Raspberry Pi SSH Login without Monitor

Raspberry Pi SSH Login without Monitor

The Raspbian "wheezy" distro we have been using comes with SSH telnet access enabled, and this is a great way to get terminal access to your Raspberry Pi without having to hook it up to a monitor and keyboard.

All you need connected to your Raspberry Pi is the power and an internet connection.

By default the Raspberry Pi will be allocated an IP address by your router. However, next time you power it up the router may allocate a different IP address. This is a problem because in order to connect through SSH we need to know the Raspberry Pi's IP address on your local network, and we can't see this if we dont have a monitor attached.

There are two ways of solving this:

  • Setup the Raspberry Pi to have a fixed IP address
  • Scan the network to find the IP address of the Raspberry Pi

For this tutorial we shall use option 2 and scan the network.

We can find out the IP address of the Raspberry Pi by logging into the router and seeing what devices are connected. But this is a bit of a pain, and there is an easier way by using a great free tool called Advanced IP Scanner. Download it from http://www.radmin.com/products/ipscanner/

When you run it you will see a screen similar to the following. Click the Scan button

Advanced IP Scanner

You should see the Raspberry Pi detected and you can note down it's IP Address.


To connect via SSH, the best way is to download the free program called putty. Download from http://www.putty.org/

Run up putty and the following screen will be displayed. Enter your IP address from the scanner. Putty defaults to using SSH so no other changes should be required.

You can if you wish save the setting for next time (but remember your IP address may change)


Click on Open and if this is the first time you have connected to the Raspberry Pi you will see a warning dialog. This is putty's way of making sure you trust the device you are connectiong to. Click on Yes and the settings will be saved for next time.

Putty Warning

You should now get the terminal screen.

Putty Login