Short bio: Computer Scientist, FOSS supporter (read more)
Tux Machines (TM)-specific
The Raspberry Pi has been out for over a year now, and in that time the number of distributions for the device has grown considerably compared to the few available at launch. The function of these distributions has also expanded, with the desktop operating systems making way for media centres and thin clients. Today, we’re focusing on the desktop distros, comparing six of the best to find out exactly what their strengths and weaknesses are.
All but one of the operating systems in this test use armhf, ‘hard float’, and are optimised for the ARMv6 processor that powers the Pi. Reportedly this can result in floating point operations speeding up by a factor of ten, so are such distros generally a better choice to get the most out of the Raspberry Pi?
We’ll be using a pretty varied mix of distros in the test, from the Debian-based Raspbian to the source-built Gentoo and everything in between.