Does anyone here use a Raspberry Pi?

Considering trying out a raspberry pi and wondered if anyone else had experience of them. planning on upgrading from a DLNA server built in to my WD Cloud drive to a Plex server.

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I have one. Raspberry Pi is a great inexpensive and low power platform. Mine runs DNS and network management services.

I haven’t tried it yet, but Plex is a popular application to run on a Pi. You might run into resource constraints if you have more than a few simultaneous streams or do a lot of transcoding.

Yes: Smart Home Nerdery

I can’t remember if it was here or on Automators but @RosemaryOrchard posted about using one to run test web servers.

The Pi is a good utility headless server type device. You can put a monitor on one very easily. But it’s graphics capability is quite limited (even for web browsing). The I/O speed is also quite limited compared to something like a Mac. I personally would not want to run Plex on one. I run Plex on my NAS instead which has much better I/O performance and can transcode video on the fly when needed.

They are fairly commonly used to convert a USB camera to a security camera. Also to run a private VPN of your own. There are tons of pre-built packages for the Pi like this. You can search Instructables to see what people like using Pi’s for. I run one 24/7 monitoring signals from aircraft.

I’ve a few I’ve been playing around with. I’ve an original Raspberry Pi A which has been running for a few years as a security camera with a PI Cam. Things have gotten a lot easier over the years as more tools have been converted and packaged into specific distributions, and the PI more powerful.

I’ve never tried Plex on one, but I believe there’s a PlexPI distribution out there which should get you going quite easily. What are you planning to keep your media on?

I use a Raspberry Pi for Homebridge, which allows me to use non-Homekit compatible devices in the Home app.

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My son and I made a retro pie emulator for old school games a few years back. I know it’s pretty basic but it was fun learning Linux code and it makes it more convenient than digging out my old Nintendo console. Love it. It’s a perfect application for something like that. And if you wanted to get real crazy there’s a guy who went all out on a Donkey Kong cabinet. We almost did one too but we didn’t have enough room in our house. Thinking of making one similar for an office desk though.

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Me and my son built a RC robot out of a Pi that used the bluetooth controller from a Nintendo Wii.

I’ve got one to play around with, but I find it too anemic as a “computer” and overly complex as a “controller”. For low end playing around I much prefer an Arduino. Maybe I should run the Arduino IDE on the Raspberry Pi. (A little autobiography – I’m a retired electrical engineer, 3 years now, and used ARMs, Atmel AVRs and other microcontrollers professionally for decades. I also taught a college level course in microcontrollers for about 20 years.)

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I’m running pi-hole on mine.

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I have no idea how many are in use in our house, hubby has several plus a bunch of orange pis and arduinos doing all sorts of things. Mostly working with GPS and FLIR stuff as far as I know. My impression is they are a bit too underpowered to run a decent server.

Pi are one of those things that I’m very tempted to try, but know that my time will be lost because of endless tinkering, lol

I agree that a rpi isn’t powerful enough to handle dozens of users pounding on it constantly. However, that situation is rare in a home network. In such an environment the rpi can perform many useful tasks and is a great option for experimenting. It’s not a Mac, though; it doesn’t “just work” straight out of the box. Pi users must be prepared to wrangle with the terminal, and probably do a lot of Google-ing.

My media is currently on my NAS. Wd my cloud

Sounds interesting, is that hard to install? I know enough about Terminal to be dangerous, but have no experience with Linux.

Ok. Something to bear in mind is that the networking on the Pi is done through the USB 2.0 bus, so the Ethernet port and WiFi are both just USB devices built into the board. Even through the latest Pi is rated as a Gigbit ethernet port it’s limited to 300Mbit/s so unless you’re using a 3B+ you may struggle with through-put to read from the NAS and send out to the Plex player if you’re thinking of serving HD/4K files.

But for the cost of the Pi and a SD card it’ll be worth a try and see how you get on.

Well, there is a lot of info out there on how to do most all of it. The problem is that both macOS and Linux are moving targets so the info is frequently outdated and/or contradictory. IMHO it’s not that easy even if you do have a decent idea of what you’re doing. On the other hand you’ll be learning new stuff which is always useful.

To be clear, you won’t be doing much (if any) terminal hacking on your Mac. You may have a terminal window open on your Mac but you’ll be connected to the rpi, or else you’ll be using the terminal directly on the rpi’s display.

Once you are configured, the Pi can be connected via Wifi and you can do everything from the Mac, including displaying the Pi’s Linux GUI using VNC (“Screen Sharing” on the Mac). Of course the terminal on the Mac (or in the Linux GUI) can be used, but you don’t have to do so.