Etcher: prepare your SD cards on Windows, Linux and macOS

Etcher is an Open Source and free software that allows to write images disk on USB key or SD card. Etcher is a cross-platform software available for Windows (32 and 64 bits), Linux (32 and 64 bits) and Mac OS X (beyond version 10.9).

You can download free etcher on the site of (link to the download page). The source code is available on github.

Use etcher to preprare Raspbian SD Card

The use is very simple and will be perfect for beginners who discover the Raspberry Pi and who are looking for a simple solution by preparing their SD card. Etcher will be very convenient to install a distribution that is not supported by Noobs like the Lite version of Raspbian (link to distributions).

Etcher has been designed to simplify the task of users and to avoid using the command line (especially on Linux and macOS X).

First, first select the image you want to “burn”.

etcher-raspberry pi sd card flash prepare

If an SD card is already present on your computer, select it by default. All you have to do is press Flash! To start the operation.

Once the operation is complete, it is possible to continue to burn a new medium with the current image (or to choose a new one), which can be useful if you have to prepare several identical cards (practice for professors who have A whole class of Raspberry Pi to prepare). Etcher being able to detector the insertion of an SD card (or the connection of a USB key) and of the destination automatically, it becomes almost a pleasure to “burn to the chain”. etcher

Etcher supports IMG and ISO images but also ZIP files. No need to unpack the Raspbian archive to prepare your SD card.

Before preparing your SD card (or USB stick), however, it is better to format it. For Windows and Mac OS X, I advise you to use the official formatting software developed by the SD Association available here.

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