Connect to armbian (orange pi) without the IP

There are many reasons why you may not have a static IP configured for your orange pi/armbian installation.  Maybe it needs to be portable to different networks or your network doesn’t allow static IPs.  Whatever the reason it is a pain to find the IP, often you have to use a scanning tool like nmap.

We’re going to install a popular Linux implementation of zerconf.  These steps should work on any flavour of Ubuntu but I specifically used armbian on an orange pi zero.  It’s simple to install, just follow these steps:

Change your hostname from default

While not mandatory, it’s generally a good idea.  If another device running raspbian for example pops onto the network you’ll have two devices with the same hostname!  Edit /etc/hostname using the vim text editor (if you don’t know vim install it then type “vimtutor”):

sudo vim /etc/hostname

In that file you’ll see the current hostname, simply remove it and replace it with the new one.  Now edit the hosts file.  Make sure you replace every instance of the old hostname with the new one to make sure it resolves properly

sudo vim /etc/hosts

Now reboot your system to apply all of the changes.

sudo reboot

Install the Avahi Daemon

Something to note is most full versions of Ubuntu come with avahi-daemon installed out of the box, so give hostname.local a try first.  Simply type the following command and it’ll install avahi-daemon.  You shouldn’t need to restart but if it doesn’t work right away you know what to do.

sudo apt-get install avahi-daemon

In the case of my orange pi, after setting the hostname to “homeassistant” and installing the avahi daemon, it’s now accessible via homeassistant.local – much more convenient than an IP.

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