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Install Ubuntu Core
on a Raspberry Pi

This is a brief overview of the steps for installing Ubuntu Core on a Raspberry Pi 2, 3, or 4. At the end of this process, you will have a board ready for production or testing. Check the Ubuntu Core documentation for more detailed instructions.

Minimum requirements

  • A Raspberry Pi 2, 3 or 4
  • A 4 GB+ microSD card and reader
  • A Wi-Fi network or an ethernet cable with an Internet connection
  • A monitor with an HDMI interface
  • An HDMI cable
  • A USB keyboard
  • An Ubuntu SSO account with an associated SSH key

  1. Prepare the SD card

    Use the Raspberry Pi Imager to download and write the latest Ubuntu Core release to the SD card. To get started on Ubuntu you can run:

    sudo snap install rpi-imager

    Once installed choose “Other general-purpose OS” then “Ubuntu”.

    Choose “Ubuntu Core 32-bit armh” for the widest compatibility or “Ubuntu Core 20 64-bit IoT OS for arm64” if you need applications that require a 64-bit system, such as MicroK8s.

  2. Set up an Ubuntu SSO account

    An Ubuntu SSO account is required to create the first user on an Ubuntu Core installation.

    1. Start by creating an Ubuntu SSO account.
    2. Import an SSH Key into your Ubuntu SSO account.

    More information on generating an SSH key pair can be found in the tutorial and community help wiki.

  3. Install Ubuntu Core

    1. Attach the monitor and keyboard to the board. You can alternatively use a serial cable.
    2. Insert the SD card and plug the power adaptor into the board

  4. First boot setup

    1. The system will boot then become ready to configure.
    2. The device will display the prompt "Press enter to configure".
    3. Press enter then select "Start" to begin configuring your network and an administrator account. Follow the instructions on the screen, you will be asked to configure your network and enter your Ubuntu SSO credentials.
    4. At the end of the process, you will see your credentials to access your Ubuntu Core machine:
      This device is registered to <Ubuntu SSO email address>.
      Remote access was enabled via authentication with the SSO user <Ubuntu SSO user name>
      Public SSH keys were added to the device for remote access.

  5. Connect to the device

    Once setup is done, you can login with SSH into Ubuntu Core, from a machine on the same network, using the following command:

    ssh <Ubuntu SSO user name>@<device IP address>

    Your user name is your Ubuntu SSO user name, and the command should be displayed on the RPi.

Next steps

Get started with snaps

Congratulations! Your board is now ready to have applications installed, it's time to use the snap command to install your first snap.

The Snap Store is where you can find the best Linux apps packaged as snaps to install on your Ubuntu device and get started with your secure IoT journey.

Visit the Snapcraft documentation and learn how to create your first snap.

Learning more and getting help