Anthias (Screenly)


Anthias (AKA Screenly) is a simple, open-source digital signage system that runs well on a raspberry pi. When plugged into a monitor, it displays images, video or web sites in slideshow fashion. It’s managed directly though a web interface on the device and there are fleet and support options.


Use the Raspberry Pi Imager to create a 64 bit Raspberry Pi OS Lite image. Select the gear icon at the bottom right to enable SSH, create a user, configure networking, and set the locale. Use SSH continue configuration.

setterm --cursor on

sudo raspi-config nonint do_change_locale en_US-UTF-8
sudo raspi-config nonint do_configure_keyboard us
sudo raspi-config nonint do_wifi_country US
sudo timedatectl set-timezone America/New_York
sudo raspi-config nonint do_hostname SOMENAME

sudo apt update;sudo apt upgrade -y

sudo reboot

Enable automatic updates and enable reboots

sudo apt -y install unattended-upgrades

# Remove the leading slashes from some of the updates and set to true
sudo sed -i 's/^\/\/\(.*origin=Debian.*\)/  \1/' /etc/apt/apt.conf.d/50unattended-upgrades
sudo sed -i 's/^\/\/\(Unattended-Upgrade::Remove-Unused-Kernel-Packages \).*/  \1"true";/' /etc/apt/apt.conf.d/50unattended-upgrades
sudo sed -i 's/^\/\/\(Unattended-Upgrade::Remove-New-Unused-Dependencies \).*/  \1"true";/' /etc/apt/apt.conf.d/50unattended-upgrades
sudo sed -i 's/^\/\/\(Unattended-Upgrade::Remove-Unused-Dependencies \).*/  \1"true";/' /etc/apt/apt.conf.d/50unattended-upgrades
sudo sed -i 's/^\/\/\(Unattended-Upgrade::Automatic-Reboot \).*/  \1"true";/' /etc/apt/apt.conf.d/50unattended-upgrades


bash <(curl -sL


Adding Content

Navigate to the Web UI at the IP address of the device. You may wish to enter the settings and add authentication and change the device name.

You may add common graphic types, mp4, web and youtube links. It will let you know if it fails to download the youtube video. Some heavy web pages fail to render correctly, but most do.

Images must be sized to for the screen. In most cases this is 1080. Larger images are scaled down, but smaller images are not scaled up. For example, PowerPoint is often used to create slides, but it exports at 720. On a 1080 screen creates black boarders. You can change the resolution on the Pi with rasp-config or add a registry key to Windows to change PowerPoint’s output size.

Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00


Schedule the Screen

You may want to turn off the display during non-operation hours. The vcgencmd command can turn off video output and some displays will choose to enter power-savings mode.

sudo tee /etc/cron.d/screenpower << EOF

# m h dom mon dow usercommand

# Turn monitor on
30 7  * * 1-5 root /usr/bin/vcgencmd display_power 1

# Turn monitor off
30 19 * * 1-5 root /usr/bin/vcgencmd display_power 0

# Weekly Reboot just in case
0 7 * * 1 root /sbin/shutdown -r +10 "Monday reboot in 10 minutes"


YouTube Fail

You may find you must download the video manually and then upload to Anthias. Use the utility yt-dlp to list and then download the mp4 version of a video

yt-dlp --list-formats
yt-dlp --format 22

WiFi Disconnect

Some variants of the OS do not automatically reconnect to WiFi should the Access Point reboot. You way want to add the following script that checks for that and reconnects.

sudo touch /usr/local/bin/checkwifi
sudo chmod +x /usr/local/bin/checkwifi
sudo vim.tiny /usr/local/bin/checkwifi

# Exit if eth0 is connected
grep -q 1 /sys/class/net/eth0/carrier && exit

# Exit if WiFi isn't configured
grep -q ssid /etc/wpa_supplicant/wpa_supplicant.conf || exit 

GATEWAY=$(ip route list | grep default | awk '{print $3}')

ping -c4 $GATEWAY > /dev/null

if [ $? != 0 ]
  logger checkwifi fail `date`
  service wpa_supplicant restart
  service dhcpcd restart
sudo tee /etc/cron.d/checkwifi << EOF
# Check WiFi connection
*/5 * * * * /usr/bin/sudo -H /usr/local/bin/checkwifi >> /dev/null 2>&1"

Hidden WiFi

If you didn’t set up WiFi during imaging, you can use raspi-config after boot, but you must add a line if it’s a hidden network, and reboot.

sudo sed -i '/psk/a\        scan_ssid=1' /etc/wpa_supplicant/wpa_supplicant.conf

Wrong IP on Splash Screen

This seems to be captured during installation and then resides statically in this file. Adjust as needed.

vi ./screenly/docker-compose.yml

Last modified June 30, 2023: Misc changes (c57a90f)