Raspberry Pi is a very versatile single board SBC (Single Board Computer) microdenator. In the maker world, Raspberry Pi is used for all kinds of Internet projects from IoT (Internet Of Things) to playing retro games or learning programming basics. The truth is that it is also a very useful tool for teleworking.
Since Covid-19 came into our lives and the global pandemic broke out in 2020, many companies have made the decision to have their employees work from home without going to the office for the first months of confinement. Some companies have lengthened this situation over time and others have gradually reincorporated their staff to the offices. The coronavirus has marked a before and after in teleworking, with many people who have left the office behind to telework 100% of their working day. In addition, to spend our leisure time playing retro games with Raspberry Pi it can also be very useful to work remotely.
If you want to use the Raspberry Pi as a desktop PC, in addition to having a Raspberry, you will also need external peripherals such as a monitor, mouse and keyboard. Raspberry Pi has an official desktop kit, so it depends if you already have any of these materials, it will be worth it or not. If we want to use the Raspberry Pi as a desktop PC, it is important to get an SD card of the highest possible capacity, since surely you start to store all kinds of files in your daily work day and running out of space could be a problem.
The Raspberry Pi 4 has two micro HDMI outputs that make it possible to use it with a dual monitor setup, a very positive aspect for productivity. In addition, its GPU allows it to handle 4K resolution. The 4GB version of RAM may be more than enough for work, but the 8GB version will work more smoothly with all kinds of applications and programs that you use in your workday. Depending on the requirement of your job, a higher or lower option will be better.
However, keep in mind that using a Raspberry Pi as a desktop PC can have certain limitations. Surely you cannot 100% replace a Raspberry with a desktop PC, as it may be limited by development and performance elements. It is possible to use the Raspberry Pi as a desktop PC for Internet browsing or office tasks, but if in your day to day you have the need to edit video and use design programs, it will not be enough.
Although business communication platforms such as Slack or Microsoft Teams are useful, face-to-face conversations are still a critical component for teams to integrate and get work done effectively. With Raspberry Pi we can also have video conferences with our boss and coworkers.
For a video conference to work with Raspberry Pi we need a compatible microphone and camera. Setting up the audio output is pretty straightforward – just plug a pair of headphones into the audio jack. If we do not get sound through the audio connector or the built-in speakers in the monitor that we are using, it is best to configure the audio output manually. The Raspberry Pi does not have a native audio input, so the best solution is to use a USB microphone, unless the camera we use already has a microphone, which is usually the most common. Once we have everything described above, we can start making video calls with Skype and Zoom among others. If, for example, we want to make a videoconference with Zoom, it is enough to do it directly from the browser.
Create your own home server
Depending on what you do, your day to day may make you store quite a few files. There are in certain cases that storing your files in the cloud becomes quite a convenient option. While it is true that there are cloud storage services such as Google Drive or Dropbox that offer free options, creating your own home server with a Raspberry Pi is relatively simple.
On the web there are different guides, videos or tutorials to turn your Raspberry Pi into a NAS (Network Attached Storage) server, a storage system that allows us to create our own cloud at home. For this you can use hard drives with a SATA interface, SSD, external hard drives with a USB connection or the internal storage of the Raspberry Pi, everything will depend on your needs.
With a Raspberry Pi we can install a VPN (Virtual Private Network) server with a simple script that will automate the entire process and allow us to access everything we have in the office from home. How the Raspberry Pi communicates with your office VPN will depend on the type of VPN used by the company you work for. The best thing you can do if you want direct access to your Raspberry Pi is to get in touch with the department in charge of these matters at the company where you work.
If instead you work for yourself, you can create your own virtual private network. With a VPN server with Raspberry Pi you can connect to your home network when you are away from home. That is, although you usually work at home, it may be the case that there are days that you have to work while traveling or elsewhere. Unlike a traditional VPN, a Raspberry Pi VPN server will allow you to easily access your home network, rather than a VPN service that allows you to choose from any number of remote servers to create a connecting tunnel.