The ultimate Pi3D FAQ Page - All the questions, all the answers and more 2

The ultimate Pi3D FAQ Page – All the questions, all the answers and more

Pi3D is the favorite Raspberry Pi image viewer of digital picture frame enthusiasts. Its ability to create super smooth crossfading and other blending effects even for 4K displays using the full graphic power of the Raspberry Pi is unparalleled.

In this FAQ, I have compiled, in no particular order, questions that we received, commands you may frequently use, and several tidbits you may want to discover and try for yourself.

If you are missing a particular question, please let me know.

What is the current Pi3D version?

The current version of Pi3D as of December 2020 is 2.41.

How can I find out which version I have installed?

In Terminal enter:
python3 -c 'import pi3d; print(pi3d.__version__)'

How can I update my Pi3D version?

In Terminal enter:
sudo pip3 install pi3d --upgrade

To get the latest example files,, etc. enter
wget && unzip && mv pi3d_demos pi3d_demos_old && mv pi3d_demos-master pi3d_demos && rm

Your previous directory will be renamed to “pi3d_demos_old”. To delete it, see below.

Alternatively, go to the Pi3D GitHub site and download just the files that have been updated.

What is the Pi3D developers’ site?

Does Pi3D run on all Raspberry Pi models?

Pi3D will run on the Raspberry Pi 2, 3 and 4. It also runs on the Raspberry Pi Zero but we found that as soon as you also launch other programs at the same time, the memory limitations of the Pi Zero may cause issues.

Does Pi3D support the Raspberry Pi’s capability to connect to 4K screens?

Absolutely, and there are even great articles on this subject.

Is there a way to change the Pi3D PictureFrame parameters while the program is running?

Pi3D has an in-build remote control functionality based on MQTT messages.
These are the parameters you can change or commands you can send:
– Filter images on date_to and date_from
– Delay between images
– Duration of the transition
– Set shuffle mode on/off
– Pause playback
– Jump to the previous photo
– Set photos subdirectory
– Delete currently shown image
– Quit Pi3D
– Show date, location or filename

Why does Pi3D always show the same images after reboot?

Pi3D has a parameter setting where you specify to show a number of recent images first following a reboot or a reselect (i.e. reshuffle after a filter command has been entered). Set this value (“default”) to zero in to not show any new images first:
parse.add_argument("-n", "--recent_n", default=0, type=int, help="when shuffling the keep n most recent ones to play before the rest")

How does Pi3D know when I add new images?

Pi3D has a folder notify feature whereby it knows when there are changes in the pictures folder. If a change is detected, the playlist is reshuffled. This process is called “reselect” in Pi3D speak. The check is performed every minute.

I want to start Pi3D at boot using crontab but it doesn’t work!

I recommend using systemd for launching scripts and have updated the section on auto starting Pi3D using systemd.

I just updated my Pi3D version. Now I have a “pi3d_demos_old” directory which I cannot delete.

This may be because of your network file permission settings of SAMBA. Connect to the Raspberry Pi via Terminal and enter the following to delete the old directory:
sudo rm -r pi3d_demos_old

My file names are missing some special characters in my language!

Open and add your special characters or alphabet to the last line called CODEPOINTS. If you have characters like ” ‘ ” that have a special meaning in Python, then you have to prefix it with an “\”, so like “\'”.

I will add more items to this FAQ as they come up.

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