Raspberry Pi Full Screen Browser (2015)

Dashboard

Running full screen browser on boot

This is part of a series on running a browser full screen on a Raspberry Pi at boot.
The most current version is here:
Raspberry Pi Full Screen Browser (2020-05-27-raspios-buster)

After Imaging, Before First Boot

Before installing the card in the Raspberry Pi, edit the `config.txt` file in the FAT32 partition and add to the bottom:

# ADDED
framebuffer_depth=32
framebuffer_ignore_alpha=1
hdmi_force_hotplug=1
hdmi_drive=2

This sets the color depth and some hdmi properties.

First Boot, raspi-config

On first boot `/usr/bin/raspi-config` is run. The Raspbian distribution defaults to en_GB.UTF-8 UFT-8, in my experience en_US.UTF-8 UTF-8 presents fewer issues.

As a result, my instructions setup en_US.UTF-8 UTF-8 and a Generic 101 keyboard.

The device will also automatically login to the Desktop with user pi.

Replace the password and timezones with appropriate values.

  • Expand Filesystem: Yes
  • Change User Password: SEEKRIT
  • Enable Boot to Desktop/Scratch: Desktop Log in as user ‘pi’ at the graphical desktop
  • Internationalisation Options:
    • Change Locale:
      • Unselect en_GB.UTF-8 UFT-8, Select en_US.UTF-8 UTF-8
      • Default locale for the system environment en_US.UTF-8
    • Change Timezone: America, Toronto
    • Change Keyboard Layout:
      • Generic 101-key PC
      • Other
      • English (US)
      • English (US)
      • The Default for the keyboard layout
      • No compose key
      • Use Control+Alt+Backspace to terminate the X server? No
  • Advanced Options: SSH: Enable

Then finally, reboot the Raspberry Pi.

Get Latest Updates

Always update the system:

sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get upgrade
sudo apt-get dist-upgrade
sudo reboot
sudo apt-get autoremove
sudo reboot

Install Packages

Install the Chromium browser, additional fonts and some x11 utilities.

  • chromium-browser installs Google’s Chrome browser
  • ttf-mscorefonts-installer adds common web fonts
  • unclutter is used to hide the mouse
  • x11-xserver-utils installs xset, which is used to disable screen blanking
sudo apt-get install chromium-browser ttf-mscorefonts-installer unclutter x11-xserver-utils

Edit Startup Scripts

Edit autostart to add chromium, unclutter, disable the screensaver and prevent screen blanking.

sudo vi /etc/xdg/lxsession/LXDE-pi/autostart
# CHANGED
#@xscreensaver -no-splash

# BEGIN ADDED
# Chromium parameter references:
# http://peter.sh/experiments/chromium-command-line-switches/
@/usr/bin/chromium-browser --kiosk --start-maximized https://google.com

# Hide mouse
@unclutter

# Disable screensaver
@xset s off

# Disable screensaver blanking
@xset s noblank

# Disable DPMS (Energy Star) features
@xset -dpms

# END ADDED

Conclusion

That’s it! You might consider changing the background wallpaper with something branded and perhaps deleting the desktop icons.

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