Official Raspberry Pi User Guide: 2nd edition out now!

The Raspberry Pi User Guide, co-authored by our very own Eben Upton with Gareth Halfacree, is your complete guide to the Raspberry Pi, from setup and installing software to learning how to use the Pi to play music and video, using it in electronics projects, learning your first programming language, learning about networking – it’s a complete guide to everything you need to get going, and even if Eben wasn’t involved in this book, it’d be our first recommendation for adults and older kids interested in getting started with the Raspberry Pi.

This second edition is a much, much fatter book than the first – there’s almost half a book’s extra content in there. The first edition only covered the earliest revision of our hardware, and much of the software we now take for granted hadn’t been written back when it was published: this new edition is bang up to date, with new chapters covering use of the camera board, how to use NOOBS to set up your Pi, the introduction of the Pi Store and much more.

We’ve got the Raspberry Pi User Guide for sale in the Swag Store: it’s a great gift for anybody you know who might be getting a Raspberry Pi this Christmas. If you’d like to support our educational mission and help us produce free learning materials and more schools equipment, we’d love it if you could buy from us. It’s also available in the usual places: Amazon currently have it on sale, but it’s been so popular that it’s out of stock there at the time of writing. We hope you buy a copy: and we hope you enjoy it as much as we have.


The Raspberry Pi Guy avatar

Awesome! I will be reading… It is amazing how fast books get outdated!

The Raspberry Pi Guy

Mark Daniels avatar

It would be nice if this was available in PDF format. I already have the first edition, but might consider buying a PDF of the updated book.

Jan Burdinski avatar

Exactly what I thought.

Gareth Halfacree avatar

Your wishes are my command: [ukscone: link removed as it was in error]

liz avatar

Thanks Gareth! (And thanks for all your work on this – it’s been a long haul!)

Mark Daniels avatar

Whoa! That is a touch expensive at $19.99 for a PDF, when the printed version can be had for £9.99 from Amazon! Still, I have ordered and downloaded it :(

Mark Daniels avatar

Really, Gareth? Is this a joke? I have just paid $19.99 to download this and it is the first edition! I suggest that no-one pays for the PDF until it is confirmed that the download has been updated to the new edition. I trust this will be corrected, shortly. Thanks.

Mark Daniels avatar

Update on my comments regarding the PDF from O’Reilly Media. I have just spoken to them by telephone and been advised that they do not have the second edition, nor were they aware that it had been published. So, my advice remains: do NOT pay for and download any of the electronic formats of this publication from Gareth’s link until someone on here confirms that it has been updated to the new edition. I have been advised that O’Reilly are looking into the matter and will email me in due course. I will post an update here as soon as I have one.

Gareth Halfacree avatar

No, Mark, it’s not a joke. O’Reilly is using the image from the Second Edition on that page – note the sash at the top-right which details the updates. That sash is not present on the First Edition. For them to claim no knowledge of the update, then, seems disingenuous.

Hopefully it’s just a mix-up at O’Reilly’s end and they’ll get it sorted soon – but if not, I’d certainly say you were due a refund on the basis of “not as advertised.”

liz avatar

We can’t +1 posts here, but if we could, I would be doing.

JBeale avatar

Is there more than one version of the updated cover? On this R-Pi blog page the sash reads “Updated Second Edition” and shows “Wiley” at lower right corner. On the sash reads “Covers Rev 2 board, raspi-config & Camera Module” and does not have the “Wiley” text.

Mark Daniels avatar

Gareth, thank you for your comments. I did, indeed, see the sash and pointed this out to O’Reilly’s but was told that was just to show that this was a second printing (I think) of the first edition. I have the first edition (no sash). I am trying very hard to get to the bottom of this and, like you suggest, should I fail, I will then ask for a refund. I will, as promised, post updates here.

Thank you.

Gareth Halfacree avatar

If that’s the First Edition, Second Printing (if you can have such a thing with an electronic book!) then that could explain it – in which case I heartily apologise to anyone I’ve inadvertently misled. To my knowledge, though, there’s only the sashless cover from the first edition and the sash cover from the second. Unless the publisher made a new cover without telling me, which is entirely possible.

However, I’d certainly second Mark’s advice not to buy the book from O’Reilly until things are clarified – and apologies again if I was mistaken. (Sadly, there’s no facility here to edit comments, or I’d remove my link!)

[ukscone: removed the link for you]

Will Jones avatar

Wordery have this in stock, and cheaper than Amazon!

obo avatar

“Currently unavailable” at the moment.

JBeale avatar

For me, the Wordery webpage shows “currently unavailable”

Will Jones avatar

Sorry about that – should be available again now.

IL avatar

Cool! Thank you!

Mark Swope avatar

Seriously, when have you guys had time to update this book? What with 2 jobs, beard-growning, traveling,etc. Congratulations!

SelfReplica avatar

Darn….just purchased the first version not too long ago.

Jim Manley avatar

Just to be clear, only is currently offering the Second Coming, and only in paperback, not Kindle format (yet?). Apparently, there’s no room for the e-book on Amazon Web Services cloud servers, or it’s just too difficult to upload the file. Maybe they’re too busy trying to get their hijacked drone prototypes back which I’m convinced are a ploy to get their competitors to waste their time trying to do the same ridiculous thing, that Amazon has no real intention of developing, let alone deploying.

Rick avatar

Who took a dump in your coffee this morning? Lighten up.

Jim Manley avatar

Let’s just say that Amazon sucks in general, and particularly so in this case. Any company deserves to be dumped upon that seriously believes that it can deliver 85% of its millions of products via autonomous drones and is sinking resources into a PR campaign hawking it. They should be making real, actual, existing, tangible products like Eben’s and Gordon’s book available to the millions of prospective customers who could really make use of it (particularly students and teachers).

The fact that their business practices of doing everything they can to put small competitors, and even their own customers, out of business while dodging taxes is an even bigger reason. I can’t believe anyone has invested in that company either, since they’ve never really returned much (other than to its own executives) as they slice margins ever thinner.

There, is that enough light for you on what Amazon is really all about?

Greg avatar

Any chance of an eBook?

liz avatar

Yes – it’s available in several different eBook formats.

DaveSemm avatar

Do you know when a Kindle version will be available from Amazon USA?

Mark Daniels avatar

Liz, if this book is indeed available in several e-book formats, would you mind enlightening those of us who are struggling to get hold of such a format? Thank you.

Also, update on O’Reilly’s: I have received a full refund of my purchase price of the PDF. They have also intimated that the book (PDF?) is coming to them in the near future, but no date as yet.

Mike Cook avatar

I saw the book in the Kendal Waterstones about two hours before this was posted. Mind you I was more interested in looking at the list of Technical Editors, printed at the front of the book. :)

liz avatar

Good-looking, intelligent, fine-smelling, athletic Technical Editors all. :D

Niall avatar

The content of issue one was excellent – but nigh on impossible to read because of the really poor contrast between the text and the page.

Has this been improved in the second edition? If not, I’ll be skupping this release and waiting for an issue with decent contrast, where I don’t need a 3KW floodlamp and a x10 magnifying lens to be able to read it!
Of course – it may well just be ‘my’ eyes – but the font and ink used certainly didn’t help :-(

Maybe I need to get an eBook version!

Niall (aka The Blind One)

liz avatar

I can’t judge for you: go to a bookshop and have a look at it in the flesh.

Niall avatar

(apparently Santa seems to already have a copy set aside for me, :-) so, if necessary, I’ll just have to read this version with my ‘super-goggles’ on as well. Maybe I could build a “PiReader” with a Pi, PiCam and HDMI screen?!!?)

Alex avatar

Unfortunately or is not able to offer a kindle edition….

I bought the book now from goole play store. Sorry amazon.

David Rolfe avatar

Although Amazon are still currently showing the 2nd edition as being temporarily out of stock, they must have had a few available as they have despatched one off to me this afternoon!

David Moss avatar

Any idea when this will be available on the iBooks store?

John Botha avatar

Amazon has this thing for Kindle they call Automatic Book Update, which is supposed to update to the latest version of an eBook.

I’ve not yet seen it work, so I assume that the publishers concerned have to enable it. Since I bought the first edition on Kindle (John Wiley & Sons), it would be wonderful if you could twist their arm in this regard.


Agustin avatar

Can anybody give me a summary of the book?
Because I wanna buy it, but I’m not sure if it will help me with my prjects

Ivan X avatar

I purchased the eBook, definitely 2nd edition, directly from Wiley’s site for 10 USD. (Saw they also had it for Google Play, but I don’t live in that world, so I skipped it.)

It required that I obtain a DRM-protected PDF using the Adobe Digital Editions application (free) on my Mac, which is also a reader. The PDF gets downloaded to the Digital Editions folder of the Documents folder.

I wanted to read it on my iPad, and the solution for that is the (free) Bluefire Reader app. You can transfer the PDF using Dropbox or another cloud storage service (I used CrashPlan), by choosing “Open in Bluefire Reader” in the app. It asks you to sign in to your Digital Editions account, and then you’re good to go.

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