Setup on a Raspberry Pi

Setup on a Raspberry Pi

We recommend to initially run your bot in a local environment on your laptop before you run the translator on a Raspberry Pi. The local setup allows you to get familiar with the setup and the settings.

The following description allows a headless configuration. Only a network connection is required. This description is explicitly for running the bot on a Raspberry Pi 4, but the setup should be similar for earlier version.

Recommendation: run it locally first before putting the code on pi. Easier to ensure that .env variables are setup correctly.

Step 1 - Write to SD card

Download the minimal image of Raspbian ( This setup is based on Raspbian Buster Lite, July 2019.

Use balenaEtcher( to write the image on your SD card.

For more Information: See

Step 2 - Enable SSH

Enable SSH by placing a file named “ssh” (without any extension) onto the boot partition of the SD card.

Step 3 - Start and Login

  • Pop your prepared SD card, power and a network cable into the Pi.
  • Find your Pi’s IP Address. Check your Router’s DHCP allocation table or use a mobile app like Fing ( to find the IP of Pi.
  • Install WinSCP and Putty on your Laptop.
  • Start Putty and login into your Pi. Username: pi, PW: raspberry. Change your password with ‘passwd’.

Step 4 - Initial Setup

  • Type raspi-config and change your locales
  • Update the package lists from repositories: sudo apt-get update
  • Update your repositories: sudo apt-get dist-upgrade

Step 5 - Install node and npm

The fastes way to install the current node and npm versions ( was to follow the description from nodesource (

  • Get the source: curl -sL | sudo -E bash -
  • Install: sudo apt-get install -y nodejs
  • Check version: node -v and npm -v

Step 6 - Get the code

It is recommend to install git and pull from your fork or main:

  • Install git: sudo apt-get install git
  • Create the folder for the source: mkdir Rita
  • Clone the repository: git clone
  • Checkout the branch you need: git checkout --track origin/1.1.7

Alternative: move the source code with WinSCP from your local environment to the Pi.

Step 7 - Install the db

Install sqlite3 with sudo apt-get install sqlite3.

Create an empty database file (sqlite3 database.db)and call .tables)

Step 8 - Copy your .env

Use WinSCP to copy your .env file from your local environment to the Pi.

Step 9 - Run the code

  • Install gulp is installed: sudo npm install -g gulp (not sure if still necessary)
  • Make sure you are in the RITA folder
  • Get and install all packages of RITA: npm install
  • Build the code: npm run-script build
  • Start the bot: npm run-script start

Step 10 - Autostart

There are different ways to make the bot initialize at startup. The following description is based on init.d and update-rc.d:

  • Create a init.d script: Edit the script template in .pi/translate_bot if necessary and copy it to the folder /etc/init.d/ with sudo mv .pi/translate_bot /etc/init.d/.
  • Make the file executable: sudo chmod +x /etc/init.d/translate_bot
  • Update the system script links: sudo update-rc.d translate_bot defaults
  • Now, you can interact with the bot service with commands sudo service translate_bot start, sudo service translate_bot status and sudo service translate_bot stop
  • The logging will be in /var/log/translate_bot.err and /var/log/translate_bot.log
  • Reboot and hope everything is running smooth: sudo reboot
  • Enjoy (or return to step 4 in Setting up a New Bot if you haven’t done yet)

Step 11 - Updating the Bot

Update method via command line, minimal GUI interface needed

  • Step 1: Naviagte to the directory where you ran git clone for your fork of the RitaBot repository.
    • cd RitaBot
    • git status should return the following On branch master Your branch is up to date with 'origin/master'. nothing to commit, working tree clean if so preoceed to Step 2
    • if how ever you get the following messages you will need to resolve them before proceeding further.
      • Changes not staged for commit: you have the following options
        • Do this if you have changes you deam nesiciary to add only
          • (use “git add <modified file>” to update what will be committed) followed by git commit -m <commit message> and lastly git push master
          • If you are adding you own commits I’m assuming you know how to deal with potential merge conflicts and can appropriatly resolve them accordingly before rebase step.
        • The other and HIGHLY prefered method is to simply checkout the modifed files to avoid merge conflicts (use “git checkout -- . to discard changes all changes working directory)
          • Once you think you’ve gotten the branch back to working tree clean state by running git status one more time. You are ready to move on to Step 2
  • Step 2: Now just run the following commands in order
    • git remote add upstream
    • git fetch upstream
    • git checkout master
    • git rebase upstream/master
    • git push -f origin master (Note you will only have to use the -f flag for the first psuh)
      • enter your username and password from your Github account that’s linked to the bot to complete the git push
    • Restart your stopped Web Dyno on the Heroku website.
    • Go to Depploy page on your Heroku app overview, scroll to the bottom and click Deploy Branch at the bottom in the Manual Deploy section.
  • Congrats update to new bot is complete. You can verify the update by checking the version of the bot after it finishes rebooting with the trusty !tr stats command