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How to install Ubuntu on Raspberry Pi

📅 2021-Jan-31 ⬩ ✍️ Ashwin Nanjappa ⬩ 🏷️ raspberry pi, ubuntu ⬩ 📚 Archive

Ubuntu on RPi

A while ago Ubuntu added support for Raspberry Pi and so recently I decided it was time to try something other than Raspbian on my Raspberry Pi 3 Model B+ board. Since this was an older (and thus less powerful) RPi board that I planned to use in headless mode, I chose to install Ubuntu Server instead of Ubuntu Desktop.

Note that Ubuntu has a guide that lists the steps at a high level to install Ubuntu Server on RPi, which turned out to be not detailed enough for me to get my install working.

Install steps that worked

The steps that eventually worked for me are listed below:

You now have the entire universe of Ubuntu packages and tools accessible from a ARM64 computer. 🙂

What did not work: Install from wifi

Initially, I tried to bring up the RPi board using wifi. This involved modifying the network-config file on the microSD card from Windows and adding the network name and password. Once the RPi board had finished one reboot, I could see its wifi IP address in my wireless router’s interface. But SSH to this IP address would hang indefinitely. I tried this many times, with both Ubuntu Server 20.04.1 64-bit and 32-bit installs, and only once did I get to the Ubuntu change-default-password stage and then the interface went off. Not sure what the problem here is, probably something to do with the wifi driver. So eventually, I switched to using a ethernet LAN cable and the bring up worked as described above.