Install RPi.GPIO Python Library

The RPi.GPIO Python library allows you to easily configure and read-write the input/output pins on the Pi’s GPIO header within a Python script. Thankfully this library is now including in the standard Raspbian image available from the Foundations Download Page.

If you are using a fresh image you don’t need to install it but I’ve kept the instructions here in case you ever want to try a manually installation.

Method 1 – Install from repository

If the package exists in the Raspbian repository is can be installed using apt-get. First you need to update the available package versions :

sudo apt-get update

Then attempt to install the RPi.GPIO package :

sudo apt-get install rpi.gpio

If it isn’t already installed it will be installed. If it is already installed it will be upgraded if a newer version is available.

Method 2 – Manual Installation

The package is available from http://pypi.python.org/pypi/RPi.GPIO and the current version is 0.5.11 (February 2015). If this version is updated you will need to make appropriate changes to the version number in the commands below.

Step 1 – Download the library

wget https://pypi.python.org/packages/source/R/RPi.GPIO/RPi.GPIO-0.5.11.tar.gz

Step 2 – Extract the archive to a new folder

tar -xvf RPi.GPIO-0.5.11.tar.gz

Step 3 – Browse to the new directory

cd RPi.GPIO-0.5.11

Step 4 – Install the library

sudo python setup.py install

Step 5 – Remove the directory and archive file

cd ~
sudo rm -rf RPi.GPIO-0.*

This will now mean you can use the library within Python.

Example Usage

import RPi.GPIO as GPIO

# to use Raspberry Pi board pin numbers
GPIO.setmode(GPIO.BOARD)

# set up the GPIO channels - one input and one output
GPIO.setup(11, GPIO.IN)
GPIO.setup(12, GPIO.OUT)

# input from pin 11
input_value = GPIO.input(11)

# output to pin 12
GPIO.output(12, GPIO.HIGH)

# the same script as above but using BCM GPIO 00..nn numbers
GPIO.setmode(GPIO.BCM)
GPIO.setup(17, GPIO.IN)
GPIO.setup(18, GPIO.OUT)
input_value = GPIO.input(17)
GPIO.output(18, GPIO.HIGH)
This entry was posted in Python, Tutorials & Help and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.



9 Responses to Install RPi.GPIO Python Library

  1. oluwatoyi says:

    Pls i followed the step above but am still getting no attribute setmode error…how do i correct this pls. thanks

    • Matt says:

      Use the latest version of Raspbian. This library is now installed by default so you do not need to install it manually.

  2. Ganesh says:

    Can you please explain the difference between GPIO.setmode(GPIO.BOARD) and GPIO.setmode(GPIO.BCM)?

    Thanks in advance!!

    • Matt says:

      BOARD allows you to use the physical pin numbers 1-26. BCM requires that you use the GPIO reference numbers. So physical Pin 8 (BOARD 8) is actually GPIO14 (BCM 14). Use the diagrams on my GPIO Header page to see the pin numbers against the GPIO references.

  3. Hello
    I’ve downloaded and tried to setup the library on raspberry b+ but it outputs this error
    fatal error Python.h file not existent
    What is this error?
    Thank you
    Roberto

  4. When I run my script with the GPIO commands, the SETUP command returns a runtime error with “no access to /dev/mem” The import and setmode commands precede the setup command OK. What am I missing?

  5. tanuha says:

    How do i get to see all GPIO python commands and syntaxes?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>