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I have received an RPi 3 as a gift and have never used linux before. I want to copy my NOOBS SD card to a larger SD card so I will have more storage space.

I have another laptop that has Linux Mint 17.3 that came from my grandson. It has a card reader.

I am 74 and do not understand the shorthand terminology that most people use. after saying that. Can anyone tell me in human terms, how to do this task?

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As you say "Jessie" your are probably running Raspbian.

If you boot to the GUI there is a "SD Card copier" application which lets you copy your SD Card to a new (larger) card installed in a SD Card reader plugged into your USB.

If you have a SD Card reader (they only cost a few $) This is the easiest, fastest way of resizing a Card. It includes a number of safeguards which prevent you from making any mistakes and damaging your system.

If it is an old Raspbian, you may have to upgrade if there is no "SD Card copier" application. Edit your question to provide more detail if you need further help. SD Copier is described in this link. PIXEL explains the latest applications.

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Going from a smaller capacity SD card to one with a larger capacity is relatively easy, though it will require a number of steps. I'll try to write them in plain English as I can. Please feel free to ask clarifying questions.

The SD Card

The term SD Card refers to a type of physical information storage. It comes in three sizes, regular (usually just called an SD Card), miniSD, and microSD. You can see a picture of the three types below.

wikipedia image of the three types of SD cards

Your laptop's card reader probably accepts the regular SD card, and your RPi needs its operating system stored on a microSD card.

My assumption is that your NOOBS installation came preinstalled on a microSD card with a size converter, and it looks something like the image below.

enter image description here

If that is the case, then you just need to put the microSD card in that converter before you stick it into your laptop. If you don't have a converter, or a reader that will accept microSD cards directly, you will need to get one before you progress beyond this point.

Copying NOOBS off the existing microSD card

  1. Insert the microSD card into the converter
  2. Insert the converter (containing the microSD card into your laptop)
  3. Open the terminal* on your laptop and run the following command: dd if=/dev/sdX of=~/NOOBS_image.img bs=4M. You'll need to replace X with the device number of your SD card.
  4. Eject the converter and remove the microSD card from the converter.

Copying NOOBS onto a new microSD card

  1. Put the new, higher capacity microSD card in the converter.
  2. Insert the converter (containing the microSD card into your laptop)
  3. Open the terminal* on your laptop and run the following command: dd if=~/NOOBS_image.img of=/dev/sdX bs=4M. Again, need to replace X with the device number of your SD card.
  4. Eject the converter and remove the microSD card from the computer.

Starting up the RPi

  1. Put the microSD card into the RPi.
  2. Boot up the RPi.
  3. Open the terminal*
  4. Run the command sudo raspi-config
  5. Select the option Expand File System (the first option at the time of this writing).
  6. Wait patiently
  7. Once that's finished, you'll need to reboot the RPi

Once this is done, you're finished!

Other Notes

* If you don't know what the terminal is, I highly suggest you ask your grandson for help at this stage. While it's not rocket science and I'm sure you can learn, it's much, much easier to learn this part with someone who is already familiar with type of thing.

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Note there is two things in play here:

  • noobs can be installed on any sufficiently large sd-card. The size of that stays unchanged.
  • after installation e.g. Raspbian asks if it should reclaim the unused space. This is what you want.

So if all you need is to utilize a larger card, just install on it and follow instructions when asked.

  • I think the point of the question is that the user has an existing installation they wish to move. – Jacobm001 Feb 15 '17 at 1:11
  • Jac obm001 I tried to follow your directions, had a problem. when I put the disk in the laptop, it was recognized and instantly spewed 13 files to the desktop each were icons of disks, they all opened with separate screens. – David Feb 15 '17 at 4:31
  • @Jacobm001 Rereading the question you are probably right. – Thorbjørn Ravn Andersen Feb 15 '17 at 8:10

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