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The Pi Wire

The Pi Wire looks at new products, education, boards, and ways people are putting the Rasp Pi to work.

FreeBSD on the Pi

The RaspBSD project has announced RaspBSD, a new Raspberry Pi distribution based on FreeBSD, a free version of Berkeley Software Distribution (BSD) Unix that is older than Linux and considered by many users to be more stable and secure. Regardless of your preference, the new project will give you a means for testing and experimenting with FreeBSD 11 using the conventional boot-from-the-SD-card Raspberry Pi installation techniques.

So far, RaspBSD images exist for the Raspberry Pi Model B and B+ systems. The project reports that images for Banana Pi and BeagleBone Black are in the works.

The nature of open source systems makes it easy for a seasoned developer with sufficient time and resources to port an operating system to new hardware. Developers have run BSD on Raspberry Pi systems in the past – the real news is that RaspBSD offers a sustained development effort to maintain an ongoing branch of the FreeBSD kernel for Pi-like systems and to integrate the necessary tools and documentation to make the system easy to install and use.

Retrogaming with RetroPie 3.0

The RetroPie retro-gaming project has announced the release of RetroPie 3.0. RetroPie offers a collection of emulators for computers and game consoles from the 1970s, 80s, and 90s, including Atari 2600, Sega Mega Drive (Sega Genesis), and Sony Playstation. The RetroPie collection, which is popular with the retro gaming community, lets the user configure the Rasp Pi as an old-fashioned gaming console. The compact nature of the Pi has led to many interesting projects, in which the Pi board is retrofitted into a Game Boy or game console housing.

New features in the latest version include automatic controller configuration for the RetroArch multisystem emulator, a new system for "per-ROM emulator switching" and emulator configuration, new configuration tools accessible from within the Emulation Station tool, and basic joypad control within the RetroPie setup menus. The system now offers support for more than 20 emulators. The latest release also includes lots of smaller improvements and bug fixes based on feedback from the Version 2.6 release.

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