Author Topic: How to Disable HDMI on the Raspberry Pi  (Read 124 times)

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Offline WB3IHY

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How to Disable HDMI on the Raspberry Pi
« on: December 12, 2019, 03:10:16 pm »
For those of us who use Pi-Star on the Raspberry Pi, the HDMI port on the Pi board is basically of no use to us.  Yet on some models/configurations, the port remains active, drawing a little bit of power and generating a little bit of heat, even with nothing connected to it!

Luckily, there is a way to disable that port if you want (and how to reactivate it later on if you need it).

First, determine see of your version of Pi-Star has the code installed that you need.  SSH into Pi-Star and enter

which tvservice

If you get a response like "/usr/bin/tvservice" then you've got the code.  If you get nothing in response, then you need to install it by putting your Pi into RW mode with


And then install the code with the command

sudo apt-get install libraspberrypi-bin

Now you can control the HDMI port and see what state it's in. The commands are:

What's the current status of the port?
tvservice -s

Turn the port off:
tvservice -o (that's a lowercase "o," not a zero!)

Turn the port on:
tvservice -p

Note that some editions of Pi-Star version 4 automatically "ship" with the port disabled.  So, if you find that it's off when you first test it...congratulations, there's nothing more to do.

If you do find that it's on and want to make sure it stays off after a reboot, you'll need to edit a file to make it "stick." So, enter the following command:

sudo nano /etc/rc.local

And add the following code to the end of the file:

# Turn off HDMI
/usr/bin/tvservice -o

Write the file, exit Nano, and voila: Enjoy a little bit of power saving and slightly less heat from your Pi.


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