PIXEL for PC and Mac


Our vision in establishing the Raspberry Pi Foundation was that everyone should be able to afford their own programmable general-purpose computer. The intention has always been that the Raspberry Pi should be a full-featured desktop computer at a $35 price point. In support of this, and in parallel with our hardware development efforts, we’ve made substantial investments in our software stack. These culminated in the launch of PIXEL in September 2016.

PIXEL represents 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; and the Chromium web browser with useful plugins, including Adobe Flash, preinstalled. And all of this is built on top of Debian, providing instant access to thousands of free applications.

Put simply, it’s the GNU/Linux we would want to use.

The PIXEL desktop on Raspberry Pi

Back in the summer, we asked ourselves one simple question: if we like PIXEL so much, why ask people to buy Raspberry Pi hardware in order to run it? There is a massive installed base of PC and Mac hardware out there, which can run x86 Debian just fine. Could we do something for the owners of those machines?

So, after three months of hard work from Simon and Serge, we have a Christmas treat for you: an experimental version of Debian+PIXEL for x86 platforms. Simply download the image, burn it onto a DVD or flash it onto a USB stick, and boot straight into the familiar PIXEL desktop environment on your PC or Mac. Or go out and buy this month’s issue of The MagPi magazine, in stores tomorrow, which has this rather stylish bootable DVD on the cover.

Our first ever covermount

You’ll find all the applications you’re used to, with the exception of Minecraft and Wolfram Mathematica (we don’t have a licence to put those on any machine that’s not a Raspberry Pi). Because we’re using the venerable i386 architecture variant it should run even on vintage machines like my ThinkPad X40, provided they have at least 512MB of RAM.

The finest laptop ever made, made finer

Why do we think this is worth doing? Two reasons:

  • A school can now run PIXEL on its existing installed base of PCs, just as a student can run PIXEL on her Raspberry Pi at home. She can move back and forth between her computing class or after-school club and home, using exactly the same productivity software and programming tools, in exactly the same desktop environment. There is no learning curve, and no need to tweak her schoolwork to run on two subtly different operating systems.
  • And bringing PIXEL to the PC and Mac keeps us honest. We don’t just want to create the best desktop environment for the Raspberry Pi: we want to create the best desktop environment, period. We know we’re not there yet, but by running PIXEL alongside Windows, Mac OS, and the established desktop GNU/Linux distros, we can more easily see where our weak points are, and work to fix them.

Remember that this is a prototype rather then a final release version. Due to the wide variety of PC and Mac hardware out there, there are likely to be minor issues on some hardware configurations. If we decide that this is something we want to commit to in the long run, we will do our best to address these as they come up. You can help us here – please let us know how you get on in the comments below!


Download the image, and either burn it to a DVD or write it to a USB stick. For the latter, we recommend Etcher.

Etcher from resin.io

Insert the DVD or USB stick into your PC or Mac, and turn it on. On a PC, you will generally need to enable booting from optical drive or USB stick in the BIOS, and you will have to ensure that the optical drive or USB stick is ahead of all other drives in the boot order. On a Mac, you’ll need to hold down C during boot*.

If you’ve done that correctly, you will be greeted by a boot screen.

Boot screen

Here you can press escape to access the boot menu, or do nothing to boot through to the desktop.

Spot the difference: the PIXEL desktop on a PC

Please note that this initial experimental version is only available as a live image to boot from USB or DVD. In future releases, we may create an installer so it can be permanently installed on your computer’s hard drive, but for now this is can only be temporarily booted for trial purposes.

* We are aware of an issue on some modern Macs (including, annoyingly, mine – but not Liz’s), where the machine fails to identify the image as bootable. We’ll release an updated image once we’ve got to the bottom of the issue.


If you are running from DVD, any files you create, or modifications you make to the system, will of course be lost when you power off the machine. If you are running from a USB stick, the system will by default use any spare space on the device to create a persistence partition, which allows files to persist between sessions. The boot menu provides options to run with or without persistence, or to erase any persistence partition that has been created, allowing you to roll back to a clean install at any time.

Boot menu


One of the great benefits of the Raspberry Pi is that it is a low-consequence environment for messing about: if you trash your SD card you can just flash another one. This is not always true of your PC or Mac. Consider backing up your system before trying this image.

Raspberry Pi can accept no liability for any loss of data or damage to computer systems from using the image.


1.If you find that the taskbar does not appear when the x86 image is booted, please see here for a workaround.

2.If you find the image doesn’t boot on a Mac, you can try the fix here


Chas avatar

Wow! You guys at Raspberry Pi are so cool! Would it work on old PCs? Just asking. Cheers! Chas ?

Simon Long avatar

Given it works on our CEO’s decade-old laptop, it should work on most old PCs.

Chas avatar

Thanks for info? you guys are so awesome ?

Josh Sullivan avatar

Ha. Awesome.

Christian Hilton avatar

I have a ‘turn of the millennium’ imac that needs a ‘purpose’ – might try it on there and bring some feedback, unless advised otherwise in the interim…

Simon Long avatar

I’d be amazed if that works – I don’t think Macs that old support booting from USB, and I think the internal drive was a CD-ROM and not a DVD, so the disk won’t work either. By all means give it a try and let us know, though!

tai viinikka avatar

That probably has a Motorola G3 (or G4?) CPU, so it’s not x86, so I think that’s a no go.

JacekK avatar

If it is ‘turn of the millennium’ iMac, then tai viinikka is right – it won’t work (G3/G4 is a powerpc architecture, not x86).

But there are other Linux distributions with community support for powerpc architecture, so you should be able to find a purpose for the iMac.

If you are lucky your iMac comes with DVD drive.
If not, then it is possible (and relatively easy) to boot old Macs off the USB disk. And if I remember correctly – long before PCs were capable of doing so ;)

Somebody avatar

Yep, you could make a boot floppy/ CD-ROM with Plop on it to chain load a pen drive with some Linux with PowerPC support. Many linuxes still support PowerPC.

ean avatar

only Intel Macs officially support booting from USB

No Alternative avatar

Try MintPPC. It runs on LXDE like Pixel does. The last stable is based on wheezy. It is still updated as oldstable http://www.mintppc.org/content/installation-instructions-mintppc-11

They are testing a Jesse version if you want to play test pilot. http://www.mintppc.org/forums/viewtopic.php?f=12&t=1528

Eric T avatar

This is awesome works great on HP G60 except for some keys on the keyboard being switched around, like @ and “.

Life with Pi avatar

Change the keyboard layout in preferences to US

Richard avatar

Let me read the post for you.

“Because we’re using the venerable i386 architecture variant it should run even on VINTAGE MACHINES like my ThinkPad X40”

Ryan K avatar

It also depends what you mean by “old.” A Pentium M machine is old, but a Pentium or Pentium 3 are much older. I have had a Pentium MMX laptop run Slackware before.

Peter Schofield avatar

This is a good OS for old PCs, but my question is — how do you permanently install Pixel on an old PC . I have a 12 year Toshiba laptop that I would like to revive and Pixel looks like a good OS to use.

Liz Upton avatar

We’ll be providing you all with an installable version when we’ve kicked the bugs out of this beta.

Edward Cohen avatar

I cant wait for the full install version

Didier Gaultier avatar

Yes, same for me,
I would like to have a full and regular install for PC that works on Parallels desktop or virtual box on MAC

Cheese2face avatar

When do you think we will have access to the full version? Because I cannot wait for it.

s2rt avatar

Wow, amazed by this. Has turned an old Lenovo x220 into a virtual super hero. I reckon you’ve leapfrogged a number of more mature distros in the Ux department too. Way to overachieve! Can’t wait for a fully installable version to breath new life into a number of older machines I have.

Khairul avatar


Used in on my “old-about-to-be-thrown-away HP Pavillion D6000 with-cranky-HDD” … so far so good.

Am a noob in Linux and likes. so This is good.

1. Why can’t I open certain website I used for small businesses like https://www.waveapps.com.

2. The dropdown menu goes black in Chromium when I mouse over the selection

3. can’t install Dropbox or Chrome.

Sorry if these questions seems silly and stupid.

Daniel avatar

For 2., try restarting, and for number 3, Dropbox and Chrome are not a Linux programs last time I checked, you can use Dropbox online, and the included Chromium browser is basically the same as Chrome but without the auto-update feature.

Miguel Mayol i Tur avatar

Please make a version for the AUR (Arch User Repository) or a snap or a flatpack to share the PIXEL with all the community.

Simon Long avatar

Our internal work is all done on Raspbian / Debian. The PIXEL components are all available from our GitHub repo or from apt. If Arch also wants to use it, it’s going to be up to the Arch community to port and package it – we don’t have the manpower to support other OSes.

David Smith avatar

Put on usb, put image on the usb then boot the usb and
dd the image to the hard drive, same as you would a sd for the pi.
Then boot from hard drive.

Khoa Pham avatar

Hey David, I’m new to this. Can you teach me the terminal code to DD the image to Hard Drive for my Old laptop.

Adrian Baena avatar

It works very fast in a Compaq Mini CQ10 with 2GB of ram, i am using a 2gb usb dongle to boot from there

Colin Begg avatar

It boots just fine on my old Lenovo S10-2 Netbook. Looking forward to an installable version. It currently has Debian (Mint?) and Windows 7 Dual Boot but I’d love to replace the Debian with Pixel.

Keep up the good work!

Roger avatar


i am sorry but i did not find another way to give a feedback to the raspberry pi and pixel community.

I am using a small notebook aspire one with intel atom initially designed for windows xp. It has three usb ports and can be booted via usb drive. So I downloaded the iso file for pixel and translated it via Rufus to a 3.7 GB usb stick. After changing the boot order of the aspire one to usb drive it started pixel without any problem.
Files can be stored to an other usb stick in one of the other usb ports.
The integrated wlan of the aspire one also works fine after having done the password setting.

So now I would like to thank the developers very much for this great job of bringing pixel to a pc. Because now software, e.g. sonic pi I think will work better, because
of having a better processor performance which can be relevant for the timing of music software.

Thank you !

Chas avatar

Wow! I love PIXEL desktop ?

Bartley O'Malley avatar

The most frustrating thung about linux for a windoes user is the huge variation in configurations. Trying to install software can be a complete nightmare with instructions whuch Re for another version. If you can keep the config locked down like windows we all might finally have a usable linux desktop.

James Hughes avatar

Most people think the ability to set up as you like is a bonus! And of course, you could just leave it as the default, which should “Just work”(c)

pd avatar

Most people being the less than 5% of users? That’s not most people.

Windows can be customized. There’s a massive difference between customizable and needing to be broken down and or initially (re) built from scratch to get a basic experience with some different flavorings. The latter is Linux. Average users don’t care about window managers, desktop environments, multiple runtimes, all the granularity of Linux as a GUI. To average users, customizable means changing a color scheme or wallpaper, not which and how to install and configure your entire desktop environment.

This seems like a huge exercise in hubris and a waste of resources that arguably should be spent on the substantial platform update needed to build an Rpi4 / fix the fundamental issue0 limiting the Pi3 since its inception: the USB Ethernet shared bus.

That said, you guys make some out there decisions but that includes the creation of the Pi in the first place. So I guess you’re entitled to a few mistakes/ some hubris if the upside is creation of the Pi originally.

Varun Priolkar avatar

Just use Xubuntu and be done with it. Or just continue using Windows/OSX. Nobody’s forcing you to use Linux.

>fundamental issue0 limiting the Pi3 since its inception: the USB Ethernet shared bus
True. But RPI does make a nice tiny server or a router if throughput is not a concern.

Jongoleur avatar

“This seems like a huge exercise in hubris and a waste of resources that arguably should be spent on the substantial platform update needed to build an Rpi4 / fix the fundamental issue0 limiting the Pi3 since its inception: the USB Ethernet shared bus.”

I think you’re entirely missing the point. The Pi Pixel environment on a version of Debian that extends across a huge range of x86 computers is incredibly useful and allows older PCs that don’t run current Windows operating systems (or even newer Linux distros) to function AT LEAST AS WELL as a Pi3 for web browsing, emails and so on. You can even use it to develop Python scripts.

It also means that anyone familiar with the Pixel environment on their Raspberry Pi’s can enjoy the same experience on a PC.

Hardware platform developments are a completely different kettle of fish, your routine beef about the USB/Ethernet issue is… tedious.

Simon Long avatar

Well, I guess the two software engineers who produced the x86-PIXEL image could try sorting out the hardware design issue you mention, but I’m not entirely convinced that would be the best use of our resources; there might be a bit of a learning curve, but – you know – whatever…

Jim avatar

Thank you for providing PIXEL on PC.

I hope schools will be able to benefit immensely from being able to use older(/cheaper) hardware, and from letting kids learn one consistent interface between PIs and PCs.

Mike Redrobe avatar

Too many linux distros ? Lets create another one !


But seriously – great job, now we can have same UI on PC/Mac as on Pi

Malagueños Originales y Libres avatar

There are a lot of frustrating thing about Windows that encourage to switch to linux, one of them one of them is that if something you do not like in Windows you have to swallow it.
GNU/Linux offers a lot of options, just select the one you like.
The price of freedom is to think for yourself and be responsible for your decisions.

John Cena avatar

It would help if it was spelt right

Tony Goodhew avatar

Looks fantastic – I’m off to the shops

salman avatar

would it boot/work on a MacBook pro?

Simon Long avatar

It depends…

As Eben mentions above, there is an issue with some Mac hardware which fails to see the image as bootable. For reference, it boots fine on my 2014 MacBook Pro, and also on my 2013 MacBook Air. However, it doesn’t boot on a 2015 MacBook Air, nor on a 2011 Mac mini. We think this is due to some glitch in the EFI code which provides the low-level boot on Macs; we’re pretty sure it is fixable (as other Debian images boot on all those devices), but haven’t had a chance to dig into it yet.

Best thing is to download the ISO and try it!

Eben Upton avatar

Or as an interim measure, you can run it hosted under VirtualBox (I checked, and that does work).

Mike Redrobe avatar

Works fine on my mid 2009 MBP – but I also have rEFind on that machine, which may be helping too ?

Simon Long avatar

Yes, rEFInd may well help. This ought to be solvable without it though – my original prototype image ran fine on all the Macs we tried; something changed when we created a hybrid ISO, which we are looking into.

Gary Calnek avatar

I have installed Pixel as a virtual machine running under host CentOs 7 and it looks fine. Unfortunately any changes I make within the virtual machine are lost upon shutdown. I expected to have a virtual disk of several gigs, but in fact it is only 2 megabytes.

Any suggestions?

mmortal03 avatar

You’re likely running it from the virtual disc drive within the virtual machine, not the virtual hard drive, meaning nothing is actually getting written to the virtual hard drive. You’d have to actually install it onto the virtual hard drive somehow.

Gary Calnek avatar

I have created a USB stick with the OS on it, and it is better than the Virtual OS; the full screen is used on the USB version while the Virtual system uses only about 2/3 of the screen, and it has persistence (15 gigs worth). I can’t see any way to get the OS installed on the VDI, so will play with the USB version, which is really very well done. Kudos to the developers.

David Atkinson avatar

I had a problem booting from a USB on a Macbook Pro running the latest version of OS 10 when i held down the C key during boot up as suggested in the above article. However, holding down the Alt key during boot gives the option to boot from the Mac HD or “Windows” on an external drive – this turned out to be Raspbian Pixel on the USB drive and it worked well!

Simon Long avatar

Yes, booting by holding down C boots from an optical drive, not a USB drive – that’s an error in the instructions, for which our apologies!



Phil H avatar

Interesting news. Would it work on Atom chipsets?

Simon Long avatar

We’ve not tried it, but if standard Debian x86 runs on them, then this should as well.

Phil H avatar

Answer my own question: Yes it does :).

+1 for the permanently installable option :).

Thanks to the team for this great work – opens up a fantastic avenue and allows us to un-retire a whole host of old kit (and potentially fix the age-old “running-slow-on-crappy-HW” issues :D).

Merry Christmas.

Bill F. avatar

It works fine on an Eee PC 900A with an Atom N270.

William Jack avatar

12-26-16 Pixel worked with an HP mini 210-4150NR with 2 GB of RAM. The unit is a small notebook (manufactured around 2002. I got the system up and running using a 64GB flash drive. I clicked on the wi-fi icon
located at the top of the screen and a request for a security code popped up. I used my router’s security code and a normal wi-fi connection was made.

Jens Christy avatar

Atom? Yes, it does.

Sakari Castrén avatar

Torrent anywhre?

Brandon F. avatar

I also appreciate the link. It’s always a good day when there’s a new RasPi torrent to add to my dedicated Raspberry Pi B+ seed box. :)

punkbass avatar

Considering the number of people downloading it, the torrent is faster. Thanks for seeding.

Jesús Leganés Combarro avatar

Is the Pixel source code published somewhere? And is there any APT repo I could be able to use?

Simon Long avatar

All the source can be accessed via apt-get source – it’s all in standard Debian packages. We also have a GitHub repo at http://github.org/raspberrypi/

Jack Reynolds avatar

This is going to be much bigger than Raspberry Pi. The genie is out of the box…

MrHarcombe avatar

Just had a thought – this would be an awesome image to use on my Chromebook with Crouton!

Simon Long avatar

Only if you have an x86-based Chromebook, though – it won’t run on the ARM-based ones.

RogueM avatar

on the other hand it’s gairly straightforward to install stuff from the Raspbian repo on top of a debian chroot ;-)

spock avatar

awesome! exactly what i wanted. i even suggested it in the forum. :)

rudolph avatar

I think this is a very interesting project.

Could you provide a sha1 or sha256 hashsum of the image on this page?

a file containing the sha1 hashsum is available but the files from there are transferred via http.
Thus it would be very nice if the hashsum were availble on this site which can be transferred via https.

Thank you very much for your great work on the raspberry pi ecosystem.

rudolph avatar

Thank you very much.

Ancient-Geek avatar

the instructions also work for XENforCentOS-6.4. <>. installing also helps to make things clearer, in lieu of . I now have 23 virtual client machines. The virtualization is HVM :-( PVM would be nicer. Where is rc_gui? (screen resolution) /boot/config.txt doesn’t seem to do much for screen resolution. Sure would be nice to virtualize GPIO. Maybe I could create an ICE (In Circuit Emulator) for the Python GPIO library? Thanks for building this platform.

Ancient-Geek avatar

the dd command looks like if=/dev/cdrom of=/dev/xada bs=1M. the only real downside is I can’t move my Python code around – no CIFS which interconnects my Androids, Windows Servers, CentOS-6&7, Fedora, Debian VM’s, and Raspbian machines. Oh well, it’s in beta state. I can wait.

Kev Partner avatar

Fantastic news – I have a 6 year old laptop that’s gathering dust. Time for a new lease of life!

Adam avatar

You could have used Lubuntu for that old PC for ages!

Dan avatar

This is excellent news. Now I can bring back from the dead old school laptops and deploy them in the classroom. I can also create an OS version in Virtual Box so every student can learn how to Pi! Merry Christmas.

George Birbilis avatar

would be nice if you had some social sharing buttons here to easily spread such interesting news

Björn avatar


Will this later be possible to make a clean install on harddrive?

Can the parallel port be accessed directly in memory for hardware projects?

Egon Rath avatar

How to: Install to HDD (as the only OS)

– The USB Stick you boot from is /dev/sdb
– The internal HDD is /dev/sda
Commands are given in double quotation marks.

1. Boot it from USB/DVD
2. Transfer the entire stick to your drive:
2.1. “sudo bash”
2.2. “dd if=/dev/sdb of=/dev/sda bs=1M”
3. Reboot without the stick, should boot from internal HDD_
3.1 “reboot”
4. Resize the Partition:
4.1. “sudo bash”
4.2. “fdisk /dev/sda”
4.3. print partitions with “p”
4.4. write down the beginning of partition 2
4.5. delete partition 2 with “d”, then “2”
4.6. create a new parition with “n”, primary partition, starting at the location from 4.4
4.7. write with “w”
5. Reboot:
5.1. “reboot”
6. Resize the filesystem on /dev/sda2 to fill the disk:
6.1. “sudo bash”
6.2. “resize2fs /dev/sda2”

Menno Harzing avatar

In VirtualBox I have mounted the iso as an image.
To install to disk change the following:

Replace “dd if=/dev/sdb of=/dev/sda bs=1M”
with “dd if=/dev/sr0 of=/dev/sda bs=1M”

alex avatar

deto 4 kvm,
in Ubuntu 16.04 unter KVM 4G (1,3 + 2,6) persistend
qcow2 ist jetzt exportierbar.

Das Systemm geht dann spaeter auf dem Gateway Labtop ano 1998. ;-) ist aktuell moch unter Ubuntu 10

Gruss Alexander

John avatar

I’m eager to try this with a very old laptop (nonPEA). I think I’ll use gui program, gparted to resize the hard drive.

Egon Rath avatar

I would strongly recommend you to use the command line fdisk as you need to make ABSOLUTELY sure that the partition starts at the same Offset as the original one (as there’s an existing filesystem on it)

Frans Overkleeft avatar

Followed these instructions to install on a virtual machine under Hyper-V manager. Worked like a charm. I don’t know whether the delete and recreate of partition two is necessary. I can’t see a difference in partition 2 before and after recreation

NKT avatar

That’s not what you are doing! The steps there are to remove the second partition, then expand the first one to fill the space that one and two once had.

[Original Partition 1][Old Partition 2]
[Newly e x p a n d e d partition one!!]

(Hopefully that worked – HTML can be a pain as whitespace gets eaten. But those two lines should have the ] aligned, to show they are now the same size.)

Anonymous avatar

These directions do NOT WORK. This is a livecd and these directions were clearly whipped up from some other OS.

The directions make no mention of the the fact that mount persistence overrides all of this, or do you have to boot and select option #3 no persistence? Either way, won’t work.

I’ve tried every permutation and this simply will NOT run properly from a hard drive and should be stated that way and this comment should be taken DOWN stating it can be!

Anonymous avatar

I’ve got this running just great in a VMware environment. However, we need real proper working instructions on how WITH THIS BUILD to properly put it into a virtual disk and then, using the current menu, adjust it with it’s mount persistence stuff to properly run from a HDD instead of USB/DVD.

It’s running, but via mounted squashfs persistence carryover from the USB. The above dd commands would be proper if not for this dist build, it’s boot command lines that already hard-map/mount to SDA1 and SDA2 and interfere with those instructions, etc.

So, I’m just not enough of a Linux guru someone jump in with what works so that after all the partition stuff, you can run MOUNT and see one large partition that isn’t just a mapped SQUASHFS to a flat file for persistence and then I’ll add it and write up instructions start to finish for proper virtualization of it with all drivers etc.

eeg avatar

I got this running in vmware fusion on a mac as well but without any persistence. I can’t figure out how to make it see another partition on the vdisk or find it on a second vdisk and use it.

Micethrow avatar


I used Virtual Box’s CLI to convert iso to VMDK (VDI is possible as well) :

VBoxManage convertfromraw 2016-12-13-pixel-x86-jessie.iso pixel.vmdk –format VMDK

I’m using OS X but Virtual Box command line should be available on other systems.


Mark Star avatar

Your polite 23 line response on how to install to Hard drive shows why Linux will always be Linux. There should be an option- Click here to Install. O’Well
I gave this a try it works great on my IBM Thinkpad R40. Yeah, I went way back. It does NOT see the internal WIFI nor a USB WIFI. not a big deal for me but still O’well.
I will like to install this when able, Maybe WIFI will work at that point


This is no worse that Windows 10 which does not recognise some older hardware.

Running off a hard-drive is an un-supported configuration, it worked fine for me on an old ASUS netbook.

I am sure a small amount of Googling will find a driver for your wifi.

Roy Stefanussen avatar

Keeping in mind that this is an unofficial hack to an experimental release.. I’ve tried this on a couple machines, and both times I just used:

sudo cp /dev/sr0 /dev/sda

Reboot, and found the entire drive used, 1.3G for sda1 and the rest for sda2, no need to re-size anything.

aj avatar

Thanks Roy. Worked like a charm!

Anonymous avatar

Yep, but you guys apparently don’t care that it is NOT really writing to a REAL sda2 partition and apparently through all these comments simply execute a MOUNT command before the “it’s easy” comments……do it and paste it here – it’s mounting sda2 via it’s USB flashdrive based boot to SQUASHFS flat file and NOT truly to a EXT3 or EXT4 formatted partition – the way it be to simply have this thing boot off a HDD.

Those of you commenting that you ran a CP clearly do not understand that you are still copying over several LIVECD build aspects that are still running via your HD that make it run as a LIVECD and not a real HDD install.

I’m trying to help folks get this done correctly there is absolutely NO reason this awesome build can or should not be able to be run from a HDD easily – like I said I rsync’d it from the DVD/USB like you and in 2 min had it running virtualized with everything working in only a few min – but under the hood it is NOT allowing a true EXT3/4 HDD partition run and the SQUASHFS mount that fakes it doesn’t make it so. :)

And I agree, easy to CP it or rsync it…..so why is it so “unsupported” (or apparently impossible) then to run off a HDD from real (NON-SQUASHFS) EXT formatted partitions when 90% of hardware just might have a HDD even older PCs and why do this mounting to a nested SQUASHFS when for performance, recovery, and usage reasons be so much better to change the boot flags, do a 2 min CP or rsync from the DVD/USB and have a REAL either single SDA1 EXT3 partition or a REAL sda1&2 EXT3 partition?

Maybe the DEVs or someone that really understands what’s happening under the hood so we can post an amended version of Egon Rath’s steps above for a method to run it natively off EXT3/4 partitions with no “persistence” carry-over stuff from the USB/DVD live build.

Simon Long avatar

I’d personally suggest people not to try hacked installs to hard drive; I think it’s safe to say we’ll be doing further work on this next year, and that will almost certainly include a proper install version. This would be based on a standard Debian install disc with the PIXEL changes rather than the live image, I think, which should then install using the same process as vanilla Debian.

Anonymous avatar

Thanks for replying Simon!

Is there any reason you guys couldn’t just give us a couple quick pointers on how to make the adjustments now?

I ask because it’s really only a couple changes I would think. I agree a full Debian dist with Pixel, etc. is the way to go; However, if for community testing and DEV (the real reason you released it publicly now before that full dist, anyway right?) we are already able to simply copy the liveCD build to HDD (especially virtualized) and it actually DOES run pretty darn well……

For you guys to help us with the seemingly couple steps to change the boot and fix the SQUASHFS mount/PERSISTENCE process (as you would in a standard, non-LIVECD build) IMO might help with what you could benefit from anyway prior to that full Debian Pixel build which is real-world pre-release non-live build testing from the community, right?

Just an idea but I think it might help get you there quicker and in better shape to allow the community to stay involved in the process!

Simon Long avatar

I can’t tell you because I genuinely don’t know the answer! We haven’t even looked at an install version yet, so you know more about this than we do; all we have done is to respin the standard Debian live ISO with our changes applied over the top.

We will be looking at an install version next year, but we have literally not even looked at it yet; we were seeing how the live image was received before we decided whether to go forward with this.

Emma L. Mack avatar

Thank you very much for your step by step processes it worked like a charm :)

Bob Buchanan avatar

This worked perfectly for me. Installed on a T61. Ethernet, but no WiFi on the internal card. If anyone has an idea how to get it working, I’m all ears.

Bob Buchanan avatar

Oops. Switch on the front of the t61. Doh!

Manuel Tijerino avatar

This would be great to try and run on virtual box too. Great Christmas present.

Simon Long avatar

It works fine under VirtualBox in our testing.

Gwen avatar

OOH, that was EXACTLY what I was going to ask!

Gary Gate avatar

Booting the .iso image in VirtualBox worked fine on my MacBook Pro mid-2010, but there is no network connection. Any hints?

Simon Long avatar

Ah, the joys of networking under VirtualBox… From memory, you need to configure VirtualBox with a virtual network adapter which is then shared with that of the local machine. It’s nowhere near as easy as you might hope; I’m sure it’s been done for very good reasons, but it is a pain! https://www.virtualbox.org/manual/ch06.html will tell you far more than you ever wanted to know about this – best of luck!

FuzzyRoll avatar

I will try this on my latitude 2120.

Love the PIXEL desktop!

Peter Jones avatar

Will you be moving away from LXDE, as I understanding this has been Superseded by LXQt?

Simon Long avatar

No plans to do so at present – LXDE works very well for our purposes; it’s mature and stable and we’ve heavily customised it for our requirements.

Newer isn’t always better…

Doug Coulter avatar

If ever a “+1” or “like” button was needed – here’s your example.
We love you just the way you are.
Thanks for this, it’s great.
Of course, we want a real install…

Luca Trifan avatar

The download link does not work

Alan Mc (Irish Framboise) avatar

Fantastic! Thank you. It’s going to be very exciting to see how this take off.

I think you’ve just solved my Win10 laptop slowdown problem. Best of all worlds.

Bonnes fêtes à tous – Season’s greetings !

Alex Enkerli avatar

My thoughts exactly, on the Win10 slowdown. My 2014 Lenovo Flex 2 15 laptop runs slow as molasses on Win10, compared to my 2011 Mac mini running either macOS or Ubuntu-MATE. Hoping this version of Raspbian will work well enough to make that laptop usable. Can also make it easier to reproduce some RasPi experiments on different machines. And PIXEL is indeed a pretty neat desktop.

Alan Mc (Irish Framboise) avatar

Wow! Replying to you @AlexEnkerli from my ASUS laptop booted from a USB =oD Feel so much better now!

Richard avatar

This excellent. :)
My subscription to MagPi must have run out as not seen my usual copy in the postbox. Better sort / check that now.

I’m using Linux Mint 18 simply because it was the closest to Pixel I could get. Have been wanting this for a long time. A single consistent platform based on Linux. Was once Ubuntu but then they went all crazy with the desktop.

Having said that, my desktop PC is a bit of a monster, maybe I can put together a 64bit build???

I’ve had done it once before for a different distro but it is a lot of work. I have failed more times than succeeded.

Simon Long avatar

In theory, creating an x64 version is just a question of applying the PIXEL changes on top of Debian-x64 rather than Debian-x86; it’s probably a lot easier for us to do it than for you to try! Don’t quote me on this (and I’m certainly not promising anything or suggesting a timescale), but if this does turn out to be something people want, we will probably create an x64 build at some point ourselves.

Richard avatar

Thanks for the feedback Simon. Yes, it would make a lot of sense to wait for you guys to make it happen. :) There is a chain of trust and downloading an x64 from the foundation is always going to feel better than from some monkey like me who spend months on doing it and may not update it. :)

But I may reacquaint myself with the Linux build games over the xmas break. I doubt I’ll get very far but will give me something to do. My updated weather project is almost done.

Hope you and the team have a good xmas.

scruss avatar

Yes, and x86_64 version would be great! I am getting very annoyed with Ubuntu’s random changes to the UI.

Chelo avatar

X64 would be awesome to have! Keep up the good work guys, you are awesome! ^^

Richard avatar

Simon and Eben,

Very well done indeed guys. This kind of thing is a great boost and will help the Raspberry Pi usage. I look forward to a x64bit version to run on my myriad of older PCS. I am so tired of PC’s running bad Windows software that only gets more and more instrusive, constantly changing look and feel with very little new functionality so that usoft can keep selling software.

Funny thing is that to get the (~8 years old) wireless D-link dongle to work under Windows 7, had to install a broken driver that gives 2 errors on boot. Your very nice version of Raspian x86 just runs that Dlink hardware without having to install anything from Dlink.

A couple of comments. I have only had the software installed for a couple of hours on Dec. 25 (a very nice Christmas present indeed!). I can not find the files on my Hard drive from the file manager. This would be a very useful way to transfer a lot of files from my PC to my RPI3. Is there some simple command to let me access those files.

You guys are really boosting the Chromium browser, fine, but not everyone is enamored by Google. How about boosting the Firefox-ESR with the flash player also? I found the Firefox-ESR to work almost as fast as Chromium on the Rpi, and there are those of us who prefer it.

Would you guys please get someone to put an updated version of the Arduino IDE for the Rpi in the repository? The one in the repository (1.0.5, the 2: before is just fluff) is ancient and does not run some of the timing functions accurately, which a later version on the PC does (same code on both with ultrasonic ranger).

Thanks and Merry Christmas!

Eamon McKenna avatar

64bit would be great :)

Jeff Layton avatar

I’ll vote for a 64-bit version as well! I’d love to put this on some systems – then they would look and feel like my Pi :)

kneekoo avatar

OK, I just downloaded my Christmas present. :D

Merry Christmas, Raspberry Pi! ;)

Stewart Watkiss avatar

Having this available for x86 is a big bonus. It will allow those that want the familiar PIXEL desktop on a PC and provide easy access to all the programming languages.

Installed on a USB drive will avoid that concern of damaging the config of the family laptop.

Of course something similar was available before in terms of Ubuntu and other Linux distributions, but I can see the advantage of having something with the same look and feel as used on the Raspberry Pi. I also expect this will help introduce more to the advantages of Linux.

pmbuc avatar

Are you planning on making PIXEL installable to a hard drive? I tried it on a Dell Inspiron 1150 (about 14 years or more old) and it runs fine, just takes a long time to boot up from a 2 GD flash drive. I also want to install more apps than I believe the small flash drive will hold.

Simon Long avatar

If enough people think PIXEL on x86 is useful, then yes, we plan to produce an installable version.

Henry Feldman avatar

Please, Please, Please do this. This will allow me to do RPi development on my mac (in parallels) while on the road without having to carry an actual RPi which is somewhat awkward while on the go…

Gordon avatar

This is exactly what I would love as well.. It would be great to have an install, so I can make a Vm and work it on my mac, or hackintosh.

Please please please

SM Gray avatar

I just tried it on an old HP laptop with an AMD X2 Turion that is currently running Ubuntu. Even though I used a bootable DVD which takes a bit longer to load, once it was loaded it ran rings around Ubuntu. I would go for an installable x86_64 version. Any thoughts about developing this for android tablets? I have a couple of old ones lying around.

eeg avatar

Consider an installable version of Pixel x86 and/or x86_64 +1’d :-)

Ethan samosa avatar

I really, really, really want to use this!! I want to switch from Windows to Linux and i already know the PIXEL interface so i’ll be waiting patiently for this!!!

UIbsen avatar

Yes please make and install able version.

s2rt avatar

How many ‘YES, ABSOLUTELY YES please, and hurry up’ votes can I get? :-)

Andrew Gale avatar

This is ace! A usb-to-gpio header gizmo to complement it would be the icing on the cake!!

Robin Newman avatar

maybe Ryan’s RTK.GPIO kickstarter for a USB Raspberry Pi Compatible GPIO header will fit the bill?

Alex Enkerli avatar

Good timing too, as Ryanteck has been making progress with the code…

Alan Mc (Irish Framboise) avatar

I was thinking the same about Ryan’s card.

Ryan Walmsley avatar

Works fine as per latest update. Ideal for switching between Pi and PC for GPIO programming.

Ton van Overbeek avatar

Have you seen this?
Remote GPIO should work with this x86 image.
Of course you need a Pi to actually connect the hardware too (or Ryantecks RTK.gpio when available)

Ben avatar

Pi Zero attached via a USB cable and then pigpio, which is built into Raspian?

Humbug avatar

So far raspbian has always been a set-and-forget distribution for me, now it could work for the family computer as well!

Robin Newman avatar

Tried it on a Pavilion DV6 laqptop. Boots OK, but only get wastebasket on screen (plus background) No menus so cant do anything. Doesn’t boot on my Mac, but works under vmware fusion there.

Simon Long avatar

Might be an issue with the sound hardware crashing the menu bar – try removing the volumealsa plugin.

Open a terminal (Ctrl-Alt-T). Launch Geany to open the lxpanel configuration file – geany ~/.config/lxpanel/LXDE-pi/panels/panel

Find the section which looks like

Plugin {
Config {

Delete it. Save and restart.

Andrew avatar

I had the same error with no menu bar showing on the desktop. As suggested, I removed volumealsa plugin from lxpanel config, and it rebooted to a good desktop with menubar.
Thanks for the fix – now for sound!

Stephen avatar

I have installed Pixel on two usb drives and both drives when first booted only showed screen and waste basket. But after rebooting 2 to 4 times the full desktop came up. Love the persistence on the Pixel. I have used usb with other Linux OSs on usb drives with some sort of persistence, and it has not worked all that well.

Age Bosma avatar

In what way is PIXEL a “… modern user interface …”? I assume you are referring to it’s implementation, not it’s current UI with it’s IxD, both from 1999? ;-)

Simon Long avatar

Perhaps you could constructively suggest what we should do to improve it, rather than simply complaining that you don’t think it is “modern” enough? The Macintosh OS X desktop has not changed in overall design ethos since 2001 – presumably you don’t think that’s “modern” either? Whether a design is “modern” or not is irrelevant – what matters is how well it works and how nice it looks. We happen to think that PIXEL is better than a lot of “modern” Linux desktop environments in both respects…

Peter Jones avatar

I think we have to remember that the Pi although an amazing machine is slow compared to the likes of modern PCs, so the work done in creating a desktop environment in most impressive.

However, I do agree with a few others that the icons look dated compared to the likes of Mint Cinnamon or Korora, but for the education market I don’t see a huge issue with this. I use mine at the Command Line anyway.

yotldt avatar

perhaps wbar 1.3.3 (from 2007) looks more ‘space age’ than a ‘start menu’ type thing ?

Simon Long avatar

I’d not seen wbar – but having just looked at it, it does seem to be a pretty much identical copy of the MacOS dock. Hardly revolutionary, given that was launched in 2001…

We might look at an improved application launcher at some point, but it’s very hard to improve on the classic “start menu” in terms of intuitive usability.

Age Bosma avatar

Trust me, that’s not me complaining yet ;-) It’s amazing how the MacOS X UI from 2001 even looks more modern than PIXEL’s, now that you mention it ;-P

But please, don’t take a simple comment like that so serious. If the UI works for your intended audience and they are happy with it then you’ve reached your goal. That’s all that matters. I was merely surprised that a look, feel and concept that is existing for a long time already now was labelled as being modern. In the end, there’s no need for it to be modern.

Dougie Lawson avatar

Can we get a permanent link to the download for this on https://www.raspberrypi.org/downloads/?

And can we get it torrented like the other bits of Raspbian/PIXEL?

What’s the smallest USB stick needed to fit this (and still be bootable)?

Simon Long avatar

There will be a permanent link somewhere (once we’ve worked out where best to put it so people don’t get confused between it and the Pi version!), and we will also put it on torrents in due course.

It runs fine on a 4GB stick; in theory you should get away with a 2GB, but we haven’t tried it. It definitely won’t work on a 1GB stick…

Dougie Lawson avatar

Thanks Simon.

I’ve finally got a copy. I’m going to give it a go in Oracle’s VirtualBox directly from the ISO – just for laughs.

Richard Reed avatar

I tried that yesterday, It worked great! Ran Pixel in virtual box right from the ISO! Then I dumbed it down to 512K RAM and no HDD. Still ran.

Would love a 64b version
Would live an installed veraion

AntonyIndia avatar

I write this booted from a 2 GB Transcend USB stick. Starts up faster than my stock Windows 7 64 Ultimate on this ACER Aspire 7736ZG laptop with 4 GB RAM from HDD.
Etcher didn’t work well for me; Win32image managed and also showed progress.

yotldt avatar

This truly marks yotldt!


♫ junastsw ♫

Alex Enkerli avatar

Every year is the “year of the Linux desktop”. But there might be something to be said about 2016 milestones. Including RasPi3 and PIXEL but also some other Single-Board Computers, distros, and disappointments with mainstream platforms.

Nicolas avatar


What about a PowerPC build?

I’ve got an old 2004 Apple iBook G4 that’s just sitting there…

Vaughn avatar

That would be Heavenly! Please,Please,Please!

Juan Rodriguez avatar

Yes please PowerPC build !!

Aravind avatar

Powerpc please, pretty please. I have a mac mini lying idle

Paul Duncan avatar

Likewise, I know of a couple of PowerPC Macs that could definitely have their useful life extended with this.

Silv avatar

Yes! PPC support would be great!

tai viinikka avatar

Hey, Mac people with G4 cpus — there’s no particular reason to wait on the Foundation in this case. Just get yourself a straight-up Debian install and run the LXDE desktop. Simon’s work on PiXEL is great but you’ll quickly realize that the absence of that work is no reason at all to leave a nice old box unused.

Install manual at:
Installers/images at:

Works fine on my Aluminum Powerbook G3.

tai viinikka avatar

Er… I meant G4!

Andrew Oakley avatar

Bittorrent – for when your website is Slashdotted. Magnet URI – for when your .torrent file is also Slashdotted.

Magnet URI for the Pixel x86 ISO is:

Very much looking forward to playing with this under VirtualBox. Should make it easier to prep Cotswold Jam workshop tutorial print-outs on the go on my laptop. Currently I do a lot of screenshot work using VNC, but this is a lot more portable.

Pete Stevens avatar

No sign of knocking us over just yet. We’ve can shift traffic to a CDN if we need to, but we can fairly easily deliver an image per second on the existing hosting setup.

Richard Sierakowski avatar

Hi Simon,

I would like to fully support your statements, policy and direction of development. Many people find creating improvements in established software too difficult and prefer to go for a “new” version and suffer the consequent years of testing to attain the stability of the previous version. Not that I am pointing fingers, in any way, at Microsoft.

This is an excellent “winter festival” present for me and more importantly a tremendous present for the worlds linux community. Hopefully the existing 11M RasPi users will help to leverage the PIXEL UI into general use.

I would certainly welcome a 64 bit x86 installable version but this should be seen only as a necessary step to enable migration of linux onto the OpenPower CPU platforms which have no back doors. The reason is that Intel “i” series CPUs have a ARM based Machine Management Unit and that MMU can access all the main memory and communicate via the NIC to the outside world. This is a total back door which Intel says is safe because it is encrypted with their keys. After VW can corporates be trusted not to compromise their customers? AMD incorporates a similar system. Which leaves the RasPi as one of the few really secure computing platforms. Well done to all involved and I am sure those users in oppressed countries will be able to sleep more soundly.

All the best to every one.


Ken avatar

Sounds great. I’m up for a hard drive install.

Will omxplayer work?

Bruce avatar

Fan-tas-tic. I DVD booted this on an old Dell Latitude C610 with just 256M of memory (add to upgrade list). The HD died as I was doing it so I replaced it with one lying around. Rather than trying to find a 20 year old windows to install I definitely wish to install this on it. Chromium does not work because SSE2 instructions are not supported on this Pentium III, but it will be great to be a keyboard and screen to VNC into my development Pi rather than a monitor and keyboard. Or I could just mount a Pi on the back of the screen to be an upgraded system.

Michael Lusiano avatar

when the HDD installable version available, I’ll change all my office’s client PCs (13 PCs to be exact) to Raspbian PIXEL….

san-claudio avatar

To install it in French on a Dell D420, Live-DVD has worked …???

John Stap avatar

Thanks for that.

However, the X40 is according to me not the finest laptop ever, that honor goes to the X22!!!!

Chris Menon avatar

It’s so fast! Like, really fast!

Kevin avatar

Hi Simon and Serge, I like it a lot, would also like a installable version once you’ve gone stable. :-)
As a bug report, on two laptops I’ve tried HP/Compaq nc6400 and a DELL Inspiration mini 1018, on both WiFi didn’t work, two red x in the task bar. :-(. Any logs/reports you’d like?
Regards, Kevin.

Simon Long avatar

On the Dell, its wifi card requires a non-free driver which isn’t in the standard Debian image – see https://wiki.debian.org/InstallingDebianOn/Dell/InspironMini10v.

The NC 6400 has a rebadged Broadcom wi-fi card which doesn’t seem to work with the Broadcom driver we install in the image – https://forums.opensuse.org/showthread.php/387373-HP-nc6400-and-wireless.

Not sure how easy / possible those will be to fix, but we’ll see what we can do…

Kevin avatar

Thanks for the swift reply Simon, I’ll have a look at the Dell Inspiron link and see if I can get it working, I’ll report back.
If you could get the other WiFi driver going, I’d be very impressed ;-)
Thanks again, Kevin.

Kevin avatar

Hi Simon,
The link to broadcom, on the page you linked, returned 404 :-( so I did more digging and found this.
It seems that the Inspiron 1018 uses a RTL8188CE chip.
which installs the rtl8192ce-dkms driver, but I have been unable to find or install this, any ideas?
Both the Inspiron 1018 and HP nc6800 have Ubuntu Mate installed and WiFi works fine, so there must be drivers out there somewhere; I’d prefer PIXEL though. :-)

dtl avatar

(if) you can list the modules loded
on the mint install with working wifi

you can know how and why it is working

see also
the ‘lsmod’ command

gtechn avatar

Awesome! Truly amazing. Now we just need Raspberry Pi 4, and people who just do internet browsing will hopefully stop buying regular PCs altogether.

Will you make a sub-forum for this PC version? It needs one.

One day, when Pixel desktop starts taking over, Microsoft will look at this as treason. :) Or maybe not.

Simon Long avatar

If this product becomes a permanent offering (and looking at the reception so far, that is looking likely), we’ll certainly add a dedicated sub-forum for it at some point.

Shridhar avatar

To me it seems like reinventing the wheel. Have you not heard of slax or puppy linux distros.

If we are porting this just for fun and pride, I am with you!!

eeg avatar

Have you not heard of the Raspberry Pi. It’s this great little computer that suddenly made single board, cheap but capable computers a real thing. You know they have this operating system on it called Raspbian. And then they improved the interface and called it PIXEL. The big selling point here is that PIXEL x86 allows you to share an environment between Windows/Mac and that little computer that’s become a big deal.

I think this is a great present and quite forward thinking. Are there other minimal desktops that run on x86? Of course, but they don’t all run on Pi hardware hence the present offering to create a cross platform capability. Bravo!!

Allen avatar

What would be interesting would be a version that would boot an iPad from say the camera connector.

ukscone avatar

works exactly on my laptop as it does on my Pi3 e.g. wifi setup app doesn’t work so i’d say you have replicated the experience exactly :)

seriously though looks good.

Dave avatar

The download links don’t seem to be correct. They’re not working at any rate. Takes me to a page that talks about the various Pi models and some FAQs, but no download or additional download links.

Chris avatar

Excellent work – thank you. Writing this from Chromium on Pixel on a 2GB USB stick on an old Toshiba Netbook with Intel Atom processor. Performance is very slick and usable. It also runs videos using VLC well, though so far I have not figured out how to get sound working (any thoughts?). Given this all fits and works in under 2GB including LibreOffice, it would be great to have a similar distro for the Raspberry Pi. Full Rasbian is >4GB, and the Lite version obviously has no GUI. Something in the middle with a GUI, but without Wolfram, Minecraft etc would be a great addition to the standard Raspian images. Thank you.

Simon Long avatar

Sound is one of the areas that is a bit flakey – we’re at the mercy of the maze of twisty passages that is ALSA, combined with any number of pieces of third-party audio hardware and the associated Linux drivers.

Just to check the obvious, have you right-clicked the volume icon and tried all the devices which appear in the list? Certainly on Macs, the default audio driver doesn’t work, but the alternatives do.

Chris avatar

Thanks Simon. Just got the sound working. Right clicking on the volume icon, the only device listed was HDA Intel, which was ticked. Digging further from the applications menu under Preferences / Audio Device Settings I needed to turn the Headphones on and Speakers off to get sound coming from the PC speakers (for no obvious reason!). Hope this helps anyone else puzzling this out! As I said this is a very slick and quick implementation for use on an old PC. Sure there are lots of other lite Linux distros available, but given the huge installed base of the Raspberry Pi I think it is a brilliant idea to clone this for the PC.

Richard avatar


The audio speaker icon is not in the menu bar and I don’t know how to get it there.

I had to delete lines using the work around fix from the panel file that you suggested to get the menu bar to appear at all. I get sound in YouTube when I use the sound mixer app to turn on everything. Unfortunately, I have to keep the audio device settings shortcut on the desktop near the menu bar in order to adjust audio. I would really like to get the speaker icon working on the menu bar.

PS I just downloaded the Arduino app and used it on a temperature and pressure sensor running on an Arduino, which has an LCD backlit display, and it also gives the correct numbers when running on the serial port monitor!! Great to see that we can at least talk/listen USB serial to Arduino with this x86 version!! Awesome, keep it up! I have lots of old PC’s only retired because they could not keep up with the changes needed to run later versions of Windows, when they could run versions of Raspian. Really, really nice.

Simon Long avatar

I’m going to be investigating the speaker / audio issues in the New Year – at the moment, I don’t know exactly what is causing the problem, but my suspicion is it is something to do with certain audio hardware whose ALSA support is flakey. We’ll try to get it working.

Afdhal Atiff Tan avatar

Any plans for fast gpio implementation?

Simon Long avatar

Err – most PCs and Macs don’t actually have GPIOs, so I’m not sure how that would work…

hans lepoeter avatar

Old pc’s might have a parallel printer port. That is certainly usable as io lines. Ive done that many times.

tim Rowledge avatar

pigpiod interface can certainly be used on x86 and then pigpiod actually run on a spare Pi. Easy.

eeg avatar

Late 2016 Macbook Pro “15
Has Intel HD Audio
PIXEL running in VMWare Fusion 8.5.3
PIXEL only show Ensoniq AudioPCI as an audio device. No other devices/alternatives

No Sound.

Between sound and printers I don’t know which drives me more nuts to setup. BTW this runs great otherwise. Just no audio.

Mike Mason avatar

Running it as VM on windows 7 (Oracle VM Virtual Box) – runs a treat and allows me to treat it like an SD card – if I screw it up – delete and re-build.


Paul Winwood avatar

There may be a problem with the Nouveau driver and older NVIDIA chipsets. According to my tests NV50 is OK but the about menu on Chromium (and Microsoft Code when installed) does not display correctly on NV40 (for example my older Acer 5630 laptop). I have had this problem with Nouveau before and needed to use the appropriate NVIDIA driver. Otherwise very nice!

Peter Medus avatar

Okay, so my Eee Pc 4g laptop booted and ran PIXEL fine for about 20 minutes up until a few minutes ago. Upon trying to shutdown, An error box came up saying ‘Failed to execute child process “lxde-pi-shutdown-helper” (Input/output error)’. Similar input output error messages come up with other programs. The programs I can run are LXterminal, the task manager and the file manager. If I try sudo shutdown -h now in the terminal it just says shutdown not found. I tried using Ctrl+Alt+f1 and putting the shutdown command in there but more input/output errors came up. I think these problems are because my USB drive (It’s a Maplin 4GB one) isn’t working? Preferably, I would like to be able to shutdown safely but I feel like that would be far fetched in the circumstances. Any suggestions would be helpful. Thanks!

Serge Schneider avatar

That’s the sort of behaviour I’ve seen when the USB device was removed. It’s possibly that there’s a problem with the USB device or the controller that’s causing it to drop.

Simon Long avatar

Just pull the power – probable worst case is you will have corrupted the image on your USB drive and will need to reflash the drive

Peter Medus avatar

Thanks for the quick reply! I have cutted the power and turned back on again. It has successfully booted back into PIXEL again. I probably need to buy a new USB stick :/ Anyway, thank you for making the Debian+PIXEL image available to us! An installer would be really cool, and I would love to see that in future!

gerry avatar

Your thumb drive may be able to recover i have had several drives stop working after using them as linux boot dives i have gotten them to work by using gparted in a linux distro and deleting the partition (Be extremely careful that your thumb dive is selected and not your internal drive.) them applying and create new partition table then applying and creating a new fat32 partition and applying. This method has fixed several dives for me and they are still working however your success may vary. Side note i have found that many of new WD portable hard drives i have gotten needed this to work as well.

Joseph Kesselman avatar

Outdated pcs are sometimes available for a song. I know several people who rescue and revamp them. This opens up another possible configuration…

Jeff Andersson avatar

Is there any system requirements or can I run it on any X86 PC?

StarMariner avatar

Just a thought, pi in the cloud? I’m dreaming here, but virtual pi’s based on x86 on Azure or other Vcpu machines clouds linked to ARM physical pi’s and virtual box pi’s all distributed/clustered in a school network to make a super computer available anywhere any time.
As said being able to login on a home PC great. but if the kids go to grannys and forget there pi , then they could login to the cloud and carry on. This would be something like iCloud with handoff. So thinking big here. Great news, I’m just waiting to play with it in virtual box and load it into a Ramdisk.

Pete Stevens avatar

We’re in private beta of real dedicated Raspberry Pis hosted in the cloud – no emulation.

[email protected]

if you’d like more information.

Chris Whelan avatar

Can anyone tell me if this uses a PAE or non-PAE kernel please?

Serge Schneider avatar

Either. It detects whether PAE is available and automatically selects the appropriate kernel.

Chris Whelan avatar

Thank you Serge

nancy avatar

Pixel works great from a usb stick on an old Dell inspiron mini 10. It connects to the internet and is quick. How can I get it to accept tapping from the touchpad? The mouse and keyboard settings don’t include a touchpad.

Mathew Thomas avatar

I had to add some options to the synaptic config file. You’ll find it in /usr/share/X11/xorg.conf.d
There is some information on https://wiki.archlinux.org/index.php/Touchpad_Synaptics
Good luck.

Joe Ressington avatar

Now that PIXEL is widely available for X86 machines and not just the Pi, I worry that Google might consider taking action over violation of their Pixel trademark. Is this something that you have considered?

Simon Long avatar

Our use of the term PIXEL does not violate the trademarks of any third party, including Google.

All About Code (@all_about_code) avatar

Here is my guide on getting started on using a Raspberry Pi to simulate GPIO pins using GPIOZero and PIXEL x86 http://www.allaboutcode.co.uk/single-post/2016/12/21/GPIOZero-Remote-GPIO-with-PIXEL-x86

Wayne Tempel avatar

Absolutely brilliant! Thanks

Gfetters avatar

I have Raspian up and running on an Acer Aspire One 1.6ghz atom processor with 1 gig of memory. It works pretty well. My mind is racing with all kinds of ideas for this. I love the idea of developing on the laptop and pushing to a pi in IOT devices. We need a USB to GPIO breakout board. Something that we could plug into a usb port that would give us some gpio pins we could access from python with the laptop.

Darren Townsend avatar
Elfen avatar

This is great! But I have a complaint. My Mac does not have a GPIO! (j/k)

Egon Rath avatar

Thank you very very much for building a Debian based PIXEL Desktop for regular PCs. Everyone i know loves the PIXEL Desktop but the PI is simply not powerful enough to be a everyday workhorse.

Dimitris Maronidis avatar

So finally there is a reason to keep loving my Mac!

guillaume avatar

If you made an installable iso I would use it on my main pc because I like linux but still haven’t found a distro that fits to my liking.
The LXDE desktop is fast and can do everything the bigger distributions do. I want my computer to be a tool not a toy. I want to click on something and BAM there it is, no waiting.
I think PIXEL has a great selection of apps, tools and has a nice theming compared to the ugly debian and lubuntu.

Matt avatar

This is awesome. I love PIXEL on my RPi3. Next up, can I run it on my Odroid XU4 ?

Tim Hutman avatar

Love it. It seems to run just fine on my Toshiba laptop and netbook ( which has an atom processor ). I’m hoping it will be installable on the hdd soon :-)

derek gassen avatar

I runs fine on my Dell Mini 10v with 2Gb at its native resolution. Haven’t been able to get the dsub/vga cable to talk 1080p to my external monitor yet.

Gareth avatar

Just booted on virtualbox on Win 10, very quick and easy to set up and really fast, thanks.

Guilherme Pontes avatar

For the ones who are searching for a torrent link : http://downloads.raspberrypi.org/pixel_x86/images/pixel_x86-2016-12-13/

Sean Mohrhoff avatar

I would think that if it can breathe new life into anything as old as a x386, there would be an immediate interest. I am, as I have salvaged a DELL Dimesion that didn’t even have a DVD drive, just an IDE CD Drive and IDE Hard Drive. Its a Pentium 4 that even came with the XP key sticker. I have managed to reinstall XP (without SP3) and compared to PIXEL, its like looking at windows with 16 bit graphics. Since I am using recycled IDE DVD drive, its slow as hell and doesn’t really allow for running multiple things. Its also running on 512 MB (I ordered a 2GB kit for the machine).

I can’t wait to try this on my Pi 2 Model B, but I don’t see any instructions for installing PIXEL on an SD card. Will it run off an USB drive on the Pi without anything in the SD slot? Forgive my ignorance, but I am new to everything Linux and looking to set up Linux machines to practice on.

Matt Richardson avatar

The PIXEL desktop environment is already included in the standard download of Raspbian for Raspberry Pi: https://www.raspberrypi.org/downloads/raspbian/ or you can install it with NOOBS: https://www.raspberrypi.org/downloads/noobs/

Milliways avatar

Interesting! I will probably give it a go, although I need another computer like a hole in the head.

HOWEVER I think the Foundation would be better updating/enhancing its documentation. Much is out of date, or just missing – for instance I can not find any instructions for booting NOOBS to a different OS, a question I often see.

PS I know writing new code is MUCH more fun than updating documentation.

Niall Saunders avatar

Hi all at Pi Towers. Having spent a happy afternoon chatting all thing Pi with your JDB, the idea of Pi-on-a-PC seemed to grow on me as the hours passed.
However, having already pushed the Pi3 to its limits in Mathematica – I realise that licensing issues were going to prevent me getting any further with Pixel-PC. Shame.

And I still haven’t been able to find any way of getting a Pi to print to any of my LAN-connected printers. SO, what are the chances of being able to do this with Pixel-PC?

Still, I’ll get a copy downloaded overnight, and see how many of my ancient laptops will run the image tomorrow.

Keep pushing the edges of the envelope (somewhere, there must be a way out of those twisty little passages, all looking the same!!)

Season’s greetings.
Niall (Eben, I’ll let Jonathan come back down to you when he has solved all my PI problems up here!! We should be done by Feruary, maybe March)

Tony avatar


Why don’t you allow to make ping without being superuser?

Regards and nice job!

Dougie Lawson avatar

That can be fixed by re-installing the package. It then does a setcap to set the right permissions.

Clearly the first build of the PIXEL live CD will have some bugs that will get fixed in future versions.

I just need to find a way to encourage my HP Laptop to boot from a USB stick.

Mathew Thomas avatar

I had to use Plop Bootmanager to get my Toshiba satellite to boot from a usb. It took a little research and tinkering. Good luck.

wb7odyfred avatar

The Plop Boot Manager is a small program with unbelievable many features.

Documentation – Download

Here is a list of features, but you can do more…

USB boot without BIOS support (UHCI, OHCI and EHCI)
CD/DVD boot without BIOS support (IDE)
PCMCIA CardBus support to enable boot from USB PC-Cards
Floppy boot
Different profiles for operating systems
Define up to 16 partitions
No extra partition for the boot manager
Hidden boot, maybe you have a rescue system installed and the user should not see that there is another system installed
Boot countdown
Hide partitions
Password protection for the computer and the boot manager setup
Backup of partition table data
Textmode user interface 80×50
Graphical user interface 640×480, 800×600, 1024×786, 1280×1024
MBR partition table edit
Start of the boot manager from harddisk, floppy, USB, CD, DVD
Starting from Windows boot menu
Starting from LILO, GRUB, Syslinux, Isolinux, Pxelinux (network)
It can be used as PCI option ROM in your BIOS
Access the whole USB hard disk (up to 2TB) even when the bios has a 128 GiB limit
You can run the boot manager over the network
Start the network card boot rom from the boot manager to boot from the network


PlopKexec is a Linux Kernel based boot manager for auto detecting and chain loading Linux distributions on USB and CD/DVD drives. You can start PlopKexec from CD, USB or any Linux loader/boot manager. To start PlopKexec from floppy use the 0.3 version because of the size. You can boot Linux from USB even if there is no Bios USB support.

PlopKexec is based on a Linux Kernel and can load only other Linux kernels! PlopKexec is not a fork of kexec-loader.

The Linux distribution detection works only with distributions that are using Syslinux, LILO, GRUB, GRUB2. The distributions can be on FAT, EXT2/3/4 formatted USB drives and on CD/DVD’s. You can easily boot the detected Linux distribution from a menu.

Latest version: 1.4.1

Compiled for i486, Linux Kernel 4.7, 50 MB RAM required.

USB support: USB 1.1, 2.0, 3.0
PC-Card (PCMCIA) and PCI Express is supported

Doug Coulter avatar

Thanks! Pixel is my favorite linux distro, bar none.
Yes, to the 64 bit and installable versions – my whole network ( >15 boxes) will adopt it in a heartbeat. The other xu4 fan (wow, there are two of us) might note that odrobian is fairly similar (not quite as nice) and also pretty fast…so not as much need as for the PC arch. One wonders if with a little work, it being arm and all, one might roll one’s one xu4 pixel…

As a developer for just about all sizes and types computers, tiny to huge, I’ve been frustrated with ubuntu, and even mate’s latest as a bunch of my older tools quit working or being available in the distro repos. (gad, I even use padre for perl…neckbeard is showing) But they all work on pixel (on the pi, I’m downloading now for x86/virtbox). Thanks again, I’ll be back if there’s anything useful to report to you. I agree about the “modern” stuff – I like pixel *because* of what it is.

Eli Bradley avatar

Sorry if this has already been asked, but is PIXEL open source? If so, where is the source repository?

Simon Long avatar

All the source is available using apt-get source. Or we have a GitHub repo at http://github.org/raspberrypi/

Keith avatar

My early 2006 white Macbook (Intel Core Duo based) doesn’t want to boot this image from USB. Maybe I should try a DVD to see if it makes a difference.

Did anyone else with one of these have any luck? It does run Linux Mint o.k.

Keith avatar

I was able to boot from a DVD, connect to Wifi, and use Chromium. I’ll have to see if there was any limitation as far as USB booting on this first Intel based Macbook. If anyone knows anything, please post.

Qwame avatar

I’ve got a black revA macbook that successfully booted form a flashed USB (I used Etcher to make it, from the .iso) after installing the bootmanager rEFInd. Without using a different bootmanager, I don’t think the early intel macbooks can boot from USB.

StephanieClaireV avatar

will it also be possible to flash this into an x86 atom tablet and have a raspberry pi tablet? thanks!

Tim Rowledge avatar

You should find that NuScratch works just fine on this.

Sgtkeebler avatar

Will this work on Intel compute stick? The atom processor one?

Joe H avatar

Love where you guys are going with this. Kudos to the team. I recently loaded Debian in a virtual machine but this will be WAY better and what I wanted to begin with.

Egon Rath avatar

This is becoming BIG. Are you working with upstream to integrate your changes to the components into the main branch?

Jimmy avatar

You guys thought of rebranding Raspbian into Raspberry Pi OS or PIXEL OS? Seems that everyone is calling it PIXEL since it sounds cooler lol.

Simon Long avatar

Technically, PIXEL is the name of the desktop. It’s still Raspbian OS running underneath it – none of this would have been possible without the great work from the team behind Raspbian, and we don’t want to understate their contribution.

Chris Schram avatar

In VirtualBox’s command line tools I converted 2016-12-13-pixel-x86-jessie.iso into an 8 GB vdi file. Booting into the vdi file, I selected “Run with persestence.” This produces an experience very similar to running a “real” pi. For those unfamiliar with the commands necessary to do this, here they are:

cd into the directory where 2016-12-13-pixel-x86-jessie.iso resides.

VBoxManage convertfromraw 2016-12-13-pixel-x86-jessie.iso 2016-12-13-pixel-x86-jessie.vdi
VBoxManage modifymedium 2016-12-13-pixel-x86-jessie.vdi –resize 8192

Chris avatar

I’m a noob… How do you get it to “Run with persestence.” ?

Simon Long avatar

Download this month’s issue of the Magpi – there are full instructions in there. Free download at https://www.raspberrypi.org/magpi/

Stuart Hertzog avatar

On an iMac 7,1 -resize should be –resize according to VirtualBox cli 5.1.12, but it throws an error:

VBoxManage modifymedium [disk|dvd|floppy]
[–type normal|writethrough|immutable|shareable|
[–autoreset on|off]
[–property ]
[–resize |–resizebyte ]
[–move ]

Syntax error: Invalid parameter ‘–-resize’

Paul B avatar

Thanks Chris, your instructions were perfect. I can now run from VirtualBox with ‘persistence’ on my MacBook. Also, just found how to enable Guest Additions for Debian (from YouTube) son can run VB in full screen.

Colin Deady avatar

Very very nice, thank you for this :)

It’ll be useful at DigiMakers to be able to expand the number of computers doing Raspberry Pi stuff.

Giles Booth avatar

This is a great idea. I got it working fine off a 2GB USB stick on an ancient Lenovo S10 IdeaPad netbook – didn’t try audio but wifi worked. As outlined above, my 2015 MacBook Air wouldn’t boot it but does boot in VirtualBox on the Mac. Would love to try this on the heap of old netbooks in school (if they’ve not been thrown out in the holidays!).

Andy avatar

+1 for install option
Would love to have this running for students in VirtualBox with an immutable drive

Luke avatar

If you installed this could you still use Windows on that computer as well as Pixel? Otherwise my mum might kill me ;-/

Simon Long avatar

As long as you boot off the DVD or a USB stick, the Windows install on your computer should be unaffected – it should go back to Windows when you reboot without the DVD or stick.

Luke avatar

Thanks. That is great…

Dougie avatar

I’ve finally encouraged my HP Laptop to boot but it won’t connect by WiFi. I can only see a SSID of “DIRECT-” not my normal two home SSIDs.

What can be done to encourage it to connect?

I’ve tried editing /etc/wpa_supplicant/wpa_supplicant.conf and adding my SSID and psk, but that was a no-go.

Simon Long avatar

Don’t know – it just works on the networks I have tried it on, and we haven’t tampered with the underlying Debian networking or changed the dhcpcd stuff from that which works on Pi.

I’d suggest leaving the wifi menu open for a while (which increases scan frequency) and see what it finds – it may just be slow to detect your SSIDs.

ben avatar

Just a quick check, is the HP WiFi b only?
Have you set your network up as g or n only?
Still not sure why it wouldn’t see it, but might give you a hint.

The DIRECT- sounds like Smart TV, Sony?

Duncan Robertson avatar

Unfortunately, only seeing the desktop background image and the waste bin icon.

Not a task bar in sight

Simon Long avatar

This seems to be a symptom of your sound hardware not playing nicely as an ALSA device. To work around it, you need to remove the volumealsa plugin from the taskbar. See the instructions at https://www.raspberrypi.org/forums/viewtopic.php?f=63&t=168852#p1085521 – you’ll need to be running from a USB stick rather than the DVD to get the changes to save across reboots.

exartemarte avatar

An interesting development – I shall certainly give it a whirl and will watch its development with interest. That said, though, it will take a lot to drag me away from the nice, stable Linux Mint that I run on my PC and my laptop.

exartemarte avatar

There again, the download link doesn’t work and it doesn’t seem to available on the Downloads page. Ho, hum …

exartemarte avatar

Seems to be working now. Previously it took me to a page announcing the release of the Pi 3!

exartemarte avatar

Runs okay on my Lenovo laptop. On the Dell desktop (wired Ethernet) it seems to run and the browser seems to find website addresses but then it won’t transfer any data.

Robert Marsh avatar

This looks very interesting. If I put it on a pc and configure it how I want, would it be possible to then copy that configuration to my actual Raspberry pi?

Simon Long avatar

Depends what you mean by “copy that configuration”. If you make changes to config files (such as those in ~/.config) then yes, those should copy straight across to the Pi. But if you mean installing applications or making other code changes, then no, these won’t be portable to the Pi as they will be x86-based code rather than the ARM code required for the Pi.

Frank avatar

You guys absolutely rock. I have on old Asus 900 that is about to get a new lease of life.

holtalanm avatar

Would love to install this as a desktop environment on my ubuntu VM. Is there a PPA for this?

Simon Long avatar

Afraid not – this is all in Debian debs only; it’s designed to run on vanilla Debian rather than any derivatives. Unless you are running LXDE as the desktop environment on your Ubuntu install, it’s not going to work anyway.

Dougie Lawson avatar

Prepare for the deluge. You’ve just been Slashdotted.

Jammy Lammar avatar

It’s nice to see a link to software that can make bootable usb’s but for those of us carrying a keyring of usb’s is there any software that would be recommended for making a single bootable usb that can boot into a menu that allows you to select from multiple live images/iso’s to boot from?
I read instructions on how to do this once before but only managed to make 2 usb sticks unreadable and a 3rd that looked right on the surface but failed to boot into any iso image except a windows install image I threw on there for haha’s…

Not looking for persistance, a second usb drive on my keychain can be used to save data between sessions. Just want to go from a whole bunch of different bootable usb’s to 1 or 2.

John avatar

You might try the Etcher utility

Mansome avatar

Is there a way to upgrade an existing version of Debian to use this? Like list out the apt-get packages that need to turn a non-gui debian into this.

Simon Long avatar

Not trivially, particularly if you aren’t already running X; you’d need to add a lot of packages and you’d have a very high chance of ending up with something that didn’t quite work. All the relevant deb packages are in the apt repo at archive.raspberrypi.org; you probably need most of the i386 ones…

Ed avatar

Does it work with a touchscreen?

Simon Long avatar

Not unless your touchscreen has Debian drivers, in which case if you install them, then yes it should.

Walter Cardozo avatar

There is a way to persist the keyboard configuration ?
I use US keyboards.

Cristiano Venancio avatar

Congratulations on the job!
Is it possible to install (restore) on an android tablet? If so how?
Happy Holidays

mimi avatar

Could it work on INTEL CELERON 666 with 128MB DRAM ?

Simon Long avatar

I think it’s unlikely – you probably need at least 512MB. But you could try it and let us know!

Roy Stefanussen avatar

I tested it on a 2001 VIA C3 with 256 MB of RAM. This CPU is about on par with a Celeron 400 MHz and does not do PAE, so very few distros will even boot on it.

Booted PIXEL from CDROM and installed to HDD without a hitch. :)

Performance seems less than an original Pi, but Netsurf (hidden menu entry) got me on the Internet.

Yerba1 avatar

Super! I’ll get out my mini-hp when I get home and bring it back to life! My guess is that you’re aware of the “OpenAps” diabetes hack that’s changing lives! This cross machine capability plays right into that sector. Thanks again!

tom martin avatar

Using the vboxmanage method works!! Creates a ready to use VirtualBox disk image with persistance that works!! Boots on my win7 box very fast!! Thanks to all!!

Paul avatar

Works good on a dell D630 2.4 ghz core 2 duo and 2 gb of memory. Everything works as it should including the onboard wifi.


Thanks – Just what I need, I do a lot of motorcycling touring where space is at a premium, I have two old netbooks which have the exact form factor I want.

I had just tried Peppermint Linux which made them usable. But with Pixel the experience was great. The netbooks have around ~1.8 GHz Atom processors and 2GB RAM.

My ancient IBM Thinkpad A22 is the next beast to test.

Quick thoughts on 64 bit version. 64 bit code runs slower due to larger executable and instructions. Since the need to address >4 $GB RAM is not great it may not buy much.

That being said I have been running SuSe 64 bit on my Pi 3 and it performs well.

Luis Alcaraz avatar

Running succesfully inside a Vmware Fusion virtual machine.
After running (as root) the command “dd if=/dev/sr0 of=/dev/sda bs=1M” and restarting without the ISO attached with Persistence mode, the image resize it itself to the 20GB I have configured for the virtual machine.

The only downsize is the screen resolution but I’m trying to figure that out while I type this.

Luis Alcaraz avatar

I just know how to do it.
on a console or terminal just type the command xrandr and will output the available modes for the connected displays. In my case the connected display is named Virtual1 (as I’m running into a virtualized computer inside of VmWare Fusion). Then, just type xrandr with the output of the screen connected and the resolution mode needed. Here is an example for my virtual environment, but should work with any virtual or physical computer.

pi@raspberrypi:~ $ xrandr
Screen 0: minimum 1 x 1, current 1024 x 768, maximum 8192 x 8192
Virtual1 connected 1024×768+0+0 (normal left inverted right x axis y axis) 0mm x 0mm
800×600 60.00 + 60.32
2560×1600 59.99
1920×1440 60.00
1856×1392 60.00
1792×1344 60.00
1920×1200 59.88
1600×1200 60.00
1680×1050 59.95
1400×1050 59.98
1280×1024 60.02
1440×900 59.89
1280×960 60.00
1360×768 60.02
1280×800 59.81
1152×864 75.00
1280×768 59.87
1024×768 60.00*
640×480 59.94
Virtual2 disconnected (normal left inverted right x axis y axis)
Virtual3 disconnected (normal left inverted right x axis y axis)
Virtual4 disconnected (normal left inverted right x axis y axis)
Virtual5 disconnected (normal left inverted right x axis y axis)
Virtual6 disconnected (normal left inverted right x axis y axis)
Virtual7 disconnected (normal left inverted right x axis y axis)
Virtual8 disconnected (normal left inverted right x axis y axis)

pi@raspberrypi:~ $ xrandr –output Virtual1 –mode 1024×768

Luis Alcaraz avatar

Or, if you want to have a nice, simple visual tool for changing this, go to the Apps Menu, select Preferences, then Add / Remove Software.
Look for “arandr and install it.

It will not create an icon but you can run it by using the option Run available on the Apps Menu. Then it’s simple enough for the ones not comfortable with the command line or to manage a lot of connected screens.

Wazburi avatar

Using “2016-12-13-pixel-x86-jessie.iso” from http://downloads.raspberrypi.org/pixel_x86/images/
in VMware Fusion ver 8.5.3 application in current MacOS (selecting machine type “Debian 8.x”) boots PIXEL.

The default display size was annoyingly small until I tried Luis Alcaraz suggested Terminal command “xrandr” to expand the display window.
I think the reply window of this blog translated double-dashes in the command, “xrandr –output Virtual1 –mode 1024×768”. However, (we) won’t know until I post this.
Running PIXEL in VMware provides “snap-shots” which helps overcome lack of “persistence” in saving configuration changes after reboot.
I look forward to a future PIXEL installer for non-ARM processors and appreciate this effort. PIXEL for Linux/PC/Mac is a brilliant bridge for legacy hardware users into the Raspberry Pi environment.

eeg avatar

How does one make this new resolution permanent? Whenever I reboot it goes back to 800 x 600.

WestfW avatar

Under virtualBox, randr seems to think that the “maximum resolution” is only 1024×768… I usually use my VMs with 1280×1024. (actual monitor is 1920×1200.)

Walter Gunter avatar

Install the Guest additions. Run VBoxLinuxAdditions.run with sudo. Then reboot. The resolutions will be available.

Kim avatar

I’m not using my OLPC laptop any more; is this something that might play on that?

Steve avatar

Will we ever be able to install Pixel on a laptop? Not just boot it.

Liz Upton avatar

You can do it, but it’s a bit fiddly. We won’t be shipping the installable option until we’re 100% sure everything is right.

TheLini avatar

I love this on my MSI wind U180..

everything but wifi works.. Thats not an issue to me though..

Please get this released as an installable version.. I’d be your best friend ever if you did :D

Andrew Waite avatar

x86_64 ? AMD64 surely ?

bill mcbride avatar

a question: i am trying to figure out how to set the clock time displayed in the upper right menu bar…the lxpanel … clock. also on my keyboard the @ is transplaced to
the ” key, and vis-a-versa



Stephen avatar

To set the LXDE clock you can search for LXDE clock codes, which I did (sorry, cannot remember the codes ). Also, I have the same problem with the @ and ” reversed keys. Evidently,the British English keyboard is set up (for these two keys, and a few others ) opposite the USA English keyboard. I still need to find out if there is a fix for this problem.

Stephen avatar

Just found this solution for keyboard issue further down in this column.26th Dec 2016 at 7:46 pm
You can change the keyboard mapping (it defaults to a UK setting) – go to preferences in the GUI to swap it over.

Alex Enkerli avatar

Successfully running in VirtualBox on my Mac mini. Performance might not be too much of a problem. Not getting sound from Sonic Pi, but that’s more or less to be expected.
However, haven’t been able to run from a flashed USB thumbdrive, on either this 2011 Mac mini or a Lenovo Flex 2 15 laptop. Burnt the image with Etcher but no machine (including a RasPi3 running Ubuntu MATE) seems to recognize the filesystem. On macOS, it only shows the disk (no volume) and it’s called “0x17”. On Windows 10, it says there’s no valid filesystem. On Ubuntu-MATE, the USB drive doesn’t seem to mount.
Tried with two USB keys (a 64GB one and a 2GB one). Etcher didn’t warn me of any error. And since the ISO image works under VirtualBox, it can’t really be a problem with the download…
This must be really obvious but no idea what’s going wrong.

Simon Long avatar

If it helps, it doesn’t work on my 2011 Mac mini either – this image does not like something about that platform. Other Debian live images (including my first hacked-together prototype for this) work perfectly on it; I think we have something not quite right in the EFI code in the ISO. We’ll be looking at this early next year.

No idea why it doesn’t work on your Win10 machine though – this is the first report I’ve seen of it not booting on a Windows machine. Although it’s entirely possible that is also an EFI issue, as some modern PC motherboards are using EFI instead of traditional BIOS. Hopefully the same fix will deal with both…

Alex Enkerli avatar

So, to report back on this…
It does boot on my 2011 Mac mini if I press option instead of C. Thought I had already tried that before posting, but it worked later on. So, that part is semi-solved.
No luck on my UEFI Win10 laptop (Lenovo Flex 2 15). The same USB flash drive boots in Linux Mint on the same computer with the same config, but not Raspbian/PIXEL. Trying Mint on that machine really convinced me that some Linux distro is the best way to get good performance out of it. Just need to find the best setup for that.

Thanks for all the good work!

Jerry avatar

On my HP Pavilion, I had to disable secure boot in the BIOS, as well as enable Legacy boot mode. It doesn’t want to boot the USB in UEFI mode. Try that, and see if it helps.

Simon Long avatar

If you are booting on Windows machines which use UEFI booting, it might be worth trying the instructions at the top of the page (under “Updates”) for how to boot on a Mac; the EFI fix might also be relevant on a PC.

CC avatar

I had problems with Etcher, too. Tried two memory sticks. Volume not recognized in Windows 10 or Lubuntu. After giving up trying, I had to use the Kingston Format Utility to reformat my USB stick afterwards to get 15 GB back. I was then able to create an image on the USB stick using RUFUS instead – and that worked.

Robert Linn avatar

Thanks — Running successful from an USB stick on a (8yrs old) toshiba satelitte including wlan access.

Wendell White avatar

I just want to say you guys are fantastic…especially with this one for Windows. But I want to give you all honors now!
I use my Pi3 setup for church services with a projector to teach Bible class, and now have young adults and teens wanting to learn, so now I’m going to start training class for all those interested. Please keep up the good work.

Thomas Veach avatar

Here’s one for you.
Thinkpad 770.
Maxed out ram and 8g hd. Running Win 98. Can only get on MSN because IE is so old and won’t let me get on other sites.
Anyway, Tried the bootable DVD. Starts to work but freezes about 20 lines of code into the startup.

Running flawlessly on 11 year old Toshiba with USB. Can’t wait for the ability to run from HD (without jumping through hoops).

kneekoo avatar

It works out of the box on my Dell Inspiron Mini 10 (1010) – 88-90 MB RAM with the Task Manager on. It’s great having a nice OS for this old 32-bit-only Atom CPU (Z520) netbook, so I wish there was an official installer. :)

Here’s some feedback.
1. The boot splash has a gray 1px line on the bottom and a red 1px line on the right.
2. The wifi password input (as on the RasPi) is clear-text… bummer.
3. The bluetooth applet is loaded although I have no bluetooth device (is this normal/expected?). Also, the default state of the bluetooth is “on” (when I click the applet, I can “Turn Off Bluetooth” and “Make Discoverable”) – weird, considering there’s no such device in the netbook. The applet’s icon is gray, though.
4. The default icon names come in white, which is nearly invisible on the default background. Are shadows possible for this thing? Would it take up a lot of resources?
5. There are no RasPi favourites in the pre-installed browser. Must have! :D
6. Having inxi in the default image would be a weclome addition. I installed it along with other diagnostic tools (about 5MB):
sudo apt-get install inxi hddtemp lm-sensors mesa-utils read-edid
7. This is a wonderful Christmas present. Thank you all and Merry Christmas to everyone! :D

Here are some details about my hardware with PIXEL:
CPU: Intel Atom Z520
GPU: Intel GMA500 (Poulsbo) running Galium 0.4 on llvmpipe (LLVM 3.5, 128 bits) with GLX 3.0 support (Mesa 10.3.2)
LAN: Realtek RTL8101E/RTL8102E (driver: r8169)
WLAN: Broadcom BCM4312 (driver: wl)

Simon Long avatar

1. Known issue – we’re looking into it.
2. This is a deliberate decision. Think about it – why do you want to avoid someone seeing a wifi password? Either you are in a public place, in which case you are connecting to an public wifi point, so it doesn’t matter if someone sees the password, or you are at home connecting to your secure wifi access point, in which case no-one is going to be able to see the password. Obscuring wifi passwords is completely pointless 99% of the time; it just makes life really inconvenient.
3. The applet will load whether you have BT hardware or not.
4. Go into Preferences->Appearance Settings and change the desktop text colour. Shadows are deliberately disabled as they just look blurry…
5. Raspi favourites are in the start menu – our site, the help pages, the Magpi

kneekoo avatar

Thanks for your answer, Simon. :)

Regarding #2, I hope in the future there will be an option to hide the password. Here are just a few reasons:
– home visitors, you want to demonstrate PIXEL or GNU/Linux;
– public demonstration on a private wifi – meant for presentations only;
– using your PC in a public place, with your own phone’s hotspot (no one wants to care about prying eyes)

It’s not a problem when you can show the password, but it’s a terrible problem when you must (but you can’t) hide the password.

Simon Long avatar

Fair points on things like connecting to a hotspot on your phone; our policy on this was admittedly based on Pi hardware and how it is used rather than laptops. We’ll look at this in a future release – I’d still like to keep the password unobscured by default, but we could maybe add a checkbox for adding obscuration.

kneekoo avatar

That sounds great. :) What’s missing from Pootle is a plugin for .ts files. If some of the countless Python programmers in the RasPi community could contribute such a plugin to Pootle (built with Python, on top of Django), all the locale files could be taken care of with Pootle.

In the meantime I grabbed a Noobs translation file and translated a few strings, but I don’t know how to test them, so see if they are not too long in the UI. I found no information in the forums. How do I proceed?

Simon Long avatar

To be honest, I can’t tell you anything about NOOBS – it’s not something I work with, and I don’t think it uses GTK, which is what all the UI stuff I do work with uses. For reference, for everything *other* than NOOBS, you can have strings pretty much as long as you want, and GTK will intelligently resize the window to fit them.

In the absence of better information, I’d suggest working on the basis that you don’t want to be more than 10-20% longer than the current English strings; ideally, you’d want to be no longer at all than the English versions.

Jason Gann avatar

Can I install the image permanently?

John avatar

It worked great on an old Dell Inspiron 4100 with 256M mem. But I saw no way to install the OS on the HD. Am I missing something simple?


Neil Wilson avatar

PIXELonPC is a very nice piece of Pi. Thank Eben, Simon and all who worked on it. I booted it on a HP-Elitebook-6930p via a cheap 8GB ThumbDrive & had no menu bar until today’s MagPi article showed the command line fix. So far it seems to be a really good fit. I’m using it right now w/WI-FI while its playing MP3 music on the PCs speaker + stereo bluetooth. Still lots of things to try, including using a leftover A+ for the GPIO. All those remarks about ‘reinventing the wheel’ the reality that better wheels are a really good thing. I think this will be very important. Best regards, Neil W.

Benjamin Frankliin avatar

Wow!!!! Awesome!

A Hart avatar

Boots fine on my PC however there is no menubar. So no way to get to the applications.

Tim Takacs avatar

Not seeing the Menu Bar is a known issue for some PCs. To get to applications, etc., right-click on the desktop and open the Layout dialog. Add the Documents icon to the Desktop. Then double-click Documents to open the File Manager. (At the moment, I’m not on Pixel, so I’m typing this from memory.)

From the File Manager’s menu bar, select Go > Applications. That will get you to the Applications menu.

Simon Long avatar

While those instructions will work to get you to Applications, you’re better off fixing the actual problem! The lack of a taskbar is usually caused by an incompatible sound device causing the volume control plugin to crash the bar. The fix is to remove the plugin – see https://www.raspberrypi.org/forums/viewtopic.php?f=63&t=168852#p1085521

David avatar

Awesome announcement! Will definitely be giving this a spin later today. One query I have – are there any plans to rename this distro? I feel that Google’s PIXEL branding overshadows any potential exposure it is likely to get.

Simon Long avatar

We were using the name PIXEL internally for our custom desktop long before Google; I first thought of it in the first week or so after I joined Pi in 2014, and I’ve never come up with anything better. To me, it’s been PIXEL for over two years, and we really like the name, with its echoes of when half the Pi staff first learnt to program back in the 80s on Sinclair and Acorn machines. So no, no plans to change the name – we like it!

Ken avatar

I could run Raspian PIXEL on Virtualbox!

Astro Jetson avatar

I do this and it works great. Took longer to download the image than it took to get it to work.

ChrisMcC avatar

Well done guys!
Booted up first time (from DVD) on an old AMD Athlon machine circa 2003, Gigabyte mobo GA-7VT600 1394. Wouldn’t run Chromium for some graphics HW not supported reason, will check through my old box of graphics cards to see if I can find a card that works.

I love the idea of being able to work on a PC-Pi and transfer files directly across to a Pi-Pi.

Can’t wait until you make a full installable x86 version, until then I will set it up an SSD version and see how I get on…

ChrisMcC avatar

The Error I get when trying to start Chromium reads:

“The hardware on this system lacks support for the sse2 instruction set, The upstream chromium project no longer supports this configuration, For more input, please read and possibly provide input to their bug tracking system at http://crbug.com/348761.”

Reading the link (in Firefox on a 9 year old Macbook Pro running Ubuntu 16.04) it looks like my problem is that the PC’s Athlon XP processor itself is pre sse2, so nothing I can change to make that AMD PC run chromium on a Pixel PC-Pi. I can see some people have compiled an earlier version of Chrome to solve the problem. Firefox for Pixel anyone? Am I missing anything?

Rick Dunn avatar

Everything working except wifi on Dell Latitude D620 with a Broadcom Dell 1490 dual band mini wifi card… Any help with a driver possible?

Rick Dunn avatar

Broadcom BCM4312

Rick Dunn avatar


b43 now loaded and active. Just need help with the supplicant portion to get my SSID/password into the working conf …. any help is appreciated

Rick Dunn avatar


1) broadcom driver downloaded/installed however need to manually run #sudo modprobe b43 to get the driver loaded each time I boot?

2) Have to then manually run the following command to get wifi to connect?
#sudo wpa_supplicant -B -i wlan0 -c /etc/wpa_supplicant/wpa_supplicant.conf

Rick Dunn avatar

I blacklisted wl driver, removed blacklist for b43, added sudo wpa_supplicant -B -i wlan0 -c /etc/wpa_supplicant/wpa_supplicant.conf to my rc.local and now Wireless is active at boot and dhcp working.

Paul Williamson avatar

Is there any plan to add support for raspi-config? Seems like that’s a pretty integral part of the Raspberry Pi initial setup experience.

Simon Long avatar

We didn’t include raspi-config in this version because a lot of the settings therein are specific to Pi hardware (overclock, memory split, some of the interfacing etc). I think we will have to do a custom x86 version of it for a future release though, as some of the settings are globally applicable.

Jeff avatar

Giving this a go on a not-so-old-but-does-not-run-great HP Pavilion dv2-1030us with the intention of installing directly onto an SSD. I only found out later that this is meant to run straight from DVD or USB. I was giving CloudReady’s version of ChromeOS a shot, but it’s just still too slow. That single core Athlon Neo 64 is just a chugger. :)

Anyone have any thoughts on installing this to the SSD? I had Xubuntu on it and it did run OK, but I just really like the simplicity and cleanliness of Pixel. So far it seems to be loading up fine and connecting to wifi, so that’s already better than I expected.

Mike Stroud avatar

My problem with installing Linux on older PCs has been the lack of support for old VGA cards. Specifically the AMD Rage XL PCI card.

Al Szymanski avatar

Only one question at the moment: I don’t find any kind of check sum to validate the downloaded file. Is it available?

Mobiscoop avatar

Great work guys! Can I use an external USB drive as a boot drive?

J.A. Watson avatar

Congratulations, this is a typically outstanding project and contribution to the community from the Raspberry Pi team.

I have tried the x86 image on a variety of systems, some of which are quite old:

Fujitsu Lifebook S2110: Boot from DVD and runs, but networking wasn’t working, neither wired nor wireless.

Fujitsu Lifebook S6510: Boot from USB stick, runs, and everything appears to work, including wired and wireless networking

Samsung 305U: Boots from USB stick, runs, everything works

Samsung N150 Plus: Boots from USB stick, runs, and everything works.

Acer Aspire V 13 (V3-331): The USB stick is not recognized as bootable.

I would also vote for an installable image – but I think that keeping the DVD/USB Live image as the top priority is important.


Jarno avatar

I tried to run it on my Dell Latitude E6520 and it works great and amazingly fast, even flash-content works!
Now if I just could somehow enable pipelight(some sites are still using that cursed silverlight) then all my pay-to-view stuff would change to this OS!
Tried to google, but no luck.

jbee avatar

Just put this on an old Dell 9100 laptop and runs like a dream. Thanks guys and Happy Holidays

Chris Norman avatar

I’m reading this article and it looks great!

As a totally blind computer user, I wonder what your commitment to accessibility is? Will this grow to have the same level of accessibility as Microsoft Windows and (less so these days sadly), Apple’s Mac OS?

Thank you.


Simon Long avatar

Accessibility is on our list of things to worry about, but we haven’t really had a chance to do much about it yet! It’s certainly something we’d like to improve in future – one of the things I’d like to look at this year is things like screen scaling beyond the limited options we currently offer, which would be a start. I’m very open to other suggestions of adaptations which would be useful to increase the number of people who can use PIXEL.

MW avatar

Great work by all the team, thasnk you for a great Xmas Pressie..

Seems a lot of confusion about what this is and is not. People appear to see this a new Linux when it is just a new Desktop.

IMO using Debian is good and stable and to improve this OS further just build an install-able Desktop Environment, like a PPA so that a choice is made whether one downloads a i586 Full ISO or just the Desktop to use on their existing OS.

Paul Sutton avatar

The BBC seems to have reported this as being a custom OS with pixel for PC / Mac.

Raspberry Pi makers release own-brand OS

“It is based on a version of the open source Linux software known as Debian. ”

this sort of thing annoys me. Linux is released under the GPL which makes it free software (free as in freedom), open source is a different licensing model.

No wonder people are confused


Liz Upton avatar

We did have a chat with them about the inaccuracies in the original article, and they’ve made some changes, but a few of the original inaccuracies stayed in. That said, the semantics of free and open seem to be beyond a lot of sites which are dedicated to tech (unlike the BBC news, which is general news coverage); tbh, I’d have been surprised to see a discussion of the GPL there, and it’s arguable that the BBC news site is not the place for that! (Even The Register called it an OS rather than a desktop environment – we’re just very happy that so many places have decided to cover the release.)

ben avatar

The usual basic High Contrast and text size options, sometimes a theme editor to tailor to specific children and adult and sight problems. White/grey contrast is not good.
The usual mouse and keyboard settings too.
A screen reader and magnifier.
Someone on the forum or schools team may know of some drop in enhancements.

I’d have a look at a Win10 AE or newer setup for some ideas.

Simon Long avatar

OK, that’s helpful – thank you!

jtgd avatar

Does anyone have instructions for installing on a (x86) Chromebook? Seems like a good fit.

Paul Sutton avatar

As I run the Torbay Tech jam, if anyone would like help with this at the Jam then we can (or should be able to) help with install etc. Even if we, use other tools to partition disks (e.g those that come with Windows)

I have put a link to the current website below, we are working on a new site at the moment so will hopefully switch over shortly.

Dennis avatar

Can I change the Language to German ? or is this only
in English.

Roy Stefanussen avatar

Very nice! Runs well on a single core Celeron from 2004.

Like the rPi itself, this is usable far beyond “teaching kids to code”. I use Live Linux for troubleshooting and fixing computers, and this is great tool. I can customize the USB stick so that in my shop I have the settings I prefer, but on untrusted networks I can choose the non-persistent option. Brilliant!

I have had the panel go missing on first USB boot on several machines, so there might be something there. Any suggestions to help find the issue? I’m willing to test.

If I may suggest one thing, it would be to make the persistence partition FAT, so that “other OS’s” could use it as well.

Thank you, and Happy Holidays.

Simon Long avatar

The missing panel seems to be due to sound hardware which isn’t playing nicely with ALSA causing the volume plugin to crash. The fix seems to be to remove that plugin – see instructions here – https://www.raspberrypi.org/forums/viewtopic.php?f=63&t=168852#p1085521

As far as I am aware, the persistence partition needs to be in ext4 – everything I have read on the subject suggests that to be the case. If you know differently and can point me at instructions for how to make a FAT persistence partition work, then please let me know and we’ll investigate – I agree that it would be useful to be able to access persistence from other systems.

Roy Stefanussen avatar

> As far as I am aware, the persistence partition needs to be in ext4

I know nothing about that, and would not go through any trouble to force that issue.

Removing the alsa plugin from panel helped, thanks for the tip.

Big Poppa avatar

Good move. I think it could become quite popular.

I have tried an ISO/USB Rasbian Pixel boot on an Atom-powered Samsung NC10 – nice little laptop about 8 years old. It originally had Windows XP I think but I have recently been using it as a “Chromebook” with Neverware’s Cloudready, another offering to revive old Windows machines. It’s good but much more limited than Raspbian Pixel.

The USB boot fails:
“ISOLINUX 6.03 20150819 EHDD ….
Failed to load ldlinux.c32
Boot failed: press a key to retry…”

Is that message from your ISO? Can I fix it?

Joshua avatar

Having the same issue here, on an older Dell laptop and also Virtualbox on two separate macs.

Paul Sutton avatar

Just booted on a HP mini 210 – 1000sa works fine, maybe worth installing lspci

It works really well though :)

Hope this helps


Neil Barnes avatar

Boots fine on an oldish Acer V3-771 with 12GB ram and 1600×900 display, using the standard bios.

Will be investigating soon on a Toshiba chromebook 2 – 4GB ram and the HD IPS screen – (suitably modified with the bios write enable and the USB boot bios) which has previously worked well with Mint 17.2 but not really sure if I want to give up a USB socket; it’s not exactly endowed with them. Installation to the internal ‘drive’ would be beneficial. I do have a 64GB SD card but that contains data I want to keep.


Kevin avatar

Hi Simon and Serge,
Further to my WiFi problem on a HP/Compaq nc6400.
I found that my WiFi is a Intel PRO/Wireless 3945/4965 by doing (under Ubuntu) the command:-
lspci -vnn | grep Net
this gave the wireless card id as 8086:4222 which lead me to:-
by following their instructions, I was able to turn on the WiFi, but now it constantly saying “No APs found-scanning” :-(
Any ideas?
Happy Christmas :-)

Mike Mason avatar

Installed on an old eeePC – it makes it usable…..
The displayed time (top right corner) seems to be set to the UK.
Can the time zone be changed (I’m USA EST)

Installed wpa_gui to get wifi up and running (have to do this on a RPi any-way)

Alan Portman avatar

I would like to join the crowd looking for an installable to the HD version. I am working on a program to provide computers for classrooms in under served areas in the US as well as in West Africa. Our goal is a sub $50 desktop or laptop. PeppermintOS is my current favorite, but Pixel could stretch how old a piece of hardware we could use by three or so more years. I will be checking back. Right now, my copy is downloading.

Best of luck with this project.

Liz Upton avatar

Not something you need to campaign for – it’s always been in the plans, but we want to be 100% sure that what we have is stable before we release an installable version.

kneekoo avatar

Considering the PIXEL desktop will become considerably more popular, translating the user interface and even certain Raspbian applications will help many people. Is this possible right now or considered for the future?

Simon Long avatar

We’re entirely at the mercy of the community for translations. Some kind individuals have already submitted translations for some of the Pi-specific apps (for which we are always grateful), and they are included in the x86 image as well as the Pi image.

If anyone does want to contribute translations, please go to our GitHub repo (github.org/raspberrypi/), find the relevant application, create a PO file and issue a pull request – we’ll be delighted to use them in future releases.

kneekoo avatar

That’s good news. :) Would it be possible to point out to all the .po and .ts files that can be translated, so we can jump in easier than hunting each and every one of them on our own?

Even easier, if you could put those files in a service like Transifex, Launchpad, or even use the open source Pootle [1] to host the translations? That would make it really easy for non technical people to contribute translations.

[1] http://pootle.translatehouse.org/

Simon Long avatar

I wasn’t aware of things like Pootle – I’ll certainly look into something like that in the New Year. Thanks for pointing it out!

Erik avatar

Also have some issues to boot from the USB. Using a Macbook Pro 2011 everything is fine but the USB is not recognized during the boot process. Anyone having the same problems?
The usb stick was not made as bootable, is the necessary ?

Simon Long avatar

As Eben pointed out in the post, we are aware of the image not appearing as bootable on some Macs – unfortunately it sounds as if yours is one of them. We’re hoping to find a fix for this for the next release – for the time being, your best bet is to run the ISO under VirtualBox on your Mac.

Steve avatar

Any help available? I have downloaded the .iso file to my MacBook Pro. But Disk Utility can’t mount the file.

Simon Long avatar

Disk Utility won’t be able to do anything with it – use Etcher (https://etcher.io) to copy it to a USB stick and use that to boot your Mac.

Bob Fagioli avatar

Worked pretty nicely on my 10 year old DELL Latitude D620 Core 2 Duo. One issue I did notice was that the but wifi adapter was not recognized so I had to use eth0 which did work fine.

alan avatar

tested OK on an emachines nettop (1.6GHz atom, 1 GB ram). HP printer driver (hplip-3.16.5) installed OK as did smath. Could do with a battery icon. Also, for some reason the graphics menu option is not shown even when selected from menu preferences.

Simon Long avatar

The Graphics menu (like all other menus) will only appear if there are any applications in that category installed on the system, which there aren’t by default in this image. You’ll need to add at least one application which lists graphics as a category in its desktop file for the menu to appear.

alan avatar

As part of the HP printer install, the scanner program Xsane is installed and found in the graphics menu folder. In the preferences menu option, Xsane is shown in the graphics menu folder, however, the graphics menu folder is not shown in the normal menu list.

Methusla avatar

Etcher fail.

Downloaded Etcher
get “this app won’t run on your machine”

Machine is an old Dell laptop., just now trying Win10 before returning to linux. Possibly because laptop has DVD-ROM only (that old), but I wanted to use Et for USB bootable. And it has USB2.

Can’t talk to them, github is currently refusing to play nicely with me.

Ton van Overbeek avatar

You need the 32-bit version, not the 64-bit version.
On their donwnload page select Etcher-1.0.0-beta.17-win32-x86.exe or
Note the ‘x86’.

Martin avatar

Tried it on an Intel pentium 4 laptop, it runs but then it asks for a password?

Simon Long avatar

It shouldn’t do! The default password is “raspberry”, as on the standard Raspbian/PIXEL image.

osxunix avatar

I burn it to DVD boot from my A10 5800K watch 1080p youtude video smooth with no lag! Awesome!!!

Des. avatar

Congratulations, great work and look forward to its continued development.

Mathew Thomas avatar

Works great on my old Toshiba. Better than Linux Mint for me, I look forward to the Install button. I cannot get the touchpad to accept taps or double taps, any support or ideas for this problem would be greatly appreciated from anyone.

Simon Long avatar

You’ll need to find a Debian driver for your trackpad – if there is one in standard Debian, it should just install and work on the PIXEL image. Try “apt-cache search trackpad” for possible packages.

Mathew Thomas avatar

Thanks mate, I’ll give it a try.

Stonge avatar

Unfortunately doesn’t work on my Dell Pc. All I get is the waste basket.

Simon Long avatar
Cameron Lewis avatar

Works great on my HP Mini 3510. Please do an installer.
Just brought this back to a usable PC.

Thank you.

Ted avatar

In VMware Fusion on a Mac, just install VMware tools and the screen will auto-resize when you drag the window corners or when you just maximize it. Very nice job Raspberry folks, this lightweight OS really flies!

blaz avatar

Have you thought about replacing the menu/launcher with a third party one like Cardapio?


is it available as a torrent?

Al Szymanski avatar

Sorry to say this, but I tested it on two older Mac Books ( a pro and a non-pro ) as well as an HP laptop without success. I was soooo hoping this would be a neat Holiday present. Good luck and Fair Winds.

Ed Stewart avatar

Won’t boot on my 2015 MacBook Air either. It flashes fine with Etcher but then gets an error message “The disk you inserted was not readable by this computer.” right after the flash finishes and asks to Initialize, Ignore, or Eject the flash drive. When powering up while pressing the Option key the usb drive with the flashed ISO is not recognized.

Philippe Lewis avatar

Same here. Not sure where to go from here. Did you figure it out?

Al avatar

It functions OK on my old Toshiba Satellite laptop (booting from USB stick), but either persistence isn’t working for me, or else I don’t understand what persistence means… I start with persistence, but I can’t even get it to keep the battery monitor in the task bar between boots, let alone keep my wireless LAN setting or any cookies in the browser, even when I specifically allow them. At least all those things work once I reset them every time, but who wants to start over every time you boot? Also Etcher didn’t work for me to flash the ISO onto the stick either (using a win-8 PC, at least). I had to use Rufus instead.

Al avatar

Didn’t see a way to edit… Found that persistence doesn’t work when you use Rufus to flash the ISO. Problem with Etcher is that it doesn’t “see” all flash drives. Side by side, a SanDisk Cruzer Facet wouldn’t work, but a SanDisk Cruzer Glide did… Anyway, once I found something that Etcher could find and write to, then everything was good after that, settings, cookies, etc all persist between boots.

Brainz moar Brainz avatar

first of all you NEED to provide a CRC, and I mean something EASY TO FIND, not just for ppl who dig A LOT (like me), this is MINIMUM good sense, not just about security, but also about safety, I for example, use download manager which splits the file in pieces and download it in parallel from multiple sources, SO I `NEED` TO KNOW THAT FILE WAS RECEIVED CORECTLY !!!!

second … http://downloads.raspberrypi.org/pixel_x86/images/pixel_x86-2016-12-13/ is NOT WORKING FROM MICROSOFT EDGE, I get a totally wrong page there

and third …
wget -q -O- ‘http://downloads.raspberrypi.org/pixel_x86/images/pixel_x86-2016-12-13/2016-12-13-pixel-x86-jessie.iso.sha1’

7d0bfa01b95ffae8e0767f12b92cdd1b03d23473 /var/www/pixel_x86/images/pixel_x86-2016-12-13/2016-12-13-pixel-x86-jessie.iso

I don’t know how you call this, but I call it … EMBARASING, not only that image not supposed to have a path, but you actually give away a VALID path on your server … WOW

Simon Long avatar

I’d be really interested to know just how you think anyone could actually *use* a path to a file on our server for anything – good luck with trying to upload anything to it, for example. And it’s hardly surprising that we store files in /var/www/ on a machine hosting a website – that really isn’t giving much away to a hacker…

And it’s not quite as embarrassing as having not one but two spelling mistakes in “EMBARASING”, is it? ;)

Brainz moar Brainz avatar

what a hacker can do ? … I don’t care, BUT YOU SHOULD, be cause when your site is hacked then you gonna cry, NOT ME

and wow, you are the kind of person who deflect it’s own embarrassment by changing the subject to anything AND EVERYTHING ELSE,
1, you are soooo smart, may I touch you ?
2. I didn’t start my post with “I know English perfect”, get this dude, some ppl don’t actually been born in an English paradise
3. UNLIKE YOU I’m not an international site with (at least) thousands of visitors … I DON’T NEED TO BE PERFECT

Liz Upton avatar

That’s rude, and we don’t tolerate rudeness around here. A general reminder: the rules here are very simple. If you wouldn’t say it if we were sitting around my kitchen table, you don’t get to say it here.

mmcv2008 avatar

If you manage to get installation support for x86, x86_64 and any ARM (maybe PowerPC) and support for touch screens out of the box, so that it can be installed on tablet PCs also, than in my opinion at least the owners and users of the 11 Million Raspberry PI’s out there will be using it on their PCs, MACs and Tablets for development and normal day-by-day tasks besides the Raspberry PIs HW in embedded applications. Also remember a lot of companies selling after 3 or 4 years old PCs for a low price to employees for my knowledge – so this is the base for running Linux and now with a well purposed version for education.
No need for any other OS anymore for those how wanna want …

Carles avatar

First of all, thanks for all your efforts guys.
It works ALMOST fine for me, except that the system bar does not appear, so its kinda difficult to use for me in that condition… Any idea how I could fix this? I’m running Pixel on a 5 year old, low spec PC, connected to a TV via an VGA/USB to HDMI adapter…

Simon Long avatar
Ernest N. Wilcox Jr. avatar

Your solution is a work-around, not a real fix (because it disables Alsa = no sound).

Since this issue has been fixed, I suggest installing the updates (see my post above).

Simon Long avatar

I’m sorry to break this to you, Ernest, but the only person who would be creating fixes for this issue for download from our repo is me, and I’m pretty sure I’d remember if I’d created one!

I haven’t. An update and dist-upgrade isn’t going to make the slightest difference to this issue. I suspect what you are referring to is a completely different bug in the original release of PIXEL for Pi, which also caused the menu bar to crash; this was an issue with the icon rendering and nothing to do with the issue for PIXEL-x86, which is caused by incompatible audio devices.

At the moment, the workaround of removing the plugin is the only option for people with this issue; when I get back in to the office in the New Year and can repeat it, I’ll hopefully be able to find a fix.

ove avatar

Download it and wrote to an USB.
It started, a beautiful desktop.
But, that’s all.

Just a Wastebasket.
Impossible to find anything else.
Had to remove the USB to log out / stop.

Simon Long avatar
ijkl avatar

Successful boot with DVD and type this message here on my old PC. However there is no raspi-config :(

ijkl avatar

Additional configurations for Terminal command :

#keyboard configuration
sudo dpkg-reconfigure keyboard-configuration
#reload the keymap (need logout and login to be effective)
sudo invoke-rc.d keyboard-setup start

#reset timezone
sudo dpkg-reconfigure tzdata

#generate locale
sudo dpkg-reconfigure locales
sudo locale-gen en_US.UTF-8

#scan private hidden SSID network
sudo iwlist wlan0 scanning essid “yourSSID”

ijkl avatar

Instruction to create bootable USB stick on Mac
# Running on Mac
# list disk volumes
diskutil list
# assume the USB stick on /dev/disk4
sudo diskutil partitionDisk /dev/disk4 MBRFormat FAT32 PIXEL 8g FAT32 PERSISTENCE 54g
mkdir -p /Volumes/PIXEL/efi/boot
# Download Enterprise-0.4.0.tar.gz to ~/Download
#from http://blog.sevenbits.io/Enterprise/
cd ~/Downloads
tar xzvf Enterprise-0.4.0.tar.gz
cp ~/Downloads/Enterprise-0.4.0/boot* /Volumes/PIXEL/efi/boot/
cp ~/2016-12-13-pixel-x86-jessie.iso /Volumes/PIXEL/efi/boot/boot.iso

cat > /Volumes/PIXEL/efi/boot/enterprise.cfg < /mnt/persistence/persistence.conf < /Volumes/PIXEL/efi/boot/enterprise.cfg << EOF
autoboot 0
entry Debian
family Debian
initrd /live/initrd1.img
kernel /live/vmlinuz1 findiso=/efi/boot/boot.iso boot=live config live-config quiet splash persistence

# Reboot and Running on Debian PIXEL to test persistence mode

ijkl avatar

Instructions to create bootable USB stick on Mac

# Running on Mac
# list disk volumes
diskutil list
# assume format USB stick on /dev/disk4
sudo diskutil partitionDisk /dev/disk4 MBRFormat FAT32 PIXEL 8g FAT32 PERSISTENCE 54g
mkdir -p /Volumes/PIXEL/efi/boot
# Download Enterprise-0.4.0.tar.gz to ~/Download
# from http://blog.sevenbits.io/Enterprise/
cd ~/Downloads
tar xzvf Enterprise-0.4.0.tar.gz
cp ~/Downloads/Enterprise-0.4.0/boot* /Volumes/PIXEL/efi/boot/
cp ~/Downloads/2016-12-13-pixel-x86-jessie.iso /Volumes/PIXEL/efi/boot/boot.iso

# create enterprise.cfg
cat > /Volumes/PIXEL/efi/boot/enterprise.cfg < /mnt/persistence/persistence.conf < /Volumes/PIXEL/efi/boot/enterprise.cfg << EOF
autoboot 0
entry Debian
family Debian
initrd /live/initrd1.img
kernel /live/vmlinuz1 findiso=/efi/boot/boot.iso boot=live config live-config quiet splash persistence

# Reboot and Running on Debian PIXEL to verify and test persistence mode on Mac
df -h

Hugh avatar

Really like it.
Had it running on a Compac Presario 2100.
Please can we have an installable version?

David Moss avatar

For info, doesn’t work on any of my Macs, so it’s not just modern ones. Tried with a 2009 iMac (running El Capitan 10.11.6), 2011 MacBook Air (running Sierra 10.12.2), and a 17″ MacBook Pro (a MacBook Pro 1,2 with the Intel Core 2 Duo) whose age I can’t recall (running Snow Leopard 10.6.8) – that’s the one I’d like to get it running on, of course :)

Stonge avatar

As I said all I get is the wastebasket. Disappointing but glad it works for most people. Can’t really see it being more than a five minute novelty though, unless these problems are sorted and an easy installation process is provided.

Guess it’s all in the spirit of Raspberry Pi though, to get students to find out how to do these things, not really intended or suitable for mass market appeal – or very helpful for non-techy parents.

Could be quite discouraging for many people who will only give it one chance and then have their worst fears confirmed.

Liz Upton avatar

>Can’t really see it being more than a five minute novelty though, unless these problems are sorted and an easy installation process is provided.

You did read the bit about this being an experimental Beta, right?

Simon Long avatar
StudentBoy avatar


Fanstastic idea! thank you.

Struggling with my Lenovo Yoga 3 Pro 1370 Windows 10. Managed t get to first boot screen (rasberry logo, persistence options etc) after changing bios menu to support ‘Legacy’ as well as EFI. It then proceeds to ‘Loading’ in large font, then small font. A brief flash of something mid scceen and then blank. After a while I did get a quick flash of the pixel background image (long road) whnen I moved the mouse and when I did Ctrl Alt Tab the flash stick led whirred into life suggesting it was doing something – so perhaps it’s working but there a problem driving the diaplay (I’m using laptop screen not an external monitor)?

Hope this info is of some use to you and others.

Merry Christmas

PS : Might be wort including a link in the main downloads page to the PC distro – I spent a wasted hour or two trying to install the Raspbian image for the Pi on my PC! I’m an idiot, but I’m sure there will be others who will do the same.

Liz Upton avatar

It’s actually *not* on the main downloads page for that very reason: everything else on there is an image for the Pi, and we think it’s inevitable that people will get confused and try to install it on their Raspberry Pis! We’re working on a permanent home for it that won’t confuse people.

studentboy avatar

update on the black screen issue: I tried adding “nomodeset” after 686-pae (no quotes) in the cmdline boot and this has solved the black screen problem on my Yoga3. Just need to work out how to change resolution now – everything is way to small for my poor old eyes! :-)

Yann L avatar

Great, that worked for me as well. Thanks!

Note: running a 5 year-old recycled Hello terminal from Orange.fr, spec: AMD Sempron or Turion 64 X2 socket S1 with ATI RS690E + SB600

paulk avatar

Just booted PIXEL up as a VM on VMware Workstation Pro v12 with no issues.
Should also work on VMware Workstation Player(free)(http://www.vmware.com/products/player/playerpro-evaluation.html) or Oracle Virtualbox https://www.virtualbox.org/ (free)

John Santoni avatar

Made a usb for my easynote laptop.
Runs really well.
But 2 points.
1. I never got the persistent option on boot, just a 5 sec countdaown to auto boot, but it went fine.
2. I wanted to try a couple of programs from the add/remove software and I get a box asking fpr pi password. Is there a standard one.
Awesome os by the way.

Roy Stefanussen avatar

Persistence is the default when booting from USB. Press the Esc key during countdown to change options.

Standard pi password: raspberry

Scholar avatar

I found this thread through
http://www.bbc.com/news/technology-38403423 and seeing this post:
Björn says: 21st Dec 2016 at 11:56 am
and the response:
Egon Rath says: 22nd Dec 2016 at 7:29 am
and the post:
Menno Harzing says: 22nd Dec 2016 at 8:28 am
and under Windows 10 on a HP Pavilion 300-030 with a DELL S2316H monitor I downloaded the x86 ISO image of Pixel and using VirtualBox and all defaults for a 32bit Debian install I created a VM.
Starting the VM and using the browse feature in VM Manager (VMM) to find the downloaded ISO image I allowed all the wait screens to time out and in short order up popped Pixel albeit with a screen size I found difficult to use. Clicking ‘View’>’Full-screen Mode’ in VMM’s Mini Tool Bar displayed at the bottom of the VM did not activate a full monitor screen so, and here I profess little understanding of the following, I used the Menno Harzing tip and then I:
Shutdown Pixel from its Application Menu
Used VMM to edit the ‘Boot Order’ in ‘System’ in ‘Settings’ leaving only the ‘Hard Disk’ option set at the top
Started the VM and again allowed all the wait screens to time out and up popped Pixel with, I assume, all the FS mounted under /
Then using the information contained in
I did the following:
Selected ‘Devices’ >’Insert Guest Additions CD image’ from the VMM Mini Tool Bar displayed at the bottom of the VM and using ‘File Manager’ from Pixel’s ‘Application Launch Bar’ clicked on / in the directory tree and then clicked through to /media/pi/VBOXADDITIONS_5.1.12_112440 – this is, as of today’s post, the latest version.
Then I right clicked on the folder in the directory tree and selected ‘Open in Terminal’
Then in Terminal I typed and entered:
1. sudo bash
2. apt-get update (Answered y when prompted)
3. apt-get upgrade (Answered y when prompted)
Here I had to repeat steps 2 & 3 several times until Step 3 completed without reporting any missing objects and or files
4. apt-get install build-essential module-assistant
5. m-a prepare
6. sh VboxLinuxAdditions.run (Following the instructions on screen)
I then called ‘Shutdown’ from Pixel’s Application Menu and used VMM to start the VM again and as ‘Full Screen Mode’ had previously been selected the VM started Pixel in ‘Full Screen Mode’ which filled my monitor (1920×1080)
If it doesn’t try calling it again using the VMM Mini Tool Bar and click ‘View’>’Full-screen Mode’

Mark Gibbs avatar

In your instructions it reads …

5. m-a prepare

Then should come:

6. cd /media/pi/

As of writing, is “VBOXADDITIONS_5.0.30_112061” (without double quotes). You can then issue the following:

7. sh VboxLinuxAdditions.run
8. reboot


Mark Gibbs avatar

Erk … my comment got mangled (note to self: Avoid angled brackets). Let’s try again:

In your instructions it reads …

5. m-a prepare

Then should come:

6. cd /media/pi/[location]

As of writing, [location] is “VBOXADDITIONS_5.0.30_112061” (without double quotes). You can then issue the following:

7. sh VboxLinuxAdditions.run
8. reboot


Blair Leduc avatar

I just loaded this on a Dell Mini9 and it works great!

Louis Garcia avatar

Sadly I tried to burn this on a USB then tried booting it up.. it didn’t boot up when I go back booting my windows it’s now corrupted.. ugh.

MW avatar

Booting from a USB Flash Drive does not impact Windows what-so-ever.

Therefore maybe you have not created a Bootable USB Flash Drive but instead tried to overwrite the Windows Partition when using the ETCHER SOftware ?

Louis Garcia avatar

Nope it detects the flash drive and I chose that. Yeah I know I am not really sure what happened. My windows got corrupted stuck in Starting Windows. Doesn’t give me any error can’t even boot to safe mode.

Simon Long avatar

That looks good for some of the earlier Macs, but we’ve also seen issues on much newer ones – my 2011 Mac mini will boot from the live DVD, but not from the image on a USB. Neither USB nor DVD will boot on the boss’ 2016 MacBook Air. I am in the process of testing something which might fix this…

AlistairL avatar

I’m really impressed. Using Etcher I burned a 4GB SD card and used this to boot a 2007 EEE PC 2G Surf (512MB RAM, Celeron-M CPU, Atheros WiFi and Realtek audio). Connected to internet easily, both wired and wireless. YouTube worked well, audio was really loud. I’d love to install to the EEE’s internal 2GB SSD! I’ll look forward to trying the installer.

Gary Isley avatar

How do I make the iso bootable on a DVD or usb stick bootable for a mac?
When iI tried to use etcher to make the dvd, etcher would not allow me to use my optical drive because it thought it had 0 gbs of space.

Any help appreciated.

Gary Isley avatar

just tried it but it does not show up when ai option reboot.

Gary avatar

It works on my 2013 MacBook pro but not on my 2006 iMac?
Can’t find how to configure wifi though.

David C Busby avatar

I downloaded the iso file and imaged it to a USB using Etcher. When I boot from USB, I receive the error “The selected boot device failed. Press to continue. I’m running Windows 10 Pro on an HP Pavillion.

J Osiiecki avatar

two different machines both with DVD and USB give the following messages
Failed to Load idlinux.c32
isolinux 6/03 20150819 EHDD (C) 1994-2014 H. Peter Anvin et all
The selected boot device failed. Press any key to continue

Filigree avatar

I’m getting this issue too on an HP notebook. Anyone find a fix? I don’t currently have another device to test it on though.

joshua vanbergen avatar

Having an issue with the download. Coming in at 17kb/s and then it just stops around the 24MB point telling me the download has completed…I believe this file is 1.3GB though isnt it?

RevKenny avatar

Off the USB, Pixel works perfectly (and fast as hell) on an HP Stream netbook. I truly wish that there was an install option instead of all the command line hocus pocus.

Liz Upton avatar

There will be (see elsewhere in this thread) – we’ll be releasing an installable option when we’re confident we’ve knocked the bugs out of what you’ve been experimenting with here.

claudio avatar

Works fine on my EEEpc 701! I try even frecad and works!!!!

Frank avatar


I successfully loaded Pixel via a DVD but don’t see the menu bar. I am able to access the applications by clicking on the Wastebasket ICON and then clicking on Go and Applications.

Running on Dell with Pentium processor.

Any suggestions?



Simon Long avatar

See link at top of page under “Updates”.

Frank avatar

Sorry, geany couldn’t find the file when issuing the command in terminal server. I am a newbie therefore could be doing something wrong.

geany ~/.config/lxpanel/LXDE-pi/panels/panel



Howard Greenstein avatar

I’ll second the comment from 12/22 from Bill McBride:
>a question: i am trying to figure out how to set the clock time displayed in the upper right menu bar…the lxpanel … clock. also on my keyboard the @ is transplaced to
the ” key, and vis-a-versa”

I also have the @ and ” keys transposed. Mine is on an old Lenovo S10e which worked really, really well otherwise.

note – Bill: you can use Terminal
sudo timedatectl – this article below tells you how to set time and date (and I did sudo timedatectl set-timezone EST to fix my settings)

BoB avatar

I have some old Pentium III machines running Windows 98SE. Why? Well, I use them to run some old industrial hardware, Device Programmers (such as Needham EMP-20’s) and so on. I attempted to replace W98 with FreeDOS, but some of the software that runs my old device programmers fails on FreeDOS with “illegal opcodes”, no doubt errors in the software, but W98 is “forgiving” of them. I occasionally need to connect them to my network to transfer some files. I am going to try to dual boot them with this OS for file transfer purposes. I love Debian. This is just what I need, I think… probably won’t commit to an actual install until the actual non-beta release,,,

Simon Butler avatar

Sounds like a great piece of work. Would there be a way to make the persistence file encrypted?

David Heaton avatar

How I Installed to HDD (as the only OS)
Using the ISO and Oracle VM Virtual box

Create new virtual machine
Name : RaspberryPI
Type : Linux
Version : Debin (32bit)
Disk VDI : (I used 8Gb)
when created select settings/storage and attach ISO
Boot up RaspberryPI
Then follow Egon Rath’s instructions 22nd December
to transfer from USB stick to HDD
BUT change line 2.2 to
“dd if=/dev/sr0 of=/dev/sda bs=1M”
reboot as instructed
“df -Bm” will show free space

“sudo apt-get update”
“sudo apt-get upgrade”
“sudo apt-get dist-upgrade”

I was also able to install the VirtialBox Guest additions,
but first you will need to install the linux headers
“sudo apt-get install linux-headers-3.16.0-4-all-i386”

mount the VirtialBox Guest additions CD to the virtual machine
via Devices->Insert Guest additions image

open terminal
“sudo bash”
“cd /media/pi/VBOXADDITIONS_5.1.1.10_112026”
check the messages on the terminal screen, it should complete without error.
If install fails check the Vbox log files for the reason it will sow on the screen.

then reboot.
The virtual machine screen should now scale to the size of the host screen

So far it works. I’m not a Linux expert.

Mathew Thomas avatar

Now if I could only control the brightness of my laptop screen.
It’s blinding me in the evenings.

Kevin Bowers avatar

Awesome work, guys! Also, thanks for the pointer to Etcher, I’ve been sort of looking for something sort of like that. FWIW, several people asked if it would run on Atom systems, and yes it will. On my old MSI netbook with an Atom it runs quite well, with performance comparable to the Puppy Linux it has been running for years. Now, Puppy is a mature distro aimed at low-end machines, for this new release to approach its useability is just phenomenal. And while I’m rambling, thanks also for the pointer to timedatectl–it’ll take me a good long while to get used to systemd. And actually, I suggest a GUI to set time and timezone, I doubt I’m the only one fool enough to spend a couple hours fiddling with config files just to bork the system. Keep up the good fight!

Steven avatar

This is so awesome! I have an old Pentium 4 that I pretty much couldn’t do anything with. Chromium wouldn’t install because it does a CPU check. The same with new distributions of Linux. I tried older versions of Linux, but I’ve never gotten good video performance, and the browser is so out of date anyway.

But Pixel works great! My P4 is now like a Chromebook! I can view YouTube smoothly–way to breath life into an old machine! I hope you keep tinkering with it–I would like to be able to actually install this on my old machines rather than just run it from a USB stick.

Marcel avatar

Hi, i can run retropie? or maybe the community can addapt for it?
could be nice, in brazil u can afford a old notebook cheaper tem rasp 3, in Brazil rasp 3 cost 100$ +-

Ethan Samosa avatar

I’m getting a new computer for christmas and want to make this my main OS, I hope you guys make it so we can install :) great work everyone!

Ron Kierstead avatar

A Christmas present for me, as I’ve only just finished downloading it and flashing to the stick.

It’s running well on an old 2008 Mac Book Pro under Oracle Virtual Box, and I used a usb flash on my Thinkpad R400.

Thanks so much for your efforts.
I too am looking for the installable version. :D

ard avatar

Hi Pixel, it is GREAT.
My 10yr old Pentium, running from DVD and works fantastic on Pixel. It works even faster than my normal Ubuntu 16.10 OS.
[my newer notebook has a problem, no taskbar, but I see there is a work-around already!]

My favorite sailing simulator, with flash working in one go, my favorite music streaming site with flash is also working with very good sound quality

Great, maybe to consider to wipe Ubuntu and continue with Pixel but than installed on the HDD =:)


Tae Yong avatar

I can’t use fcitx-hangul
Help me please
I’m gonna have headache

WestfW avatar

First of all: THANK YOU! This is a wonderful idea. I’ve been looking at the various “small” linux distributions for a while now, for something that would allow software development on old hardware. But most of the distributions are aimed at a different kind of small hardware, and different application spaces (MythTV, various kinds of servers, web browsers and kiosks.) Having an (already popular) distribution that is focused on writing code is great, and I already see a bunch of stuff that I like…

Second, it ran fine under VirtualBox on my Mac. I followed the instructions up-thread to move it to the “hard drive”, and that seems to work OK as well (I have persistent files, but it doesn’t look as though it’s actually handling them like a disk. I could live with that, I think. But it’s nice to know you have plans toward a more disk-friendly version…

Thirdly, it’s a nice ‘try me’ for RPi that doesn’t involve as much fiddling with hardware. Though at some point, deciding how much you want to support x86 hardware vs RPi hardware will probably become an issue…

Jason Myers avatar

So is there a way to properly install this on a harddrive for some proper performance?

Or is that not recommended?

Jason Diaz avatar

Someone published a post earlier in this thread showing a way to install on a HDD as the only OS.
An easier solution, in my opinion, is to boot from USB and configure the PC’s hard drive as the default location for /Home, i.e. all the user’s documents, files and data.
It’s all here: https://frambuesapiblog.wordpress.com/2017/01/05/how-to-revive-an-old-pc-with-pixel/
It also includes setting up a multiuser login after boot, for a tidy full PC experience.

Young avatar

Since got many issues on win 10, I’m consider migrate to Linux on new Xps 13 9343. And PIXEL x86 would be first option, because I’m familiar with raspbian.

Toni avatar

Will you be doing a version for iPads and other tablets? I’ve got iPads one and two, and both work perfectly except for the issues with planned obsolescence.

Simon Long avatar

That’d be as close to technically impossible as makes no difference, unfortunately, particularly on Apple hardware – I’m not aware that anyone has ever managed to upload a different OS onto an iPad.

franz katzlinger avatar

merry christmas

must say:
1.this is best invention after raspberry pi hardware
2.as no one can get informations directly out of a blog with hundreds of posts it should be a possibility to get this from usb or cd to a harddisk with optimal partitions otherwise persistence does not work
3.non-english people neet a reduced raspi-config to obtain language and keyboard and clock-troubles
4.duckduckgo should be replaced by google search
5.then raspberry pc/mac will turn down windows & co

i like to see you things developing in future as in past
good luck and thanks a lot

CR avatar

Interesting idea – waiting for improvements.
I give to the R-Pi in my mind the merit of spreading the goodwill of tech to people.
I got mi PI 1 y ago and what opened for me in a very short time was a more benevolent view for the Linux environment especially when I realized that I have a much better (easier) access to hardware from Python / Linux environment (than from Windows).
I installed a Debian 8 64 on a dual core Intel PC with 4 GB of ram and since I’m using it as a full replacement for the PI during software development mostly because is faster and has a larger software collection.
The possibility of accessing the I2C via Python in the PC’s VGA port was extremely beneficial for some of my developments.
I tested the PIXEL on a 2 GB AMD 32 and the first unpleasant element is that Chrome rejects my “old” (true) hardware so I don’t “browse” internet.
The next thing is that in a persistent option I would like to install some extra software but I was not able to get in SU mode to install the synaptic manager.
The main drawback from Debian 8 32 bit is the very slow Firefox browser ( but at least it is there) otherwise it is equivalent.
PIXEL on PI hardware works great I like it and it looks acceptable fast for my needs.
On the PC I will stick with the Debian 8 for the moment.

이용재 avatar

Is there a Korean version?

Liz Upton avatar

Not at the moment. We don’t have the resources to do translations ourselves, but this is all open source, and we do encourage the community to get engaged and help; so if you want a Korean version, it’d be great if you could help create it yourself!

erasmus avatar


Can’t wait for the first release.
From 2GB USB stick (imation nano) tested on:
Asus Eee PC 901
Compaq Mini 110c-1020ST
Fujitsu-Siemens LIFEBOOK P8010
Toshiba Satellite Pro A200-1ON
HP 530 Notebook PC (Wi-Fi didn’t work)

It runs even on a HP Compaq t5720 Thin Client!
(Did install firefox because of sse2 problem with chrome)

Superuser avatar

How can I install it to computer? Please help me.

Punkbass avatar

It’s a PIXEL Stick.

This is a great idea. It will make the software developed for Raspberry Pi more versatile and enable more existing technology usable for educational purposes.

Gerry avatar

Lenovo X220 will not boot from the USB for some reason.

Punkbass avatar

It won’t boot on my ASUS laptop. The USB doesn’t appear on the boot menu. However, it boots fine from a Dell All in One PC. However, I forgot to change the keyboard setup to US instead of UK.

Since Minecraft and Wolfram are unavailable on this version, maybe it might be a good idea to add Minetest and Cantor or something similar to this version.

Brian avatar

I am also having trouble with an ASUS, an EEE PC 901. Windows XP bogged this thing down so much so it was almost unusable. BIOS seems to not see the USB stick. I’ve flashed it twice per the instructions.

Kevin Bowers avatar

Brian, sorry it took me so long to get back to you. I, too, have an eeePC that I’ve always had trouble getting to boot to USB. The problem is the oddball BIOS. Put your bootable thumbdrive in, then boot to the BIOS setup. Then set it to boot to HDD first, open the HDD menu, and your USB drive is there–just place it first, save and exit and you’re finished. Worked for me.

UncleRaeRae avatar

Attempting to bodge my way through some kind of install and see if I can get it to fly on my old Motion M1400. Knowing that Debian itself is a possibility on this device (including sound and using the Wacom pen features) makes this OS VERY appealing to breathe new life into a machine that I feel has some years of service left. Worked OK under XP, but it felt clunky. and had very little luck with win7 once i shoehorned it onto the device.
Coupled with a 2gb ram upgrade and SSD this looks like fun!

Alexandre Perier-Muzet avatar

Tested on my early 2015 MBPr : awsome!!! keep going!!!

Can’t wait for BLE and WIFI to work ?

denbid avatar

I keep getting failed to load ldlinux.c32 error. I have tried it on various machines same problem tried dvd and flash.

Hans Wiggers avatar

Totally great, but where is the torrent so it won’t take 3 hours to download. Expecting my “real” raspberry Pi in a few days.

Marlin Schwanke avatar

I’ve got my Pixel stick in an 6 year old Dell Latitude. It runs very nicely. WiFi connected right up. Only glitch I’ve seen so far is that the @ and ” characters are swapped.

Very clean & simple. Just what I like in a desktop OS. I’ve actually been tasting various distributions of Linux over the past few months and I didn’t really care for them. I’ll be looking for the installable version!


Liz Upton avatar

You can change the keyboard mapping (it defaults to a UK setting) – go to preferences in the GUI to swap it over.

Marlin Schwanke avatar

Thanks Liz. I figured that would be the case.

Will avatar

I burned the ISO onto a USB drive and attempting to boot the thumb drive on an insignia ns-15ms0832 tablet, Currently running Windows 10 and I am able to see the thumb drive in windows but when I try to boot from the thumb drive its just goes back to windows.

Marlin Schwanke avatar

Windows 10 devices tend to have a locked down boot process. You might need to get into the device UEFI/BIOS settings. Look for boot settings to disable UEFI. It might also be called Enable CSM or Legacy Boot. You might also need to find a setting called Secure Boot and disable that.

Who Else avatar

Is there any way to bootstrap PIXEL on the X40 via Win XP without using a USB stick? I have the same model (finest laptop ever, indeed!) but the USB ports are blown. I have PCMCIA USB, but can’t boot off it.

Gary H. Baker, EE avatar

Please make an installable version based on the current Debian 32 bit release. Then everyone should be able to get it to run on almost anything. I have wasted too many hours trying to get this to permanently install on a variety of PCs, always having to compromise something. Even the VirtualBox idea gives less than a perfect and slow solution. I love the fact that you guys have curated the Raspberry Pi solution. Now lets make your remarkable software curation efforts more universally available. Until then I will just stick with PIXEL on a Raspberry Pi, PiTop or PiTop CEED. Thanks for everything you do toward making your way of thinking as ubiquitous as possible.

Liz Upton avatar

Read the comments. :)

Scott avatar

Just downloaded and tried it virtualized.

Picked Debian 7 as the base target.

Runs great.

Use persist and it’s pretty close to a permanent install for now.

Elias avatar

For my budget laptop I’m using Lubuntu. But it’s also good alternative.

nimble2 avatar

Installed pixel on usb drive using YUMI.
Boots up PI splash screen and starts to load, then goes command line.

/bin/sh: can’t access tty: job control turned off
(initramfs) Unable to find a medium containing a live file system
modprobe: module ehci-orion not found in modules.dep

I guess I’ll try and burn DVD or burn to different usb not using a multi-boot loader like YUMI.

Ed_P avatar
Martin Mander avatar

It’s like I got a new laptop from the pi foundation for Christmas! Dug out the old Dell Vostro 1000 and it runs really well. Was previously baffled by the range of different distros but to have this familiar one is just great. Thanks!

Sakari Castrén avatar

Is it possible to shrink the image so that it fits on CD? There still exist laptops with option for CDROM only.

Simon Long avatar

Probably not – it’s a standard Debian live image with our changes applied to it, and the Debian live images are too big for a single CD.

Rich Dexter avatar

Is PIXEL good in security measures i was thinking about using this for Deep Web surfin, would this be good to use with Tor?

Simon Long avatar

On x86, it’s not significantly different from Debian in respect to security – if Debian is good enough, then PIXEL would also be acceptable.

Maciej avatar

Pixel works great from USB stick on Acer Aspire One D270 (Atom N2600 1.6 GHz, 2MB RAM). Everything works: video playback on youtube, sound. It also boots on an old Dell Lattitude D630 Intel HD but only in low resolution mode on an attached 1200 x 1048 monitor. Would be nice to have screen resolution or graphics modes in settings. Anyone know how to change or force screen resolution in Pixel?

Bas Jansen avatar

Just tried it on my iMac 5K 27″ retina (boot with USB stick). Starts up fine, desktop is shown, but mouse and keyboard won’t work (both wireless and wired).
Using the same USB stick on a MSI U200 gives no problems. Everything is running fine.

Simon Long avatar

For Mac, you need to re-pair Bluetooth devices under the PIXEL environment (and unfortunately, if they are the standard Apple wireless mouse and keyboard, this un-pairs them from the Mac…) Wired USB mouse and keyboard should work fine with PIXEL on the Mac; I use a cheap USB keyboard and mouse with my Mac mini, and they work with no problems.

MKaz avatar

Running well on a Dell Inspiron 910! I was sure it was useless and about to go into the E-cycling bin. Can’t wait for the perm install!

David Smith avatar

You could install this on laptop or old computer the same as you would a pi.
Just dd the image to the hard drive and reboot?

Stephan Sokolow avatar

That icon theme REALLY doesn’t feel like it fits with the art direction of the rest of the desktop, the clock widget needs a few pixels more padding on the left, and the close button in the titlebar looks a little misaligned when presented above that thin scrollbar.

(The problem is that the widget and titlebar theme are completely flat, matte, and without outlines, while the shapes in the icons have very heavy outlines and a glassy gloss accent on the folders.)

That flaw aside, what I can see in the screenshots looks good.

Jan avatar

Works great!!!
Installed on different USB sticks, HDD – permanently.
Notebook Lifebook s7110
Notebook Acer Travelmate 5730
Thanks a lot!!!

evil twin avatar

Okay, now where was the GPIO on my desktop PC again?
I guess someone ought to make a USB to PI HAT interface soon …

Ron avatar

My pixel disc will not show the desktop I just get a blank screen
I have tried the free disc from your mag and tried my own iso burned disc also tried without persistence but no screen shows
The last text the screen shows is in the top left saying some think like linux 8 then the dvd drive keeps going for a little while then quite and no show,
My computer is a Acer Aspire 5715z
Can you help ?
cheers Ron

RON avatar


David Smith avatar

I am now using my Pixel laptop. Way to go, this plus my pi and a 32 inch monitor and wifi now all set up and complete.

Thank for the great idea. Dave

newbie-pi avatar

no dice on an old hp pavilion dv6000

isolinux 6/03 20150819 ETCD (C) 1994-2014 H. Peter Anvin et all

Failed to Load idlinux.c32

The selected boot device failed. Press any key to continue

image 2016-12-13-pixel-x86-jessie.iso

Ed_P avatar

Hi. I downloaded the PIXEL OS iso file and am trying to boot it with grub2, which is how I test Linux isos on my Acer netbook. In setting up my grub2 boot parameters I looked at the /boot/loopback.cfg file in the iso. I copied them verbatim but booting failed. In actually looking at the parms there are many repeated over and over, boot=live for example.

When booting I keep ending up at a terminal screen, but I was expecting a GUI. Is there an updated set of grub2 loopback parms I can use to boot the iso?



Ed_P avatar

initramfs)A little more info.

I changed the grub2 bootparms to be just: boot=live splash. Booting take me to the Pixel screen and after a minute if I press the Enter key I get a terminal screen showing typical Linux commands followed by:
BusyBox v1.22.1 …
Enter ‘help’ for commands
/bin/sh: can’t access tty …
(initramfs) unable to find a …. live file system
modprobe: module ehci.orion not found in modules.dep

Entering whoami shows I’m root but entering the boot command says I’ not authorized.

I’m running on an Acer netbook and the iso in on an ntfs partition.

How do I get to the gui de?

Ed_P avatar

I found this link for booting Debian isos with grub2:
I tried the parameters shown and they didn’t help the PIXEL iso.

Maybe the next beta will work.

BTW I did try using the recommended app for creating a PIXEL USB drive. The system did boot but many of the systems functions didn’t work. File manager, network manager being the main ones.

And the USB app partitioned the USB drive!!! For Linux users that’s not a problem, for Windows users that’s a no-no. Windows only sees the 1st partition on removable drives.

Ed_P avatar

Progress!! Found the findiso command in the /boot/loopback.cfg file in the iso to be wrong. The file shows it as findiso=${iso_path} whereas the correct format is findiso=$iso_path

So, the iso boots now in grub2 with
‘boot=live findiso=’$iso_path’ splash’

Unfortunately the booted PIXEL doesn’t respond to my mouse clicks or keyboard keys. :(

Ed_P avatar

Found the problem with the touchpad is PIXEL doesn’t interpret taps on the touchpad as clicks of the left button, but it does accept clicks of the left button!! And the right one.

The next problem was PIXEL not supporting my WiFi controller. Loading an older Broadcom driver (firmware-brcm80211_0.43_all.deb) seemed to have an effect, it gave me wlan0 as a network option but I was unable to see or input my router’s name.

A person named user1 helped me a lot on the forum but he was basically the only one.

So, PIXEL looks like it could be useful for those that it works for.

David avatar

I think it will be great,I hope it gets a full install release :)

wayne waters avatar

This is so cool… I’m pretty new to all this… Could I access files from old computer as well?

Simon Long avatar

Yes, you can – you should be able to mount the other drives on the host PC under Linux. Be very careful when doing so, though – we’ve not tested this, and there is a risk that you might end up writing data to them which would potentially corrupt your existing Windows or MacOS installation.

Alan avatar

I love the idea but I’ve tried from USB and DVD but I just get “Failed to load linux.c32” each time.

Simon Long avatar

What tool did you use to create the USB stick? I’ve seen reports that this can happen if something like Rufus is used and the option is selected to create the image as FAT-32 rather than FAT. It might be worth trying an alternative flashing tool – we recommend Etcher (http://etcher.io/)

Joshua avatar

I posted higher up that I had this issue, but once I finally managed to re-download the image it worked perfectly. Have a bootable USB drive and a few old laptops that I used Etcher to install to their hard drives, connected via IDE-to-USB to my MacBook. Anyone experiencing that issue probably just has a corrupt image like I did.

David Baynes avatar

Problems in chrome accessing etcher.io – seemed blocked no matter what I did/tried. USB created via Yumi and seems to load well -very pleased. The one exception (and I suspect this is me/my old laptop hardware: AMD Athlon 64 processor 3000; Realtec RTL8169/8110 Inprocomm IPN 2220) ie I can get no linux distro to recognise wifi and can’t figure a workaround despite XP working fine on wifi on same machine. Any thoughts on a postcard or otherwise very welcome! Like the idea of pixel and hope I can get this darned machine working with your good works.

Hal avatar

Many Thanks for providing this OS for a PC. Boot it on my 4 year old Lenovo and its only using 90MB or memory..wow!!

I used Etcher to create the USB image and it worked the first time.

sallonoroff avatar

Runs beautifully on an ancient PC with an Athlon XP processor… except Chromium chucks an error about no SSE2 support.

Any way around this? I tried to apt-get firefox, midori, etc but they all failed.

erasmus avatar

sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install firefox-esr