In addition, a virtual desktop interface is created when you
run a headless Pi, i.e., no monitor or graphical desktop.
Here’s how to connect to your Pi via VNC. Boot up
the Pi, and open up the menu bar by clicking on the
Raspberry Pi logo in the upper left-hand corner. Go to
Preferences, then Raspberry Pi Configuration. A window
should appear. Go to Interfaces and enable VNC if it isn’t
already (Figure 13).
After you “OK” the changes, the Pi may ask to reboot
(if VNC wasn’t enabled). If so, reboot for the changes to
take effect. When you get back to the home desktop
screen, open up a Terminal window (the button looks like
a black box at the top of the screen). Type in “hostname -
I” to receive the IP address of the Pi, and remember this
Now you’ll need to download VNC Viewer from
RealVNC on your laptop or computer (refer to Resources).
Once that has downloaded, open it up to reveal a “VNC
Viewer” window (Figure 14). Enter the IP address into the
top box. You’ll be prompted to enter in your username
and password before you’re connected! If you didn’t
change it, the default login is “pi” and “raspberry” for the
username and password, respectively.
Now let’s switch our focus to SSH. The concept of
remotely connecting to your Raspberry Pi is the same
except you only have access/control via the terminal. In
other words, you control your Pi with text commands
instead of clicking through a graphical display.
We’ll be connecting to the Pi through a Windows
computer in this SSH guide. If you’re using something
other than a Windows computer, see Additional Content
in the Resources list for directions. Just like with VNC,
you’ll have to first enable SSH in your Raspberry Pi
Configuration menu. To review: Menu > Preferences >
Raspberry Pi Configuration > Interfaces. Ensure that SSH is
Enabled. You can also use “hostname -I” in the terminal to
return the IP address now. You will need this IP address
Similarly to how we used RealVNC
for a VNC connection, we’ll be
downloading and using a client called
Pu TTY (see Resources). Scroll down to
where you see “putty.exe” in blue. If
you’re not sure whether to download
the 32- or 64-bit version, the 32-bit
should run fine regardless. Download
and run the file to open up a Pu TTY
Configuration window (Figure 15).
Type in the IP address into the
“Host Name (or IP address)” field, and
click Open. You’ll see a Pu TTY
Security Alert window which you can
safely ignore by clicking Yes. Finally,
the screen will prompt you for a
username and password before you
have access to your Pi. (Recall the
default login is “pi” and “raspberry” for
the username and password,
respectively, if you haven’t changed it.)
Note that when you’re typing in
your password to gain access via SSH,
the cursor will not move and no
characters will be displayed.
64 May/June 2018
FIGURE 14. VNC Viewer window.
FIGURE 13. Enable VNC in the Configuration window.