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Software & Distributions:
Software - an overview.
Distributions - operating systems and development environments for the Raspberry Pi.
Kernel Compilation - advice on compiling a kernel.
Performance - measures of the Raspberry Pi's performance.
Programming - programming languages that might be used on the Raspberry Pi.
What is armhf
The Debian Squeeze image originally issued by the Raspberry Pi foundation as the recommended distribution used "soft float" settings. The foundation found it necessary to use the existing Debian port for less capable ARM devices due to time and resource constraints during development of the Raspberry Pi. Therefore, it does not make use of the Pi's processor's floating point hardware - reducing the Pi's performance during floating point intensive applications - or the advanced instructions of the ARMv6 CPU.
The official Raspberry Pi distributions are now optimized for ARMV6 and for "hard float" which should have better performance on certain CPU intensive tasks.
There are some info on the news groups that "hard float" optimization can speed up floating point operating up to 10x, please read detailed discussion on the Raspberry Pi forums.
|Distribution||Latest||First||Type||License||Memory footprint||armhf||Image/Installer||Packages||Username:Password||default GUI|
|Arch Linux ARM||2013-01-22||2012-03-01||Linux||OSI GPLv2||Yes||raw image||4,604||root:root||none|
|Bodhi Linux||2013-01-25 (raspbian/wheezy)||2012-06-12 (wheezy)||Raspbian||Core: OSI mixed (GPLv2 BSD etc)||Yes||img+md5sum||35,000+
(sudo su root/bodhilinux)
|Debian ARM||2012-04-19 (Squeeze)||2012-02-16 (Squeeze)||Linux||Core: OSI mixed (GPLv2 BSD etc)||No||raw image||20,000+||pi:raspberry||?|
|Fedora Remix||2013-02-11 (F18)||2012-07-07 (F14)||Linux||OSI mixed (GPLv2 BSD etc)||Yes||Fedora RPM: installer
Windows Zip: installer
Other Linux: Python script
|Gentoo Linux||2013-02-07||2012-04-27||Linux||GPLv2||~23 MiB||Yes||Wiki article Quick Install Guide
|IPFire||2012-06-27 (2.11)||2012-06-27 (2.11)||Linux||Open Source||~20 MiB||No||raw image (404 error from their own website)||144||N/A||none|
|Meego MER + XBMC||2012-04-27 (0.2)||2012-04-11 (0.1)||Linux (embedded)||OSI mixed (GPLv2 BSD etc)||~34 MiB + XBMC||No||~320 (core)||N/A||XBMC|
|Moebius||2013-05-06 (1.1.0)||2012-08-01 (1.0.0)||Raspbian||(GPLv2)||~20 MiB||Yes||Raw Image||(core) + Raspbian Repositories||root: raspi||none|
|openSUSE||2013-04-07||2012-07-30||Linux 3.6.11||OSI mixed (GPLv2 BSD etc)||279 MiB (inc. X11)||No||raw image||5000||root:linux||icewm via startx|
|OpenWRT||2012-10-23||2012-08-15||Linux||OSI mixed (GPLv2 BSD etc)||3,3MiB||No||Image||Packages||first login with telnet
set your SSH pw
|PiBang Linux||2013-03-09||2012-10-29||Linux||Core: OSI mixed (GPLv2 BSD etc)||Yes||Latest image||(user created at first boot)||Openbox,i3wm|
|PwnPi||2012-06-29 (Squeeze)||2012-05-26 (Squeeze)||Linux||GNU General Public License version 3.0||No||Image||20,000+||root:toor||xfce|
|QtonPi||2012-05-27 (0.2)||2012-05-07 (0.1)||Linux||No||qt 5 sdk + sdcard image||root:rootme
|Raspbian||2013-05-25||2012-05-28 (Wheezy)||Linux||Core: OSI mixed (GPLv2 BSD etc)||~30 MiB w/o desktop||Yes||pi image list
|OpenELEC||2013-05-17 (3.0.3)||2012-05-10||Linux 3.6.11 (embedded)||OSI mixed (GPLv2 BSD etc)||88 MiB (incl. XBMC)||Yes||- Official Downloadsite
||~140 (+ 7 via xbmc)||root:openelec
|XBian 1.0 Alpha 5||2013-02-20||2012-07-29||Raspbian||OSI mixed (GPLv2 BSD etc)||Yes||Windows installer
|raspbmc||2013-06-16||2012-06-30 (Squeeze)||Raspbian||custom||Yes||linux installer
|RISC OS||2012-11-01 (5.19 RC6)||2012-07-09 (5.19)||RISC OS||Shared Source||No||Latest official image
||(not applicable)||RISC OS WIMP|
|SliTaz||2012-12-14 (cooking)||2012-05-29 (4.0)||Linux 3.2.27||GPLv2||~10 MiB||Yes||raw image||Packages||root:root||Openbox ?|
|Aros hosted on Raspbian Limited Demo||2012-06-14||2012||Mixed Debian6 and Aros||Mixed - GPLv2 and APL (MPL derivative)||<~50 MiB||No||Binaries and run ./where/ever/AEROS/boot/AROSbootstrap||pi:raspberry||Aros Wanderer|
|Plan9||2013-06-26||2012-11-12||Plan 9||Lucent||Yes||raw image||Rio|
|SlaXBMCRPi||2013-02-19 [14.0]||2013-02-19 [14.0]||Linux 3.6.11+||OSI mixed (GPLv2, GPLv3, BSD etc.)
BCL For Java SE
|No||Raw Image (Developer)
Raw Image (Minimal)
Install Instructions (Windows/Linux)
(+ Official SlackwareARM 14.0 Packages)
, autostart into XBMC
|PiMAME||2013-03-09||2012-12-01||Linux||Core: OSI mixed (GPLv2 BSD etc)||Yes||raw image||pi:raspberry||none|
|PiBox||2013-07-14||2013-07-14||Linux/Buildroot||OSI Mixed||Yes||image (Source, rootfs, staging tree, install images, SD card builder)||root:pibox||Blackbox
Discuss: Forum at raspberrypi.org
The Raspberry Pi Fedora Remix is a Linux software distribution for the Raspberry Pi computer. It contains software packages from the Fedora Project (specifically, the Fedora ARM secondary architecture project), packages which have been specifically written for or modified for the Raspberry Pi, and proprietary software provided by the Raspberry Pi Foundation for device access.
Debian was the default distribution on the Alpha boards. Boot time depends on width & speed of SD-card. Alpha board boot into Debian prompt (no GUI) was timed taking about 34 seconds.
The Debian distro for Raspberry Pi is the Cambridge reference filesystem, which is a fully functional Debian Squeeze installation containing LXDE (desktop) and Midori (browser); development tools; and sample code for accessing the multimedia functionality on the device.
Arch Linux ARM is based on Arch Linux, which aims for simplicity and full control to the end user. It provides a lightweight base structure that allows you to shape the system to your needs. For this reason, the Arch Linux ARM image for the Raspberry Pi does not come with a graphical user interface, though you can easily install one yourself. Please note that the Arch distribution may not be suitable for beginners.
Arch Linux ARM is on a rolling-release cycle that can be updated daily through small packages instead of huge updates every few months.
More information is available at http://archlinuxarm.org
Raspberry Pi + Debian = Raspbian. A project to create a hard float port of Debian Wheezy (7.x) armhf for the Raspberry Pi. The intent of Raspbian is to bring to the Raspberry Pi user 10,000s of pre-built Debian packages specifically tuned for optimal performance on the Raspberry Pi hardware. The project is still in it's early phases, but the major push to rebuild nearly all Debian packages for the Raspberry Pi is expected to be completed by early June, 2012 (only several hundred packages remain as of June 1st). After that, efforts will focus on making Raspbian the easiest to use, most stable and best performing Linux distribution available for the Raspberry Pi.
More information is available at http://www.raspbian.org
A very compact ARM HF debian based distribution, it fits in a 1Gb SD card, has autoresizing features to better adapt to your SD card size and uses Raspbian huge repositories for installing everything you need. A wise configuration and a small memory footprint are ideal for an headless machine or for interacting with real word I/O devices, take a look at Moebius Website
Raspbian Server Edition
It's a stripped version of Raspibian with some other packages
Red Sleeve Linux
Red Sleeve Linux is a Linux distribution that aims to bring the RHEL clone design to the ARM architecture. There are images for several ARM devices including the Raspberry Pi.
IPFire is an Open Source firewall distribution for x86 and ARM-based systems. It turns the Raspberry Pi computer into a small router for home networks and very small businesses. As the Raspberry Pi computer comes with only one NIC, it works perfectly as a 3G router without plugging in additional hardware.
The generally small system that provides essential services for networks can be enhanced by addons which add new features to IPFire. So the system can be turned into a file server and much more.
More information is available at http://www.ipfire.org
Raspberry Pi Thin Client
Thin Client project want to create a very low price thin client over Raspberry Pi board! Microsoft RDC, Citrix ICA & VMWare View
BerryTerminal is a minimal Linux distribution designed to turn the Raspberry Pi mini computer into a low-cost thin client. It allows users to login to a central Edubuntu or other LTSP server, and run applications on the central server
GeeXboX is a free and Open Source Media-Center purposed Linux distribution for embedded devices and desktop computers. GeeXboX is not an application, it’s a full-featured OS, that one can boot as a LiveCD, from a USB key, an SD/MMC card or install on its regular HDD. The GeeXboX distribution is lightweight and designed for one single goal: embed all major multimedia applications as to turn your computer into an HTPC.
The Android Transporter allows you to share display content wirelessly with remote screens in real time. Please be aware that the Transporter is still a technology study and it is missing the maturity of a full-featured product. However, we think that the Android Transporter is already exciting enough to let you play around with it. We believe that with the recently released Miracast standard you will get a very similar technology in upcoming Android devices, and we are considering making the Transporter compliant with the Miracast specs.
QUICK START GUIDE Let’s start with the Asus Nexus 7. By installing the Android Transporter firmware on your Asus Nexus 7 all data on the device will be removed including the contents of the /sdcard directory! So maybe you want to backup some data before you begin. To start, enable USB debugging on your Nexus 7 by switching on this option under Settings -> Developer options. Next, unlock the bootloader of your Nexus 7 device. This will void your device warranty and it will also do a factory reset! Install the adb and fastboot utilities. On Microsoft Windows you will also need Google’s USB drivers. Just search the Internet for instructions how to install this tools. Unlocking the bootloader is done by getting the device into the bootloader using the adb reboot bootloader command. Now unlock it with the fastboot oem unlock command. Download the Android Transporter firmware for the Asus Nexus 7 and unpack it. Reboot your Nexus 7 device into the bootloader using adb reboot bootloader. In the Android-Transporter directory you will find the flash script, which is called flash-all.sh. Be aware that the fastboot utility has to be available in the PATH environment for the flash script. Execute the flash script. Your Asus Nexus 7 is now ready. To switch back to the original Nexus 7 firmware image you should first download it fromGoogle’s factory images site. Then you can flash the original firmware image using the same instructions that you used to flash the Android Transporter firmware image.
Let’s move on to the Raspberry Pi. Download the Android Transporter firmware for the Raspberry Pi and unpack it. Insert an SD card into your card reader and flash the firmware image using the dd utility: sudo dd bs=1M if=esrlabs-rpi-android-transporter-2012-10-02.img of=/dev/sdX. Substitute /dev/sdX with the real SD card device name. For more information on flashing the Raspberry Pi see the Embedded Linux Wiki page for the Raspberry Pi. The Raspberry Pi is now also ready.
Next, you have to set up the networking between the two devices. You can either connect both devices to your home router or you can make use of the Raspberry Pi Wi-Fi hotspot. Both scenarios require the Raspberry Pi to be plugged into your home router. The Wi-Fi hotspot works with USB Wi-Fi adapters that are supported by the Realtek rtl8192cu Linux driver. We tested the Wi-Fi hotspot with the Netgear N150 Microadapter and with the Asus N13 Wi-Fi Stick. It works well with both Wi-Fi sticks except that we occasionally had some power consumption issues with the Asus device. If you want to make use of the Wi-Fi hotspot plug in the stick before the Raspberry Pi starts up. The network name of the Wi-Fi hotspot is RaspberryPiAP and the default password is E.S.R.Labs. The Wi-Fi hotspot may have the advantage that the Android Transporter has its own dedicated network to minimize the latency jitter during screen mirroring. If you connect both devices to your home router please make sure that the Wi-Fi transmitting power of your router is set to high. Otherwise you may experience high packet loss, which is bad for the Android Transporter.
When you now connect your Nexus 7 to the Wi-Fi network and start the Android Transporter you should see the Raspberry Pi in the list of available media hubs. The Raspberry Pi has announced itself as media sink via service discovery. Just tap on the Raspberry Pi item to start the screen mirroring. If you want to stop the screen mirroring just pull down the notification bar and click the Android Transporter “Switch off” item.
By default the Android Transporter will make use of the H.264 over RTP over UDP streaming protocols according to RFC3984. If you are in a building with a lot of Wi-Fi networks, it may be possible that the Android Transporter does not work really well because of high packet loss. If that is the case you should switch to the H.264 over RTP over TCP streaming protocols according to RFC3984 and RFC4571. You can do this in the preferences of the Android Transporter app. The latency will typically be around 20-30ms higher when using the reliable TCP transport protocol.
Enjoy the Android Transporter tech demo .
The Android Transporter is a custom ROM and not an app since we had to make adjustemts to various parts of the Android platform to make it happen.
None of the currently available solutions do a perfect job with running XBMC on the Pi, however OpenELEC comes by far the closest, in spite of its locked down nature.
This fork aims to remedy the very few flaws in its implementation and to focus 100% on the Pi, while also sticking to the upstream and incorporating its updates.
•Low idle CPU usage (< 15%) •Smoother and more responsive •Built in XBMC addons: iPlayer, custom fixed version of Demand 5, various unofficial repos •iPlayer, 4oD, Demand 5, ITV Player, SportsDevil all fully tested+working •Improved wifi connectivity •Added test-connman scripts for easy wifi setup •Added wireless_tools (iwconfig etc.) •Added rndis_wlan wifi driver (broadcom 4320 chipset) •Easy SD card installation script for building from source
OpenELEC is an embedded operating system built specifically to run XBMC, the open source entertainment media hub. The idea behind OpenELEC is to allow people to use their Home Theatre PC (HTPC) like any other device you might have attached to your TV, like a DVD player or Sky box. Instead of having to manage a full operating system, configure it and install the packages required to turn it into a hybrid media center, OpenELEC is designed to be simple to install, manage and use, making it more like running a set-top box than a full-blown computer.
Raspbmc is a minimal Linux distribution based on Debian that brings XBMC to your Raspberry Pi. This device has an excellent form factor and enough power to handle media playback, making it an ideal component in a low HTPC setup, yet delivering the same XBMC experience that can be enjoyed on much more costly platforms. Raspbmc is brought to you by the developer of the Crystalbuntu Linux Distribution, which brings XBMC and 1080p decoding to the 1st generation Apple TV.
XBian is a small, fast and lightweight media center distro for the Raspberry Pi, based on a minimal Raspbian image. It's slogan is "XBMC on raspberry pi, bleeding edge" and thus it's main focus is delivering the fastest XBMC solution for the Raspberry Pi. Thereby making most of the commercial media-center products obsolete...
What is RasPlex? RasPlex is an Entertainment Center Solution for Raspberry Pi Simply put, RasPlex lets you turn your TV into a Smart TV. Similar to the AppleTV, but completely free and open source, RasPlex is basically a set-top box. Once RasPlex is stable, it will have support for legacy console game emulation (NES, SNES, etc), as well as Plex Channels (Netflix, Crackle, Youtube, etc). RasPlex is a Plex Home Theater Client More technically stated, RasPlex is a complete port of Plex Home Theater (formerly Plex Media Center) for Raspberry Pi. RasPlex currently runs on OpenELEC for reasons of limited man power, but there is a working raspbian port that just needs some time to be brought up to speed. RasPlex was created on Gentoo linux, but that port has since been abandoned for performance reasons. We regularly merge in changes from Plex Home Theater and OpenELEC. Once things cool off a bit and we are more stable (or we get the man power), we will maintain a raspbian release as well. RasPlex is the Perfect Companion to a Plex Media Server Many people will use expensive computers as Plex Clients, or have to go through the inconvenient of plugging a computer in to their TV every time they want to use Plex. With RasPlex, just plug it in and you're media is always ready. Put one on every TV, and have your media everywhere! You can even put RasPlex on your friend's TV's, and watch your media remotely.
PwnPi is a Linux-based penetration testing dropbox distribution for the Raspberry Pi. It currently has 181 network security tools pre-installed to aid the penetration tester. It is built on the debian squeeze image from the raspberry pi foundation's website and uses Xfce as the window manager
Description This debian squeeze image created to perform "pwn plug" type of attacks using Raspberry pi. pleas look at the wiki for further details Wiki
Kali Linux Features
Kali is a complete re-build of BackTrack Linux, adhering completely to Debian development standards. All-new infrastructure has been put in place, all tools were reviewed and packaged, and we use Git for our VCS.
rk3306 mk/ss808 Raspberry Pi ODROID U2/X2 Samsung Chromebook
Kali is specifically tailored to penetration testing and therefore, all documentation on this site assumes prior knowledge of the Linux operating system. Install Download If all you want to do is to install Kali on your Raspberry Pi, follow these instructions:
Alert! This process will wipe out your SD card. If you choose the wrong storage device, you may wipe out your computers hard disk.
This process can take a while depending on your USB storage device speed and image size. Once the dd operation is complete, boot up your Rasberry Pi with the SD card plugged in. You will be able to log in to Kali (root / toor) and startx. That’s it, you’re done!
i2pBerry is a Raspberry Pi distribution that comes preinstalled with the i2p darknet software. Once you write it to your SD card and boot it up you will be able to instantly connect to the i2p network. You will also be improving the network by adding some of your bandwidth to help users in countries with firewalls connect to the true internet. With the added benifit of torrenting without your ISP snooping on your downloads.
i2pBerry comes preconfigured with a SSH server for headless operation, it is based on Debian Squeeze and has over 20,000 packages ready to be installed.
Bodhi Linux is a small Linux distribution using the Enlightenment window manager and the ARM build is based on Debian.
If you hit any snags or find bugs with this image please let us know in the R_Pi section of our user forums so we can improve this release.
A Quick Start Guide exists how to install Gentoo on the Raspberry Pi.
Gentoo Section on the official Raspberry Pi forum.
Adafruit - Occidentalis v0.1
http://learn.adafruit.com/adafruit-raspberry-pi-educational-linux-distro/occidentalis-v0-dot-1 Occidentalis v0.1. Rubus occidentalis is the black raspberry. It is derived from Raspbian Wheezy July 15 Made a few key changes to make it more hardware-hacker friendly!
... Please keep in mind, adafruit is not full time linux distro maintainers - we will try to fix any bugs we find but this distro is not for beginners or people who are new to linux!
RISC OS is a fast and lightweight computer operating system designed in Cambridge, England by Acorn. First released in 1987, its origins can be traced back to the original team that developed the ARM microprocessor. RISC OS includes BBC BASIC which was primarily conceived to teach programming skills as part of the BBC computer literacy project.
A lot of issues come from people not knowing how to do it right, e.g. just dropping the img file onto an SD card. So I’ve customised a GParted LiveCD ISO and written up a custom script to *hopefully* install a distro straight onto an SD card. This is a very early iteration of this idea, but hopefully will develop into something useful.
At the moment, essentially what it will do is
PiBang linux is a Raspbian based distribution. PiBang is inspired by Crunchbang Linux, an i686 and x86_68 Debian based distribution. It comes preconfigured with many helpful scripts and pipemenus as well as a fork of Raspi-config with increases functions such as support for changing the user and hostname. PiBang is also one of the heavier Rasperry Pi distributions boasting a complete package set with favorites such as Abiword, OMXPlayer, GIMP, and VLC all pre-installed.
Plan 9 is a distributed operating system originally designed and implemented by Ken Thompson, Rob Pike, Dave Presotto, and Phil Winterbottom @ Bell Labs. It is a lean operating system that has been ported to super computers such as IBM's Blue Gene down to tiny boards such the RaspberryPi.
SlaXBMCRPi is a minimal Linux distribution based on Slackware ARM that brings a full featured XBMC solution to your Raspberry Pi. It allow the user to exit from XBMC to the Desktop should he need to perform typical desktop tasks (browsing, text editing etc.).
Raspberry Pi distribution geared towards emulating video games. Maintained by Shea Silverman
PiBox provides a build system based on Crosstool-NG, Buildroot/Busybox (mdev), the Linux kernel, Rasperry Pi firmware and installation tools to create a base system that can be installed to an SD card to boot a Raspberry Pi. The base system serves as a minimal foundation on which opkg based extensions such as XBMCBox can be installed. The build system provides an easy to customize environment for creating custom software platforms for purpose-built systems based on the Raspberry Pi.
PiBox is intended as a build system, though binary release are made available to try out the system. It's current focus is to provide a lightweight system for providing services (wifi webcam, media server, platform for DLP display) for my travel trailer. Wifi requires manual configuration of USB ids in /etc/usbhandler.conf. RTL8187B based adapters are recommended.
Developers are wanted to help in adding new features and cross compiling additional packages. Also, feel free to fork this distribution for your own custom platform. The aim is to make an easy to use meta-build, making creation of a custom distribution as simple as possible.
Created and maintained by Michael J. Hammel
The following distributions have been announced and may have been publicly demonstrated but distributions are not generally available quite yet.
https://en.opensuse.org/Portal:ARM OpenSuSE Arm Port exist quite of many Years .
Current Infomations gathered at the RPI Forum http://www.raspberrypi.org/phpBB3/viewforum.php?f=87
Details about the work Chromium OS is Google own version of linux os
Meego MER & XBMC
The MeeGo MER project provides a Linux-based, open source software platform for the next generation of computing devices. The MeeGo MER software platform is designed to give developers the broadest range of device segments to target for their applications, including netbooks, handheld computing and communications devices, in-vehicle infotainment devices, smart TVs, tablets and more – all using a uniform set of APIs based on Qt. XBMC is an award-winning free and open source (GPL) software media player and entertainment hub for digital media. Meego TV 1.2 uses XBMC as a reference GUI (that is, a starting point for creating a custom GUI).
Puppy Linux is designed to be a small tiny Linux distribution (<100MB). One distro version of Puppy for ARM is SAP6 Debian6 armel binaries and another PuppiPlan all under the Puppy initiative. Puppy Linux is going back to his roots. Designed to run from 256MB ram. Making every bit count. Join the Puppy geek adventure for 2012. Woof Woof
OpenWrt is described as a Linux distribution for embedded devices. The Rpi is now supported by the Attitude Adjustment (12.09-beta) release available here:
OpenWrt Wiki for R_pi http://wiki.openwrt.org/toh/raspberry_pi
RPi-Buildroot is a set of Makefiles and patches that make it easy to generate a complete customized embedded Linux system for your Raspberry Pi. This distro is based on Buildroot so it's perfect for somebody looking to build a trimmed down or task-specific system.
Please note that this distro is intended for advanced users.
Aros Hosted on Linux
Aros is an open source Amiga like operating system (OS) at the api level. This version runs as a task under Linux to take advantage of the drivers available inside the GNU Linux OS core.
These are other popular distributions that are often asked about for Raspberry Pi but are not available.
Ubuntu was initially planned to be the default distribution, but the current version of Ubuntu only supports ARMv7 onwards, not the ARMv6 architecture used by the Raspberry Pi's processor. Therefore Ubuntu does not work on Raspberry Pi, and there is no further information about this changing in the near future.
A bug report on this subject was submitted to Ubuntu's bug tracker. The responses to that bug include an unofficial viewpoint from a Canonical employee, outlining the amount of work required to support ARMv6 (and therefore, potentially, Raspberry Pi). See Bug 848154