“RISC OS Open are very pleased to announce the official release of RISC OS for the Raspberry Pi, ‘RISC OS Pi’. This is a watershed moment for RISC OS and represents the culmination of many months of hard work from a whole community of developers, testers and other contributors. It also means the Raspberry Pi can now boast support for the quick, compact, original ARM-based operating system.” This is absolutely fantastic news. I’m going to try this on my Pi later this week.
RISC OS Pi released
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2012-10-29 1:19 ambhtooefr
That would be the PandaBoard ES, which has a dual core Cortex-A9 at 1.2 GHz. (There is also a 1.0 GHz PandaBoard that the ES effectively replaced.) However, RISC OS doesn’t support multiprocessor systems, so one core stays idle. I suspect the PandaBoard also has the fastest floating point, as the TI OMAP4’s version of the Cortex-A9 core has the VFPv3 unit included.
Also, the BeagleBoard xM (1 GHz Cortex-A8) and BeagleBoard (600 MHz Cortex-A8) are both faster than the Raspberry Pi’s older 700 MHz ARM1176 for integer work. However, the Raspberry Pi is faster for floating point, as it seems that RISC OS has standardized on using VFP for floating point, instead of NEON (ARM backpedaled on the whole “deprecating VFP” thing that they tried with Cortex-A8, now it’s just that the vector VFP instructions are deprecated, and NEON is used for those), and the Cortex-A8 uses a badly crippled VFP unit.
2012-10-29 11:24 pmZbigniew
Actually, that would be some “Project Denver” mobo – announced by NVidia for this year – if it was in sale. We’re reaching the end of the year, and they’re still silent.
2012-10-29 11:34 pmbhtooefr
And if RISC OS supported it, which it doesn’t (and usually a stable port isn’t available until the platform’s had about 6-12 months of RISC OS development, based on the past).
Fastest single ARM core you can readily buy is probably the Cortex-A15 as used in Samsung’s Exynos 5 Dual, running at 1.7 GHz. (The second core sits there and does nothing under RISC OS.)
Once the X-Gene comes out, that thing will be an absolute beast. As far as I can tell, ARM basically outsourced the development of the first ARMv8 chips to AppliedMicro, and the X-Gene looks like it’ll whip up on the Cortex-A15. And with eight 2.5 GHz cores. (About a third as fast as an equivalent Sandy Bridge core, it seems, but that’s still REALLY FREAKING FAST as far as ARM stuff goes.) But, it’s a server chip.
2012-10-30 12:42 ambhtooefr
Gah, I forgot to clarify that that platform isn’t supported under RISC OS, either.
PandaBoard ES is still the fastest.
I’m guessing the next port target that will happen is to the Arndale Board, which uses the Exynos 5 Dual. (So, same as the Nexus 10 and Series 3 Chromebook.)
2012-10-31 5:42 amzima
So I wonder, did anybody compare it (I guess there is some benchmarking software) to RISC OS running under emulation? (I suppose RPCEmu is the most readily available option? And generally, emu could be more handy in many cases… http://www.osnews.com/thread?520050 )
2012-10-31 10:16 ambhtooefr
http://www.riscosopen.org/forum/forums/5/topics/466?page=5#posts-12… is worth looking at.
Also, this: http://www.riscos.info/pipermail/rpcemu/2012-October/001738.html
Baseline is 177868, on a RiscPC with RISC OS 4.02 ROMs, and a 202 MHz StrongARM. So, the PandaBoard ES is nearly 2.5 times as fast as a 3.4 GHz Core i7 (I’m assuming Sandy or Ivy Bridge, at that clock speed – although, I’m pretty sure RPCEmu is single-threaded or nearly so, but that just makes it more fair). Actually, for that matter, a 600 MHz BeagleBoard would be faster. (The Iyonix and Raspberry Pi, on the other hand, are not.)
Edited 2012-10-31 10:17 UTC
2012-11-02 10:00 pmzima
Thanks for the links. I must note that an emulated (say, on a laptop) RISC OS machine is likely still most convenient ;P – especially since it seems to win handily in, & can generally benefit from, one of the two recent major improvements in ~PC tech: storage, especially when that storage is a fast SSD (the other improvement, dual+ core CPUs, not applying to RISC OS obviously)
Overall, RISC OS is not an operating system starved for CPU power on pretty much anything – I suppose it runs more than fine on RPi? I tried it under RPCEmu running on an Athlon XP 1700+ (1.46 GHz), a decade+ old CPU – and it was fine (but then, those were fairly barebones RISC OS images, not much apps of any kind …are there any “fancied out” images available, with tons of software already included? Or do numerous licenses make that impractical? Some good software directory at least?)
2012-11-02 11:19 pmbhtooefr
Generally, ROL’s distributions came with a small selection of software, I’m not sure what the Iyonix came with, and the Raspberry Pi distribution comes with a small selection (with an optional bundle of a bunch of commercial software available, too).
But, typically, you add the software you need.
There are a few package repositories based on RiscPkg (PackMan being the preferred front end for those repos nowadays), and there’s also the PlingStore for some commercial software (although AFAIK you can’t actually buy through it yet).
As far as performance… most native RISC OS software is designed to run acceptably on a 202 MHz StrongARM (with a choked down memory bus, no less), although ports start to actually need the hardware. The old Firefox 2.0 port struggles to run on the Raspberry Pi. (Then again, it’s better than Firefox on a 233 MHz StrongARM RiscPC – holy crap that was awful. IIRC over 5 minutes to get it started, then get a webpage opened.)
Edited 2012-11-02 23:21 UTC
mmm … apparently the site is down. too many people tried to download riscos? has anybody been able to install it? how is the experience? are there any mirror sites?
2012-10-29 4:00 pmbhtooefr
It got linked from Reddit, and I’m told that ROOL’s site has rather… fragile… infrastructure. (And apparently it got linked somewhere on the RPi blog, which will take down something quite quickly. RPi’s Twitter account turned my cable modem into a melted blob of plastic and PCB material.)
Good news is, they’re not hosting the Raspberry Pi image, the Raspberry Pi foundation is hosting it.
http://downloads.raspberrypi.org/images/riscos/riscos-2012-10-16-RC… (both direct download and torrent)
Put it on the card the same way you put any other Raspberry Pi OS image on the card – extract everything, then dd the image onto the card.
Edited 2012-10-29 16:01 UTC
2012-10-29 8:29 pmKrustyVader
Also the site may be down because they are preparing a new image. I downloaded last night and it boot but fails to initialize the O.S.
2012-10-29 10:27 pmbhtooefr
Nope, the site was down because they were experiencing technical difficulties.
(I think they may be preparing a new image due to a couple bugs, though, but a boot failure is probably related to the SD card – IIRC it can be finicky with SD cards in different ways from Linux on the Pi.)
Edited 2012-10-29 22:27 UTC
I really wish I was at home instead of stuck at work all night. I think I’ll have this up and running by sunrise though!
I’m going to try it out right now. Is the Raspberry Pi now the fastest computer that can run RISC OS natively?