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"New" old functionality with Raspberry Pi OS (Legacy)

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Debian

Over the past nine years, Raspberry Pi has only ever supported a single release of the Raspberry Pi OS (formerly known as Raspbian). This can cause significant problems when we move to a new upstream branch (for example when we moved from Jessie to Stretch or from Stretch to Buster, or the recent move from Buster to Bullseye). With the new branches come new versions of libraries and new interfaces. Old software and interfaces become unsupported, and the way to do specific things changes. Some of those come from the upstream and some from our own desire to move to open-source interfaces.

Of course, we understand this isn’t always the right decision for particular users. For example, some of you are educational users who would like to follow instructions and tutorials online. Others are industrial users, who’ve developed software to use particular library versions; or who value a stable unchanging operating system. Some of you have asked for an option to roll back certain parts of the OS to restore some functionality that you have been relying on.

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Also: Raspberry Pi OS gets a legacy version to offer extended stability - Liliputing

Raspberry Pi Releases 'Legacy' OS to Target Bullseye Problems

  • Raspberry Pi Releases 'Legacy' OS to Target Bullseye Problems | Tom's Hardware

    As we reported at the time, Raspberry Pi OS Bullseye came with a free speed boost for certain Raspberry Pi models, a new window manager, and a host of problems not limited to library and HAT compatibility, video drivers, and with camera modules.

    The new Legacy release claims to fix all that. Based on Buster, the previous release of Debian, it removes the hardware-accelerated version of the Chromium browser that was one of Bullseye’s headline features, replacing it with an upstream software-accelerated variant. A new option in the raspi-config app allows the reinstatement of legacy camera interfaces.

    The legacy OS sticks with version 5.10 of the Linux kernel, and branches the firmware too, so won’t support any future products. It will, however, continue to receive security and hardware support patches as they become available.

    “Although we will not support new products on the legacy image, we will make sure any new revisions of older products continue to be supported,” writes Raspberry Pi director of software engineering Gordon Hollingworth on the Raspberry Pi website. “So, for example, if we were to release a (currently imaginary) new Raspberry Pi 4 rev 1.5 (which usually means component changes for supply reasons), it would be supported on the legacy image, whereas a new Raspberry Pi product (a future 5 for example, also currently imaginary) would not.”

  • Raspberry Pi OS (Legacy) Launches to Offer Long-Term Stability | PCMag

    Raspberry Pi users now have the option of running a legacy version of the Raspberry Pi OS, allowing them to rely on a stable platform for several years.

    The new version of the operating system is called Raspberry Pi OS (Legacy), and it's based on the Debian Buster release. Hardware-accelerated Chromium has been removed and replaced with the upstream software-accelerated browser. This removes a lot of the headaches around supporting hardware-accelerated Chromium, which always requires the latest version of Debian due to security patches.

New Raspberry Pi OS Based on Debian Bullseye

  • New Raspberry Pi OS Based on Debian Bullseye

    Like some other Linux distributions, the Raspberry Pi OS is built on top of Debian. Debian, on the other hand, recently received an update from Debian Buster, on which the Raspberry Pi OS was previously based, to Debian Bullseye. Raspberry Pi has now announced that the Raspberry Pi OS will also be based on this new Debian version in the future. But while the Bullseye release itself mainly involves changes that are barely visible to the user, adjustments have been made to the desktop environment and thus also to the hardware requirements for the Bullseye-based Raspberry Pi OS.

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