (red power button) in the menu bar at the bottom right corner of the screen.
- Click shutdown (or "logout" as shown on newer versions, then issue the shutdown command listed above).
Once it says System halted, you can remove the power cord if needed.
2Regarding the LXDE GUI part: Is this still current? I tried with Raspbian corresponding to NOOBS 1.4 released 2015-03, underlying Linux version: Debian 7 (Wheezy) - I am not sure of the exact version, but it is Raspbian ultimo 2014/primo 2015 (the fix for Shellshock bug is included). Pressing the power button in the lower right only offers logout (and cancel). However, there is an icon on the desktop named "Shutdown". I don't know if NOOBS customises/configures Raspbian. May 17, 2015 at 20:05
@PeterMortensen it does appear that newer version of Raspbian have removed it from the options so i have made an edit above to address it - thanks. May 17, 2015 at 21:59
This is what I do for my headless Zero WH. Still, on three occasions, after running fine for weeks, I do the shutdown, wait for the green LED to go out, pull the plug, move the Pi to another room, and it fails to join the network. I end up pulling the plug on the live Pi and schlep it to my monitor/keyboard area. The system always shows corruption. It's so frustrating. I have to recreate the SD.– MACEJun 3, 2020 at 14:32
2This means that Raspberry Pi isn't suitable to be plugged to the wall or to run on batteries that may run out of charge? How are we supposed to power the device then? Will it be rendered unusable and corrupt all our data once it loses power such as from a blackout? There are file systems that can handle such situations, so why not use those instead? Jan 31, 2021 at 22:33
It's best to always shutdown correctly if you can.
Constantly unplugging the device without shutting down gracefully may have undesireable effects on the SD card (a temperamental object already).
For reference, to shut down from the terminal you can use:
sudo shutdown -h now
These commands send
SIGTERM to all running processes, notifying them to save their data and exit. It then sends
SIGKILL to all remaining processes to halt the system, followed by finally unmounting all filesystems. The screen will then show
System Halted and you can pull the plug.
sudo poweroffalso works just fine.– NilpoJun 24, 2012 at 6:19
5Out of interest, what's the difference between
poweroff?– ACarterJan 7, 2013 at 20:54
2@ACarter There's no difference, they all switch the system to runlevel 6.– JivingsJan 7, 2013 at 22:46
3Its not exactly the same: aplawrence.com/Linux/halt_shutdown_reboot.html– AnakeJan 11, 2013 at 13:50
2@Jivings They're not exactly the same on every single system/distro, for example, some BSD variants will just halt the CPU without even killing any processes when calling
halt. Furthermore, you can specify
haltto just halt the kernel/CPU right away without taking any processes down; for this reason I would stick to using
shutdownunless you have a specific reason not to do so. Jun 24, 2015 at 6:20
I've used that shutdown.py solution too.
You'll still need to find a physical switch and solder it to pins 6 and 8 of header 5. I took mine from an old broken Arduino board. I've also drilled a small hole in the case to make sure that I can push the button with a small wooden pin when the case is closed.
This is how it looks like:
As a Raspberry Pi newbie, why is it necessary to find a physical switch and solder it to those pins? Do you need hardware to turn it off properly, or what happens if you just turn it off by using software (i.e. from the shell or from a GUI)? Jun 29, 2019 at 16:55
2The point was to do it locally without remote access. There is no button that would gracefully shutdown OS, so just "pulling the plug" as OP has suggested is not a good option. Jun 29, 2019 at 17:35
I’m not sure I follow you. Why is a physical switch soldered to the Pi necessary, or even better than pulling the plug? Jun 30, 2019 at 19:32
1No, you're definitely not. I'm not saying that "it's necessary", I'm saying you can use the solution to shutdown the device gracefully without remote access. Jun 30, 2019 at 19:36
Ah, I get it, so it’s only necessary if you use the shotdown.py solution. The file seems to have been moved or removed, though; your link doesn’t point to it anymore. Jul 1, 2019 at 6:18
I followed the project described in Raspberry Pi Shutdown Switch – Safely Turning off the Pi, but set pin 17 to be internally pulled up. Then connect the wires like the above project, but leave out any resistors and add the following Python script in
import RPi.GPIO as GPIO import time import os GPIO.setmode(GPIO.BCM) GPIO.setup(17, GPIO.IN, pull_up_down = GPIO.PUD_UP) while True: print GPIO.input(17) if (GPIO.input(17) == False): os.system("sudo shutdown -h now") break time.sleep(1)
1A quirk of the above would be that because it checks the state once a second, it will sometimes require holding down the button for a full second, and other times it will appear to start shutting down instantaneously. That's fine, of course, just a quirk.– BrianOct 5, 2015 at 20:29
GPIO.wait_for_edge(17, GPIO.FALLING)instead of the while loop, is more responsive. Oct 10, 2015 at 23:29
Other considerations aside, the power, and other, connectors will be designed for a limited number of insert/disconnect cycles. Often this is a surprisingly low number.
Statistically connectors are a very likely source of equipment failure.
With a view to the overall longevity of your Pi, you might want to moderate the number of connector insert/disconnects it experiences. One way of helping to do this would be to use the mains supply socket's on/off switch.
So what is the suggestion? Turn the Raspberry Pi off by disconnecting the power supply from the mains (thus reducing the number of insert / remove cycles to the connector on the device)? I find your answer regarding probability of connector failure very interesting. Can you back it up with links to any evidence? Thanks. Jun 20, 2012 at 12:25
4@AndrewFogg It's a well know factor in equipment design in Electrical Engineering. In the general case, electronic components do not experience the same degree of mechanical forces as connectors do. Manufacturers mating lifetimes, as you might expect, for connector are obtained in favourable conditions so are often optimistic and do not account for real life human usage.Check data sheets, Edge connectors - 50-100 insertions, RJ45 500-1000 insertions, Micro-USB 5000-10000. So yes, you are correct, turning off at the wall socket is the best choice. Jun 21, 2012 at 7:49
Please add the suggestion to your answer. You and I came to the conclusion, but other may not see the implications.– BengtJun 23, 2012 at 21:16
Also what about switches? Are they designed for more on/off-circles? Would it be a good idea to place a switch on the AC-side of the power supply?– BengtJun 23, 2012 at 21:18
2If it's reachable (and not going into an even more expensive piece of equipment such as a desktop/laptop) I do find it often preferable to plug-cycle the USB "A" end of the cable. Cables are cheap to replace, and the "A" end generally plugs and unplugs more easily without requiring you to firmly grab the board with your fingers. Aug 1, 2012 at 17:51
I log into my Raspberry Pi remotely, and here is how I shut it down:
- Execute the command:
sudo shutdown -h now
- Wait until the LEDs stop blinking on the Raspberry Pi.
- Wait an additional five seconds for good measure (optional).
- Switch off the powerstrip that the Raspberry Pi power supply is plugged into.
Since I use a remote display, I don't necessarily see the final output of the Raspberry Pi in the command window, which is why I use the activity lights. The non-blinking state of the LEDs is not an absolute indication of a complete successful shutdown, but it has worked well enough for me.
If your Raspberry Pi is frozen then you can not enter to ssh or console, then this helps. I was broke my few SD cards before knew this:
Hold down both Alt+PrintScreen, and while holding those keys, hit the following keys in sequence, one at a time, with a few seconds pause between them.
Alt + PrintScreen + R E I S U O
Alt + PrintScreen + R E I S U B (reboot)
A handy mnemonic to remember that is, Reboot Even If System Utterly Broken.
Substitute "O" for "B" to shut down the system instead of rebooting (O=off, B=boot).
2primary source: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Magic_SysRq_key (please mind your keyboard layout)– FabianMay 6, 2018 at 8:42
Or "Raising Elephants Is So Utterly Boring"– SubinNov 26, 2020 at 8:04
To avoid the SD card corruption issues you should always shut down the OS properly. You can automate this by using a power controller hardware solution and a script that is triggered through a GPIO port signal, for example (in addition to the Pi Supply mentioned above):
The RemotePi Board in the last link has the added functionality of using IR remotes to power on/off the Raspberry Pi.
There is multiple ways to power the pi off! Just pulling the plug without proper shutdown could corrupt your SD card!
To shutdown use
sudo shutdown -now or
sudo shutdown -time tell shutdown in minutes.
To reboot use
sudo reboot to restart and
sudo reboot -time in minutes to power back on and or use just
sudo reboot to restart now
sudo shutdown without the
-time will default to one minute to cancel shutdown use
sudo shutdown -c
Note: You can also press the raspberry pi button and then click power. Then shutdown or reboot as well which shutdown and restart are both immediate!
As described in some of the other answers on this post:
Will also work: once there is nothing on the screen just pull the plug!
"no way to power on without pulling the plug and putting it back" -> Incorrect. The RUN header can be used to do a hard reset of the SoC, causing it to boot (whether or not the OS has been shutdown...): raspberrypi.stackexchange.com/q/29339/5538 On some models these are labelled P6, not RUN.– goldilocks ♦Oct 13, 2017 at 20:55
@goldilocks Thank you I did not know that I removed it from my post Oct 13, 2017 at 20:57
sudo shutdown -nowdoes not work,
sudo shutdown nowworks.– DanijelNov 8, 2021 at 16:04
This is not very hard. Go into the command prompt, and type
sudo halt. Enter your password if needed. Once there is nothing on the screen, pull the plug.
Info from the Raspberry Pi website.
I would only add that after the screen goes dark I double-check to make sure the green light is also out.– SDsolarSep 16, 2016 at 21:10
There is also a GPIO board called the Pi Supply that has an on switch, power management and hard off for lock ups. It is also useful if your plug is behind the TV and hard to get to. You still need to shut down normally, but it then powers off the Raspberry Pi.
If you're concerned about wearing the power micro USB port out in normal usage you can get a male-to-female USB adapter and plug your power supply in to that.
You should only pull the plug, if the green led is off. The green led flashes, if the machine is writing to the sd card.
You don't really need a power switch for your Raspberry Pi. I use a USB hub for the power supply that has on/off switches. So, whenever I want to turn off the Raspberry Pi, I just turn the USB switch off.
20It is not a good idea to just power of the Pi - YOu could risk data loss or corruption in sudden power downs. Better to always shut down as intended. for example - FreeNAS (based on FreeBSD) is safe to do that because the root is readonly; But, because it is a NAS! data can be lost while writing to your hard drives.. So end of day. Always use implemented shutdown methods! Nov 1, 2012 at 16:43
The normal unix commands work with Linux, like so:
init 0 will shut it down so it is safe to pull the plug.
init 6 will reboot.
Unlike unix, there is no real need to do sync; sync; before shutting down. But simply pulling the plug can cause errors, so be sure to use shutdown or init 0 before disconnecting power. If you do happen to interrupt power unexpectantly, use fsck to check for and/or fix any problems that might arise.
There might be a case to do the full sync; sync; sync; sleep 30; halt if you have an external file system that does not unmount cleanly. You'd know if this is a problem by running fsck on external filesystems right after booting. If it is finding problems then you might want to do the whole thing. But I have never seen this happen with my Rpi3.
Always use a command to power down and shut off your Raspberry Pi. I use sudo halt like alot of other users. I recommend backing up your SD card I accidentally unplugged mine and corrupted the image somehow. It is easier to shutdown than burn a new image and starting over
sudo halt -pwill do it.