I saw a tutorial that said you could ssh into a Pi Zero by using a different port and modifying various boot files, would this work on a Pi 3? Does the micro USB used for power have data lines?

  • No, it does not.
    – joan
    Feb 23, 2017 at 16:38

2 Answers 2


While there are no data lines on the power port, there are other ways to gain access:

  1. serial console session through GPIO (though a a console cable);

  2. running a PPP daemon to connect via the GPIO serial port, and making a network connection with that;

  3. serial console over Bluetooth; or

  4. PPP over Bluetooth.

1 & 2 may be difficult on a Pi 3 due to the change in GPIO serial port specs. 3 & 4 may hit problems with availability of a Bluetooth serial profile for the Pi.


The micro-USB on a regular RPI have no data lines, it's power only. Besides that, what you read is a reference to the RPI Zero.

The Zero USB hardware implementation is not like a 'regular' Rpi, Indeed all but the Zero, present a 'usb hub' and not the Zero master/slave USB port; the 'center' micro-usb is complete: data and power, while the other is power only.

On the software side, Linux Gadgets allows to offer serial, ethernet and other cool functionalities through the 'plain' micro-USB port.

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