Raspberry pi 4 headless manjaro setup

Hi everyone, I’m trying to setup a raspberry pi with manjaro without a monitor. The problem is that in the first ssh login I always get “permission denied”. I’m using root@… and I’ve tried different passwords: root, manjaro, raspberry and even the no password(just pressing enter). Can someone help me please?
Thanks in advance

By default, the root account can not login via ssh with a password.

Edit /etc/ssh/sshd_config and modify:

#PermitRootLogin prohibit-password
PermitRootLogin yes

Then either reboot or restart sshd.
sudo systemctl restart sshd

I don’t have that directory (using windows to burn the sd card). I don’t have any monitor around so I really need to use the ssh to setup everything…

The images with a DE boots into the Desktop with a GUI to set everything up. If you are going to be headless only then you would need to install the minimal image. With it you will be able to ssh with root@ip-address with no password and you will presented with a TUI to set things up. After reboot then log in with the user and password you created via ssh.


Was this changed at some point?

I set up Manjaro XFCE headless, using the TUI over SSH. I did have to do something to enable headless setup, though.

Unfortunately, I can’t quite remember what. It’s been a couple of years, I think. I swear @Strit talked about this in a set of major release notes a few versions back.

Yes. Was changed in 21.07 releases, in favor of a better looking GUI setup tool.
And SSH was disabled by default for security reasons, unless it’s a headless system. Headless meaning, no GUI.

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Oh! Thanks for the clarification.

While I’m certainly in favor of more security, this seems a bit unfortunate, as it’s much more convenient for me to do headless setup. Though I recognize my use case is probably somewhat unique, and involves the rather unfortunate fact there’s a doorway between my TV and the Pi, so I can’t just run an HDMI cable easily. :stuck_out_tongue:

I think you miss-use the term “headless”. A headless system, is a system that does not need a GUI as it’s only accessed remotely, usually through SSH.

What you mean is running a system monitor-less. And you want a GUI, so you can still use GUI software, like VNC, to control it. I don’t get the idea behind these though, because what’s the point of having a GUI on a computer, without a monitor? Wouldn’t it be better to have a real headless system instead?

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"Wouldn’t it be better to have a real headless system instead?"

Considering that I mostly use my Raspberry Pi as a small Linux server, yes, in general, I agree.

As someone new to Linux, I found having access to a GUI useful for two main reasons:

  1. When I’m learning something new, or even just trying to quickly configure something, having access to GUI configuration tools is easier, quicker, and safer. (e.g.: using a command line partition utility is not what I’d call newbie-friendly, but newbies occasionally will need to partition thing.)
  2. Raspberry Pis make great learning computers. I’ve got Qtile and IceWM installed on mine because I want to learn how to use a tiling window manager and a floating window manager. There are a lot of fun learning opportunities on a low-power Linux device that are enhanced by having a GUI available.

This is a more niche use case, but there are times when you otherwise want a GUI, period, but don’t have an HDMI monitor available, and can’t get one.

Given my experience, I do not recommend Raspberry Pis for remote desktop servers. They don’t have the hardware oomph. The situation might be better with 8GB of RAM vs 4 GB of RAM, but the CPU usage alone from, e.g., nomachine makes it clear that these computers really aren’t meant for this.

Having said all that, my 8GB Pi 4b is getting delivered today, and it’s getting Manjaro Minimal. I feel comfortable now not having a GUI to fall back on. I’ve got a virtualization server that I’ll have access to, soon, and I’ll put AwesomeWM or Qtile on that. :slight_smile:

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This is great to hear. :slight_smile:

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I’m really glad I went through the sometimes painful process of making remote desktop access happen, though. Learning how to do it taught me a lot about how Xorg worked, how Linux worked, and the limitations and strengths of the Pi hardware.

I’m also convinced the Pi is a terrible gateway product. Like, I went from having a 4GB computer the side of a credit card to deciding to buy a used 3U Supermicro server and a rack and–

tl;dr be careful when you buy a Pi or you might wake up one day to realize you turned your office bedroom into a tiny datacenter.

EDIT: @Strit , the fun thing about setting up the new Pi is going to be finding out how good a job I actually did at keeping a written record of all the little configuration tweaks I bumbled through at the beginning to get the server side of things working the way I wanted. :stuck_out_tongue: I’ve come a long way from “how do I make IPv6 work” to “I need more RAM for my docker Wordpress instances behind my reverse proxy.” :stuck_out_tongue:

(I figured out I could install Duplicati via docker last week. Mind blown.)

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