A new Raspbian update

The last major release of Raspbian was the Buster version we launched alongside Raspberry Pi 4 last year. There was a minor release a couple of months later, which was mostly just bug-fixes for the first release (hence no blog post), but today’s release has a few changes that we thought it was worth bringing to your attention.

File manager changes

We previously made some significant changes to the PCmanFM file manager included as part of the Raspberry Pi Desktop; we added a cutdown mode which removes a lot of the less commonly used functions, and we set this as the default mode.

One of the things we removed for this mode is the Places view, an optional view for the left-hand pane of the window which provides direct access to a few specific locations in the file system. We felt that the directory browser was more useful, so we chose to show that instead. But one useful feature of Places is that it displays external devices, such as USB drives, and these are somewhat awkward to find in the file manager otherwise.

So for this release, the Places view has been reinstated, but rather than being a separate switchable view, it is a small panel at the top of the directory browser. This hopefully gives the best of both worlds: easy access to USB drives, and a directory view. You can customise what is shown in the Places view on the Layout page of the file manager Preferences dialogue, or you can turn it off completely if you’d rather just have the directory browser.

PCmanFM file manager on Raspbian

There are a few other small changes to the file manager: there is now a new folder icon on the taskbar, and the expanders in the directory browser (the little triangles next to directory names) are now only shown when a directory has subdirectories.

Finally, the folder and file icons used in the file manager have been replaced with some new, cleaner designs. These are designed to make it more obvious at a glance what sort of file an icon represents, and also to fit better with the slightly flatter GUI appearance we moved to for Buster.

Orca screen reader

One area of the desktop which we have been wanting to improve for some time is accessibility, particularly for those with visual impairments. To this end, we asked the accessibility charity AbilityNet to assess the Raspberry Pi Desktop to see how usable it was for those with disabilities, and where we could make improvements.

They gave us a lot of very helpful feedback, and their number one suggestion was that we needed to make the Orca screen reader work with the desktop.

Orca is an application which uses synthesised speech to read out menus, window titles, button labels, and the like. It’s a standard Linux application, but people who have tried it on Raspberry Pi found that it didn’t actually work with Raspbian. (When I first installed it, all it did was to make slightly alarming growling noises instead of speaking!)

After quite a bit of fiddling and head-scratching, Orca now works as intended. It will read out many of the pre-installed applications, and should work with a lot of other Linux software packages as well.

Unfortunately, there are a few areas where it won’t work. Orca hooks into various user interface toolkits — the software which is used to draw buttons, menus, etc. on the screen. It is fully compatible with the GTK toolkit (which is used for most of the desktop) and Qt (which is used for the VLC media player and the qpdfview PDF viewer). But many applications (such as Thonny, Sonic Pi, and Scratch) are built on toolkits which are not compatible with the screen reader. Also, the current release of Chromium is not compatible with Orca, but the forthcoming version 80 release, which should be available in a few months, will be Orca-compatible. In the meantime, if you want an Orca-compatible browser, you can install Firefox by entering the following into a terminal window:

sudo apt install firefox-esr

(Please note that we do not recommend using Firefox on Raspbian unless you need Orca compatibility, as it is not optimised for video playback on the Pi in the same way as Chromium.)

Orca screen reader settings dialogue

Orca doesn’t have a menu entry — the settings dialog shown above can be opened by holding down the Insert key and then pressing the space bar, or by typing orca -s into a terminal window.

Please note that Orca currently doesn’t work with Bluetooth audio devices, so we recommend using it with either the Pi’s own HDMI output or headphone socket, or with a USB or HAT external audio device.

Orca can either be installed from Recommended Software, in the Universal Access category, or by entering the following into a terminal window:

sudo apt install orca

This is hopefully just the start of making the Raspberry Pi Desktop more accessible for those with disabilities, as we are planning to do more work in this area in the future.

New Scratch blocks

Scratch 3 has added the ability to load a project from the command line at launch (scratch3 filename.sb3).

There are also two new blocks in the Sense HAT extension, ‘display stage’ and ‘display sprite’. The first of these shows the current stage on the SenseHAT LED array; the second shows the current sprite on the LEDs.

Example output of Sense HAT Scratch extension

Thonny improvements

A lot of work has been done on Thonny to improve performance, particularly when debugging. In previous releases, setting breakpoints caused performance to slow down significantly — this was particularly obvious when running PyGame Zero games, where the frame rate was very slow. The new version is substantially faster, as you can see if you set breakpoints in any of…

Code the Classics

…the Python games from Eben’s book Code the Classics – Volume 1, which are now installable from Recommended Software, and can be found in the Games menu.

Example of Mynapod video game

If you want to look at the code for the games, this can be found in /usr/share/code-the-classics.

Volume control / mixer

In previous releases, there was an Audio Device Preferences application in the main menu to enable device-specific settings to be made for external audio devices. This has now been removed; all these settings are now available directly from the volume plugin on the taskbar. With an external device selected as the output or input device, right-click the volume icon and choose the Output Device Settings… or Input Device Settings… option to open the configuration dialog.

Example of Output Device Settings menu of Raspberry Pi Desktop

Screen blanking

The option to disable the timeout which blanks the screen after a few minutes has been added to Raspberry Pi Configuration. To try and reduce clutter in this application, the options from the System tab are now split across two tabs; all display-related options, including screen blanking, are now on the new Display tab.

Example of Raspberry Pi Configuration menu of Raspberry Pi Desktop

We’ve also been able to reinstate the pixel doubling option for Raspberry Pi 4; this was originally implemented in a manner incompatible with the KMS video driver used on Raspberry Pi 4, but we’ve now found a way to make it work with KMS. (The pixel doubling option is designed to make the Raspberry Pi’s screen easier to use for people with visual disabilities — it doubles the size of every pixel, scaling the entire screen by a factor of two.)

We’ve made one minor change to key shortcuts: in previous versions of Raspbian, the combination Ctrl-Alt-Delete launched the task manager. We felt it might be better to be consistent with the behaviour of Windows PCs since the dawn of time, so now Ctrl-Alt-Delete launches the shutdown options dialog. If you want to access the task manager with a key shortcut, you can now do so using Ctrl-Shift-Escape — also consistent with the behaviour of Windows.

There are also numerous other small bug fixes and robustness improvements across the board.

How do I get it?

The new image is available for download from the usual place: our Downloads page.

To update an existing image, use the usual terminal command:

sudo apt update
sudo apt full-upgrade

We hope you like the changes — as ever, all feedback is welcome, so please leave a comment below!


Cyber Killer avatar

Can you make the base image for raspbian lite to fit on a 2GB microsd card again? Strip the free space or something like that.

Cyber Killer avatar

I didn’t check the new version, it runs out it’s 1,7GB so it’ll fit. Thank you!

I have a lot of 2GB sd cards and use them in Raspi Zeros for small single app servers e.g. for backups, etc.

cjan avatar

chromium is 80 now.

Simon Long avatar

Yes, but we need to merge in the custom video acceleration which uses the Raspberry Pi’s hardware to improve video playback before we release it on Pi; this is a non-trivial process.

Lucas avatar

I’m curious if this is just something we are dealing with. Are you are familiar with a problem in chromium on the pi causing memory leaks/crashes when looping mp4 videos? If not, I’ll try to create a bug report.

beta-tester avatar

i am wondering, if chromium has hardware video acceleration, why i still see a sync issue when playing back youtub videos.
somewhere in the middle of the screen the upper part and lower part of the screen shows a different frame of the video. lower part is one frame ahead or behind…

Vaticinator avatar

Actually in my case (RPi4B4) youtube videos plays better on the Firefox than Chromium. So I don’t understand why Firefox on Raspbian is not recommend.

Simon Long avatar

If you find it works better for you, then feel free to use it. But it would be very odd if YouTube does play better on Firefox – I suspect you are getting lower-resolution streams from YouTube in Firefox than you do in Chromium, so they may appear to play in a less glitchy fashion, but the overall quality is almost certainly lower.

Stefan avatar

Hi since 5th Feb release Chromium stucks sometimes by playing videos on my pi4 4Gb with ( firefox play same video with same setts are ok (only the systemload on firefox is much higher).
No changes only a update (full-upgrade). Other things are fine Screen blanking now works swich off monitor is now ok!!!

Radudek avatar

Question. Does the NOOBS installer have the latest version of the rapsbian system? im installing a new image because my rasperry just refused to boot with the old one (update failed and possibly corrupted the whole os) so im installing a new one using noobs (i cant use torrents btw)

Joakim Uppsäll-Sjögren avatar

Why is it that that Cromium 80 is not included in the may update? It has been relesed and cromium can be updated but it wil be mutch easyer if it wore included. easpacialy for orca users.

Simon Long avatar

Because we need to add Pi-specific hardware acceleration for video playback to Chromium before we can release it, and every time Chromium is up-versioned, they seem to change the hooks for this so it’s never a trivial merge operation. We are working on a release of version 80 at the moment, but can’t say when it will actually be released for the reason above.


Hi, what are the changes in Raspbian Lite?

Big Mike avatar

How can you update Raspberry without losing all your kodi settings and addons?

Claude Pageau avatar

Kodi has a backup feature. This will save all your settings. I have used this to duplicate custom settings and restore onto a new kodi sd image. Works great and saves effort in trying to manually setup media sources, settings, etc.

Marc avatar

Does screen blanking work on the pi 4 now?

Can we get a perf version that works in repository?

Does overclocking of the GPU to 600MHz work out-of-the-box now?

Roman avatar

Any chance to add gamma control? I can not make my screen as bright as it is by default

CJ avatar

Will the issues with the Pi4 for heat be included with this release or do they have to be installed separately?

Liz Upton avatar

You’re somewhat adrift – that was addressed in an update months ago. https://www.raspberrypi.org/blog/thermal-testing-raspberry-pi-4/

Simon Long avatar

This release includes all the firmware changes we have released to date, so all the fixes for Pi 4 thermals are included.

Balsey Dean De Witt avatar

I have said this before, but will say it again. That thermal firmware update ruins everything when you want to overclock. I had my Pi4B 4gb running really well at CPU 2GHz and GPU at 750 MHz. Worked well in a fan enclosed case. After I upgraded the eeprom firmware, can’t over clock anymore. Makes sense though, firmware to fix over heating but blocks overclocking. I can’t seem to do a backwards firmware installation. Bring that back for us that know what we are doing with overclocking.

Peter avatar

I thought you would add OFFICIAL USB boot support for Raspberry Pi.

James Hughes avatar

Yes, we will be providing native USB boot. It’s currently under development, with some months to go before it’s ready. In the meantime, you can use a simple SD card boot then have the boot process from USB takeover.

W. H. Heydt avatar

As in…don’t bother looking for it for 6 months or so?

Balsey Dean De Witt avatar

Seems that way, kinda sucks!

AmigaGamer avatar

I’ve done a full-upgrade , but still have the old volume plugin (right click options are only analogue or hdmi). Do i need to install an extra package, or manually add a panel item?

Simon Long avatar

You only see the additional audio options if you have an external audio device connected (USB or HAT) – they aren’t needed with the internal device, because it only has a single volume control.

mike avatar

Great news you’ve reinstated ‘places’ in pcmanfm, I always found it really useful and its removal was frustrating.

Nick avatar

Hi installed orca but now will not let me remove it keeps saying error removing packages the following packs have umet dependences primxier depends: libgstreamrr-plugins-base0.20-0(>=0.10.14) but it is not going to be installed depends,:libgstreamer0.20(>=0.10.0) but is not any one know this and how do I uninstall it.

Simon Long avatar

I’ve just double-checked, and it uninstalls without problem on a clean image, so it looks as if it is interacting badly with something else you have installed on your system – perhaps you were running other audio packages like PulseAudio? You could try “sudo apt –fix-broken install” and then reinstall and remove again, with “sudo apt install orca” and then “sudo apt purge orca” to see if that fixes it.

Herman avatar

Very nice! I had a problem though installing the new version on my RPi 4/4. After trying to update via the terminal, clicking the FM icon showed the FM window only during 1/10 of a second on the display. I then upgraded the old Buster version, and installed the new one once again. Seems to work very well now! I do like the new look of the icons in the FM and will have a closer look at the rest of the novelties later tonight.

Mike McRoberts avatar

This update has broken my Pi 4. The Pi boots and I can see it is running but on each boot the clock starts at 17:17, the Pi will not connect to wifi and the mouse and keyboard no longer work. It is now useless.

Any ideas please?

Simon Long avatar

Mouse, keyboard and wifi not working suggests that you may have an incompatible kernel and firmware, which suggests that some part of the update failed. If you have SSH or other access to the Pi, log in remotely and do “sudo apt –fix-broken install”, followed by “sudo apt update and “sudo apt full-upgrade”. If that doesn’t work, it might be worth trying “sudo rpi_update” to force an update to the latest kernel and firmware.

We do repeatedly test updates from existing configurations, and there was nothing in any of the packages we have updated that should have caused incompatibility, so it sounds as if your update failed or only partially completed; possibly a power interruption or similar. We do recommend backing up your system on a regular basis just in case this sort of problem occurs.

mihol avatar

I’ve an issue after upgrade too.
This is related to a previously working openmediavault (OMV) installation

Simon Long avatar

As a suggestion, try uninstalling the realvnc-vnc-server package (“sudo apt purge realvnc-vcn-server”) – in the past, we have found issues with this interacting badly with other remote connection protocols.

mihol avatar

above “sudo apt –fix-broken install” was proposed but that command gives an error. Root file system was full “sudo apt-get clean” fixed that for me :)
For us noobs its surprising that apt has no safeguards to prevent this simple erro!

Steve avatar

Performed the update and was left with a non-booting system. It would get to the multi-color screen and not go any further. Knowing I had the overclocking set up I tried disabling it. Booted like a champ. If I get some time I’ll try to identify if a lower, I was going to 2147 on the ARM, works.

beta-tester avatar
Simon Long avatar

That feature comes straight from upstream Debian / LXDE. There’s a limit to the resource we can apply to fixing upstream problems – you’d be better off reporting it to the authors of Debian or LXDE. It may be deliberate behaviour.

beta-tester avatar

but on Debian Live 10 LXDE,
PCmanFM has not the %20-issue with smb shares…
what is debian doing different than raspbian there?

Simon Long avatar

Hmmm – ok, I’ve had a look into this, and it looks as if it may be a side-effect of a change I made to fix a bug in PCmanFM when renaming files. I’ll dig about a bit and see if I can see what is happening.

beta-tester avatar

thank you for looking to it…

PS.: i just tested the new Debian Live 10.3 amd64 LXDE, PCManFM shows smb shares perfectly as expected.

here the kernel parameters i used:
KERNEL /nfs/debian-x64/live/vmlinuz-4.19.0-8-amd64
INITRD /nfs/debian-x64/live/initrd.img-4.19.0-8-amd64
APPEND nfsroot=:/srv/nfs/debian-x64 ro netboot=nfs boot=live config — locales=de_DE.UTF-8 keyboard-layouts=de utc=no timezone=Europe/Berlin

Simon Long avatar

On further investigation; it is a side-effect of that change. That was designed to fix some inconsistencies in the way names and paths were displayed in various circumstances; it looks as if the display of file names on shared volumes uses a different code path from local files and so misses out on a fix I’ve applied elsewhere. (This whole area in PCmanFM is a bit of a mess, with various different representations of paths used in different places.) It ought to be fixable, but it’ll probably take me a few days to come up with something that fixes both problems; we’ll get a fix in apt once I’ve worked it out!

beta-tester avatar

good news. i say thank you!

Pearl.852 avatar

Great news!!! Looking forward to apply the update soon.

beta-tester avatar

i just updated PCManFM (sudo apt upgrade)…
thank you, it is fixed now!!!

Pearl.852 avatar

I too confirmed this is fixed with PCManFM 1.3.1-1+rpt18.
Thank you very much.

Pearl.852 avatar

I too can confirm this is fixed.
Thank you very much!!

Keith avatar

These are the commands I normally use to update my Pi, will these get me the new version?

sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get dist-upgrade

Simon Long avatar

Yes, those should work.

John avatar

Thank you!

AC avatar

Thank you, fantastic work. I love the focus on real world usability. An approach so many other distributions could learn from.

Bill Stevenson avatar

Oh dear! Some of us are dim. I spent several minutes wondering why I couldn’t install this new upgrade with the new file manager features, and it kept saying ‘0 upgraded’ etc., but it was so trouble-free that I had installed it yesterday without noticing. Useful enhancement to File Manager with features I hadn’t noticed I didn’t have. I just attributed inconveniences compared to Windows to not using the Pi properly. I really must read the blog more diligently to discover what I’ve been given!

John Davies avatar

Has a software-driven mpeg2 appeared yet or is it still on the “To Do List”? I cannot easily get audio when I record SD TV programmes using an RTL2832 usb dvb stick on a Raspberry Pi 4. mplayer will play the recorded programmes with audio but omxplayergui will show neither video nor audio. VLC will show audio and video when its internal recorder is used or when live TV is played. It will not play videofiles with sound which are recorded using the command line and dvbjet.

Ed avatar

Upgraded, and it worked, VNC reconnected. Checked out the new Display settings (still over VNC) and disabled screen blanking which was on, apparently. Clicked on the other tabs and also also disabled the GPIO serial port (I first disabled the console then the port). Confirmed the popup question to reboot and now VNC doesn’t work anymore! “Cannot currently show the desktop”. Login via ssh still works fine, I tried rebooting once again from there, but VNC stays kaput.

It might be connected because it asks to confirm disconnect, but it only gives a small black screen with the above message, no desktop. How might I proceed to fix this via ssh? Getting to it physically is a hassle.

Ed avatar

I tried editing /boot/config.txt manually via ssh which was still the same except for the added enable_uart=0. So I commented out that, and added “dtoverlay=disable-wifi” because it is also connected via ethernet and I thought maybe that was the source of the confusion for VNC, although it has always worked before.

Well I don’t have any better idea what the problem was, but it disappeared! I rebooted and VNC reconnected correctly, with desktop. So I tried to reverse my manual changes to config.txt, one by one this time, and it still worked… So, ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ but it’s fine now.

This was on a RPI 4 running from USB SSD (still booting from SD card, obviously). Neither device near full, SSD 6% and /boot 22%.

Ed avatar

Same problem came back today after another apt upgrade (there were quite a lot of new updates). So the upgrade went well, the reboot worked, but unable to connect to the screen via VNC. And again: a random(?) change in /boot/config.txt via ssh, reboot, and all was well again with VNC. Reversed the change in config.txt and it still worked.

Very annoying, not only the issue but especially its strangeness.

John Davies avatar

Has a software-driven MPEG2 been produced yet or is it still on the “To Do List”? I cannot easily get the Raspberry Pi 4 to play Tv programmes saved via the command line and dvbjet. VLC will only play video; omxplayergui plays nothing. Only mplayer will play audio and video. VLC will play audio and video for live TV and files saved using its internal recorder. I have been using an RTL2832 usb dvb stick

Simon Long avatar

I think you mean a “hardware-accelerated MPEG-2”, not a software-driven one; that already exists for Pi 4.

Unfortunately, MPEG-2 is basically a dead end nowadays – it’s very old (it was the original codec for DVD, so it was developed well over 25 years ago). It’s just not efficient enough compared to more modern developments like H.265. Given that, it’s probably not going to be worth investing in providing a hardware-accelerated version of it for Pi 4; the software MPEG-2 codec in VLC is about the best you are going to get. If you need to watch a lot of MPEG-2, you’re probably better off doing so on a Pi 3 with its hardware-accelerated codec, or transcoding your MPEG-2s to a codec like H.265 which is hardware-accelerated on Pi 4.

beta-tester avatar

on my old RPi2B in the past, i used a licence to enable MPEG-2 hardware acceleration.
but RPi3B and RPi4B have enough “power” to do a good job in pure software.
as far as i know, for a RPi4 you can not buy a MPEG-2 licence anymore.

now i use LibeELEC 9.2, and i can watch Live TV via my USB DVB TV stick without problems.
in my case, only the SD TV channels are encoded with MPEG2. with that SD (low) resolution there is no problem to decodes it in software (at least under LibreELEC).
all higher resolution HD (1270i) and full HD (1980p) are encodes with h.264 or h.265

to get USB DVB TV stick running under LibreELEC, you have to install add-ons:
Add-ons | install from repository:
LibreELEC Add-ons | Services | Tvheadend Server,
LibreELEC Add-Ons | PVR clients | Tvheadend HTSP Client

to setup the server you have to do it by using a webbrowser “” (where the IP of the LibreELEC RPi is and 9981 the default port of the Tvheadend Server frontend is.)
there you have to setup the tv channels once.

maybe you also have to change the interface skin, to show up TV in the main menu

beta-tester avatar

forgot to tell… at the moment i use a RPi3B+… and it is doing MPEG-2 decoding in pure software underLibreELEC 9.2 without problems.


Awesome, does Scratch 3 still requires a Raspberry Pi 4 and 2 GB RAM? Is that ever going to be addressed or is this like Scratch 2 which never really worked on a Pi.

Simon Long avatar

There is very little chance that Scratch 3 will ever work well with less than 2GB of RAM; it’s an Electron application which means it is basically a webpage packaged with a copy of Chromium. Unless Electron reduce the memory footprint of their application – and so far, it only seems to have gone the other way… – then it’s unlikely that Scratch 3 will be able to run with less memory.

tim Rowledge avatar

Seems like a good place to remind people that the Scratch 1.4 system is still happily running, faster than ever, and about to be updated to run on a new version of Squeak. It is fine with running on a Pi Zero, great on a Pi 3 and amazing on a 4 (which benchmarks Squeak around 3X faster than a 3+).

Roger avatar

Thanks very much Tim. That is really good news, and hopefully a sign of RPF’s long-term commitment to NuScratch (Scratch 1.4) – still the best Scratch. Is it possible to provide a date for the new release?

Victor avatar

did u forget the pc version?

Simon Long avatar

No, it should be released in the next few weeks. We always do the Pi version first!

Trevor Harris avatar

The network option in pcmanfm still does not work.

Simon Long avatar

What do you mean by “the network option in pcmanfm”? I’ve just connected to a network share with PCmanFM with no difficulty.

B Pham avatar

Do you have any plan to have 64-bit Raspbian? I have software that uses Java Runtime Environment but they stop making 32 bit version

Gustavo Moura avatar

When there will be the arm64 update?

Garrett Y avatar

The release notes say “Raspberry Pi Touchscreen correctly aligned with display.” Can you expound on what the issue was that is now fixed?

Also, what are the impacts to the “Lite” image? The release notes look the same, but that doesn’t make sense. ? Thanks for your time!

Simon Long avatar

The touchscreen issue was that tapping a location on the touchscreen resulted in a tap on a different part of the screen from the one you tapped…

As for the differences in lite, they’re the ones listed in the release notes which don’t pertain to desktop applications! I don’t work with lite myself, so I’m afraid I don’t know any more detail than that. (I find the desktop keeps me busy enough without worrying about that command-line stuff…. ;) )

Milliways avatar

I did an update then upgrade followed by full-upgrade.

The File Manager shows Places in the sidebar with a pull down menu to select Places or Directory Tree

Simon Long avatar

You have the default file manager mode enabled instead of the cutdown mode. Go into Preferences in the file manager and on the Layout tab, select “display simplified user interface and menus”.

Simone Pompei avatar

Is there any improvement in performances for fullscreen graphics like processing sketch?

Burney avatar

Aaand again, no fix for screen tearing. Please guys fix that annoying bug :/

Simon Long avatar

We’re not aware of any screen tearing bug – can you be more specific about when you see it?

Andrew Ferguson avatar

Hi Simon

Im also experiencing screen tearing issues on a RPi 4 (4Gb) when dragging windows across the desktop as well as when watching YouTube video using Chromium. The strange thing is the tearing seems less intrusive (but still visible ) when in full screen mode on YouTube.


Simon Long avatar

OK, thanks for that – we’ll investigate.

TIFFANY avatar

I am always grateful for your work.

It would be very helpful to be able to display a context menu when you release the right mouse button instead of pressing the right mouse button in the keyboard and mouse settings.

Thank you very much.

Simon Long avatar

I’ll stick that on the to-do list – no idea if it is possible, but I’ll have a look!

Just to make sure I understand – at present, the right-click menu is shown when the button is pressed; you want to see it only when the button is released?

Radudek avatar

it worked but now my raspberry pi looks like it has windows 98 on it and none of the programs or games appear in the recomended software tab. pls help i i have done it wrong. i had an existing image so i typed the command and then my raspberry accidentally overheated (fan battery ran out of power) and i had to restart the process and it told me to type in a configure command to fix the issue and now it looks like that.

Simon Long avatar

Unfortunately, it sounds as if the update crashed half-way through. There’s not much you can do to recover from that – the usual solution is to go back to a clean image, or a recent backup.

You can try typing “sudo apt –fix-broken install”, followed by “sudo apt update” and “sudo apt dist-upgrade” at a terminal prompt, and it’s probably then worth trying “sudo apt install raspberrypi-ui-mods”. But if that doesn’t recover it, you’re probably going to have to start with a clean image – sorry!

Radudek avatar

Thanks man i was really scared when it happened because i had to change batteries in my fan while the rapsberry was updating and it overheated and i think that thats what caused it. thanks for the response and help

gilberto gomez da silva avatar

You are a great help to the world.
They have revolutionized informatics for those who didn’t have opportunities.
I love your work.
you remind me to sync in 1980 with the zx81 that also enabled millions of people to learn computer science at that time and I have been there to see and now I see the same with you.
Many thanks for your work.
What you do is really incredible.
I have all the raspberry´s I love them a lot.

PetriM avatar

After Rasbian update my RPI-camera not able to be used to take videos.
Following were not functioning after update:
– RPI web cam interface
– motion
– raspivid
No error message is given (that I am able to see), a video file is generated but without content and the size of file few kBs
Following functioning:
– raspistill (RPI camera is able to take photos)

I restored back to an older Rasbian version and all above functioning again normally. So I expect that HW is not broken.

I am very newbie with all these linux things. I have no idea how to start to investigate what is the issue.

Grant avatar

I’m having the same issue. Previosly working code using picamera to record sequence video doesn’t work (generates a file of a few bytes).

Returning to pre-update image works correctly.

Simon Long avatar

We’re investigating this issue at the moment – not sure what has happened, but it does look as if something has gone wrong somewhere with video encode. We’ll hopefully have a fix out within a week or so.

PetriM avatar

Thank you for the status update!

Pascal ROY avatar

Is there something new with booting on SSD without SD card?

croft avatar

just updated pi 4b4 tracker ball drivers not working

may be next time check with tracker ball

Simon Long avatar

That’s absolutely nothing to do with us! Drivers for that sort of hardware come straight from Debian; we do no customisation on them at all.

croft avatar

yes but
that means i cannot trust up grades of buster as no testing has been on the upgrades
the long an short ansur back up and do not up grade as you
cannot trust the upgrades to keep your system working
meaning you loose a lot of work due to a up grade

Simon Long avatar

You should always keep a current backup of your system, and you should particularly do so before a major update. Debian is open-source – and huge; we have no control over what changes have gone in upstream, and it is impossible for us to test every configuration.

Steve avatar


Can you make the volume slider stay on top? If a window is open and you click the volume it opens beneath the open window.

Simon Long avatar

I don’t see that – I always get the slider opening on top of any windows I have open. The slider is effectively a new window, and they should always open on top. Are there any particular application windows you find it opens beneath? I’ve just tried with a terminal and a file manager window, and it opened on top of both.

Val avatar

Is it possible to make DropBox or pCloud work with Raspbian as they work with other Linux distros? It would be great to have local folders like “DropBox” or “pCloud” to synch with the cloud.

Simon Long avatar

I’d love to have Dropbox working on Pi, but as far as I am aware, their Linux client is not open-source, and they only offer it as an x86 build, which won’t run on Pi. Perhaps you should ask them to reconsider this!

apaz avatar

I understand that the file manager is meant to be very lightweight. That being said, is there a way to get image thumbnail previews like in gnome/kde? Is that a feature that exists, you have considered, you would consider, or you have already rejected?

Simon Long avatar

It already exists – just click the “thumbnails” icon on the file manager task bar; third icon from the left, on the right of the “new folder” icon.

TIFFANY avatar

Yes, then you can use CTRL + mouse wheel to zoom in and out as you would expect.

Poul avatar

Thinking of Orca and Accessability, why does the Chromium Web Browser have a fixed font size for the menus and the address bar.

I sit about 10ft/3.3m away from the wall with a projector that casts (roughly) an 80″/2m screen running at a 1920×1080 resolution. I don’t like this glaring non-ADA feature of Chromium, nor do I care for Apple’s MacOS solution to just revert everything to an older and smaller (800×600) resolutions, losing out on some rather useful desktop space. Unfortunately, I’m left with having to lower the resolution overall, or I have to “guess” that my typing is accurate, strain and squint very hard, or get off the couch to get closer to the “screen” and maybe get in everybody else’s way.

If I can make use of the maximum desktop resolution, say 1920×1020, but still be able to use configurable system wide fonts, where everything is set to use 16 point sized fonts, I would be set. I could almost use the Raspberry Pi 4B/4GB as my daily driver…. but there are a few other issues. The biggest for me is that Chromium (with latest Rasbian on Pi4), for whatever reason, is unable to play back, with YouTube as the exception, most content from the major streaming providers (Amazon, Netflix, VuDu, etc.). Is this just a Linux thing? If Chrome and Chromium are effectively made of the same DNA, then why can’t Chromium play the streaming content?

I’m sure these issues have been addressed elsewhere…or maybe they just haven’t been brought up.

Simon Long avatar

With regards fixed font sizes in Chromium, that’s something that you will need to take up with the Chromium developers – but I agree that it is far from ideal. The trouble with a desktop environment which allows the use of multiple different UI toolkits is that some portion of accessibility support ends up being at the application level rather than the system level, and some applications make it a higher priority than others.

As for video streaming, this is usually due to providers using custom DRM (copy protection) systems to prevent piracy, and tending to be unwilling to make these available on open-source platforms, as to do so would provide a relatively easy path to stealing the content; if you open-source your DRM solution, you invite hackers to create back doors to make copies of the unencrypted data.

matthigast avatar

You could try 3rd party browsers;
Vivaldi (Chromium based) has UI zoom and minimum font size settings, so maybe you can try that?

Pearl.852 avatar

A pop-up dialog “Can’t update Chromium” keeps appearing on the latest Chromium browser (Version 78.0.3904.108).

See post from the forum also,

Simon Long avatar

I’m afraid that comes straight from Chromium; it’s objecting because version 80 is out. However, we are still in the process of adding VideoCore hardware acceleration to Chromium 80, and it will be some time before it is available. Just close the notification whenever it appears; there’s not much else we can do.

Ορθόδοξος avatar

I just want to thank the whole team for working so hard for us all! You put so much time and effort into making things great for us all!

Thanks again!

Pearl.852 avatar

Understood. Thank you for your reply.

Octapudus avatar

Yeah nice thing for playing games but guys!!
Where is the modificatation of boot in order to boot it directly from usb without sd card?

James Hughes avatar

Still under development. It’s not easy to do, and we have other important stuff to do as well. When it’s ready, it will be announced, but this blog post is about Raspbian, not USB boot.

Pearl.852 avatar

Dear Simon,
While you are investigating the SPACE appears as ‘%20’ issue for the PCManFM 1.3.1, I would like to add another symptom where the file listing does not get refreshed automatically, requiring to press F5 to reload folder.

To reproduce:
1. Create a mountpoint (/mnt/nas_share) for a network share in the fstab.
2. Open the mountpoint folder with PCManFM.
3. Put/Create some files (New1, New2) in the folder.
4. Using a different PC, open the same network share, you will see the same 2 files (New1, New2) in it.
5. Rename the file New2 –> New222 and create a new file (New3). Now there are 3 files (New1, New222, New3) listed.
6. Go back to the Pi, navigate to a different folder and then back (/mnt/nas_share). Notice the folder listing still shows 2 files (New1, New2).
7. Press F5 to reload the folder and it will then list 3 files (New1, New222, New3).

Note: This symptom happen on PCManFM 1.3.1 only, PCManFM 1.2.5 on raspbian stretch loads the folder contents correctly without requiring press F5.

Simon Long avatar

I’ve just tried this with the latest release of PCmanFM – the one we published overnight – and I can’t repeat the problem you describe. However, I did see the problem in testing yesterday, so it may be that this was a symptom of the same filename problems which we have now fixed.

As of this morning, I see changes made to files on the server by just switching away and back again; I don’t need to press F5.

Pearl.852 avatar

The latest release of PCManFM 1.3.1-1+rpt18 does seem to have corrected the symptom. Thank you very much.

Pearl.852 avatar

It happen again. I have to press F5 to reload. Very strange.

Pearl.852 avatar

I just logout and logged back in then it works without press F5. Very strange!!

Pearl.852 avatar

Dear Simon,
I think I have found the culprit that cause this symptom.

Once a file deletion is performed by PCManFM 1.3.1 from the network share, any subsequent file operation (Rename, Create or Delete) to the same network share by other pc will not be automatically reloaded. Only way to recover is to logout and log back in.

Furthermore, if the same procedures above are done to another network share, the PCManFM will freeze completely. Click [x] to close PCManFM will cause all the desktop icons disappear.

If you need a step by step procedures to reproduce, please let me know.

Pearl.852 avatar

Dear Simon,
Did you have any luck reproducing this symptom?

John M0RVJ avatar

Once again, so much here to be grateful for! Simon Long, we really appreciate what you do!

Tomislav Panovic avatar

can’t boot anymore after update..tried with different sd cards..with fresh install 20200205 from official site everything worked fine..then i updated with sudo apt update and sudo apt full-upgrade..reboot..after that pi4 doesn’t boot anymore…on screen it says plla: couldn’t lock pll…with my old pre 20200210 update sd card,everything work fine…what could be the problem? Any thoughts?

Edgar Prada avatar

-How do I rotate the screen? Before Rpi4 I used “sudo nano /boot/config.txt”, then it was the “Screen Configuration”, which doesn’t appear to be anywhere.

So what now?


Simon Long avatar

The Screen Configuration tool only appears if you are using the FKMS graphics driver, which is the default on Pi 4 but not on other Pis. If you are not seeing the tool, then you are not running FKMS, and should therefore use the settings in /boot/config.txt for rotation.

Jeff Smith avatar

Google maps text is reversed in Newcastle Australia.
Initially okay for about 1 min from launch then goes reversed and stays reversed.

TK avatar

Whatever you guys did in this update… absolutely incredible. My Pi Zero W is FAR snappier, and it actually feels like a piece of tech now. It wasn’t terrible before, but I did regret not getting an earlier model. At least, until I saw the update. Now, I’m just downright impressed.

Rich avatar

I did the update / upgrade and the Pi 4 internet works like its got mud in it’s pants. It is so slow I am probably going to re install and start over again.

Linas Balsys avatar

I use a USB sound card as an audio output device. I need both right and left channels to be regulated separately. It was possible on the older Buster with the Audio Device Settings item in the Preferences Menu with channels “unchain” feature, but now it is not as there is only one slider displayed in the Output Device Settings under the speaker icon double-click. Is there a workaround here?

Eddie Maddox avatar

Search found 74 matches: chromium freezing

Board index > Using the Raspberry Pi > Troubleshooting
Pi4: Chromium Browser Causes frequent hangs (5 seconds or so duration)

My Raspberry Pi 3B+ running Raspian Buster with current
upgrades does freeze frequently while watching videos as
the above Forum thread describes. I use the Raspberry Pi
Samsung 32GB card that previously came preloaded.

Is this Freezing problem being worked on by Anyone?
Thank you.

Eddie Maddox avatar

The freezing has also happened on non-video pages and the File Manager application.

Eddie Maddox avatar

Using 1-2 GB swapfile helps greatly. See “man dphys-swapfile”.
Then, in terminal, “cd /etc”, “sudo nano dphys-swapfile”, “reboot”.
Use, “swapon –show” and “free”, to keep an eye on Chromium’s swap usage and overall memory situation. Chromium Version 78.0.3904.108 (Official Build) Built on Raspbian , running on Raspbian 10 (32-bit) seems to use at least 500 MB swap at times. Without the larger swapfile the system was bound to freeze up, and often did. Now, this workaround helps greatly. I’m hoping Chromium 80 fixes the swap usage issues. We’ll see. Enjoy! DISCLAIMER: This info is provided on an AS IS BASIS with NO WARRANTY! Use at your own risk.

Eddie Maddox avatar

Use, “swapon –-show” … – Two dashes needed!

Eddie Maddox avatar

From my RPi 3B+ (1 GB RAM) terminal window:
pi@raspberrypi:~ $ date; swapon –show; free
Tue 12 May 2020 10:52:16 PM EDT
/var/swap file 3G 1013.3M -2
total used free shared buff/cache available
Mem: 863036 572544 42972 115756 247520 120660
Swap: 3071996 1037568 2034428

Chris Totten avatar

How do you officially check for and if necessary report bugs in Raspbian kernel? I’m getting issues mounting iSCSI targets from this kernel that work perfectly in Buster on x64 VM


Javier Herrero avatar

File Manager regression? Seems it can mount LUKS encrypted partitions on removable drives.

Jeffrey LaCosse avatar

Google maps in Chromium flips the map so it is upside down and reversed after about one minute. Text on map is also reversed. Running latest update of Buster on a RPi 2 B+. Have not tried maps before update so not sure if is a brand new issue. Have another RPi2 B+ running Stretch with no map problem.

Eddie Maddox avatar

I have noticed the same on my 3B+.

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