PIRaspberry Pi have released a desktop/Laptop version of their PIXEL running on Debian Linux – bootable via DVD or USB Stick, once you have downloaded and built the media.

Its good to see a lot of people enthused with installing Linux onto their old hardware sitting around.

I decided to try this myself on an old laptop (Celeron 1.2Ghz, 256Mb with a 20GB Hard Disk). Yes its a bit old, but does currently run Debian 8 (a bit slowly).

I downloaded the software ISO and burnt this to a DVD to run from. The machine booted okay, however the screen did have some issues with displaying the windows, however the backdrop did load okay.

This could be down to a few things, such as hardware (Memory) and not using a USB memory stick to boot from (DVD was doing a lot of reads). Perhaps an install onto the Hard Disk may have been a better option. One to try next.


I’m now moving on from this device to a bit more up to date hardware where this does run and in a virtual desktop.

What is good though is having a universal desktop on your PC/Laptop and Raspberry PI.

Reading through the comments on the Raspberry PI Blog, there are a few machines having issue, but it does work on the majority of devices.

The posts include instructions for installing on to a Hard Disk and also into VirtualBox mounting the ISO image.

Hard Disk

How to: Install to HDD (as the only OS)

– The USB Stick you boot from is /dev/sdb
– The internal HDD is /dev/sda
Commands are given in double quotation marks.

1. Boot it from USB/DVD
2. Transfer the entire stick to your drive:
2.1. “sudo bash”
2.2. “dd if=/dev/sdb of=/dev/sda bs=1M”
3. Reboot without the stick, should boot from internal HDD_
3.1 “reboot”
4. Resize the Partition:
4.1. “sudo bash”
4.2. “fdisk /dev/sda”
4.3. print partitions with “p”
4.4. write down the beginning of partition 2
4.5. delete partition 2 with “d”, then “2”
4.6. create a new parition with “n”, primary partition, starting at the location from 4.4
4.7. write with “w”
5. Reboot:
5.1. “reboot”
6. Resize the filesystem on /dev/sda2 to fill the disk:
6.1. “sudo bash”
6.2. “resize2fs /dev/sda2”

Source:  Egon Rath


In VirtualBox I have mounted the iso as an image.
To install to disk change the following:

Replace “dd if=/dev/sdb of=/dev/sda bs=1M”
with “dd if=/dev/sr0 of=/dev/sda bs=1M”

Source: Menno Harzing

Source for comments: https://www.raspberrypi.org/blog/pixel-pc-mac/#comments