What is Raspberry Pi Imager?

published 2023-02-20 · updated 2023-02-20 #raspberry_pi #self_hosting #privacy
Raspberry Pi Imager is a free software tool that allows you to easily download and install operating systems on your Raspberry Pi computer.


Please excuse any grammatical errors. I used a tool to generate the transcript and haven't had a chance to read through it yet. ✔️

Raspberry Pi Imager makes it easy to install a variety of operating systems onto your micro SD card, external SSD, or whatever other medium you choose to install your operating system on for your Raspberry Pi. They make it super easy to install. You can head on over to raspberry pi.com. Once you get there, select "Software" and then, depending on which operating system you are running, select that download. In my case, download for Windows.

Once the download finishes, open it. Do you want to allow this app? Yes, follow the prompts. Once that finishes, select "Finish." There is one setting I like to change before I use it. The setting I like to change is located in the advanced settings. To access that on Windows, you need to hit Ctrl, Shift, and X on your keyboard, and you should see this screen pop up. Once this shows up, I change this to "Always use," and then I scroll down to the bottom, and the setting labeled "Enabled Telemetry," I uncheck that and then select "Save."

The detail on the GitHub page, which I will link down below, explains what Telemetry is collected, the URL, operating system name, and category if present, of a selected image are sent along with the running version of Raspberry Pi Imager, your operating system, CPU architecture, local, and Raspberry Pi revision if applicable to this URL. And then they go over the web service that it's sent to, where it's hosted and why they do it, which is to allow them to query the number of downloads over time and nothing else. I personally don't think there's anything malicious about the Telemetry they want to collect, but since the option is easily accessible, I like to disable it.

So, at this point, you can now browse the OS's that are available to install through the tool. They have the default Raspberry Pi OS, a popular section I like to use, as well as other general-purpose OS. In here, they have Ubuntu, which is what I'll be using in my demonstrations in future videos. They have some useful options under "Miscellaneous Utility Images" and under "Bootloader." From here, you can change the boot order of your device. So, if you want to boot from USB before SD card, you can configure that from here.

I just wanted to give a quick overview of what this software offers. In a future video, I'll walk through the install and booting up of our freshly installed OS on our Raspberry Pi. If you enjoyed this video, I think you'll like the top one here, and the machines think you'll like the bottom one.