Preorder the Raspberry Pi User Guide

We got cover artwork (possibly not the final version, but cover artwork nonetheless) through for the Raspberry Pi User Guide yesterday. This book, written by Eben Upton (Eben, if you’ve been living under a rock, is our Executive Director and the main force behind the Raspberry Pi project) and Gareth Halfacree and published by Wiley & Sons, should be out soon as an e-book (ePub, Kindle and PDF) and as a physical thing made out of trees. Here’s a link to pre-order on Amazon.

Inside, you’ll find everything you need to get started with your Raspberry Pi, including an easy introduction to Linux for total beginners, a guide to getting your SD card working, programming in Scratch and Python, using the Raspberry Pi as a home media centre, using the GPIO to do some physical computing (driving things like lights and motors and recognising switches and sensors), a beginners’ soldering guide, and much more.

The way Wiley & Sons are releasing the book, which is written with the assumption that the reader doesn’t have any technical knowledge (yet – we hope they will by the time they’ve read first few chapters and used the examples), is a little unusual. It’s being published in e-book and physical form in the UK and US, but they’re also releasing a cut-down, abridged version in e-book form only which you can buy at a reduced price. The short version just includes the first six chapters (some of which have been snipped a bit): the chapters on getting started with your Raspberry Pi. Be aware that this abridged version won’t include any material on hardware, or any of the intermediate projects; but if you’re an absolute beginner who wants to save a bit of money, it might suit you.

We’re really excited about the way this has turned out. Eben’s had plenty of journal publications, but this is only his second book. And the first one doesn’t really count, because it’s a rhyming dictionary


RaTTuS avatar

I’ve Clicked the
I’d like this in kindle format
button ;-p

liz avatar

It will be available in Kindle format when it launches (so I’m told) – I notice that the release date on Amazon is also wrong.

RaTTuS avatar

+10 ;-p

Andy avatar

Ok, I’ve pre-ordered.
Will it have the correct connectors?
Will it have to be CE certified?
Will it run Windows?

And have I ordered the E-book or the tree version? Doh!

Rick avatar

Does your amazon affiliate account you’ve used on the above links for your blog benefit the foundation? If so I’ll put a few more orders through it.

liz avatar

It does – I’ll be pushing all the affiliate fees through to the Foundation. (It says Gastronomy Domine rather than RPF or similar because it’s the one that’s attached to my Amazon account; the Foundation doesn’t have its own account.)

ukscone avatar

if you can you might want to edit/delete&replace the link i posted so it uses your affiliate code, i don’t “believe” in them so the link i posted is affiliatecodeless

Rick avatar

Sweet :)

I’ve got a few bits and bobs to order next week so will go through the affiliate link for it!

tsonga97 avatar

-The PDF is he free?
-Will it be available in another language later?
thanks for your answers

liz avatar

1) No
2) Possibly. :)

tsonga97 avatar

Oh, it’s cool, in french please.

William H. Bell avatar

+1 vote for a French translation.

horrork1d avatar

Count me in as voluntary author if you ever want to make a German edition of this User Manual. ;)

Alexander Langer avatar

Me, too. There seems to be quite a need for German stuff over here, so if I can help you out, just let me know.

Leo Leibovici avatar

Pre-Order seems to be for Dead Tree version only. Want an Epub version Full book – not cut down version).


liz avatar

That’ll be available (although I guess it’s not pre-order-able) – I’ll post here when there’s a link to buy.

bobbintb avatar

oh this is excellent. id love to get this for my kids. hopefully one of them will be interested in it.

Leroy avatar

Any chance of having some books signed by some of the people behind the creation of the Raspberry Pi, possibly via the shop when it’s up and running?

I sure some people would be willing to spend a bit extra for it. (Or possibly just me :P)

liz avatar

If you bring it (or anything else) to any conference, hackspace or lecture any of us are giving, we’ll be very happy to sign it for you. There isn’t a book tour in the offing, but if the publishers ask Eben to sign a load to sell, I’m sure he’ll do so.

ukscone avatar

there is a good project for someone. a signature signing robot

Jon Senior avatar

For the eBook buyers, how about a digitally signed copy. I assume that someone in the foundation must have a GPG key!

Leslie avatar

In 4 2,

Josh Emerson avatar

Is it possible to buy the full version in eBook/pdf format without also buying the dead tree version?

Also, can we preorder the eBook anywhere?

liz avatar

1) yes
2) not AFAIK. I’ll let you know as soon as I hear otherwise!

chris avatar

I don’t think they will ever let you pre order the ebook. What’s the point when it i released you just download it there is no finite amount of stock to ship its just there and everyone who wants it gets it.

liz avatar

Agreed – then again, I’ve seen (and used) pre-orders for e-books on Amazon before. It’s up to the publishers, of course, whether or not that’ll happen on Amazon itself, but you can already pre-order the e-book on Wiley’s website.

Morgaine avatar

Wiley & Sons? Oh god no, they’re the RIAA of the publishing world.

Given the educational goals of the project, finding a publisher who is more friendly to Open Access Publishing would probably have been better. Over the last few years the movement towards open coursework, open textbooks and open publishing has been making great strides, so the choice certainly wasn’t very forward looking.

I just hope that Wiley don’t end up suing a bunch of schoolkids eager to learn about the Pi. Their history of RIAA-style dragnet litigation is not encouraging.

liz avatar

Oh, for heaven’s sakes, Morgaine. Give it a rest, will you? My usually cheerful demeanour takes a hit pretty much every time I see one of your comments these days. You appear to be quite interested in the Raspberry Pi project, and you spend lots of time here; I simply do not understand why everything we do inspires such arrant miserablism in you.

As you should be well aware, given how much you post here, there are MANY other books and manuals coming out, from lots and lots of different publishers, some of whom you may even like (none of the others are written by Eben, though). One in particular, which we expect to see being used widely by teachers and schools, is being produced by Computing at Schools, and will be a free download. (Alleluia! Sound the trumpets!)

As it happens, *this* book is not a free download. If you don’t like that, don’t buy it.

Morgaine avatar

Calm down Liz, please. :-)

If you want to comment for or against Open Access Publishing, that would be very welcome to read, whichever side you stand on. I would even understand your not wishing to comment adversely about your publisher. But Wiley’s recent belligerent litigation spree is a matter of public record, and I would hope that people are free to make plain statements of fact here.

I’m sure you’re highly pro-education, so this is a very relevant topic of discussion here just as it is throughout the entire sphere of academia, publishing, and education in general. While I do think that choosing an open access publisher might have been better, if you disagree that’s fine, it’s your choice after all. No need to get agitated about it. :P


liz avatar

I just broke the cardinal rule and responded to a concern troll, didn’t I?

Morgaine avatar

I really don’t think you should be calling people who try to defend the needs of education names. (In fact you shouldn’t be calling anybody names.) Education is your platform, you have proclaimed this hundreds of times. If you don’t wish to defend your platform, fine, but please don’t stop others from rising to its defense.

liz avatar

Oo, look at that. My tether has an end! You’re banned for repeated concern trolling, Morgaine (you don’t get to respond to this, but I will point out that I have defended you in the past when some of our forum mods have wanted to ban you for the same thing; it turns out that my patience is limited) – thanks for playing.

Ben Wiley avatar

It’s not that I think constantly criticizing everything is a valid pursuit, but the way you respond to people who bear criticism is a bit alarming, Liz. You tend to act as though a dissenting opinion is invalid and that only happy things are allowed here. If that’s the case, my bad, I didn’t read the rules. So yeah, sure, the way this comment was presented was rather harsh, but it was a completely valid concern, honestly, even if you may not agree. Morgaine was bringing up an opinion that seemed relevant to the interests of the foundation. Calling people who say things you don’t like “trolls” doesn’t make the foundation look very good. And if I get banned for posting this (I don’t think I will, but I suppose I could be), I hope everyone at least gets to see what I wrote.

In any case, my first thought after reading Morgaine’s comment is that I’m somewhat offended.. Wileys tend to band together, you know.

scep avatar

Ben – your concern is noted, but you have not been party to what has gone on in the past and therefore you are not in a position to judge whether Liz’s response is appropriate or not in this particular case. The subject is now closed. Thanks.

Dimitre avatar

And you are ?

scep avatar

A moderator.

liz avatar

Yup – and a very fine one too. Thanks, Scep.

John Sanderson avatar

Morgaine does have a point re Wiley’s reputation that I would expect many if not most RPF supporters to agree with!

Jimmy avatar

Seconded. They do not have a spotless reputation, but all corporations don’t have spotless records. Although banning Morgraine was out of the question, he had raised a valid concern and he should be allowed to express his opinion without the constant fear of being banned. It would’ve been a better option to release a hard cover version for a price while a free download existed, but it is the author’s decision to decide whether they want to charge for their book, and regardless, piracy is inevitable, even though that may seem like a bad option, it will increase the sales of the book :) It’s free promotion anyways.

JamesH avatar

Whether her concern was valid or not, her constant concern trolling has persisted, even after repeated warnings. This was the straw that broke the camels back. There are ways and means to express your opinion. Hers could have been expressed in a way that would have lead to fruitful discussion. They were not.

JamesH avatar

I’m a Raspi supported, and have no idea what Wiley’s reputation actually is.

Sheepman avatar

May it be worth you finding out first ?

bazza14 avatar

Pointless to ban anyone. They can rejoin under another identity. If you think they are trolling just ignore them. Better the troll you know……

Ate avatar

Will it become available in the raspberry-pi-shop ?
And when is the shop re-opend….RS did not have the stickers !!
Now i will have a naked raspberrycase…

liz avatar

We do plan to reopen the shop, but that’s for some months in the future still; we’ll need premises for stock and people to run it and do distribution, and that’ll take us some time to set up.

Darren avatar

Why not do a deal with someone to run the shop for you ? Amazon do a fulfilled by amazon service where the stock is held in their warehouse, no premises required.

chris avatar

Thanks for that Liz. I am really looking forward to the book being released. I think it will accompany my pi nicely. The foundation have and continue to do amazing work. Never listen to the nay sayers you can change the world.

Ken avatar

This is great, too bad you can’t pre order the Kindle version, I will have to wait till its released.

Jaseman avatar

You should think of selling ‘Liz & Eben’ merchandising. People will buy anything if its past through your hands (Or other body parts).

Jaseman avatar

Raspberry Pi… A Fragrance by Liz & Eben

liz avatar

That sounds *beyond* horrific. :)

Jaseman avatar

But I imagine it would come in a very lovely bottle.

Snowy6 avatar

I was thinking more along the lines of an anti static bag in a strong cardboard box :O.
Any fancy bottle would be designed and made by the community :P

Peter Stevens avatar

You should definitely get the fragrance done my Mooncake and Raffles.

Alkendi avatar

with respect to the shop… and merchandise, I’d love to get my hands on a RaspberrPi Tshirt and I’m sure given the past comments about Eben’s Hal 9000 tshirt I’mn sure he could do with one too :)

Martin avatar

How many pages?

Gareth Halfacree avatar

240, roughly. Some websites are saying 150 – that’s from the original brief, which Eben and I slightly overshot!

Chris avatar

Paperback: ~240 pages? Sounds pretty good for £11.69!

Colin Allison avatar

Duly pre-ordered x 12 = class size. Thanks for an official guide. Well done guys.

reiuyi avatar

Answering this isn’t necessary, I’m just curious

Will the book contain a deeper section on how to handle GPIOs (3.3v buffering, using GPIOs with 5v logic circuits, I2C access, serial connectivity, implementing these things into python, writing your first very own ADC driver) ? LEDs, light sensors and pull-up switches are cool; but relays, ADCs, I2c and serial 5v logic is cooler :D

Gareth Halfacree avatar

The GPIO coverage in the book – part of Chapter 12, “Hardware Hacking” – briefly touches upon I2C, SPI, UART and so forth, but doesn’t use them in the examples which are aimed at a beginner level. Expect some more focused books for specialists and those who have grown past the original to appear in the near future.

reiuyi avatar

Thank you for answering the curiosity question

(no wonder it didn’t fit in 150 pages!)

Gareth Halfacree avatar

The difficult part was keeping it down to a level where it’s small enough to be published at a sensible price point – the Pi’s the sort of thing I could write thousands of pages about and still have topics left uncovered…

Robert avatar

I look forward to starting my Raspberry Pi Reference Library with this title!

Adam Novagen avatar

Looking good there; won’t do me much good though, sadly, until I have an actual R-Pi! :]

Greg_E avatar

While searching for this on the USA Amazon site, I found something that really makes me mad… It’s a book that has the following quote about the content:
“Please note that the content of this book primarily consists of articles available from Wikipedia or other free sources online.” This compilation of other people’s work is selling for nearly $60.00 each. Isn’t this somehow a violation of copyright by taking content that other people have generated and charging money for it? Notice that I don’t have a link, I don’t want to generate any sales for something like this.

Anyway the book Eben and Gareth wrote sounds like the type of book I need to really get going. Just need to stand in line for the hardware

Ashwith avatar

You said that this is for US and UK only (please do correct me if I am wrong). Will this be available soon for other counties as well?

horrork1d avatar

AFAIK ships in nearly every country in the world.

Gareth Halfacree avatar

It’s also listed on,, and, and is available from several booksellers in Australia. As other outlets pick it up closer to release, it’ll be available in additional countries. If it’s not available in your country, ask your local bookseller to place an order – as far as I’m aware, Wiley can supply the book wholesale to any country.

Ashwith Rego avatar

Thanks! I didn’t check if I could order it before posting. I’ll still probably wait to see if any seller over here is going to order in bulk. The shipping cost is half the cost of the book.

Gareth Halfacree avatar

Try The Book Depository. They deliver free to a wide range of countries, and it’s currently only £9.47 to pre-order – making it cheaper than Amazon.

Ashwith Rego avatar

Gareth, thanks a ton for that site! I also found a few other books which I want but aren’t available here.

Ashwith Rego avatar

I just placed my order. Can’t wait to get it. Thanks again! :-)

Andy Jenkinson avatar

A request regarding the Raspberry Pi User’s Guide Kindle version.

Several of the screen shots render as grey on black and even when enlarged are hardly readable (compare with the momentary black on white image on page change. I is VERY EASY to change a Kindle shook and Amazon are happy to notify buyers when changes are available.

Could you please change them to black on white as soon as possible? In all other respects it seems an excellent book.


Matthew Mills avatar

Just ordered mine. Looking forward to some autumn reading with a big bar of chocolate whilst the rain lashes against the windows.

Jongoleur avatar

If it comes out soon, I’ll probably be reading it (with a steaming mug of drinking chocolate) as the rain beats against the tent.

Marco avatar

Personally, I would like an ebook solely on the GPIO and such peripherals. Everything else is just a matter of Linux. installing stuff, doing terminal things, connecting and disconnecting. I do most of that on a daily basis. Programming isn’t new to me either (and I hate Python, it’s a bloody nuisance that seems to me as rather prone to bugs and not well adaptable for bigger projects). You can leave out the Linux and programming parts for me, though I reckon it might be a bit hard to release a seperate version for each person’s wishes.

Dirk avatar

Excellent! I’ll definitely be putting in a preorder for this to go with my unit that just arrived in the mail a few days ago. Thanks you guys for doing such brilliant and inspiring work :)

Jongoleur avatar

According to, 21st in books/1st in Books/Computers&Internet. Looks like its going to be 29th Feb all over again!

More amusing, according to, as well as buying the USer Guide, customers also bought useful books on Python, Pi cases, memory cards, etc AND Terry Pratchetts “World of Poo”…

*shakes head*

Gareth Halfacree avatar

It got as high as 14th overall late yesterday, but it’s slipped a bit since then. Still comfortably in the best-sellers list, though!

Jon Senior avatar

Just a quick note. You mention in the article that it will be available in PDF format, but the current Wiley page (in addition to claiming 150 pages, not the 240 that Gareth quotes above) is for an Adobe eBook. This requires Adobe Digital Editions* to read which (the last time I downloaded such a book in any case) is not available for Linux. Dead tree versions are nice, but for the consciencious geek (I’m not sure what subset of your target audience this is), this ties their manual reading to Windows / Mac.

*Removing the DRM and producing an OSS compatible PDF is possible but is left as an exercise to the reader! ;-)

Gareth Halfacree avatar

If you’re running an operating system that doesn’t support Wiley’s chosen DRM, but still want a digital copy rather than the dead-tree release, buy the Kindle version. The Kindle Cloud Reader – – works fine on Linux (I just checked!)

Jon Senior avatar

While I appreciate the need to protect your work, the choice is between unreadable on Linux, and only readable in a web browser. The advantage of a genuine pdf is that you can read it using a fast, efficient reader (evince / kpdf / Acrobat – if you so desire) and on your particular choice of eBook reader, regardless of manufacturer.

I would object less to DRM were it not trivially simple to circumvent, meaning that it basically serves to disadvantage the people who wish to play by the rules while providing almost no protection against those who wish to break them. In any case, I don’t blame you guys, I blame the business model. There really isn’t a viable alternative which still offers Dead Tree Press and I know of at least one member of your future audience who will benefit greatly from a physical copy.

Gareth Halfacree avatar

If you don’t want to read the book in your browser – although personally I don’t see much difference between being “restricted” to using a browser and being “restricted” to using a PDF reader, as in either case you’re being told what client application you must use – then you could always install Adobe Digital Editions on Linux using wine. Works fine, apparently – although I haven’t tried it myself.

Sadly, the authors have little (and by little I mean no) say in what DRM the publisher chooses to use. I know of at least one person who has emailed Wiley explaining the problems with DRM (not just ADE, but all forms of DRM) and asking for a DRM-free ePub edition to be released. I can’t promise Wiley will listen, but if it’s something you feel strongly about then I’d say it’s worth emailing them too. Who knows, if they get enough emails on the subject they may consider an approach somewhat closer to that of O’Reilly.

Greg_E avatar

This also brings up a question… Why hasn’t Amazon written a Kindle app for Linux? They have it for iOS/OSX and Android one of those two should be close enough to *nix to get the job mostly done with a little cleanup to the code.

I do have to agree that the DRM only keeps those who care from changing the content, this DRM costs money which increases the price of the material.

Ian Evans avatar

I never think twice about buying books from O’Reilly, because I can use their books on all my devices without restriction. They show me respect and in return I am happy to pay. DRM’d books have the potential to make me feel like I’ve been mugged later when I get a new device I’d like to read them on.

Jon Senior avatar

Last comments and then I promise to shut up! :-) The difference between reading in a browser and reading in a dedicated PDF viewer is the footprint. Neither Firefox nor Chrome are lightweight applications. Even my largest PDF (incidentally a DRM-removed eBook) barely causes evince to blink. It’s an extension of the un*x philosophy of having one tool for the job, designed to do it well. I’m sure that Google have an app for diffing files, but a local copy of diff is still a more sensible choice for most people. And my previous attempts to install Adobe Digital Editions under wine (dating from about a year ago) were disastrous. In any case, I shall email Wiley since complaining here won’t change anything. ;-)

Sheepman avatar

Be careful, the last person to complain about format availability and DRM got banned.

Jut sayin like.

liz avatar

That wasn’t why that person got banned; we’re perfectly happy for people to discuss format availability, DRM and the price of milk around here. The person you’re referring to has been concern trolling here for months (you might want to search the forums and comments to learn more), and what he/she was posting on Friday constituted the final straw. Tone, not content.

MonkMayfair avatar

Which am I likely to get first; the Raspberry Pi or the Raspberry Pi user guide? <>

Craig avatar

Placed my pre-order on Saturday.

Maurizio avatar

A link for ?

AndrewS avatar

Just out of curiosity: as this is the “official” user-guide, do any of the book’s profits feed back to the RPF?

MuddyDogs avatar

Pre-ordered mine :-) …

… but have just received email from Amazon saying that the book publication may be delayed as they just discovered that the book isn’t CE certified. They’re worried that it might cause interference if used in close proximity to other books. Apparently one of the beta testers read it sitting next to their partner, who was reading 50 Shades Of Grey at the time, and they interfered with each other.

Colin avatar


Dave avatar

I look forward to being able to get this book, the sooner the better due to issues which may end up with the Pi being put aside for another cheap pc that is available.

Thomas avatar

Dead Tree Version … interesting. It’s maybe because I’m from Germany, where books are valued not only but also for a historical reason, but I’ve never heard anything like that. Somehow I understand if someone wants to have the newspaper electronified, but in the light of (1) advertizing publications making up for the *most* of all paper prints and (2) RoHS devices with a lifespan of probably 10 years at most I’d never prefer an ebook of over a physical one.

liz avatar

It’s a very common idiomatic usage in English, especially on the internet, and it’s always intended in a tongue in cheek way.

Kwac Ka avatar

I’ve just gone to Amazon UK to pre-order but decided against it when it saw the UKP 9.18 postage price.

Think I’ll order anothe RPi.

or wait for Kindle’s proprietary format – any idea if it will be digitally restricted?

AndiB avatar

Great! Just got a copy via Amazon Germany for 3.60 €.
Are there also plans to translate this book into other languages?
Specifically, I would be interested in a German version for my older and younger family members :-)
If there are no plans yet, I would assume that there are many volunteers in the online crowd, including myself, who would like to help to translate into various languages. That said, I know nothing about the legal aspects of translating a book.

Joseph Bell avatar

How do I reorder?

Oyot avatar

Other artikels Raspberry Pi Starters Guide

Patrick Down avatar

What the difference between Meet the Raspberry Pi and Raspberry Pi User Guide – Connecting the Board?

Because I read that Meet the Raspberry Pi contains the first six chapters from the main book (Raspberry Pi User Guide) what contains the abridged ebook Raspberry Pi User Guide – Connecting the Board more?

liz avatar

Those chapters are short versions of the ones from the complete book, so some of the earlier material isn’t as in-depth as it is in the longer book. The short version also skips all the hardware hacking, and some of the software.

The short version is really good for getting you set up if you’re a beginner and getting you started with programming. If you want more than that, you need the longer version.

Patrick Wesolek avatar

but whats the difference between the two short versions?

liz avatar

There is none; it’s a listings error by Amazon.

Strohmayer avatar

With DRM I will never by it! Has the amazon version DRM?
Why is the price of the ebook in amazon germany higher?
3,99 Pfund = 5 euro, price 6,43 euro;to=EUR;amt=3.99

Sam avatar

Ditto. DRM == Ripoff. I won’t buy.

Comments are closed