Analysis

Raspberry Pi OS for old PCs

23rd December 2016
Joe Bush

The Raspberry Pi Foundation has released an experimental version of its Linux-based Pixel OS for Windows and Mac PCs. The OS, originally designed to run only on the Raspberry Pi hobby board, comes with the Chromium web browser and a suite of productivity and coding tools.

The Pixel desktop has been re-worked so it runs on PCs and Apple Mac machines. People who use it on a Raspberry Pi and other machines will now get the same familiar software across both.

The aim, according to Raspberry Pi co-creator Eben Upton, will be to assist children who work with the Raspberry Pi but who still need to use PCs or Macs.

The PIXEL OS stands for ‘Pi Improved Xwindows Environment, Lightweight’ and is, according to Upton: “Our best guess as to what the majority of users are looking for in a desktop environment: a clean, modern user interface; a curated suite of productivity software and programming tools, both free and proprietary.”

Upton added that because the core software underlying Pixel was based on a relatively old computer architecture, it should run on “vintage” machines.

Pixel was first released in September this year and overhauled the main graphical interface owners see and use when working with their Pi. It is based on a version of the open source Linux software known as Debian.

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