Anjan
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Raspberry boards based on x86 SOC

Sat Mar 25, 2017 4:25 pm

Raspberry Pi boards are great little computer which are cheap and provide better expandibility options than PC on stick however it would be better if Raspberry boards are based on x86 SOC even if it costs a little more it will provide more Operating System options.

RaspISteve
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Re: Raspberry boards based on x86 SOC

Sat Mar 25, 2017 8:36 pm

Anjan wrote:<snip> it would be better if Raspberry boards are based on x86 SOC even if it costs a little more it will provide more Operating System options.
Nah!

At risk of putting my head above the parapet: The 8086 architecture is a bit of a dog and largely compromised by its links dating back to the 8080 and 8008. Its also very power hungry and perhaps for a UK enterprise with access to processor family that is architecturally simple, kin-fast, cheap and available it had to be a no-brainer to avoid the Intel product if the aim was to make a sub-$20 product (or whatever the target price was) and include all the toys. Add to this they likely had access to a guy(guy-ess)s that could make it all happen with the minimum of fuss and then there's the software...
Share and Enjoy.

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Re: Raspberry boards based on x86 SOC

Sat Mar 25, 2017 8:51 pm

There are, and have been for years (decades really), a wide variety of Intel-based single board computers available on the market. If that's what you want, I wish you the best. They do make sense in certain applications and I've used some myself.

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DougieLawson
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Re: Raspberry boards based on x86 SOC

Sat Mar 25, 2017 8:52 pm

Anjan wrote:Raspberry Pi boards are great little computer which are cheap and provide better expandibility options than PC on stick however it would be better if Raspberry boards are based on x86 SOC even if it costs a little more it will provide more Operating System options.
What possible benefits would that bring? If you want X86_64 on a SBC spend $99 (or more) to get an Intel Atom based MinnowBoard.
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Re: Raspberry boards based on x86 SOC

Sat Mar 25, 2017 9:06 pm

Anjan wrote:Raspberry Pi boards are great little computer which are cheap and provide better expandibility options than PC on stick however it would be better if Raspberry boards are based on x86 SOC even if it costs a little more it will provide more Operating System options.
1. x86 CPUs are *significantly* more expensive and one of the prime characteristics of the Pi is that it is very inexpensive...to the point that, if it it gets broken, the replacement cost isn't a deal breaker. The CPU cost alone would be more than an entire Pi.
2. Most x86 CPUs do not have an on-chip GPU (though this is changing somewhat--but it adds yet more cost).
3. x86 CPUs use a lot more power than ARM CPUs. At present, the microUSB power connector is pushing the limits of what it can handle, Besides cutting out quite a number of current uses--more power means less likely to be able to run 24/7--using more power means dissipating more heat. Right now the BCM2837 SoC can run into thermal issues. An x86 CPU would almsot certainly *require* at least a heatsink and quite possibly a fan as well.
4. Using x86 CPUs would probably require adding BIOS/UEFI chips and other support hardware, and that would further blow up the cost and require a far larger PCB in the form of an actual motherboard.
5. The only "OS Option" that using x86 CPUs would open up would be...MS Windows. Windows is expensive. (Can you imagine having to pay upwards of $100 just to load an OS on a $100 computer...assuming you *could* build an x86 Pi equivalent for that little.) On top of that, if you want any language processor (Remember? The Pi was designed to teach programming and other CS skills.), you have to pay *again*...for each and every compiler, assembler, or interpreter other than the few that are ported to the platform from Linux or other FOSS systems.

So...no, moving to an x86 platform would NOT be a good idea, even if it was feasible. If your own project needs a x86 CPU, take a look at the Intel NUC. Then get your checkbook out because buying one and adding the extra stuff needed to make use of it isn't going to be cheap.

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Re: Raspberry boards based on x86 SOC

Sat Mar 25, 2017 9:45 pm

W. H. Heydt wrote: So...no, moving to an x86 platform would NOT be a good idea, even if it was feasible. If your own project needs a x86 CPU, take a look at the Intel NUC. Then get your checkbook out because buying one and adding the extra stuff needed to make use of it isn't going to be cheap.
Cheapest Nuc here in Western Rightpondia is http://www.intel.co.uk/buy/uk/en/produc ... cff-426901 for £113 (that's probably £135.60 inc VAT).
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Re: Raspberry boards based on x86 SOC

Sat Mar 25, 2017 10:03 pm

Anjan,

I'm curious.

In what way would it be better if Raspberry boards were based on an x86 SOC ?
...even if it costs a little more...
Perhaps, but the whole original idea behind the Pi was to create a very cheap computer for kids to play on and learn some programming. Putting the price up would rather detract from that.
...it will provide more Operating System options
Curious again. What operating systems do you have in mind?

Pretty much anything useful I can think of already runs on the Pi.
Memory in C++ is a leaky abstraction .

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solar3000
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Re: Raspberry boards based on x86 SOC

Sat Mar 25, 2017 10:37 pm

Welcome friend! I found many raspberry pis that are based on x86.
Here you go, enjoy, good luck:
https://www.newegg.com/Mini-PC-Barebone ... ory/ID-309
Antikythera

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davidcoton
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Re: Raspberry boards based on x86 SOC

Sat Mar 25, 2017 10:44 pm

I thought a Raspberry Pi was, almost by definition, an ARM-based computer.
You can achieve many things by changing your definitions. Ask a politician, or a lawyer.
I like the version of Raspberry Pi based on -- raspberries :lol:
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Re: Raspberry boards based on x86 SOC

Sat Mar 25, 2017 11:30 pm

Heater wrote:I'm curious.
In what way would it be better if Raspberry boards were based on an x86 SOC ?
It would likely have more ram. It could also run window's applications. I know that you said that anything worthwhile is already available on the pi but I suspect that's a bit of an overstatement.

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Re: Raspberry boards based on x86 SOC

Sun Mar 26, 2017 4:34 am

PC104 boards have been x86 based and around for decades
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/PC/104

Raspberry Pi's exist because Broadcom let Eben have 10,000 BCM2835 at a crazy good price.
The price of a x86 equivalent was/is 10-20 times that.
The Pi's would not be as cheap if they were x86, if they were not cheap then there would not be 12-13 million of them out there.

What OS does not run on Pi's?
Lots already do and even non General Purpose OS baremetal stuff works.
You can even make you own OS if you want to.

And really most of us here don't want or need to run Windows.
How much would the license fee be for Windows on Pi, $10/20/100.
MS is not a charity or Not for profit org.

MS gave away Win10, why?
Intel is trying to play catchup
http://www.intel.com/content/www/us/en/ ... quark.html
But wait it is 32 bit only and runs much slower
Here we go, wonder how much they are, Intel so they must cost $$$$$$$
http://www.intel.com/content/www/us/en/ ... 230rk.html

Who else makes x86? What 32bit only :o
http://www.amd.com/en-us/products/embed ... cessors/lx#

What do you want a x86 box for? Play games, surf the web, watch youtubes?
Smartphones are the next PC's, most run ARM CPU's.
There are now more Smartphones than PC's.
x86 is so last century, the world runs on ARM cpu's now :lol:

Even AMD are making ARM server chips.
http://www.amd.com/en-us/products/serve ... n-a-series
Why? Because they use less power than x86 chips.
Air-conditioning for server rooms and the power bills are not cheap for the the Worlds server farms.
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Re: Raspberry boards based on x86 SOC

Sun Mar 26, 2017 4:47 am

Gavinmc42 wrote:What OS does not run on Pi's?
And really most of us here don't want or need to run Windows.
The answer to your question is that Windows GUI doesn't run on the pi. Just getting people to accept linux on x86 is very hard, toss in arm and you have a real difficult case to make. MS has failed even with windows several times, with its phones, with it's RT whatever that was, etc.
How much would the license fee be for Windows on Pi, $10/20/100.
MS is not a charity or Not for profit org.
It's pretty clear that MS is charging a reduced fee for the reduced capability devices like win phones and tablets.
There are now more Smartphones than PC's.
x86 is so last century, the world runs on ARM cpu's now :lol:
There have always been more microcontrollers than supercomputers.
Even AMD are making ARM server chips.
http://www.amd.com/en-us/products/serve ... n-a-series
Why? Because they use less power than x86 chips.
Do they? We already see very little progress up to the frequencies that the x86 has had for years from the arm stuff and it often throttles. Arm uses less power because it's slower and because arm isn't usually going for that high end of a cpu, after all, it's risc. But down in its depths beyond the microcode, kind of sort of so is the new x86 stuff. Ultimately x86 costs more mostly because intel has had a monopoly position for a very long time.

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Gavinmc42
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Re: Raspberry boards based on x86 SOC

Sun Mar 26, 2017 7:17 am

Just getting people to accept linux on x86 is very hard,
You mean Windows people?
And how many of those people actually know what x86 is or even care?

Learning Pi's means I learned Linux by default.
Only the games box run Windows at home, everything else is Linux.
Upgraded two home boxes to Win10, turns out MS used those boxes to upgrade other peoples boxes.
Used to wonder why the hard disks were getting trashed. If MS want to use my machines as servers they should pay me. Probably it was in the small print, "MS reserves the right to trash your hard drives so MS can update everyone else"
Those boxes now run Mint 18.

With Windows you are stuck with whatever desktop look MS decides is the Desktop.
I don't have a smartphone and I don't want my desktop to look like a smartphone.
And it is too bloody hard to change it. Grumpy old man whinging ;)

With Linux pick your distribution and look and features and, and .....

No GUI with Win10 IoT, yet Linux OS's on Pi offer 5-10-15, 20?
Pick a Desktop
viewtopic.php?f=66&t=133691&hilit=Mate

The Pi2/3's and Smartphones do not have microcontrollers.
The have seriously low power multicore 64bit CPU's.
The first main x86 ran at 8MHz, a Zero runs at 1GHz.

I think someone is in denial ;)
Top end, main desktops use x86 but for how much longer?
Everyones main PC is a Smartphone, well most peoples :lol:
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bensimmo
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Re: Raspberry boards based on x86 SOC

Sun Mar 26, 2017 7:56 am

Horses for courses, just because you want to change the desktop, run mint and not have a Smartphone, doesn't mean everyone else wants to.

For one thing, you could run all the Linux software people have to port over themselves that we see crop up on here as x86 (or 64). Look we've only just got Chrome on the platform. Just think of the choice of Linux based OSs you could choose from (though to be honest, that is also a downfall of Linux as a mainstream desktop OS. So much fragmentation).

Me I'm happy with what we are given for my £30 and less. It does it's job, RaspberryPi and it's users make it usable.
If I wanted anything more, i'd just buy a nice Intel iXXXX it an AMD whatever.

I have an Intel CPU in my Tablet, cost £100 from Tesco runs Android nicely, excellent screen etc. Last a good long time and is quick, even comes with a touch screen and a battery. So no they need not be expensive and I've had it a few years now.

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Re: Raspberry boards based on x86 SOC

Sun Mar 26, 2017 8:22 am

bensimmo wrote:I have an Intel CPU in my Tablet, cost £100 from Tesco runs Android nicely, excellent screen etc. Last a good long time and is quick, even comes with a touch screen and a battery. So no they need not be expensive and I've had it a few years now.
You'll struggle to do that soon - http://www.pcworld.com/article/3063508/ ... chips.html
High power, high margin chips all the way for Intel now.
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Gavinmc42
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Re: Raspberry boards based on x86 SOC

Sun Mar 26, 2017 8:41 am

ARM rules.
The writing is on the wall.
The fat lady has sung.
Intel has left the building.

We probably won't see a mainstream game on the Pi due to closed VC4.
That might change with Eric's work.
Is there a market for paid games on Pi's?
What numbers do the Pi's need to get to before being taken seriously?

ZeroW or CM3 + DPI LCD, replaceable LIFePO4 AA cells -make my own tablet, run whatever OS I choose.
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Re: Raspberry boards based on x86 SOC

Sun Mar 26, 2017 8:48 am

There are cheap x86 :
Hanspree x86 pc stick @ £59
http://www.ebuyer.com/698859-hannspree- ... k-snnpdi1b

Not far off the pi if you include Pi's case, psu, SD card

On paid games / mainstream packaged software:

There were more "mainstream" style things on pi in the pi-store before it disappeared (due to the company running it going under). It would be good for it to make a return.
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Gavinmc42
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Re: Raspberry boards based on x86 SOC

Sun Mar 26, 2017 9:17 am

£59?
Specifically designed for your needs
Er, how do they know my needs?
Windows 8.1, no thanks.
I will just take out the Win7 games box AMD A4 and put an A10 in for that price.
Then the kid may be able to play GTA5 :?:
Hey, wonder if Pixel will run on my old 486's?

I don't buy Pi's to use as Desktop, surf, watch videos or serve media.
They are to learn on, hook up to sensors and hardware, make IoT stuff and prototype and make single purpose instruments.
And as a hobby for robotics, SP AI, deep learning and coding embedded 64bit stuff like NEON.

Pi-Store was before it's time?
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CarlRJ
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Re: Raspberry boards based on x86 SOC

Sun Mar 26, 2017 5:51 pm

Gavinmc42 wrote:I don't buy Pi's to use as Desktop, surf, watch videos or serve media.
They are to learn on, hook up to sensors and hardware, make IoT stuff and prototype and make single purpose instruments.
Yes, this. The Pi doesn't need an x86. It was designed to promote education, and does that quite well. Because it's small, cheap, and low power (and literally cool), it is also terrific for hobbyist use - you can set it to dedicated tasks of moderate complexity that just wouldn't be practical for a full-fledged PC with its orders-of-magnitude-higher expense, size, and cooling and power requirements. A Pi0W with a 5V power adapter and a microSD card can easily interface to all sorts of arbitrary hardware to control it and network with other devices - for not much over $20 and it has no moving parts and fits in the palm of your hand.

I keep thinking of the scenario where someone goes and looks at a new car and says, "gee, this car is terrific, but what it really needs is 40 seats for carrying kids"... the proper response is "Oh, I see your confusion, no - what you want is a school bus - this is an automobile, designed for a driver and up to three passengers. Turning a car into a school bus would be impractical and foolish."

If the Pi as it stands meets your needs for education or hobbyist use (or even light websurfing/video watching), then use and enjoy it. But if you need an x86, then by all means go get one (and there are x86 SBCs out there) - but don't try to turn the Pi into a... school bus.

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Re: Raspberry boards based on x86 SOC

Sun Mar 26, 2017 6:11 pm

I think that the fact that the Pi does not run any kind of actual MS Windows is a great advantage for it's intended purpose.

The Windows domination for the last three decades is exactly why kids don't get to hack on computers from age 10 like they did with C64 and such machines in the past. It's exactly the cause of the computer illiteracy that Eben noticed among the new undergraduate intake to CS courses at Cambridge. It's exactly why Eben thought to make a cheap computer for the young in the first place.

The Pi is not intended as a cheap media player or Windows machine. If that is all you need there are many options out there.

Should MS actually get some kind of Windows running on the Pi, that is just the time for the Pi to switch to the RISC-V architecture.

Don't bank on either of those ideas happening any time soon.
Memory in C++ is a leaky abstraction .

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bensimmo
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Re: Raspberry boards based on x86 SOC

Sun Mar 26, 2017 7:12 pm

What a load of ******.

I grew up with the BBC etc.
I played and programmed and stuff.
I moved to PCs and learned and did stuff, pulled it apart and altered windows in many way.

Kids do the same today with Windows10, they program, create scripts, they play, they customise it in the same way, they work out how it works, some even put Linux on it and do the same stuff.

The Pi just makes it cheap and easy to control things externally.

It's not windows that made people computer illiterate, it made people actually able to use a computer for everyday things.

UK education* just stopped teaching people what a computer could be/do and pushed for the 'how to use it's which is what was needed. People still did computer A-Level and degrees.

It's just in the media now, well at least the bit you and i read, most people still have no clue.
The advantage now is people (young kids) interests can be sparked and the odd few as before may decide it's for them, all because it's cheaper and the software is out there to do it.

*And as before, it still only happens if they have people in the school or know someone with some interest in it.
What we have now with the Pi is the 40somethigns getting a sudden spark of interest again and think they'll have a play and get their kids involved.

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Re: Raspberry boards based on x86 SOC

Sun Mar 26, 2017 7:29 pm

Heater wrote:The Windows domination for the last three decades is exactly why kids don't get to hack on computers from age 10 like they did with C64 and such machines in the past.
If you mean hardware hack, I think it was because when you paid $2000 for your PC, you didn't want to risk damaging it. Now that most people pay very little for their computers, that's less of a problem. But really, the reason kids are computer illiterate is because what they use their many computers for nowadays is silly video games. A lot of adults seem to have that going on too.

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Re: Raspberry boards based on x86 SOC

Sun Mar 26, 2017 8:01 pm

stderr wrote:
Heater wrote:The Windows domination for the last three decades is exactly why kids don't get to hack on computers from age 10 like they did with C64 and such machines in the past.
If you mean hardware hack, I think it was because when you paid $2000 for your PC, you didn't want to risk damaging it.
I don't think the hardware tamperers paid $2000 for a PC. They cobbled them together from bits, and when it got damaged it was usually one of those bits, and a PC being a modular thing that bit got replaced - it was going to be replaced soon enough anyway because hardware tamperers were constantly upgrading.

Early PCs were great for learning, start with a motherboard, separately source RAM and CPU, drives, install OS etc.
My son and I built a low noise PC last year.

.

Heater
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Re: Raspberry boards based on x86 SOC

Sun Mar 26, 2017 8:03 pm

bensimmo,

You are welcome to disagree with me. But it's probably wise to mind your language on this forum.

Clearly your experience does not mesh with that of Eben's. He stated that kids coming up to university for CS degrees had no idea about programming and much of the first year was wasted getting them up to speed. Unlike earlier generations.

Hence his desire to create the Pi.

That fits rather well with my, admittedly limited, experience of discussing computers with young people. They can run rings around me when it comes to clicking on buttons in a GUI. They are totally amazed when I show them what can be done with an MCU and a little programming.

Yes, Windows enabled people to do many everyday things. Encouraging programming is not one of them.

And, well, it was not all down to schools back in the early '80s. Kids bought Sinclair and C64 etc with or without any school input. It was all the rage at the time.

Yes, the desire to teach the world programming is all over the media recently. As far as I can tell that started to happen after the Pi was launched.
Memory in C++ is a leaky abstraction .

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Re: Raspberry boards based on x86 SOC

Sun Mar 26, 2017 8:35 pm

bensimmo wrote: What we have now with the Pi is the 40somethigns getting a sudden spark of interest again and think they'll have a play and get their kids involved.
The 40somethings have to work all day and don't have time or energy to do much in what time is left. So...try 60somethings and the *grand*kids.

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