Raspberry Pi Gets Noobs Software For Ease Of Use

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Raspberry Pi now has “noob software” to make it easier to use for non-technically minded and beginners

The non-profit Raspberry Pi Foundation responsible for the world’s favourite credit card-sized Linux computer, is offering a software download to make it easier to use.

The download is aimed at new users and those less technically minded.

Ease Of Use

“We started this project with the premise that throwing people in at the deep end and making them jump hurdles, to mix my sporting metaphors, is a good way to get them to learn stuff. It is: but it can also put some people off, sometimes terminally,” said the foundation in a blog post. “And we don’t want people to put their Raspberry Pi down in horror after five minutes. So with this in mind, we’d like to introduce you to NOOBS.”

eben upton raspberry pi foundation

NOOBS stands for ‘New Out of Box Software’ and is essentially designed to make life much easier when setting up a brand new Raspberry Pi for the first time. Users are advised to download the compressed zip file to a 2GB SD card, and then unpack it. Users are then given a choice of operating systems to install, including ArchLInux, OpenELEC, Pidora, RaspBMC.

“When you boot up for the first time, you’ll see a menu prompting you to install one of several operating systems into the free space on the card,” said the Foundation. “The choice means you can boot the Pi with a regular operating system like Raspbian, or with a media-centre specific OS like RaspBMC.”

Afterwards, the NOOBS remains on the SD card and allows the user to switch to a recovery interface (hold shift during boot up) if things go horribly wrong. Users can also opt to switch to a different operating system, or overwrite a corrupted card with a fresh installation.

The NOOBS zip file can be downloaded here. A a tutorial video showing how to set up a NOOBS installation can be found here.

Other Changes

It has been a busy time for the foundation. Last month it revealed general availability of the first official Raspberry Pi camera board. In February it revealed an even cheaper version of its low-cost, ARM-based miniature computer, priced at just $25 (£16), excluding tax and shipping.

These changes come after the Raspberry Pi was officially launched back in February 2012. In the year since its launch, it has sold around a million units and amassed an enthusiastic following worldwide

Do you know how many raspberries are in a Raspberry Pi? Try our quiz!

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Author: Tom Jowitt
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