3 Easy Ways To Change Your Raspberry Pi’s Hostname

Hostnames are used to differentiate between different devices on the same local network. Therefore, personalizing your hostname will make it much easier to discern from other devices. 

Luckily, it’s incredibly simple to change the hostname of your Raspberry Pi. There are three quick and easy methods that you can use to achieve this goal.

How To Change Your Raspberry Pi's Hostname [Beginner's Guide]

This step-by-step guide will lead you through the entire process so that you can easily update the hostname of your Raspberry Pi.

What Is A Hostname?

A hostname refers to the name that a computer device will have on a network. This is a great way of labeling your device so that it’s more recognizable and personalized.

It’s important to know your hostname so that you can identify it on a network. 

How To Change Your Raspberry Pi’s Hostname

If you want to change the hostname of your Raspberry Pi, all you have to do is:

Method #1

If you are using a desktop device with your Raspberry Pi, you can replace the hostname by using these steps:

  1. On a desktop device, open the Raspberry Pi Configuration function. You can do this by clicking the icon. 
  2. You will then be presented with a menu of options. From there, locate the “Preferences” button. Hover over this menu so that you are met by another menu. Select “Raspberry Pi Configuration”.
  3. Click on the “Systems” tab. From there, you will find your current hostname in a textbox. 
  4. Simply click on this textbox and delete the current hostname. Type your new name into the textbox. Once you’re satisfied with it, press the “Ok” button at the bottom of this panel. If you’ve changed your mind and want to keep your previous hostname, click “Cancel”.
  5. Once you leave this dialogue box, you will be prompted to restart your device. Click “Yes” to accept this reboot. Once you’ve done this, your new hostname will be updated. 

Method #2

If you aren’t using a desktop device, you can still easily alter your existing hostname by using this simple strategy:

  1. Type “sudo raspi-config” to open raspi-config, the Raspberry Pi Configuration feature. 
  2. You will then see a variety of different options. From this list, choose “Network Options”. 
  3. Now you will see a whole host of options related to your network. From these options, enter “Hostname”. When you do this, you may get a warning informing you not to use any special characters. If this occurs, simply tap “Enter”. 
  4. You will then be allowed to enter your brand-new hostname. Make sure that you type the letters in correctly. Once you’re happy with this new hostname, click “Ok”.
  5. Next, click “Finish” if you’re satisfied with the changes. 
  6. You will then be presented with the option to reboot your device. It’s recommended that you choose “Yes”, as this will confirm the change. If you select “No”, then you must manually reboot your Raspberry Pi if you want the hostname to be updated. 
  7. After you’ve completed these steps, your hostname will be changed.

Method #3

Similar to the previous method, there is a slightly different way that you can adjust the hostname. It uses the same principles as the former method. To do this, simply:

  1. Go to /etc/hosts file. Enter this command: sudo raspi-config. 
  2. You will then be taken to the Raspberry Pi configuration tool. From this list, select the “Network Options” feature. To reach this function, use your arrow keys and press “Enter”.
  3. From the list, choose “N1 Hostname”. Tap “Enter” to select this tool.
  4. You will then receive information regarding your hostname. For instance, you will be forbidden from entering a blank space in your hostname. Tap on “Enter” once you have read this message. 
  5. Now, you can change your hostname. After providing your new hostname, press “Enter” and click “Ok”. Finally, reboot your Raspberry Pi to confirm your changes.

How Can You Check Your Raspberry Pi’s Hostname?

Before you change the hostname of your Raspberry Pi, it’s best to check what the current hostname is.

This way, you can determine whether or not it needs to be changed. Fortunately, it can be super straightforward to check your current hostname by:

  1. On your Raspberry Pi, enter the following command: $ hostname. 
  2. You can then see the hostname of your device, which you can alter by following the steps above. 
  3. If this doesn’t work, there are a few different commands that you can try. For instance, you can run the following command: $ hostnamectl status. 

Frequently Asked Questions:

How Should I Choose A Hostname?

Your hostname can be pretty much whatever you want it to be, as there are very few limitations. Preferably, your hostname should be unique, so that it can be distinguished from others.

The hostname doesn’t need to be globally unique, as this may be impossible. You may also not be allowed to use certain characters, such as a blank space.

Aside from this, your hostname can be practically anything you want, though you should make it memorable and distinctive for you. 

Is A Hostname The Same As An IP Address?

No, they are not the same. Though hostnames and IP addresses are both ways of identifying a device on a network, they are two different identifiers.

As a result, you can have a different IP address and hostname. Furthermore, your hostname can include letters while the IP address will merely be numbered. 

What Is The Default Hostname Of A Raspberry Pi?

By default, a Raspberry Pi will have the hostname “raspberrypi”. So if you have not yet changed your hostname, this should be the name that you find.

This can be somewhat confusing, especially if you are a beginner Raspberry Pi user. Luckily, you can easily make things less confusing by altering the hostname of your Raspberry Pi.

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Final Thoughts

Hostnames are a wonderful way of distinguishing your Raspberry Pi from another device. By personalizing this hostname, you can make it much more recognizable.

Luckily, it is super simple to change a hostname so that you can better tell it apart from another Raspberry Pi.

Erik D

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