Linux in The News 10-16-23

Last Updated on October 16, 2023 by KC7NYR

Raspberry Pi OS Is Now Based on Debian Bookworm, Supports Raspberry Pi 5

This release also comes with Wayland support, as well as PipeWire and NetworkManager by default.
Raspberry Pi OS Bookworm

The Raspberry Pi Foundation released today a new version of its Debian-based Raspberry Pi OS distribution for Raspberry Pi single-board computers that brings a new Bookworm base and some major changes.

The biggest change in the new Raspberry Pi OS release is that it’s now based on the latest Debian GNU/Linux 12 “Bookworm” operating system series. Previous Raspberry Pi OS releases until today were based on Debian GNU/Linux 11 “Bullseye”.

However, despite this change, the Raspberry Pi operating system is still powered by the long-term supported Linux 6.1 LTS kernel series, which will be maintained until December 2026.

Two other major changes are present in this release, the first being the switch to the Wayfire Wayland compositing window manager for the Raspberry Pi OS desktop on Raspberry Pi 4 and Raspberry Pi 5 models. For older Raspberry Pi models, the OS will default to X11 using the Openbox window manager.

Due to this change, Raspberry Pi OS’s panel (LXpanel) has been replaced with a new application called wf-panel-pi when running under Wayland. GPU performance and power plugins are included with the new panel. In addition, the PCManFM file manager has been updated to use the Wayland backend when running on Wayland.

The second major change is the switch to PipeWire as the default multimedia backend instead of PulseAudio. The same goes for the network connection manager, which has been replaced with the popular NetworkManager in this major Raspberry Pi OS release.

The new Raspberry Pi OS release also adds the Mozilla Firefox web browser as an alternative to Chromium, which has been the default web browser from the start. Also, new apps are now available when running under Wayland, including the WayVNC VNC server, Grim screenshot tool, Eye of MATE image viewer, as well as Evince document viewer.

Among other interesting changes, this release switches from raspberrypi-kernel to the Debian-based linux-image-rpi-* kernel packaging, as well as from raspberrypi-bootloader to the Debian-based raspi-firmware firmware packaging, and moves the /boot mount to /boot/firmware.

The new Raspberry Pi OS images are available for download from the official website in various flavors with desktop, with desktop and recommended software, or a Lite version. It supports Raspberry Pi 3B, Raspberry Pi 3B+, Raspberry Pi 3A+, Raspberry Pi 4B, Raspberry Pi 400, Raspberry Pi 5, Raspberry Pi CM3, Raspberry Pi CM3+, Raspberry Pi CM4, Raspberry Pi CM4S, and Raspberry Pi Zero 2 W models.