Thursday, 29 June 2017

PIXEL on the PC again!

Apparently the folk at Raspberry Pi are surprised at the popularity of their operating system for the PC! And so, in the future, they are going to release an x86 version of Raspbian along with each release of the Pi version.

In fact, the future starts now because along with the new release of Raspbian for the Pi, they have now released an installable x86 version.

The first version, in December last year, would only run from a USB stick or a DVD. Now, they have provided an ISO file that can be installed on an x86 based machine in the same way as any other version of Debian Linux. They warn, however, this install will reformat your hard drive, so it's probably time to dust off that old laptop that has been lying at the bottom of the drawer for years and sacrifice it for the cause! (If you are lucky enough to have one, of course.)

The new release includes the same new features as the Pi version, an improved Scratch and the new Python IDE, Thonny.

I presume that like the previous one that, for licensing reasons, it does not include Minecraft or Mathematica. And of course, the Pi hardware is absent so you can't program the GPIO. The SenseHAT emulator is there, though.

I won't repeat the arguments for why I believe his is a good idea but, instead, refer you to my original post on the subject. But all in all,I think that this is a great development as it means that the same environment can be used both on the Pi and on a PC or, x86 based, Mac.


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