Installing a Raspbian Jessie SD Card for your Raspberry Pi

In this tutorial we’re going through the steps of installing Raspbian Jessie Linux for Raspberry Pi on a Micro SD Card. Raspbian Jessie is the most common operating system for Raspberry Pi and most tutorials and development kits refer to it.

Please note that alternatively you can purchase SD Cards with a pre-installed Operating System called noobs. Noobs will help you set up your pi’s network and internet connection and select the operating system. After that, noobs will download and install your desired operating system. In our case Raspbian Jessie. This tutorial describes the other way where you provision and install the SD card yourself.


Duration 50 minutes (30 minutes download time included)
Audience Beginners and professionals.
Costs between $8 to $30 depending on the SD card size
Date Created on 2016-10-03, updated on 2016-10-03
Authors Boris Crismancich


  1. Step 1 Hardware required
    1. Choose the right Micro SD Card
  2. Step 2 Download the Raspbian Image
  3. Step3 Install the Raspbian Image

Step 1: Hardware required

  • A computer or notebook with SD card reader
  • 7 GB of free disk space
  • Class 10 Micro SD Card 8 GB or more
  • Micro SD to SD card adapter
  • Raspberry 2 or higher (with micro sd slot)

Choose the right Micro SD Card

samsung-sd-cardYou need a Micro SD Card of 8 GB. Depending on your projects, a 16 GB or 32 GB or larger SD card might be a good choice. Also make sure the Micro SD Card comes with an SD card adapter so it fits in your SD card reader.

sd-01Make sure you purchase a class 10 card. The speed class tells you about the maximum writing speed of the card. 10 is fastest.

See: Class 10 Micro SD Cards with Adapter on Amazon

Step 2: Download the Raspbian Jessie Image

Go to and download ‚Raspbian Jessie with Pixel‘. Depending on your internet connection the download may take about 30 minutes.

The file you get will be a .zip file of about 1.5 GB. Unzip it and you get a 4 GB .iso file. This is the operating system image file.

Step 3: Install the OS Image

The documentation on this step from the original raspberry documentation website is very good and well maintained. I decided to refer to this site rather than replicating the existing content. Please follow the Link that suits your operating system:

Installing an operating system images on Linux
Installing an Operating System images on Mac
Installing an operating system images on Windows

After following the steps you should have a working raspbian OS on your micro SD card. You can now insert the card in the SD slot of your Raspberry Pi and start working with it.

I hope this tutorial was helpful for you. If you got stuck or found an error, please leave me a comment so that I can improve the tutorial accordingly. Thank you.

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