February 28, 2012

Who’s Excited about Raspberry Pi?

Posted in Uncategorized at 5:36 pm by dgcombs

I spent two weeks lugging around a ThinkPad laptop. Yes, I know this is not a hard thing to do. After all, it only weighs 5 pounds (2.26Kilos). But if you carry five pounds up and down a mountain several times, it gets heavy. Really heavy!


So I started thinking about getting a very small computer, loading my applications on and leaving it where I could access it easily. That's where the Raspberry Pi comes in. It's a very small computer – about the size of a deck of cards. It has a pretty powerful ARM11 chip on it. It will run one or two Linux systems, plans are for Debian and Fedora. Best of all, the version B (which comes with an Ethernet port on it) costs only $35!
"Where can I get one," you ask? Why they go on sale at 6am GMT tomorrow morning.


Just to get my feet wet though, I thought I'd check to see how small a Virtual Machine I could create that would allow me to boot up to a BASH command-line and run a current version of NMAP. The results were heartening. Although the Raspberry Pi only has 256Mb of memory so it might be a stretch to stuff the whole thing into RAM.

* ChromiumOS: 1.2Gb
* Ubuntu Linux: 865Mb
* Arch Linux: 734Mb
* FreeBSD: 372Mb
* OpenBSD: 250Mb
* NetBSD: 217Mb
* Slax: 59.9Mb (only has an OLD version of NMAP optionally loads to memory)
* TinyCore: 9.6Mb (does not have a version of NMAP plus loads to memory)

Based on familiarity and size, I declare OpenBSD a winner. But I might spend a little more time with NetBSD because it runs on just about everything else!


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