my sd card with NOOBS arrived today but not sure if I’ve misunderdtood something -I thought Raspian was one of the OS but boot up goes straight to RPI desktop I have no option to load any OS - help please1

NOOBS, by default only contains a preinstalled Raspbian. If you hold SHIFT it should allow you to start fresh with a choice of OS to install among a small list, but you need to be connected to the internet for that list to be populated.

… realistically, if you are new to the Pi you are honestly better using Raspbian, or you want a specialist distro, to pick it up straight from upstream as there is a fair chance that anything you could download straight into NOOBS will be outdated.

I am new to Pi thats why I bought a noobs card understanding that raspian was installed too.- in your reply you say to ‘hold it’ sorry does that mean the shift key? i it doe have done that -am connected to the net but it will only open a pi page - sorry if that’s not too clear but am struggling to understand

yes, sorry I typed SHIFT using the wrong formatting so it did not display.

I think the most likely is that your Pi is not connected to your WIFi. Click the ‘Wifi networks’ button (or type w), choose the correct network entry and add the password. As soon as your Pi can probe the remote servers it should offer a list of alternative OSes:

  • Raspbian (full - pre-imaged on SD card)
  • Raspbian Lite
  • LibreElec
  • Lakka
  • OSMC
  • Win 10 IoT

(this list varies over time)

or perhaps I misunderstand what you are after… Raspbian = the ‘RPi Desktop’. They call it ‘Pixel’ these days, but it is and remains Raspbian for all intends and purposes, they just added a lick of paint and gave it a new name, perhaps that is where the confusion lies?

thanks - silly me, because tv’s on the net … I did say I’m new to this - so now I assume I need to download KODI for home theatre etc?

it’s possible to install Kodi over the top of Raspbian, yes. Or you could install LibreElec or OSMC, which is essentially the same thing and should ‘just work’ out of the box*.

*notwithstanding the subtlety that lead to multiple name changes/fork/homegrow distros and any other non-sense that have lead me to be utterly confused to the point I can’t tell you what the most user-friendly way to get a Home Theatre setup is these days.