Headless Raspberry Pi + VNC: useful resolution

Breadboards of Canada …

I just set up a Raspberry Pi Zero to be a little breadboard computer. Running a headless machine only through SSH gets a bit dull at times, so the inclusion of VNC Connect in Raspbian is handy.

Only problem was that the default screen size — something like 720×480 — was too small for most dialogue windows. Here’s how to enable a more useful resolution of 1024 × 768.

All of these are enabled from the raspi-config tool, so open a terminal and start it with:

sudo raspi-config

Enable Boot to Desktop

Select 3 Boot OptionsB1 Desktop / CLIB4 Desktop Autologin:



Enable VNC on Startup

Select 5 Interfacing OptionsP3 VNC, and answer Yes to Would you like the VNC Server to be enabled?:


Set Screen Resolution

Select 7 Advanced OptionsA5 ResolutionDMT Mode 16 (1024×768) …:


Once you’ve enabled all of these, raspi-config will ask if you wish to reboot your Raspberry Pi. Once it has rebooted, you should have a usable remote desktop.

(All of these screenshots were taken from a headless Raspberry Pi Zero via VNC.)

Wireless, Cordless Raspberry Pi

Yay! I found a wireless adapter that the Raspberry Pi is able to power without an external hub. It’s a Belkin N150 Micro Wireless USB Adapter. Not sure of the range, but it works well enough, and is cheap.

Just to show you how hard-core I am, that’s a screenshot of a browser (showing a picture of the Raspberry Pi + LSTech Solar charger) running on that Raspberry Pi with an X session tunnelled to the laptop you can see in the background. My head hurts now.