Free Digital Signage for the Raspberry Pi

Introduction: Free Digital Signage for the Raspberry Pi

Hi, in this instructables we are going to create our own digital signage system with Screenly.

Previously, in the instructable of "Diy Digital Signage with Xibo", we used windows pc for client screens. But using Windows PC may not be good choice in terms of place and energy efficiency. The most important feature of Screenly is that it runs on Raspberry Pi, a tiny, credit card size computer. It is both user friendly and energy sufficient. From such a small package, Screenly delivers good performance. It can play flawless full 1080p HD video, render web content and do more.

Step 1: "Open Source" Use or Not to Use That Is the Serious Question

When you browse the webpage of Screenly, you can notice the pricing options.

As you see, there is a free option and the other options starts from about 10 dollars per month. But there is a option we can use Screenly for free; OPEN SOURCE EDITION!

So what is the difference between the “Open Source Edition” and the “Screenly Pro” ? In Screenly Pro version, by signing in from the website “”, you can control more than one screen at the same time. You can also manage the timing and the content for screens.

In Open Source Edition, you need a Raspberry Pi for each client screen. If you use 1 or 2 screens, it is satisfactory enough. But if you want to control many screens, controlling them will be very difficult. So, for small businesses, if several screens are enough for you, then open source edition is pretty useful.

Step 2: Getting Started


Before you begin, you need to make sure you have the following:

  • A Raspberry Pi (Model B).
  • An SD Card (>4GB). Class 10 is highly recommended.
  • An HDMI-cable.A network connection (with DHCP).
  • A keyboard (only required for the installation).
  • A monitor/TV that can view full HD (and has HDMI input).

Download the custom image The by far quickest way to get started with Screenly OSE is to download our custom image.

Download the custom image:

Follow SD install guide.

Upon the first boot, Screenly will start automatically and display the splash-screen, a web-page (, and the trailer for Big Buck Bunny. The disk image was created for a 4GB SD-card. It is recommended that you use at least an 8GB card. In order to access the tools required, you first disable the video from the web interface. Once the video has stopped playing, press ctrl+alt+F1. This will allow you to login with user ‘pi’ and the password ‘raspberry’. When logged in, simply type sudo raspi-config and select ‘Expand root file system’. You might also want to change ‘overscan’ if you have a black border around your screen. Please note that SSH is enabled on this OS image. Hence it is important that you change the default password.

Watch the video above to see how your photos, videos or web pages will be published on the raspberry pi by using the interface.

For more detail; My Blog Page.

Be the First to Share


    • Woodworking Contest

      Woodworking Contest
    • Stick It Challenge

      Stick It Challenge
    • Tinkercad to Fusion 360 Challenge

      Tinkercad to Fusion 360 Challenge



    2 years ago

    Screenly OSE (Open Source Edition) has come a LONG way, and I would highly recommend giving it a try. Very easy to install, connect to a network, connect to Screenly, upload content, back-up your image, run it, restore it (on micro-SD cards). Powerful program!!!


    Tip 3 years ago on Step 1

    Screenly Pro no longer offers a free option; you need to have a subscription even for one screen. Try using Yodeck ( instead, it's 100% free for managing 1 screen.


    6 years ago

    Is it possible to use dynamic content with the open source Screenly?

    Examples of dynamic content would be:
    - All images in a folder
    - Media RSS feeds



    Reply 6 years ago

    Hi, I did some research. A solution could be as follows

    1. Screenly support web pages. You can create a dynamic web page and you can add web adress screenly for show the raspberry pi.
    2. You can publish google slides on screenly as a web page.



    Reply 6 years ago

    Thank you for info!

    Once the dynamic page is developed, I don't really see a need for Screenly. Does Screenly add any value if the content is all controlled elsewhere?

    I'll probably develop a dynamic web page and run it off of my home server. The page can be opened at start up using Chrome browser in "kiosk" mode (full screen).


    Reply 6 years ago

    You are right. Maybe you should check Screenly Pro or other digital signage software for example xibo.