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Linux Hardware

Raspberry Pi Gets 512MB Filling 178

Posted by samzenpus
from the bigger-and-better dept.
sfcrazy writes "Good (and bad) news for Raspberry Pi lovers, the Model B has been upgraded to 512MB RAM from 256MB. Bad news is for those who already got their Model B shipments because all those who have outstanding orders with either distributors will get the *upgraded* version of the device, means with 512MB RAM instead of 256MB. The upgraded devices should be arriving to customers from today onwards. Raspberry Pi team will be pushing a firmware upgrade soon so these news devices can detect and use the additional RAM."
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Raspberry Pi Gets 512MB Filling

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  • "Bad news" (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Bronster (13157) <slashdot@brong.net> on Monday October 15, 2012 @09:41AM (#41656953) Homepage

    That's what happens when you adopt early, you get earlier revisions of stuff.

    The alternative would be to never upgrade for fear of making the early adopters sad. Of course there has to be a balance, but most non-assholes accept that this is how things work.

    On the plus side, they actually HAVE their Pi now, and have had the use of it already. If they hadn't bought it (collectively), there would be no Pi.

    Mmm, Pi.

    • Re:"Bad news" (Score:5, Insightful)

      by mfh (56) on Monday October 15, 2012 @09:45AM (#41656993) Journal

      That's what happens when you adopt early, you get earlier revisions of stuff.

      Early adopters get a rare slice of history. Nothing wrong with that.

    • Re: (Score:2, Offtopic)

      by Crosshair84 (2598247)
      Just like with SSDs, early ones were still faster than spinning rust, but horrifically unreliable. If you were someone who wanted the bleeding edge you still bought them, but for people who value reliability, we waited for the later models to come out.

      I know I said in the past that I would buy one when Western Digital started making them, but the fact that Intel has a 5 year warranty on their SSDs now for awhile and the specs of the new 520 series I went ahead and got one. Combine that with finally liste
      • by MightyYar (622222) on Monday October 15, 2012 @10:31AM (#41657545)

        I know I said in the past that I would buy one when Western Digital started making them

        I know, I'm waiting for Boeing to start making automobiles. Toyotas just aren't reliable enough ;p

        Sorry, I just couldn't resist. I personally think you are better off with an Intel SSD, since intel has experience with chips. WD might know how to make a good spinning disk, but AFAIK they don't own a single chip fab.

        • Ummmmmm, your analogy is a non sequitur. Boeing has never made cars. Western digital does make storage devices, so getting into SSD would be a logical step for them. You example would be logically coherent if you replaced "car" with "single engine prop planes", but even that's a stretch since SSDs are a growing market share while single engine prop planes are a rather mature market.

          Nvidia doesn't own a single chip fab either, what does that have to do with anything?
          • by MightyYar (622222)

            Boeing makes a reliable way to get from point A to point B.

            Aren't you taking a joke a bit too seriously?

            Nvidia doesn't own a single chip fab either, what does that have to do with anything?

            Nvidia at least designs their own graphics chips. If WD has any chip design experience at all, it is in their drive controller. And I'm sure some of that experience applies to SSDs, but they have no memory chip experience at all.

          • Ummmmmm, your analogy is a non sequitur. Boeing has never made cars. Western digital does make storage devices, so getting into SSD would be a logical step for them.

            I don't feel it's actually that big of a stretch. Western Digital is and never has been a player in the flash-storage market, they've always been a player in the mechanical storage - market, just Boeing has always been about transporting people through the air instead of on the ground. Boeing does have experience with developing lightweight, sturdy structures with passenger safety and aerodynamics/fuel efficiency in mind just as WD has experience with error-correction, data usage patterns and such details;

      • Re: Intel 520's

        I've been buying them and sticking them into the SAS slots on HP DL360/DL380 servers. They snap right in. I bought about 25% more than I need in case there are any failures and will proactively rotate them out for newer/larger ones in a year.

        Very fast.

    • by decipher_saint (72686) on Monday October 15, 2012 @10:02AM (#41657157) Homepage

      Hmm, I guess the alternative is to wait until just before the end of time to buy all your devices.

      (but you just know they have better devices in a parallel universe anyway)

    • I have my slice of Pi. And I am quite satisfied with 256Mb. I have plans for the little beast that don't require more RAM.... So I am happy. I liked the idea of a cheap limited computer. It makes you frugal with your resources and efficient. But then again if my ZX81 still worked, I'd be playing with that...

    • by kriston (7886)

      I haven't had a need to use more than the 256 megabytes it comes with but I will probably order another upgraded version anyway.

    • by drinkypoo (153816)

      On the down side, I'm kind of pissed that I have a device that will now be relegated to second-tier status, because everyone and their mom will end up planning for a 512MB memory envelope.

      On the even further down side, they will almost certainly target Android to use that much memory, and those of us with a Rev.A will have a nightmare of a time.

      On the even further down side, you still can't get ICS, which they claimed to have working two months ago. WTF?

      Finally, for the same actual delivered price, you can

      • Finally, for the same actual delivered price, you can get something else. For barely more you can get a VIA APC from Newegg. For the same price, you can get one of these sticks that run ICS.

        You do realize that those do not offer the same kind of modifiability as the RPi? The VIA APC has very few extra ports and the sticks have literally none. In other words, they cater to entirely different audience and if you bought an RPi but actually wanted a VIA APC or similar then you hadn't really thought about what you actually want. Yes, it is sad that the RPi doesn't seem to suit you, but blaming them for that is just shifting blame for your bad purchase from yourself.

        the memory upgrade had to be coming but they didn't want people to wait so they didn't tell us.

        I quite doubt it's like that. Mos

      • by xaxa (988988)

        My my, what a great big sense of entitlement you have!

        The Raspberry Pi Foundation is a registered charity, created to improve computer science education in schools. Much of the work has been done by volunteers.

        If you don't want your board, sell it on eBay. They seem to have held their value so far.

      • by dbIII (701233)

        Raspberry Pi has turned out to be kind of a comedy of incompetence

        Welcome to version 0.1 of anything new.

    • That's what happens when you adopt early, you get earlier revisions of stuff.

      That's why I'm waiting for the fastest and bestest computer anyone will ever build! By the way, is there any schedule for when they're gonna build it?

    • by Erbo (384)
      Why "bad news"? This is an excellent opportunity to get a second one...and give the original to someone who would appreciate it as a Christmas gift. Which is what I plan on doing...and it means ModMyPi will be getting more business, too, as I get another case for the new one.
    • In keeping with the BBC Micro inspired naming scheme, they should have just called them the B+

      The BBC model B+ was basically a B with twice as much RAM. [wikipedia.org]

  • by judgecorp (778838) on Monday October 15, 2012 @09:42AM (#41656959) Homepage
    One exciting thing is the Pi can now run the Ice Cream Sandwich version of Android... http://www.techweekeurope.co.uk/news/raspberry-pi-512mb-ram-96143 [techweekeurope.co.uk]
    • by CastrTroy (595695)
      I'm going to go with the AC sibling of mine. Android to me is a terrible operating system, I don't know enough about it to know whether it's better in newer versions (jellybean etc) or whether it's something specific to my phone and the phones I've seen, but Android isn't my idea of a good OS. I would much rather run Linux on the Raspberry Pi, and don't care to run Android. I only have an Android phone because there really isn't a whole lot else out there. iPhone is nice but expensive. Windows Phone is al
      • by Lifyre (960576)

        I suspect it is your phone mostly. The biggest problem Android has is that there is a huge quality range from phone to phone and manufacturer to manufacturer. The software and modifications that HTC, Motorola, and Samsung force on Android users are horrendous and lead to some absolutely horrible experiences with worse performance.

        If you use the Android that Google releases (or something close to it, like Asus) there is a world of difference and (to me) a superior experience to iOS.

    • by evilviper (135110)

      the Pi can now run the Ice Cream Sandwich version of Android

      Except the Pi shipped with an ARM11 (ARMv6) CPU, while just about all native Android apps are compiled for ARMv7. So most of the apps people are going to want to run... Multimedia programs, games, Firefox, etc., etc, won't ever work on the Pi, all for the sake of saving $1 rather than upgrading to a non-ancient CPU.

      • It's a fully open platform so you don't need a compatibility layer (android) to get to secret hardware underneath. Android doesn't even have a fully working X yet so you are more limited in the applications that can run than if you run a compatible linux, bsd, or whatever.
        • by evilviper (135110)

          I generally agree with you, but there could be many good reasons to run Android. It's certainly the better choice for touch-screens. And even on a desktop-like system, android apps are designed to be small and fast, while their desktop equivalents are nightmarish resource hogs. Firefox and Chrome are great examples of that. And while the source code of both is open, I've yet to see any lightweght desktop version being forked off.

          Android has a number of applications that Linux lacks... Netflix streaming

  • by crazyjj (2598719) * on Monday October 15, 2012 @09:42AM (#41656963)

    My son is really interested in robotics and hardware stuff. Is there some site out there that has a list of components and accessories for sale (like robotic arms, led displays, etc.) that will work out of the box with Raspberry Pi's? I've seen a few of these for other prototyping hardware controllers, but the prices were a bit steep.

  • by Terrasque (796014) on Monday October 15, 2012 @09:43AM (#41656969) Homepage Journal

    How about actually, you know, shipping the things? Ordered a month ago, only thing I've got from it so far is an automated email and a PI-shaped hole in my paypal account..

    Less mucking about, more actually delivering stuff please.

    • How about actually, you know, shipping the things? Ordered a month ago, only thing I've got from it so far is an automated email and a PI-shaped hole in my paypal account..

      I see this comment all over the place. Who did you order from?

      I have two already. Bought mine from element14.

      I don't mind about the extra ram, cause the tasks I'm using these ones for don't require it.

      • by Terrasque (796014) on Monday October 15, 2012 @09:56AM (#41657095) Homepage Journal

        Ordered from raspberrypi.rsdelivers.com - one of the two that was recommended from http://www.raspberrypi.org/ [raspberrypi.org] page.

        I looked at element14 but they didn't seem to have a casing for it, so I ended up at the other recommended place.

        • RS have been terrible.

          I ordered one, two months later they cancelled my order for no reason. Ordered another in July from RS, one month past so I went to Element14. Element14 delivered in 3 days, ordered a seconds one a couple of weeks later and that took 2 days. My second RS order from July still hasn't arrived.

          My local Tesco has RPi for sale in the CPC (Farnell) section.

          It reminded me how incompetent RS are. I used to make orders of components, used to take weeks for everything to arrive. Farnell can get

      • by Sique (173459)

        Same with me. I ordered mine at Element14, and about a week later, I got it.

      • by rdnetto (955205) on Monday October 15, 2012 @10:19AM (#41657373)

        Here's a useful reference point: I ordered one from both element14 and RS at the same time. The RS one arrived several weeks after the one from element14. I ordered another one from element14 more recently, and it arrived in under 3 weeks.

        AFAICT, most of the people complaining ordered theirs from RS. I suspect part of the reason may be that RS is using a completely separate website and therefore likely has a completely separate administrative process for fulfilling orders, which isn't as capable. Element14 just added them as items to their regular site, so they aren't subject to the same limitations. (I'd say that was a pretty good move on their part, given that I've since ordered lots of more obscure components from them.)

        • by Xenna (37238)

          "I'd say that was a pretty good move on their part, given that I've since ordered lots of more obscure components from them."

          Same here, I didn't know they existed before, but now I have placed 4 orders with them.

    • by Picass0 (147474)

      Order a Model B last month from element14, it took 1 week to arrive. I live in Nebraska.

  • THE!!!! (Score:3, Informative)

    by organgtool (966989) on Monday October 15, 2012 @09:56AM (#41657093)
    I have been reading Slashdot for fourteen years and I have never once complained about the grammar in a summary before (usually there are enough pedants out there to do more than enough complaining), but this summary is horrible. I do not blame the submitter because I realize that English may not be his or her first language, but I though Slashdot was supposed to have some sort of editors who at least read the summary once before posting it to the front page. I had to read the second sentence several times to confirm that it meant what I thought it did and in the rest of the summary the article "the" is missing at least two times. I really do love this site, but if you want to call yourself an editor, then please do the job or turn it over to someone who will.
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by L4t3r4lu5 (1216702)

      I have been reading Slashdot for fourteen years and I have never once complained about the grammar in a summary before. Usually there are enough pedants out there to do more than enough complaining, but this summary is horrible. I do not blame the submitter because I realize that English may not be his or her first language, but I thought Slashdot was supposed to have some sort of editorial staff who at least read the summary once before posting it to the front page. I had to read the second sentence several times to confirm that it meant what I thought it did, and in the rest of the summary the article "the" is missing at least two times. I really do love this site, but if you want to call yourself an editor, then please do the job or turn it over to someone who will.

      Muphry's Law strikes again [wikipedia.org]

      • Good catch! To my credit, I'm just some random shithead posting a quick comment between work tasks and not a member of the editorial staff responsible for posting stories on the front page. :)
    • but I though Slashdot was

      Did you?

    • Hey, I upvoted the other sumission on this on the firehose, but expected this flamebait version to be accepted. And, predictabaly, there's a big thread debating the flamebait about the merits of being an early adopter (again...).

      The Slashdot community gets the editing it deserves.

  • Anybody got any leads on a decent alternative to the Raspberry Pi? Since it seems impossible to actually get hold of one and I'd like to get a really compact embedded computer for a project.
    • Try researching:
      Audrino, TI MSP430 Launchpad, TI Stellaris ARM Cortex-M Launchpad, Electric Imp
    • They seem to be handling this competently, while RS Components/Allied seems to be screwing up royally.

      • by wjousts (1529427)
        Yeah, that does seem to be the observation a lot of people are making. I might well cancel my order with Allied and try ordering from the other guys.
    • by Narishma (822073)

      If you want to get hold of one, just don't order it from RS/Allied and you'll be fine.

    • by ssam (2723487)

      There are lots of arm dev boards. though none quite as cheap as the raspberry pi. for example I have had a beagleboard for several years, its a bit bigger (though still tiny by most standards), and quite a bit more expensive. If you want smaller you could look at gumstix. if you only need 8bit then arduino. if you want ubuntu support you could look at pandaboard. if you want a 16/64 core coprocessor then parallella.

  • Some Pi Alternatives (Score:2, Informative)

    by evilviper (135110)

    If you want a smartphone, the Alcatel Venture has comparable specs, and sells for $50, contract-free (and VirginMobile also has some of the cheapest cell plans, too, if you want to sign up).

    If you want a desktop, you can usually get a used, mini P4 system (40w idle) for $32 from geeks.com. Better deals are often available from local off-lease PC dealers.

    If you want a tablet, Walmart stocks a 7" Pandigital unit for $50.

    If you want video streaming and 1080p decoding, the D-Link MovieNite Streaming Player, DSM

    • by jockm (233372) on Monday October 15, 2012 @12:17PM (#41659097) Homepage

      Hmm none of those systems have open pins for hardware work, only one is roughly the same size, you can't really install any linux you want on most of them, only one can be run off of AA batteries.

      And while you can to a lot with the hardware you mentioned, it isn't the same as having a small, relatively powerful, piece of generic hardware.

      Binary blobs don't bother everyone...

      • Binary blobs don't bother everyone...

        Know what bothers me? People like the GP saying something akin to "The Pi uses a proprietary blob! That's bad! Go buy this completely proprietary system instead."

      • by fa2k (881632)

        Depending on your requirements, the Arduino board may be better for hardware work. The AVR microcontroller has much much lower specs than the R.Pi, but the electrical connections of Arduino are much better, with more pins and an ADC. R. Pi go out of their way to warn you about experimenting with the GPIO pins, because they are not protected and can fry your Pi. You can add something called a Gertboard to the Pi and that has a huge number of connections, but I couldn't figure out how to get one or if it was

    • I don't think you really 'get'what it is, there's very little like having a ubiquitous platform that has many hobbiests all clustered around it providing support and enthusiasm.

      But that's ok, you don't have to get it, and can continue to not buy it. The rest of us will be having fun with our toys...

    • by Xenna (37238)

      It make make no sense to you, but it makes sense to me. If there are enough people to whom it makes sense and who are actually willing to spend their money and their time to get one the project makes sense, business sense.

      And it certainly seems that way...

  • 512MB is nice and all but, other than the cute name, what does the relatively closed architecture of the Raspberry Pi have over other efforts such as the Rhombus [rhombus-tech.net] A10 project?

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