Introduction: Raspberry Pi Wall Mounted Google Calendar

Recently I purchased my first home. In the kitchen there was a small TV wall mounted however the TV itself was faulty so I was wondering, what should I do with this wall bracket since I didn’t really want a TV in the kitchen area. Then it dawned on me, instead of using a paper calendar with tiny little boxes to write things in I want my Google calendar on the wall.

To tackle this instructable you should have a general understanding of home networking and computing, some linux experience wouldn’t go astray but is not really necessary. If you run into something you don't understand just remember google search is your friend.

Equipment you will need
  • Home network (wireless if you can't run a cable to the Pi)
  • Raspberry Pi (I've used the model B)
  • SD card 2GB or larger
  • AC Adaptor (I used a USB wall charger for mobile phones check here http://elinux.org/RPi_VerifiedPeripherals#Power_adapters)
  • Micro USB cable
  • USB keyboard and mouse
  • USB wireless adaptor (MAKE SURE IT IS COMPATIBLE OUT OF THE BOX http://elinux.org/RPi_USB_Wi-Fi_Adapters)
  • HDMI cable
  • Wall mountable HDMI capable monitor or any monitor with some kind of HDMI converter
  • Wall bracket for your monitor

*I will not be showing how to wall mount your monitor as the bracket was already on my wall*

Step 1: Raspberry Pi Setup

First we'll setup the Raspberry Pi, to do this you'll need to have Raspbian installed. You can buy a Pi with Raspbian pre-installed or you can use a 2GB or larger SD card that you already have.

I am using an SD card I already have. Plug the SD card into your computer and download the latest Raspbian http://downloads.raspberrypi.org/raspbian_latest

I'm using windows so I unzipped the file and used win32diskimager (http://sourceforge.net/projects/win32diskimager) to write the Raspbian image to the SD card. 

If you are still not sure there is a tutorial here http://elinux.org/RPi_Easy_SD_Card_Setup

Ok now we have Raspbian installed it's time to get our Pi up and running, plug in your SD card, Wi-Fi dongle, USB keyboard, Ethernet cable to your router, HDMI to your monitor and lastly the micro USB cable to the power socket. The first time you boot up you'll end up with the configuration screen.

The changes you need to make are:
  • Expand the filesystem so Raspbian utilises the entire SD card
  • Change your password
  • Enable boot to desktop
  • Set your language, region and time zone
Go into advanced options
  • Change your hostname so you can recognise your Pi on the network.
  • Enable SSH so you can access your PI from a computer on your network.
  • Select finish which should restart your Pi.

Step 2: Keyboard and Updates

If you are in the US or Australia like me you will want to change the keyboard layout to US.
To do this you’ll need to change a file by opening your terminal and entering the command:

sudo nano /etc/default/keyboard

Use the arrow keys to move the cursor and change the gb to us.
Now save the file by pressing ctrl + X and Y to save changes

Now to update your Pi, type the following commands:

sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get upgrade


Press y and hit enter to download updates (this will take ages so go have a coffee/beer).

Step 3: Wireless Setup

If you just want to use Ethernet you can skip this step.

To get your Wi-Fi dongle working you may need to edit the wpa_supplicant.conf file by typing

sudo nano /etc/wpa_supplicant/wpa_supplicant.conf

Then make it look like this:

ctrl_interface=/var/run/wpa_supplicant
network={
    proto=RSN
    scan_ssid=1
    key_mgmt=WPA-PSK
    pairwise=CCMP TKIP
    group=CCMP TKIP
    ssid="your network ID in quote marks"
    psk="your network password in quote marks"
}
update_config=1


To save the file press ctrl + x then Y and enter to save

Restart the Pi by entering:

sudo reboot

You should be able to see if your Wi-Fi dongle has an IP address with the command

sudo ifconfig

You should get something like this

wlan0     Link encap:Ethernet  HWaddr 64:66:b3:06:43:1b
          inet addr:10.0.0.75  Bcast:10.0.0.255  Mask:255.255.255.0
          UP BROADCAST RUNNING MULTICAST  MTU:1500  Metric:1
          RX packets:912384 errors:0 dropped:121692 overruns:0 frame:0
          TX packets:706463 errors:0 dropped:0 overruns:0 carrier:0
          collisions:0 txqueuelen:1000
          RX bytes:694114055 (661.9 MiB)  TX bytes:71017681 (67.7 MiB)

Step 4: Iceweasel

Now we’ll install a browser that actually displays your google calendar properly. Iceweasel is a derivative of Mozilla’s Firefox, to install enter the following command.

sudo apt-get install iceweasel

Type y and hit enter to complete download and install.

Once complete Iceweasel should pop up in the menu under internet, open it so we can start configuring. First open up your google calendar and save the password in case you get logged out at some point. Now set google calendar as your start page.

Now we need to disable restore pages after crash in case of power outage google calendar might not show up by itself which is annoying if you have no KB/Mouse connected.

Type in about:config in the address field and hit enter.
Now find the "browser.sessionstore.resume_from_crash" line and double click to change it to false.

Hit the F11 key to go fullscreen and hover your mouse at the very top of the screen then close the browser once the x appears in the top right corner.
Re-open the browser and it should open to your google calendar and still be full screen.

We also want Iceweasel to start automatically so we’ll need to change the autostart options.

sudo nano /etc/xdg/lxsession/LXDE/autostart

add @iceweasel to the list
now press ctrl+x the Y and enter to save the changes

Step 5: Cursor and Powersave

The next step is to get rid of that pesky mouse cursor and stop the screen from going to powersave/sleep mode.
First we’ll install Unclutter to get rid of the cursor when it’s not in use.

sudo apt-get install unclutter

Now we need to edit the /etc/lightdm/lightdm.conf file to prevent powersave/sleep mode

sudo nano /etc/lightdm/lightdm.conf

Move down to: [SeatDefaults]
Change this line:
#xserver-command=X

to this:
xserver-command=X -s 0 –dpms

now press ctrl+x then Y and enter to save the changes

Step 6: You're Done :D

Now it’s all setup you can plug it in to your wall mounted monitor and turn it all on.
If something stops working just unplug the pi then plug it back in, hey presto she starts again.
Unfortunately my spare HDMI monitor does not have the screw holes for a wall mount bracket.
I have decided to use an old VGA monitor I had laying around, just have to wait for the HDMI to VGA converter.

Comments

author
downeysyndrome made it!(author)2013-12-14

This would be awesome if done with a touch screen, not that it already isn't!

author
Muniosi made it!(author)2013-12-14

Agreed! It would be so much easier to add events! I wonder, how easy is it to get a touch screen to work with Raspberry Pi?

author
Kasm279 made it!(author)2013-12-18

A lot of ELO's touchmonitors have open source drivers, I assume one could work them into working with the pi's ARM CPU.

author
TylerF64 made it!(author)2017-04-08

this is 3 years old, but FYI ELO monitors work really well with RPi, I didn't even need to download anything, it just worked.

author
mirrors1 made it!(author)2015-12-21

Oh, can't fault me for necroing a thread about serial connected touch monitors. Work had a couple of Planar 15" touch monitors not being used.

http://www.elotouch.com/files/install/Elo-Linux-US...
Have installed via pci card to a fedora desktop with success. Will be looking into but presuming it will work, when I get to that step. I only just picked up a Pi B second hand, still naive and taking my time. I also picked up a USB to serial adapter on some delorme gps boxes I picked up.
Will update on success if there's any input. Any moral support welcome.

author
tecknowolf made it!(author)2016-04-04

Mirrors1, did you finish the touch screen? How did it go?

author
tecknowolf made it!(author)2016-04-01

Mirrors1, how goes the project? I am gathering the parts to do the same thing. Would a Pi Zero also work?

author
Piney made it!(author)2013-12-14

Definitely doable but pricey and I didn't see if any screens had mounting holes.
http://www.ibm.com/developerworks/linux/library/l-playscreen/
sudo apt-get install matchbox-keyboard

author
AlderTA made it!(author)2017-01-11

Speaking of cost. How much does this impact on your energy bills?

Or do you only turn the monitor on as and when you need/look at the calendar?

author
NakanoYamato made it!(author)2013-12-15

You could use a touch screen adapter.
I don't know where you can buy outside my country (Brazil), but i found this: http://www.magictouch.com/addon.html

Maybe you can get the idea.

author
Piney made it!(author)2013-12-14

I agree a touch screen would be awesome. You can just add events with your phone, tablet or computer and they pop up on the screen after several minutes.

author
posborne1 made it!(author)2013-12-14

Will the same thing work with iCloud calendars, or will iCloud require you to keep entering your password again any time the computer restarts?

author
mitchell931993 made it!(author)2013-12-30

Personally, i have my iphone calendar automatically synced up to my Google calendar so that by default any new events i make on my phone are synced there. Consider that.

author
NakanoYamato made it!(author)2013-12-15

Usually, iCloud does not require my password when i restart my PC.
Just mark "remember me" and you're good to go.

But, sometimes, it does require my password while i'm using it.

And i saw somewhere someone syncing iCloud with GCalendar. Can't remember where.

author
Piney made it!(author)2013-12-14

I don't have icloud, it should behave exactly as it does of your computer.

author
ChristopherR144 made it!(author)2017-05-17

help for some reason I cant get it to display the calendar correctly. It returns as error loading google calendar.

author
ryan+smith2 made it!(author)2017-04-06

Mine would stay open for a week then Debian would start going back to sleep.

I added these lines to the autostart and it fixed it

sudo nano ~/.config/lxsession/LXDE-pi/autostart

@xset s noblank

@xset s off

@xset -dpms

*Then save*

control X

y enter

author
jackp77 made it!(author)2016-07-31

made it for my wife, i added a touch screen, speakers for audio alarm (because she was missing appointments, not checking a normal calendar) and a keypad if she prefered to use that for typing, i used a 10" touch screen because of space

20160731_163818.jpg20160731_162840.jpg20160731_152332.jpg
author
CoolJerkR made it!(author)2016-12-30

Do you think this would work with maybe a 20"-30" touchscreen display? If so any particular brand more compatible than the other?

author
Palle+DueL made it!(author)2017-04-06

I bought an Asus VT207N. It's 19.5" and touch worked pretty much out of the box.

author
jackp77 made it!(author)2016-12-30

I cant see why it would not work with a 20 - 30" touchscreen, the main thing is to make sure it is compatible with your raspberry pi this may help http://raspberrypi.stackexchange.com/questions/9339/larger-touch-screen-displays the biggest thing i can say is to do the research first, I went the path of one labeled for raspberry use and the largest i found was 10.1

author
GreenMangone made it!(author)2017-01-26

please tell me you have a detailed breakdown of all that you did!!?!
that is exactly what I'm wanting to do! Cal, weather, alarm sounds, touch interface. love it! I'm pretty new to the Pi scene, only just build my first project, a retropie in my old NES case.

author
jackp77 made it!(author)2017-01-26

note I should have used some shielding on the wiring i get some feedback out of the speakers ever now and then

author
jackp77 made it!(author)2017-01-26

Well all I did was followed the instructions on here for the most part. The wooden frame I based it on the the size of the screen size plus the power supply I had bought I got a AC 110V/220V to DC 12V/5V 3A LCD Dual Voltage Power Supply Module Board Universal Power Supply (would have linked it but the one i bought is no longer available)
parts list
screen https://goo.gl/Oifpxp
sound amp board https://goo.gl/0PjfbK
speakers https://goo.gl/29WG0Q
(optional) keypad https://goo.gl/2OPqdz
proto breadboard( I choice this due to less jumper wires involved) https://goo.gl/RfKB4M
hdmi cable i got a 10"
power cable https://goo.gl/7FvjLg
90 degree hdmi connectors https://goo.gl/QyhPW9
salvaged audio jack
male barrel plug https://goo.gl/HT5JSd
wire (i used 20 gauge but i wished i used 28 gauge(28 is linked) https://goo.gl/FZ29Kk
screw terminal mounts https://goo.gl/xTocyV
salvaged 4 port usb hub
flux core solder
tools: saw, router (I used box joints on the frame), screwdriver, wire cutter/ stripper; soldering iron, hot melt glue gun (I glued some part in versus screwing it in one example was the back plastic for the screen for I could still remove the screen from the front for access)
for the operating system i ended up contacting the screen manufacture for iso that was preconfigured for the touchscreen also a note anything I ordered from aliexpress I did not expect the parts to show up quickly with aliexpress you get it at a good price but shipping is slow compared to amazon but I was not in a hurry when I built this. hope this helped

author
ryan+smith2 made it!(author)2017-04-02

The file location changed for autostart

sudo nano ~/.config/lxsession/LXDE-pi/autostart

add @iceweasel or i used @firefox-esr

author
J.+MichaelL made it!(author)2016-10-16

Anyone else having issues with the google calendar iframe displaying on the raspberry pi?

author
J.+MichaelL made it!(author)2016-10-16

Has anyone else had an issue where the Google Calendar iframe doesn't display on the Raspberry Pi? If I view it on my laptop I see it, and I see my weather iframe, just not the google calendar.

author
yenkhushi made it!(author)2016-10-01

Made very good project

2016, 14:35.jpg
author
antrismont made it!(author)2016-09-21

Thanks for the cool project.

I got it to all to work, except opening in full screen mode. I pressed F11 with the browser open to get it to full screen, then I closed it, then went to reopen it and the browser did not open in full screen... Can somebody please assist?

Thanks

author
dannyk6 made it!(author)2016-09-20

This is great! You may want to check out DAKboard (http://dakboard.com). It has calendar integrations and adds photos, news and weather as well! Works great with the Raspberry Pi!

author
TonyO51165 made it!(author)2016-08-31

This is really cool, can't wait to build this. One question though, is there a way to add a music app to this? I would like to also use it for a media center and connect it via bluetooth to the home entertainment center. Thanks in advance.....

author
Hamster8471 made it!(author)2016-08-03

made it with a 15.4' screen and a control module

image.jpg
author
lacrh made it!(author)2016-07-04

I Made It!! Everything worked out perfectly, except having it load automatically. I still have to go in and open up ice weasel->firefox esr. Kind of a bummer, but oh well.

IMG_1846.JPGIMG_1848.JPG
author
natedj made it!(author)2016-08-02

sudo nano ~/.config/lxsession/LXDE-pi/autostart

add @iceweasel

hit Ctrl x

hit y

hit enter

reboot

author
PiGuy9614 made it!(author)2016-08-02

Thanks! I had the same problem!

author
white_ruin made it!(author)2016-06-30

As a family we aren't that well organised, this helps alot !

author
MrLu made it!(author)2016-06-20

i've been wanting something like this for a long time!!

author
WalterH28 made it!(author)2016-06-10

http://walterhutskyjr.com/raspberry-pi-3-google-wa...

I put together detailed instructions to display both a Google Calendar and the weather on the same page using the Chromium web browser. I hope this information helps for those of you who might be interested.

Pi - Front.jpg
author
CamR3 made it!(author)2016-04-28

This is awesome! But does the Google calendar sync with your phone appointments and refresh automatically? Let's say I had my wife's calendar and my own calendar linked, would we be able to see each other's appointments as soon as they are created on whatever device they use?

author
nickw100 made it!(author)2016-06-05

Mine does

author
LauraQ7 made it!(author)2016-06-03

would this work using noobs?

author
JoshW85 made it!(author)2016-05-28

Im having a problem with Iceweasel and the calendar, it shows an outlined box but nothing in it. When I open the webpage up in a different browser it works, but I want it to work in iceweasel, PLEASE HELP!

author
carltonwb made it!(author)2016-04-19

I have built this using chromium and pointing to a custom html page that includes a clock module, google calendar, and weather for the two places I live. Each section is about 400px height and 350px width.

My only problem is the Google calendar. After figuring out how to get it to display properly (making the calendar public) I am still having problems.

If I place my html file on a live website and call up the file url it displays perfectly ie if I have 4 meetings in one day it will display one and then say +3, allowing the calendar to display the entire month properly. But if I display it on the PI it shows all 4 meetings causing the calendar to only display 3 weeks before it is out of frame.

Anyone have ideas on how to correct this.

Thanks

author
redcarpet made it!(author)2016-05-13

There is a facility in Google Calendar to display LESS days in a month-style view, so, for example, you can display say 20 days instead of the full month. You do this by clicking and holding on the day number on the mini-calendar on the left of the screen and striping across the mini-calendar to the end day number that you want to see. I hope I have explained it for you to understand it is difficult to explain. With the amount of days now reduced on the display you may be able to see more events during each day. Unfortunately I have to redo this every time I load google calendar on startup but this is a small negative for a big facility.

Thanx PJ

author
CamR3 made it!(author)2016-05-03

this is awesome! I have everything right I believe, however, iceweasel still will not start on the startup automatically. I have the newest model B pi. Anything I'm missing?

author
rklemetsdal made it!(author)2016-04-27

Love it! gonna have to try this!

author
bgfdeswderftg made it!(author)2016-04-20

are you able to navigate the calender with the arrow keys and enter/return? if so would you be able to mount a numeric keypad like this: http://www.amazon.com/Numeric-Keypad-Black-Dell-laptop/dp/B004FRJULY/

next to the screen?

author
bgfdeswderftg made it!(author)2016-04-20

for those of you wanting to add events on the go, something like this may be better:

www.amazon.com/Rii-Wireless-Keyboard-mini-X1/dp/B00I5SW8MC/

author
guitarans made it!(author)2016-03-28

<Thanks> me and my wifes´ life got a little better..!!! and easy´r

i would like to mention to other new builders of this project that the

ICEWEASEL auto start in Rasbian Jessie, will only work if you ad

@iceweasel

in /home/pi/.config/lxsession/LXDE-pi/autostart

Thanks again.

author
ScottK60 made it!(author)2016-03-18

would you be interested in selling one? Love the concept, but I'm not a good at the craft part. Would love to discuss if you are interested