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How to update your Raspberry Pi to the latest Raspbian OS

The Raspberry Pi has undoubtedly simplified it for everyone to indulge in the new trends like IoT and Robotics. Check this article that illustrates seven interesting things you should know about the Raspberry Pi.

The Raspberry Pi can run on many operating systems, and if you install ‘NOOBS’  (New Out Of the Box OS)- an operating system installation manager- in the micro SD storage card, the operating systems that can be worked on would include:

  • Raspbian
  • LibreELEC
  • OSMC
  • Recalbox
  • Lakka
  • RISC OS
  • Screenly OSE
  • Windows 10 IoT Core
  • TLXOS

The NOOBS installer is of two types – online NOOBS and offline NOOBS Lite. Though the NOOBS Lite will not require an internet connection to install the OS of your choice, it’s entirely possible that the version of the OS installed will be outdated.

Also read: Microcontrollers: A layman’s guide to the microcontroller world

Raspbian OS

What is Raspberry Pi 3? 7 interesting things you should know

The Raspberry Pi community recommends you install the Raspbian OS on the Pi. The Raspian OS is Debian-based explicitly made to establish effective communication with the Pi’s hardware.

Raspbian is not just an OS, and it comes pre-installed with 35,000 packages and useful software bundles for better interaction with the Raspberry Pi thus providing better functionality options to the user.

Raspbian OS current version

The current version of the Raspbian OS is ‘Stretch’ which replaced ‘Jessie’ in 2017. The changes noticed on upgrading to Stretch were:

Updated versions of applications

Sonic Pi: New functionality options concerning input and output.

Chromium Web Browser: Updated to version 60 that delivers improved memory usage options and better performance.

Built-in Bluetooth audio

Previous versions used an external application – ‘PulseAudio’ to transmit audio over Bluetooth that came pre-installed in the Jessie OS. But, its integration with the system’s architecture did not prove to be quite stable.

So, a new package ‘bluez-alsa’ was added to interface the Bluetooth audio with the ALSA architecture used by the Pi itself, thereby increasing the Bluetooth audio performance.

SenseHAT support

The AstroPi mission requires SenseHAT- a Raspberry Pi add-on – which helped launch the International Space Station in December 2015.

The SenseHat comes with a built-in gyroscope, accelerometer, magnetometer, temperature, barometric pressure and humidity sensors and is now also available for purchase by businesses that require this bundle of sensors for their projects.

The new version of the OS has given SCRATCH 2 as a support to SenseHAT to provide better interaction to it.  Using this, people who aren’t even adept at coding can use SenseHAT effectively for their projects.

How to update to latest Raspbian OS

To upgrade your Raspbian to the latest version:

  • Open the Terminal by using the Ctrl+ALT+T shortcut or locate it on your home screen.
  • Run ‘sudo apt-get update’ command to update the repository package list.
  • Next, run ‘sudo apt dist-upgrade’ command to upgrade the OS
  • Wait for the upgrade process to finish and then run the ‘sudo apt clean’ command to get rid of any unwanted files that were downloaded when the upgrade took place.
  • Finally, restart the Pi using the ‘sudo reboot’ command to begin using the latest version of the Raspbian OS.

You can install the latest versions of Rapsbian OS here.

Also read: Hard Disk Drives (HDD) vs Solid State Drives (SSD)

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