/Ask HN: What do you do with your Raspberry Pi?

Ask HN: What do you do with your Raspberry Pi?

I have it set up to run a project where a subreddit has control over the watering of a live plant in my apartment.

The pi runs a reddit bot that reads the votes, and can switch on a pump to water. It also collects data about sunlight, moisture, temp and humidity to help inform the decision about watering. Despite many people’s preconceptions about the goodness of the internet, I must admit that they do a wonderful job caring for my plant!

website: http://www.takecareofmyplant.com

subreddit w/ voting: http://old.reddit.com/r/takecareofmyplant

This is one of the coolest uses of reddit/community sites that I have ever seen.

Out of curiosity, how did you come up with this idea?

I just use one as a Plex server. Can’t beat the cost of running it, which is roughly $6/year worth of electricity if I remember correctly. Previously I was running my Plex server on my gaming rig which cost a relative fortune to have running 24/7.

1x Raspberry Pi 3 installed in my car within the internal network as a bastion box and to run software that let’s my interact with the entertainment system

1x Raspberry Pi 3 running Home Assistant with a Z-Wave USB Dongle (Home Automation)

1x Raspberry Pi 3 running OctoPrint (Host/remote-control for 3D Printer)

1x Raspberry Pi 3 running FullPageOS (Full-screen Chromium in kiosk mode) displaying a server statusboard in our home office

Next project: 1x Raspberry Pi Zero W to run Unifi Controller

I have a couple of original Model B+ sitting around unused right now – just not powerful enough for any of the above projects.

(Update: Formatting)

> 1x Raspberry Pi 3 installed in my car within the internal network as a bastion box and to run software that let’s my interact with the entertainment system

Can you go in more depth about this? How did you integrate it with the entertainment system, and what do specifically do you do with it?

I didn’t know about FullPageOS, very cool. For a full stack web developer, this can give you a wide range of use cases for a Pi. Thanks!

Boo! Might have to reconsider then. I used the Pi Zero W for FullPageOS for a while but performance was absolutely terrible, recently switched it out with the Raspberry Pi 3.

The Pi Zero really has an awesome form factor, but many of the projects I come up with either require more performance (i.e. needing a Rasperry Pi 3) or are simply better suited for a microcontroller such an ESP32 or ESP8266.

My work has a really old phone system which I became the admin of. I discovered it had an audio input for Music-On-Hold, so I set up a spare RPi Zero that I had as a music player so that we’d have hold music. Low effort but wonderful improvement for work. Every now and then I go back and tinker with it to improve it a bit. (Next step is to make it controllable via a web interface.)

I have a RPi 3B+ that I use for some emulation, though I hardly ever play with it. Setting it up was plenty interesting, though.

And I have a Zero and a Zero W that I use for random tinkering/testing, both semi-permanently attached to a breadboard for ease of use.

(I’ve got a big list of projects I’d like to try or develop, but the above are the only things I’ve done so far.)

A client that I’m consulting was being ripped off by a local IT provider with pricing for on-premises servers & MS software.
I proceeded to rent cheaper equivalent machines off-site.
The IT provider claimed the hardware firewall (Fortigate) was not configurable for site-to-site to the new machines directly (could be, not an expert on those).
Therefore, I ended up purchasing several Raspberries and configuring them as OpenVPN routers that opened up the office LAN to said machines.
Quite satisfying, as it allowed to break the client out of the proprietry software/hardware/vendor chain at a rather small expense.

I have several

* Pie-hole and runs Nagios to collect information about things going on inside the network.

* One running a PiDP-11 (pdp 11/70 emulator) as well as providing MOP service to boot my DEC terminal multiplexor (it provides the boot image when the mux comes up)

* One is a stratum-1 time server using an Adafruit GPS module with PPS output. This because I got tired of both the reflection attacks and trying to manage ntp access from inside the house to outside.

* One runs RasPBX and talks to the VOIP phone that is my home “business” line.

* One sits on my electronics workbench and runs OpenOCD and allows BlackMagic Probes to export GDB as a service over the network. That lets me debug from anywhere without burning a USB port or adding additional software.

* One runs a very simple time series database and is the collector for IOT type devices that are sending various bits of information (energy use, temp, humidity, particulate levels, etc)

* One drives a display which has a dashboard of various things that the others are doing (like Nagios alerts, data trends etc) This one is a candidate for replacement as the 4K monitor would be nice here.

* One runs the waveforms live software from Digilent and hooks to an Analog Discovery 2 on my workbench. (scope, logic analyzer, etc)

EDIT: And its important to know that I boot them using the network and run them off NFS from a NAS box, the idea being that when they break I can easily swap the CPU part with a new one.

I use it to take up space in my drawer of useless electronic stuff because I can never find a combination of power supply and SD card that doesn’t eventually end up corrupt and unbootable.

The coffee machine in our office is controlled by blockchain NFTs and a Raspberry Pi:

Once authenticated, an owner of the NFT can select their coffee type on their phone which then signals the Raspberry Pi to make whatever coffee type was selected by jumping the contacts that used to be pressed by the machine’s buttons (which have been removed).

It’s a cool gimmick, fun to show off to visitors, gives us a nice record of who is making coffee (since each NFT’s owner is unique and trackable), limits users to those with the NFT without us having to build usernames/passwords, and is also how I make my coffee each afternoon.

Using several Raspberry Pis to monitor CO2 levels in my house. Each Raspberry Pi has a CO2 sensor – wrote a little Python script to retrieve data from sensor and upload it to a server Which is also a Raspberry Pi.

I’m also interested, although my curiosity is more about what you are doing with the data.

Just storage? Some sort of charting? Graphite? Maybe some other data monitoring tool? Maybe something custom?

I like this! I’m already using Pi Zero’s like this for temperature sensing; adding a CO2 sensor sounds like a good enhancement!

I’m interested in this too. It would be even cooler to link these CO2 sensors into Apple’s HomeKit somehow…

I have 4 running at home as servers:

– an OctoPi server, which allows me to manage my 3d printer remotely.

– a VPN

– a Plex Server, serving media to my TVs and phone. I just ordered the new 4GB Pi4 to replace this one. I’l probably re-purpose it as an OctoPi-like box for managing a CNC.

– a seldom-used retro gaming box, that’s actually been mostly by a hacked Playstation Classic

We’re actually running multiple of them (different generations bought at different times, one is even some similar product)

* company ownCloud server

* company wiki, company IRC server

* private RaspberryMatic instance for doing smart home (HomematicIP) without cloud

I use them as controllers/monitors for remotely managing a 3d printer farm. At about $40 total extra per printer for the pi and associated hardware, and an open source utility called “octoprint”, i’m able to remotely upload, monitor, cancel/pause, and have a camera feed to each printer. They also give some additional nice-to-haves by allowing me to upgrade the printer firmware remotely, and get very accurate print completion estimation times.


If you are interested in a 100% offline and private-by-design Voice AI, you should take a look at what we are building at https://snips.ai, it is 100% free for Makers

This allows you to do a 100% private Home Assistant, or add voice control to any of your projects 🙂

It works for english, french, german, japanese, spanish, italian, and more coming, and runs on a Raspberry Pi 3 (and iOS, Android, Linux)

You can take a look at our blog to see how to get started https://blog.snips.ai

We would love to publish on it what you are building with it!

One runs CUPS and is my printserver for an ancient but very reliable HP laserprinter.

One is our Internet radio in the kitchen.

One Pi 3 with a PiNoir infrared camera is used in a home-made camera trap for recording the local wildlife.

Two Pi Zero Ws are used in my son’s high altitude balloon cosmic ray high school experiment, recording video, and reporting GPS altitude and Muon count rates via 50bits/sec RTTY.

One is used in a beetbox I built for a BBC TV show. Not this one, but pretty similar: https://newatlas.com/beetbox-vegetables-musical-instrument/2…

Then there’s assorted robots, but none of those are currently operational.

A security camera NVR. (Help wanted! I’m developing it here: https://github.com/scottlamb/moonfire-nvr I’m proud of the design but it’s still far from a polished system that does everything a reasonable person would expect. Lots of opportunities to extend it if you’re looking for a fun Rust + Javascript project.) A Raspberry Pi 2 will run a working setup; the new Raspberry Pi 4 should be a lot more pleasant in terms of being able to recompile it in a reasonable time, transfer video segments quickly, etc.

A home theater control system. The Pi uses HDMI-CEC, my Samsung TV’s EXLINK (their protocol over RS-232), Roku’s HTTP interface, etc. and an Android app is the frontend. I wanted to make this into a nice polished thing other people could use but have given up on the idea for now. The thing is that media components are super finicky, many things need special support written just for them, and you really have to extensively tweak them to see how they function as a whole. (eg does your TV turn off your stereo receiver when it turns off itself. The answer varies based on the model and settings of both components.) HDMI-CEC doesn’t live up to its potential in this regard.

[edit: fixed hyperlink]

I think I have at least one of every variant. I had fun playing with all of them. But in the end, I wanted to use one for a Linux development machine and it was always just a bit too slow to be useful. This one sounds like it might have just crossed into the lower realm for laptops so I’ll give it a try. And yes, I know, using it as a development machine was not really the intended purpose, but a $55 machine is so tantalizing.

I’ve made some interesting projects over the years – only a writeup on a few of these, and some are in pieces and in various states of disrepair after moving so much.

Some write ups on larger projects:

1. I used a raspberry pi to coordinate the firing of multiple cameras, and then had the pi upload to a cloud service that would stitch them together to an “infinite zoom” super selfie. https://medium.com/@thekeithchester/gigasnap-

2. I created a library that made it dead simple for a raspberry pi to communicate to arduinos, and used that to control a lot of hardware projects, like little robots. https://medium.com/@thekeithchester/serial-synapse-94a114aa2…

3. Raspberry Pi’s controlled the heartbeat detection (controlled lights and music of your booth) and conductive paint controller (I built it and still don’t understand the meaning) for this art piece. https://vimeo.com/207047769

4. I had a video / text message doorbell a couple of apartments ago. https://github.com/hlfshell/doorbell

5. Used one as an MQTT hub for numerous IoT projects. I created https://github.com/hlfshell/mqtt-scheduler to schedule MQTT jobs for things like the arduino powered garden controller (lights + water pumps) I built for my wife. https://github.com/hlfshell/garden-relay

6. This never got off the ground, but when Pokemon Go had first launched and was super popular, I wrote a slackbot that would alert everyone in the office when pokemon (outside of the super common Rattatas and Pidgeots) was nearby. I was repurposing that code to make a portable Pokemon radar that would jump a false account around the area around you, thus hunting down pokemon for you. https://github.com/hlfshell/pokemon-tracker It never got far as the game got super stale quick.

1x Raspberry Pi 3 to power a weather station sampling wind direction, wind speed, air temperature, soil temperature, air humidity, rainfall and push data to Weather Underground.

1x Raspberry Pi 3 to teach the kids how to code in Python and do math games.

I’ve got 5. I only actively use 3 of them.

1. Media player connected to projector running RasPlex – this software is outdated enough and buffers on some high bitrate content that I should buy a replacement device, but it still works well enough. I tried upgrading to a newer raspi and wasted an hour trying to get it to run, then gave up. So, I still use my old one. It still gets used daily and works well enough (only issue is the buffering on occasion).

2. RetroPie – I rarely game, but it’s cool to be able to turn this on and have a library of all the games I played (and those I never had) from childhood.

3. I use the third one as a networked LED marquee controller (HUB75 panels) with this software: https://github.com/hzeller/rpi-rgb-led-matrix

The other 2 I just have sitting on my desk and occasionally use for small dev projects or to test out some new project I read about on here, hackaday, etc.

An ongoing project that I haven’t made much progress with is an automated turret that squirts squirrels with water. I made something similar in college (a “paintball gun” turret with openCV blob detection/tracking) that had decent performance. Now that openCV on rpi can outperform my old college laptop, I want to setup the pi to detect squirrels, track them, and keep them away from a bird feeder/plants in my backyard.

Would that turret will work for pigeons landing on my balcony? Or better yet, to protect my air space by squirting them on a fly by? That’d be some sweet fun. 🙂

This makes me sad.

Pigeons get a bad time, but they’re lovely birds of you spend some time observing and maybe even interacting with them. We had an obviously-paired couple visit our balcony most days for a couple of years.

Please don’t be (thoughtlessly?) mean to them.

I built a guitar stomp box using a Raspberry Pi Zero to trigger samples with a foot switch. Runs on 9 volts and has a very bright OLED display so I can still see what it’s doing when I’m playing in a dark venue.

1. PiHole (seems popular in this thread)
2. OctoPrint for my printer (with a touchscreen because I hate using the knob-based interface on the printer when I’m leveling the bed or doing maintenance)
3. Sitting on my desk because my Terraria server was freezing when saving the world file. Might set it up for emulation in the living room

I run a grid of about 250 Pi 2 and 3s across several offices and datacenters. They are the backbone of our graphics playback system (i.e. slates) and low latent IPTV system. Users can subscribe to any channel necessary without expensive re-encoding or RF antenna systems. I absolutely love them and 4k60 HEVC is a huge upgrade for the 4!

Not at all. $35 for a pi and $200 for HDMI>SDI converter is significantly cheaper than any media server with that many broadcast outputs.

For IPTV – each TV needs a decoder. Hard to beat $35 per set. Plus running our own stack means we can tune for latency unlike an app on Roku/ATV

I’m using one as part of a midi controller project:


The controller has 156 pressure sensitive keys. The raspberry Pi runs a program that reads from a bank of 20 8-channel ADCs all wired up to a SPI bus (it runs at 2mhz, and I’m able to get about 90 samples per second), and then generates MIDI commands that are sent over a USB-MIDI adapter.

I could use a microcontroller for this, but it’s kind of convenient to be able to plug other USB-MIDI devices into it and have it work, and to be able to run a Linux-based synthesizer locally if I want. (I’ve been planning on using a Teensy for the next version.)

We used a few to power kiosk touch screens and other commercial display applications using network broadcast video.

Made a seven screen display each with their own pi that sync’d individual videos running on each to create some video art pieces.

Also made a bullet time rig with 15 pi’s and each with their own webcam. There was a guy who did this already with lots of documentation but using his own pi-interface hardware he created. We did it without the pi controllers.

I use one running OpenWRT as a router. Its an old 3B, so it barely keeps up now that our internet has been updated to 100Mbps. It will soon be replaced, possibly with a pi 4. Of course, it also runs some other things.

I have OpenVPN running on it as well as a little nginx instance that I can use for reverse proxying if need be.

And the wifi turned out to be surprisingly solid as a (slow) access point, so I have sometimes used it as a Internet of Things Access Point with routing rules to keep all of those devices off the internet.

Its a surprisingly powerful little network box even with its significant limitations.

Don’t you need two Ethernet ports to use it as a router?

Are you using USB as the other Ethernet port?

I have one set up with the RetroPi distribution, that I carry around with me, along with two USB game-pad controllers, so I can engage in retro-gaming wherever I’m at (assuming there’s an HDMI display available).

I’m also dabbling with embedding one in the gutted out shell of an old boom-box, and making it a portable Alexa-like “smart speaker” of sorts. Looking at using something like Mycroft[1] or something of that ilk.

But outside of running Mycroft or whatever, I want to load this thing down with sensors (microphone, webcam, GPS, SDR, accelerometer, temperature, humidity, ultrasonic, infrared, whatever I can) and stream the data to a server where I can do more intensive AI related work. The idea is that this thing is the front-end to experimenting with “embodied AI” and having an AI “thing” that can really sense and experience it’s environment.

This whole thing is very incipient, but I’m looking at seeing what I can do with something like OpenCOG, or SOAR or ACT-R, coupled with various ML techniques, to give this thing some level of smarts.

[1]: https://mycroft.ai/

I’ve got a RPi 2 running PiHole and a SAMBA server for a bit of in-home file-swapping convenience. (“Just throw it on the server and I’ll pull it from there!”)

Currently my problem is that samba will fail to write files greater than around 100+ MB uploaded to the server. (Writing to a USB drive). It still handles multi-gigabyte downloads ok.

I’ve been able to work around it with SFTP uploading, so it’s just a minor annoyance, but I wish I knew what was going on.

I have mentioned this is a few comments, check out the RockPro64, its got 6 core processor 4gb ram, and runs Dietpi. It has a PCIe port, you can install 2 sata drives. I just installed an SSD and it’s awesome so far.


80 bucks for the 4GB, includes all the stuff on the new pi though. Interested to see how the pi4 stacks up

One Pi 3 running Pi-hole:
One Pi 3 hosting a Picroft instance;
One Pi 3 with a camera to experiment with simple video capture;
One Pi 3 and several Pi zero W’s on a custom network ( the Zero’s act as temperature sensors in different rooms, reporting back to the Pi 3 as a control node; eventually it will be running our HVAC).

1x Raspberry Pi 3B+ running OctoPrint, velcro-attached to my printer.

2x Raspberry Pi 2B running OSMC (with Kodi) for streaming from NAS to office TV and living room TV.

1x Raspberry Pi Zero W running OSMC (with Kodi) for streaming from NAS to bedroom TV.

Provided HEVC H265 decoding works as it should, I suspect I will eventually upgrade all 3 of these to Model 4. They’re great for a media center — low power, small, and provide a local-only player for TVs I don’t want to connect to any network.

Also have 2 OG B+ models that sit in a drawer unused, since they don’t have enough power for the above tasks.

I use a RPi Zero W to run DakBoard: https://dakboard.com/site which my family uses to organize our life.

I’m planning on adding another Pi as a Pi Hole device as an experiment in parental controls via low TTL values to provide scheduled access to specific DNS names. For example, my kid gets distracted beyond all that is reasonable by Discord and I’d like to let him use Discord, but only at specific times. Anyone with an interest in this, please let me know!

I have a pair of Pi Zero Ws set up as timelapse cameras that I keep in the garden – Cucumber vines and flowers opening is pretty interesting at 1 frame per minute

I recently did a project with a pair of RPi 3b+ and cellular modems as construction cameras.

I set up RetroPie on a 3b+, but it wasn’t enough for the N64 games my wife and I wanted to play the 4 could change that

Currently my security cameras are recorded using Orchid VMS on an Odroid XU4 ( Cloudshell with 2x 4T SATA)

Its a great little tool for learning Bash, and groking your systems – testing portability? – without invoking AWS resources.

What do you use for the camera? I have some plants I’d like to monitor but the cameras I’d use always ended up dying due to the heat.

I have a Pi 3 running Kodi, and I have another that I’m using as a border router for a thread mesh network. I’m going to get another at some point to run piHole.

There’s a thousand or so of them scattered around Europe which were the foundation of the company I work at, acting as IoT hubs to communicate with devices designed to alert insurance customers of floods, intrusion, and fire in their homes. We hadn’t ever really planned to get into building our own hubs, but the RPi ecosystem meant that when we were forced into that corner on short notice (thanks Smartthings for shutting down app approvals at the last minute) we were able to go from zero to working product in a matter of weeks!

I have a Raspberry Pi 3 that functions as a multi-purpose home server (Pi Hole, laptop backups, data scraping jobs, etc).

I have another 3 running MotionEyeOS that I keep pointed out the front of my house to catch package thieves.

At home: emulating old games, wifi hot spot (not needed so much these days) for hotel rooms with wired wifi, and a plex server to serve videos to the kid’s iPads in the car during road trips.

At work: show Grafana dashboards on our 4k monitors. Currently using model 3 which doesn’t like 4k so much. I’m looking forward to upgrading to the 4 in this case, see if they are more reliable. The 3’s like to crash/reboot periodically and really struggle to drive the 4k display at a decent speed.

I love and hate this question! I’ve always been curious what others do with them, but I just convinced myself not to buy a 4 and I’m sure this thread will give me reason to reconsider.

-1x Raspberry Pi Zero W in my garage running my drip irrigation (a relay board connects it to standard 24V irrigation solenoids)

-1x Raspberry Pi 3 B+ in my office running a dynamic dns script and sitting behind a forwarded port for easy sshing. I have also used this to play with pihole and Apache Guacamole, plus whatever other networking stuff sounds interesting

-1x Raspberry Pi Zero W hopping between my garage and car running a program that collects and displays OBDII and GPS data

-Nx of most other Pi revisions collecting dust in my closets and storage areas. They’re cheap enough that I’ve compulsively over-purchased them over the years…

I used it to monitor ADSL device status[0], also created a DIY timecapsule for MacOS[1] — these were all in the past, though.

Currently the Pi is on my roof, connected to an SDR. I sometimes run rtl_server on it, and listen around. Although it’s been a hassle, since I have to run upstairs and disconnect it everytime there’s a storm. Also, listening to the device over WiFi means I get really laggy control over my SDR. I’m planning on replacing the Pi with something better powered.

[0]: https://github.com/amingilani/scruffy

[1]: https://github.com/amingilani/chronopill

You could probably automate cutting the power with a relay switch also connected to the pi. Just scrape weather data, and if you expect the storm, trigger the switch.

I’m actually more concerned about lightning strikes hitting the antenna, frying the Pi, traveling down the Ethernet cable and frying my router. I’m still a ham in training but I’ve been told that it’s best practice to disconnect the antenna and isolate it from your setup. Some hams as far as placing their connectors in glass jars.

I don’t want to use a relay on the antenna cable because 1) it’ll pick up RF interference, and 2) if a direct strike hits it, there’ll be enough energy to jump the gap in the relay anyways.

I might figure out a more permanent solid-state solution in the future though. Like I said, still learning 🙂

Use a small software defined radio to listen to ADS-B messages (real time airplane telemetry— even with a crappy $10 USB SDR dongle I can sometimes see planes that are 100+ miles away)

Host my website (if I ever got any actual traffic it might be a problem, but since 99% of the traffic is me it’s ok)

Various web scraping/archival tasks

I have been working on my own hosting as well and I wonder where the tipping point is, and if it’s in regard to multiple users at once, or just consistent website hits?

I have 3 running right now

1x Raspberry Pi model B (from 2012!) – runs a reverse proxy to things in my local network, and runs a dynamic DNS service. It’s showing its age as its ARMv6 and I guess at some point updates won’t be as frequent so will eventually have to retire it, but it works fine for now.

1x Pi model 3 – runs various services, inc. GOGS a private git server, ZNC, a service to control my TV, a service to control my ‘smart plug’ lamp through a private API, a private docker registry, a voicemail system connected to Twilio

1x Pi model 3 – running Pi-Hole and wireguard

I love all of them very dearly and looking forward to reading this thread!

Do you have any more information or a write up on what you’re doing with Twilio and voicemail? That sounds sort of interesting.

You can actually do voicemail within Twilio for free using their TwiML Bins and Functions, you don’t need any extra hardware to maintain.

Just did this for a couple of numbers I set up with SIP. The docs were… confusing and inaccurate but I finally got it to work.

No write up unfortunately, I actually made it a few years ago as I was getting a lot of recruiter spam calls, but ever since the GDPR came in that has stopped. I don’t receive that many calls these days.

I have my (cell) phones voicemail set to my Twilio number. When a voicemail request hits Twilio, it calls an endpoint hosted on my Pi, which then just calls the Twilio APIs to

1. tell the caller to leave a message after the beep

2. record the message

3. use the speech-to-text API to transcribe the message

4. send me an SMS message with the transcription

It’s really just an ersatz visual/text voicemail service that I think iPhone users get. Also the Twilio speech-to-text transcriptions are hilariously bad, I don’t think it copes well with UK accents 🙂

If yours has wi-fi (Pi 3 and above or Pi Zero W) you can always just leave it plugged in somewhere innocuous as a pi-hole. It’s super useful and takes almost no time to set up, provided you can change the settings on your router to use it as DNS.

Yep. As much as I’d like to play around with it, I have no projects in mind that aren’t pure-software and easier on my laptop, or just end up filled with pre-made solutions to save on support time. Shame, but there you go.

1 runs RISCOS so I can run old beeb games on and emulator;

1 keeps a log of temperature/pressure/humidity using sense hat;

1 has a backup of my photos on an external hd (and also has an sds011 dust sensor (https://github.com/glgraca/sds011).

But my best project has been a picture frame using a Pi Zero W that receives photos via Telegram. My kids’ grandparents have this also and they love it (https://github.com/glgraca/PiFrame).

I once took one on a holiday to watch Netflix at night.

I’m totally naive with Raspberry Pi..can someone comment on the following project: Is it possible to put a glass eye behind a portrait of a one-eyed pirate and make it’s eye move around/follow whoever enters the room? A friend has a glass eye but nothing to do with it.

Lemme think. A camera that observes the room from the portrait, anyone that walks in is a dot on a plane, and it points the eye at the point on the plane. Should be doable. Yes, the Pi should handle that fairly easily.

The part that you’ll have to figure out is making the eye ball rotate. There are GPIO pins on the Pi, so you can get the commands out, but you’ll need to build the eyeball component yourself.

I’m using a Raspberry Pi (Gen 1, Model B I think) to run a smart mirror. It pulls up my daily commute, news headlines, weather, and calendar. I take no credit for the software (https://github.com/MichMich/MagicMirror)

I also had one connected to my Motorola LapDock back in 2012 to run a portable raspbian laptop. It worked surprisingly well.

I have one running pi-hole and Ubiqiti controller (powered by my router’s usb port), one sitting under the TV running Kodi connected to a NAS, avoiding the need for discs (big plus when you have small children), one sat next to an old hi-fi which also links to the NAS and lets me stream music to the hi-fi, and a couple of older ones which aren’t connected to anything having been replaced with newer models. Oh, and a Zero, which I’ve never found a use for.

I also do the PiHole + Ubiquiti controller w/ PoE, it’s a cheaper and more robust solution to the CloudKeys!

A bunch:
– Ubiquiti network controller, Pi Hole
– Temperature controller to knit an ancient hydronic in floor heater and a new-ish mini split together to act in unison. Pings local national weather stations to get more accurate data than I care to replicate at my home.
– Octoprint for my 3d printer
– 4x for a hobby project stitching together video from multiple cameras

I have 5 or more in my house, some bought, some inherited. One of them runs pi-hole. I’m in the middle of setting up octopi for a new 3d printer on another one. Two of the others are pi zeros (no wireless), no plan for those any time soon. I also have one of the older models, RCA video output instead of HDMI. I’m not sure I’ll ever find a use for that one.

I just set up pi-hole on one this weekend. It was my first time trying a Raspberry Pi, and I loved it. With the news about the latest version and the improved specs, I’m considering setting up a couple to replace my kids’ computers, which are all old and under-powered.

1) PiHole

2) Wired one into a rotary phone to make a weird steampunky smarthouse controller (Dial ‘0’ to turn off all downstairs lights and music, etc)

3) Various LED controls for fun, and Christmas

4) Always experimenting with MycroftAI to stay away from Alexa


A first version of the code is on github:

It was originally part of a confessional booth taken to Burning Man in 2015. Since then it has evolved and become part of my smart home stuff.

I was intimidated when I started as it was my first “hardware” project, but the rotary phone part was pretty easy! Just a little switch that turns on and off the number of times of the number dialed basically.

It actually has a (new) microphone wired into the mouthpiece and it uses the receiver original speaker ired to the pi sound output.

(At the time I knew nothing about Linux so I think getting pulseaudio working correctly took as long as everything else!)

Those aren’t working currently, but eventually I plan to integrate both the rotary dials and voice recognition and “scenes”

So like, dial “721” for light control. Voice: “And what are we doing with the lights today…” Me: “Make the outside light purple” and it is done.

I have custom voice recongition for things like that working with Mycroft, so it will just be a matter of joining the two projects!

As a bonus, since it was originally designed to work in the desert without a screen, it can do things via a weird analog interface. For example, if I press the hangup button 10 times in a row and then dial a number, I can get a report of how much memory is left on the device, etc.

I have several, I use them for multiroom audio with snapcast (mostly with USB DACs although one has a DAC hat.
Some have temp and humidity sensors, one has the rpi cam.
One has a always on vpn connection and transmission running.
For a while I used one with a Parsec client and cloud gaming.
However, I use a Odroid XU4 for all the big stuff (home assistant, NAS, nodered, mopidy, etc.)

Pi Zero W running Pi Hole

Besides having to hit the reload button 10 times day or so, it works a treat

I use a B+ to run a print server. Its wired directly over serial to a receipt printer. Since it exposes a standard CUPS interface, I have a few bots that call it to print out things. (messages, memes, weather, diagnostics)

2 RPis running Octoprint for the 3D printers
1 RPi connected to the laser cutter which I’m currently fixing
1 RPi that I take with me and connect to from my phone through ssh (moving to mosh and a Bluetooth terminal when I get the chance)
1 RPi that I leave in the lab so people can play with it with numpy/scipy/octave
1 RPi that I’m setting up with something like Jellyfin for my home media server

Pi3 runs piaware (aircraft tracking via rtl-sdr), pivpn, and pi-hole. Another Pi Zero runs an RF hotspot for ham radio stuff.

I use one as a hub/gateway for untrusted IoT devices.

It hosts a separate, isolated wifi network via hostaod/dnsmasq. Clients aren’t given routes to the primary network or the broader internet – they should only see the Pi and other clients (I’d eventually like to restrict access to other clients as well, but haven’t played with that yet).

Access to the devices is via a web server running on the Pi that relays commands and responses. Right now it’s a page full of hard-coded buttons and indicators, but I eventually want to turn it into a flexible firewall-like system to make it easier to add/configure/remove clients and rules.

I haven’t built it yet, but I want to buy some clickable rotary encoders, some knobs and build a light switch for my smart lights.

A knob you can click to turn the lights on or off, and turn to control the brightness.

A knob you can click to toggle between “natural light” and “color”, and turn to control either the warmth or the hue.

Not sure if I need a whole Pi for this or if I should attempt it with something more bare-bones, but that’s the project I have in mind.

I have a Pi3 in a case that looks like a NES. I’m running RetroPie on it with a few ROMs I’ve found around the internet. It works pretty flawlessly.

When the pre-order frenzy for the Pi4 has died down, I’m going to buy a 2 or 4GB model and use it to replace the old and slow crappy Windows 10 box we’re using to stream Amazon Prime stuff to our TV.

Most of the services (FlightAware, Flight Radar 24, ADSB Exchange) get much of their data from volunteer-operated receivers. If you feed your own data to these networks, you get several benefits including multilateration capability (computed location for planes that don’t send their own GPS location data) and free business accounts on FlightAware and Flight Radar 24.

I have 4 raspberries running 24/7:

– 2x Raspberry PI 3B+ in my office running 2 custom dashboards with info related to my web projects. One also runs Homebridge.

– 1x Raspberry PI 3B+ running pivpn.io

– 1x Raspberry PI X running an energy monitor (bough it as a kit

I threw my first Raspberry Pi in the trash just last week.

I’m not really using one regularly right now, but here are the few things I’ve done with my Pis:

– Hosted a blog using Rails and a Cron that updated the A record on my Route53 domain to point to my local IP address. I’m not sure anyone ever read it, but I had it up for about a year.

– Attempted to reverse engineer a treadmill controller with the UART pins. I successfully figured out the baud rate and captured bytes, but never figured out how to control the treadmill motor board. I have a feeling the motor board had a problem.

– Connected a piezo element to GPIO and made a controllable alarm device.

Nothing that cool, really.

I haven’t used RP before but I am planning to get one and use it as Voip server. I wanted to start with blogs but most of them are outdated.

pihole, nodered domoticz mosquitto for home automation, plex sonarr bazarr radarr jackett emby deluge for home media server, all in one little rpi3 and dockerized

– Hosting personal website from my DMZ at home.

– SDR and packet radio (Direwolf) projects

– Kodi

– rpi zeroW with usb serial for connecting back to my house from work/travel.

I had more projects, but I’ve been able to replace them all with ESP8266’s. Rpi is overkill to do simple things like toggle a gpio pin or take temperature readings. Use it if you have it, but it’s nice freeing up extra rpi’s with a $2 ESP.

I have one pi3b+ running Dark Ice transmitting my local police scanner to broadcastify. I built it manually on raspbian and it was a bit of a pain to get setup.

We use it as a front end to our Church’s AV system. It runs a GUI written in Python with PySide that controls our cameras, hyperdeck recorder and vision mixer.

It also controls the power switches for the system, and the blinds.

1. Retropie
2. Pi-hole
3. Bluetooth presence detection
4. Previously ran a Hassio instance on one
5. Wireguard server
6. (HiFiBerry + Volumio) x 3

great for multi room sonos-like system

Pi-hole and Syncthing. And I have Apache installed that just spits out a list of upcoming Doctors appointments since I have a few of those a week and they frequently change. I don’t drive and my sister drives my to appointments so it helps her keep track of things.

I used mine as a NAS for a while with an external USB HDD and a samba share. It was also set up to be a VPN and pi-hole. I have a pi zero that I use to flash coreboot on laptops.

My PS3 isn’t doing so hot as a media server client for my NAS’s movie library – the network connection is poor, the interface is fiddly, and it can’t load subtitles embedded in files. I was going to buy a pi3 to replace it as a media server client and hook up an external DVD player, but now I’ll be getting a pi 4!

Check out ROckPro64, I just set mine up. Running plex with an internal HDD on a PCIex4, 6 core processor and 4gb ram. Using Dietpi, I am interested in checking out the Pi 4 as well, but looks like it might be a few months until its available

1. simple server for backup and git repos

2. xbmc for videos on main tv

3. retropie (I had fun with this for about a week but haven’t used it lately)

4. pihole for blocking ads and time-wasting sites

5. various small projects: security camera, motorized window shade, etc.

I run Home Assistant on my desktop to communicate with a few of the other devices in the house but I might move that over to a Pi so I don’t have to worry about restarts and performance. I’m thinking about consolidating this setup somewhat but I’m waiting for my next move.

I’m building a CarPi. I’m using a bluetooth OBD-II adapter and Python-OBD to monitor my car’s diagnostics and record them. I’m planning on adding a GPS adapter and probably a gyroscope/accelerometer so I can track location and motion at the same time.

It’s mostly just for fun.

Maybe one day I’ll add some kind of analysis to it. It might be interesting to track location, motion, and car status in order to predict mileage or if the engine light will turn on.

I’m working on turning it into a IR emitter to control some stuff that I have that lack remotes. I have another I’ve loaded snips onto an will be experimenting with soon – I’m currently using a PlayStation eye for the experimentation, but will have to get a better microphone/speaker. I wish I could hack a dot/echo/etc. and use their microphone/speaker, but meh, I’ll take what I can get.

Also, the IR pi will probably drive some ambient light as well.

> I’m working on turning it into a IR emitter to control some stuff that I have that lack remotes

That’s really neat. Please share some details – I was planning on buying a Broadlink IR/RF device for that purpose.

1. A raspberry pi 3 on which I use git-annex to archive data on a bunch of large USB disks.

2. A raspberry pi 2 at a different location which provides off-site backups for the data archived by the first pi

3. A raspberry pi zero to run magic mirror on a leftover screen (I cannot be bothered to turn it into an actual smart mirror though)

4. And I recently added another raspberry pi 3 to play with RetroPie

I have 3 use cases for my RPi:

-PiHole as an ad/tracking blocker (adding PiVPN tonight to VPN into my home network)

-Plugging sensors to measure temp/humidity and controlling AC state (on/off) via IR Led (https://imgur.com/a/pYugqXz)

-Unifi Controller

My Raspberry Pi 3 works as a CUPS print server connected to a laser printer, as a pi-hole DNS server to filter ads, and as a ssh entry point (with dynamic DNS). I would use a Pi zero, but Ghostscript is not too happy when printing large documents on a single-core processor with 512 MB of ram. I still have to find the time to set-up a backup server on it (and decide which software to use).

There are tons of great comments and use cases here. Perhaps I’ll have to dust off my old Raspberry Pi and repurpose it.

1 – Kids’ desktop (Raspi3)
2 – Kodi (Raspi2)
3 – LAN print/automated backup server (Raspi1)

I’ve order a 4GB Raspi4 to upgrade the kids’ desktop and 1 GB Raspi4 to upgrade the automated backup server (Gb ethernet + USB3!). Kodi will get the old kids’ desktop.

Media player connected to tv. (Kodi or Elec, I can’t recall which)

What I found really neat about this is that if you use the HDMI connection, there is some automated setup/control that allows my tv remote to control the PI. (through the HDMI connection)

But also, the smart phone app for Kodi remote control added a new layer of interaction with the media player that is just sort of unique and unexpected. (everything worked so easily)

There was a time I was super into a project where I had a streaming server that used my Spotify account and would allow anyone with access to the server to change the song. I was basically trying to replicate what Sonos does with a Pi. It worked, but I abandoned it after a few months of not using it.

For a while I had a doggy puppy cam running with a real old Pi.

Just grabbed a 3b+ to use as a dedicated Pihole DNS server for my home network.

1x nailed to my wall and acting as a jump box for my home network and a DNS server

1x running OctoPrint by the 3D printer

1x responsible for remote serial access to and cycling power on my RISC-V board

1x updates the weather on an e-ink display every 20 minutes

It was bought with the intention of using it as an emulator for old games, but it just sits unused in a closet.

– LED Light alarm

– Living room music player & “radio” streamer — I need to set this up as an A2DP audio receiver too

– octoprint server

– Stratum 1 NTP server (GPS referenced)

If I didn’t also have a “big” linux system running 24/7, it would be doing things like DHCP, DNS, MQTT server, etc.

I’m interested in learning more about your LED light alarm set up—I had a similar idea a while back but am less familiar with the world of Raspberry Pi.

I have a few.

1) PiHole. I’m upgrading this to a RasPi4 and seeing if I can also merge 2) 5) and 6) into it.

2) NAS/VPN/Media Server/Hass.io

3) RTL-SDR for ADS-B Receiver feeding to numerous data warehouses (Flightaware, ADS-B Exchange, PlaneFinder, etc)

4) Connected to RTL-SDR and running rtltcp for generic HF/VHF/UHF radio receiving which was previously part of a SATNOGS automatic cubesat/Amsat/ISS receiver build I’ve not completed yet.

5) Debian desktop on my workbench

6) A Pi Zero W running a ZNC IRC bouncer

7) Experimenting with remote ham radio control but linux-based ham radio software is still a bit too frustrating, so this isn’t an active project.

8) Two extra RasPis and three PiZeroW’s just lying around because Microcenter always has them for ridiculously low prices.

Media center & TV PC. I have a 4 TB external hard drive connected to it (and swap on it). Using a custom compiled kernel with zswap support, browsing the web isn’t that bad with the 1GB of RAM on the 3B.

I’ve also hooked up an RTL-SDR to it and ran rtl-tcp instead of needing to run a long USB cord.

3 rpi w 8mb camera to create a HD CCTV.
2 rpi to serving to 2 viewsonic touch screen
1 backing up PROD server

1x House power monitor
1x Solar power monitor
1x DVBT airplane tracking (flightradar.com)
1x Fridge temperature and humidity graphing for Salami chamber
1x Pi-hole (I also run a second pi-hole on a VM)

Low-cost Aarch64 development machine! I run Aarch64 Fedora on a Pi 3B+ for porting personal projects to Aarch64 and for testing. When mainstream desktop ARM arrives (ARM Macs perhaps?), I’d like to be ready in case I have to make a switch from x86-64.

I use mine to run and monitor my 3D printer remotely. I use octopi and the little webcam extension.

Since I have a permanent use for it now, I’ll probably be buying a second to play around with.

Current and former use cases:

1.) Arcade emulator box for a custom control panel I made

2.) Host machine for a twitter bot

3.) Octoprint server

4.) Virtual disk drive for an Apple II computer

5.) Internet connection quality monitor

A lot of folks have said “pihole”. I have a linux server at home that does my DNS and a bunch of other stuff. I also have a pi3 still in the box.

Would there be an advantage to me running pihole on the pi3 instead of on my linux server?

Energy use, probably. I bet the RPi uses a ton less energy than your linux server. But in this case that’s not really a tradeoff since you’d be running your server in addition to the RPi.

A filtering DNS server is much easier to add into your network – don’t have to play with proxy autoconfig, and because it’s not mucking with the http content, very lightweight.

I don’t see why, its just neat to have a little dedicated device next to your router IMO.

I have one with a DAC running shairport-sync to recieve audio from iPhone and one running pihole.

I run PiHole on a raspberry 1 rev b.
Going to get the new model to run a bitcoin node at home (instead of running it on my old laptop).

RetroPie to run video game console emulators and MAME. Maybe the new version can finally run a proper N64 emulator?

I have 2 Pi3. Nothing special, one is for retrogaming (recalbox), the other is for files server / backup (raspbian).

Have any of you done something with machine learning on rpi? Like face recognition or some fun robot. I’m looking at rpi4+google coral and it seems impressive enough to run interesting projects.

I have a script that retrieve photos from an attached camera and then uploads the images to an AWS GPU instance and train an image recognition model there. This is all for controlling my model trains 🙂

Pi-Hole, RetroPie, and for my 1st-grade son I installed Kano OS for his first computer. I see a couple of Pi 4s as upgrades in my future.

Also looking to get my SDR rig up and running on one of the other Pis i have waiting to be used.

Anything you’ve learned to share about having it as a computer for your first grader? I recently set one up for my daughter, same age, but haven’t put much thought into the software side yet. She’s played Minecraft-pi a couple of times, we made the cat meow in Scratch, and we used it to watch a movie the other day, but that’s it so far.

I have three always on

One Pi3B+ connected to anemometer and single solar cell, uploads up to 60 secs of analog data reading every minute by CRON, then has other CROn stuff for emailing

One Pi Zero for home security camera attached to motion sensor/rapid shutter mode, uploads to S3 bucket

One Pi zero for reading HN news out loud in the morning by Amazon Polly, tracking solar cells on window, and then more scheduling stuff

I have another one powered by USB, I intend to use it as “swappable dev stacks by sd card” through USB SSH

I have several Raspberry Pi’s in use:
– One Zero with AudioQuest Dragonfly for PiMusicBox
– RPI v1 with a camera for motion detection
– RPI v3 for HomeAssistant Hub

Homeassistant (Hass with mqtt and grafana), Octoprint, MotionEyeOS, pihole, pivpn, Donkey car, Robot operating system (ROS), and a wireless controller for my crazyflie quadcopter

* DHCP server for my LAN

* DNS server including pi-hole

* headless bittorrent client (transmission daemon)

* NFS and miniDLNA media server

* git remote

Does work-in-progress count? I have two with cameras I am attempting to rig up as a frontend/backup camera in my Humvee (very necessary!), hopefully w/ UI on iPhone

– WiFi garage door controller
– OSMC x 2
– Stratux

I had PiHole, but moved it to a tiny VM in an effort to minimize cables.

PiHole service is the only project I run on my raspberry pi. Setup is not as user friendly as we are accustomed to these days, however, with a few hours you will have a robust ad/analytics block system in place.

I use it for a personal project implying scraping some websites. One of these websites was behind Cloudflare (I think), and thus was blocking request from my OVH server. Therefore I used my Raspberry to do the job, on my own connection.
I also put recently a Pi-hole on it.

I have a small Internet kiosk for one-off browsing and guests.

Currently, mine is running on an ODROID-C2 but the Pi 4 should have more than enough performance for one.

My setup is a stripped down install with a minimal window manager. There’s only one icon for launching Firefox which is configured in an amnesic mode. The DNS is set to my Pi-hole.

In production since 2016 with 3 x Raspberry Pi 3s. Very reliable – they only need a reboot once a year. These guys are hardcore – processing bursts of thousands of records from a serial interface 24 hours a day 7 days a week and shuffling it off to the cloud.

Did you do some work to run 100% from ramdisk after boot? Conventional wisdom says that the SD cards should fail eventually from log writes, etc.

Doorlocks of our hackerspace has been RPi controlled almost since the original RPi came out, maybe 2013. Nowadays we got 4 doors on 3 RPIs (internal and external), with over 200 members that has access. Using MQTT to communicate with our membersystem since 2016 or so.

I use it to build a cloud backup system. My files in the computer will automatically sync to Raspberry Pi.

I used it as a ad hoc game camera last summer (we had something coming through our back yard, so wanted to see what it was, and I won’t say no to buying more electronics I’ll use once), but that’s about it. Been powered off ever since.

I got a RPi 3B+ to build and test some open-source amateur astronomy tools I contribute to – everything has been working quite nicely so far (I use Fedora on my computers and it also works fine on the Pi). I’m eyeing the RPi 4 with interest.

I spent a while figuring out the cheapest possible way of doing front end dev for a series of blog posts (that I never wrote) . The result was using a Pi3B+ and a lot of open source tools, Github and Netlify. It works so well I’m still using it for a ton of dev.

I have several running 3d printers– OctoPi or NanoDLP. I’ve been able to modify OctoPi to run several printers at once, but it is way more work than its worth.

I also made a media player for my daughter that has all of her kids shows on it. I designed/printed a case for the RPI+vesa mount. I’m super excited about the new RPI that was announced todayish– because it has a hardware h.265 decoder meaning, I’ll no longer have to transcode some things.

I tried PiHole and I really liked it, but it caused some problems with some sites my folks frequent, and it broke mDNS discovery on my network. I may reinstall it and just exempt their devices.

I used mine as a dlna server and file server, but I was constantly having to restart it or delete the database to get it to pick up new files I had recently dragged on to it. Has anyone been able to use one successfully for serving media?

I run minidlna on it to host music. No issues scanning for new files, but IIRC detecting new files was an issue when I ran Plex under docker on it.

Right now: I use it as a Flashrom rig, for flashing BIOS chips.

The new Raspberry Pi looks powerful enough to use as a media center PC, I ordered one and want to see if it can do that well enough (read as: I’m curious to see emulation performance.)

I’ve been happy for a year or two (not even sure, now that I think about it…) with two Pi3s running openElec. Both run over wired ethernet to SMB media server. I’m generally stingy with my storage, so I usually opt for the 1080p file sizes. I don’t know how well or if it can handle 4K.

I am using The Pi for

1) video security system using zoneminder

2) text and email me alerts

3) Automate lights/devices using 433MHz RF sockets, crontab and RF433Utils

4) A cloud storage for my files using owncloud

1. I used a Raspberry Pi Zero W to flash Coreboot onto my Lenovo X200.

2. I have a 3 B+ running RetroPie.

3. I use a model 1 with USB Wi-Fi adapter as a wireless print server for an old LaserJet printer.

Primarily, an always-on node to run wake-on-lan (via etherwake) on other home network nodes, and to act as an SSH bastion when other entrypoints are failing.

I use my Pi2 as a media player (LibreElec), and just ordered a Pi4 4gb which I’m planning to replace my ageing server and NAS with.

Using it to run an order scheduling system in store of an automated coffee chain startup we’re developing.

Two things, working on more. VPN router and a doorbell to desktop-notifications box. I like listening to music on noise cancelling headphones sometimes when I work. I wouldn’t hear the doorbell in that case, so I have a pi with a mic that sits close to the doorbell. If the noise level goes past a certain threshold for a few samples, it sends a command to my workstation where a script sits and triggers a desktop notification. Works pretty well with very few false positives and all “I might miss the package delivery guy” anxiety is gone while I enjoy music.

main pi: pihole and google cloud print
spare pi: retropie loaded with all the good goodies.

Using one for a DMR (ham radio) hotspot.

Plan on using one for a GPSDO data monitoring.

The problem with the RPi is the SD card file system. It’s just not reliable enough. I have had better luck with the Beaglebone Black, which as on-board eMMC.

Mine is running in my attic, hooked up to three antennas on my roof:

1. A GPS antenna which provides an accurate “stratum 0” time source. The pi runs ntpd and provides time for all devices on my network.

2. A home built ADS-B antenna for receiving position reports from local aircraft and airliners. Interfaces to the pi with a USB SDR. Pi runs dump1090 to provide a web visualization of local air traffic. I also feed FlightAware with this info.

3. A home built VHF antenna for listening to airband transmissions. Second SDR. Pi runs scanner software and an IceCast server for clients on my network to connect and listen.

The pi also has a temperature sensor that logs once a minute so I can plot my attic’s temperature and I can have it alert me if it gets too hot.

I don’t use it, I never got around to it because I’m not actually all that interested in computers, at least not in the sense that I thought I was.