If you are using the Raspberry PI for the first time and you want to get up and running as quickly as possible then NOOBS (New Out Of The Box Software) is a good place to start.
You can buy SD-Cards with NOOBS already included or you can use an existing SD-Card that you already have laying around.
This guide shows you how to install NOOBS to an SD-Card using the Windows operating system.
NOTE: The SD-Card will be formatted and all existing data will be removed
In order to follow this guide you will need the following:
- A computer running Microsoft Windows 10
- A class 10 micro SD-Card (16 gb or above recommended)
- A working internet connection
- An SD-Card reader (most modern laptops have one built in)
- A microSD card adapter
Open a web browser and go to https://www.raspberrypi.org/downloads/noobs/
There are 2 versions of NOOBS available:
- NOOBS Lite
NOOBS is a full download and allows you to install an operating system to the Raspberry PI without the PI having a network available.
NOOBS Lite allows you to boot the Raspberry PI and connect to the network in order to install an operating system.
For this guide you are encouraged to download the full NOOBS zip file,
Click on the “Download Zip” file under the NOOBS heading.
Download And Install SD Card Formatter
You will need to format the SD Card before installing NOOBS
Open a web browser and go to https://www.sdcard.org/downloads/formatter/
Scroll down the page and click on the “For Windows” link.
Accept the license agreement.
Open Windows Explorer (press Windows key and E key at the same time)
Click on the Downloads folder.
Double click on the “SDCardFormatter” icon.
If a window appears asking how to open the file choose “File Explorer”.
Click into the SDCardFormatter folder
Double click on the “SD Card Formatter Setup”
Click on the “Run” button.
Click “Next” when the installer opens.
Click “Next” to accept the license agreement
Click “Next” to accept the default installation folder
Click “Install” to complete the installation.
To launch the program click “Finish”. If you need to launch it again in the future press the Windows start button and search for “SD Card Formatter”
Format An SD-Card Using SD Card Formatter
Most SD-Card readers require a full size SD-Card. You will therefore need to insert the micro-SD card into an SD-Card adapter.
If you are using an internal SD card reader built into a laptop insert the SD-Card adapter into the reader. If you are using an external SD card reader attach it to your computer (probably via USB) and insert the SD-Card adapter into the external SD card reader.
Select the drive letter for the SD Card. Look at the type and capacity. This lets you know you have the correct drive letter.
In the image above I have a 32 gb SD card so I can be confident that the E drive letter is the correct one.
You can give the volume a label if you wish or you can just click “Format”.
A final warning will appear stating that all data currently on the drive will be removed. Make sure you have backed up any important files on that drive elsewhere.
Click “Yes” to continue.
Click “OK” and then the “X” in the top right corner to close the formatter.
Install NOOBS To The SD Card
Open Windows Explorer (press Windows key and E key)
Navigate to the downloads folder
Double click on the NOOBS file.
You will now see a list showing the contents of the NOOBS zip file.
Click on the “Extract” button at the top of the screen.
Click on the “Extract All” button.
Either enter the drive letter for the SD card or click browse and click on the drive letter.
There are easier ways to get an operating system installed onto the SD Card for use with a Raspberry PI but I showed you this method as this is how you get the same SD card as if you had bought as SD Card with NOOBS pre-installed.
You are now in a position to follow the guide to installing an operating system on the Raspberry PI using NOOBS.