sal55
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Re: RPI4: Why is everything still 32-bit?

Mon Sep 23, 2019 10:50 am

ejolson wrote:
Mon Sep 23, 2019 5:47 am
From a marketing versus engineering point of view, it is notable that the data bus to main memory on the Raspberry Pi is 32-bits wide. This means that a 64-bit pointer, for example, takes two memory cycles to fetch from RAM rather than only one.
If that's the case then it's not even a true 64-bit system. Remember the 8-bit-bus versions of the 16-bit 8086 and 68000 which were called 8088 and 68008, which among other things meant saving cost by only needing half the minimum number of RAM chips. But that was completely open (compare the bewildering number of ARM product codes and architectures).

I think it's been the case for a couple of decades that x86 systems can have a wider data bus than the machine word size, and further that memory can be fetched in a burst mode (to read an entire cache line for example).

So it would be surprising if aarch64 devices did the opposite. But then I understand that ARM is more of a DIY architecture which can be configured in different ways. A bit like the different versions of Linux (I thought 'apt-get' was standard for example).

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Re: RPI4: Why is everything still 32-bit?

Mon Sep 23, 2019 11:00 am

hippy wrote:
Mon Sep 23, 2019 10:15 am
There are gains from 64-bit but I would consider 64-bit mostly over-rated. One won't get a doubling of performance, and it may be barely noticeable in practice for most things.

To me the clamour for 64-bit is a lot like demanding the 300mph car because 'it's better than the 200mph car', when 100mph is good enough for most people.
A better analogy is a 2-seater car versus a 4-seater one. Most journeys will be just you, but when you need to transport 3-4 people, you will need to make two trips.

With a 64-bit chip running 32-bit software, you have the 4-seater car but still need to make two trips!

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Re: RPI4: Why is everything still 32-bit?

Mon Sep 23, 2019 11:01 am

sal55 wrote:
Mon Sep 23, 2019 10:50 am
ejolson wrote:
Mon Sep 23, 2019 5:47 am
From a marketing versus engineering point of view, it is notable that the data bus to main memory on the Raspberry Pi is 32-bits wide. This means that a 64-bit pointer, for example, takes two memory cycles to fetch from RAM rather than only one.
If that's the case then it's not even a true 64-bit system. Remember the 8-bit-bus versions of the 16-bit 8086 and 68000 which were called 8088 and 68008, which among other things meant saving cost by only needing half the minimum number of RAM chips. But that was completely open (compare the bewildering number of ARM product codes and architectures).

I think it's been the case for a couple of decades that x86 systems can have a wider data bus than the machine word size, and further that memory can be fetched in a burst mode (to read an entire cache line for example).

So it would be surprising if aarch64 devices did the opposite. But then I understand that ARM is more of a DIY architecture which can be configured in different ways. A bit like the different versions of Linux (I thought 'apt-get' was standard for example).
As I stated above, this is an horrible oversimplification of what actually happens. The SOC is internally completely 64bit, the RAM has a 32bit data bus. BUT, you have to take in to account the caching and the bursts. The memory is read, IIRC, in 128bit chunks, and that is put in cache. So really, the 32bit data bus to the RAM is mostly irrelevant, since you will be mostly getting data out of the cache (caching make everything a LOT more complicated) which is already preloaded from the last 128bit burst read. Or at least, that how I understand it.

We are not using 6502's any more. You don't get data from memory when you think you get data from memory.
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Re: RPI4: Why is everything still 32-bit?

Mon Sep 23, 2019 11:45 am

It makes no sense to talk of "true" 64 bits or true 32 bits now a days.

Modern processors don't connect so directly to memory, they can fetch 32, 64, 128 instruction bits from huge caches. Which in turn get their data from memory controllers that stream blocks of memory into the system from the external RAMS. There is no one-to-one correspondence of widths anymore.

Following the "true" train of though I could argue that the Pi has 4 cores sharing a single 32 bit wide data bus to the outside world and therefore they are only 8 biters. Makes no sense.
Last edited by Heater on Mon Sep 23, 2019 12:16 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: RPI4: Why is everything still 32-bit?

Mon Sep 23, 2019 11:58 am

Heater wrote: It makes no sense to talk of "true" 64 bits or true 32 bits now a days.

Modern processors don't connect so directly to memory, they can fetch 32, 64, 128 instruction bits from huge caches. Which in turn get their data from memory controllers that stream blocks of memory into the system from the external RAMS. There is no one-to-one correspondence of widths anymore.

Following the "true" train of though I could argue that the Pi has 4 cores sharing a single 32 bit wide data bus to the outside world and therefore they are only 8 biters. Makes no sense.
Pretty much the only thing "bit-ness" refers to nowadays is the internal width of (integer) data registers inside the CPU. Even "32-bit" cores like the Cortex A7 had address space hacks to use up to 36 bits of physical address space - LPAE extensions to the page table formats.

Using wider virtual address space does get easier on AARCH64 - with the first supported VA width being the very binary-friendly 39bit mapping.
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Re: RPI4: Why is everything still 32-bit?

Mon Sep 23, 2019 12:17 pm

OP, you are wasting time and effort in a pointless exercise. This forum is flooded with rabid fanbois that would shame even the saddest iPhone queue-waiting disciple of the Jobs era.

The excuses are never ending and the avoidance tactics and user blaming is also sky high.

The Pi4 is a great machine with one of the worst OS's I've seen. Currently battling xscreensaver: It likes to loks the machine, it likes to ask for the password twice, it likes to ignore the setting in config. It's just a royal pain in the arse.

When I discovered that Raspbian was 32-bit I could not believe it. And then for the Pi faithful to chorus "You don't need it" or the Foundation to say "Sorry, we haven't got enough people - so tough - and we have to support older systems... blah, blah blah.

The number of posts Ive seen from buyers of the Pi4 that have realised that they have bought a mutton dressed as lamb is shocking. You won't see many of their posts here though, cause most of them are deleted, banned or ridiculed.

Pi 1-3 were great. 4 is a joke of a desktop computer and don't let any backroom boy tell you other. Do as many have, dump it and get an x86-based one. I have and it wasn't really much more than the 4G Pi4. It runs Mint... end of story.

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Re: RPI4: Why is everything still 32-bit?

Mon Sep 23, 2019 12:23 pm

johhnylatey,

Do you have to be so insulting to all those fine people who work on bringing us a really good computer for next to nothing? And all those people who bring us a very fine operating system and thousands of software packages for free. And all of use who volunteer our time here and else where to help people with their computing problems?

That is shameful behavior. Away with you.
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Re: RPI4: Why is everything still 32-bit?

Mon Sep 23, 2019 12:39 pm

With a 32 bits bus to the RAM you will be bottlenecked even with cache in RAM heavy applications because you will request data from the cache faster than it can fetch from DRAM (cache misses). There is a good reason many other SBCs and smartphones have a dual channel configuration with big caches. Not saying dual channel + big caches fits within the budget since the RPi is meant to be low cost but i would at least expected single channel with 64 bit bus. That would require board layout/routing changes and a possibly more expensive LPDDR4 package (not sure about price difference).

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Re: RPI4: Why is everything still 32-bit?

Mon Sep 23, 2019 12:50 pm

johhnylatey wrote:
Mon Sep 23, 2019 12:17 pm
OP, you are wasting time and effort in a pointless exercise. This forum is flooded with rabid fanbois that would shame even the saddest iPhone queue-waiting disciple of the Jobs era.

The excuses are never ending and the avoidance tactics and user blaming is also sky high.

The Pi4 is a great machine with one of the worst OS's I've seen. Currently battling xscreensaver: It likes to loks the machine, it likes to ask for the password twice, it likes to ignore the setting in config. It's just a royal pain in the arse.

When I discovered that Raspbian was 32-bit I could not believe it. And then for the Pi faithful to chorus "You don't need it" or the Foundation to say "Sorry, we haven't got enough people - so tough - and we have to support older systems... blah, blah blah.

The number of posts Ive seen from buyers of the Pi4 that have realised that they have bought a mutton dressed as lamb is shocking. You won't see many of their posts here though, cause most of them are deleted, banned or ridiculed.

Pi 1-3 were great. 4 is a joke of a desktop computer and don't let any backroom boy tell you other. Do as many have, dump it and get an x86-based one. I have and it wasn't really much more than the 4G Pi4. It runs Mint... end of story.
7 posts and this. Wow. Not going to delete this one, to simply prove that NO we don't delete posts like this. You have to be a real A-hole to get a post deleted, you are just an amateur.

So to deal with your points;

Worst OS. It's basically Debian with a few changes (which make no real difference to the experience of the OS itself), so basically you are saying Debian is the worst OS ever. That's clearly nonsense.

You have problems with xscreensaver. Is that a problem with xscreensaver, or Raspbian? Have you asked for help on here, or posted a github issue? EDIT: Ah, I see you have posted on here, and yet never went back to the post which did have some suggestions to help you. I'm afraid that's your problem not ours.

32bit - well, the arguments for that go back years. You are a bit late to the party, asare most people who think rants like this are worth writing. The arguments are well known, performance of 64 isn't that much better, the support burden for two systems is beyond what we have staff for, and backwards compatibility to other devices. All perfectly valid reasons; you might not think so but you would be wrong. Because, wouldn't we have actually done an 64bit distribution if it was easy? And of course, we are now working towards one, carefully, because it's important to get it right.

We've sold over a millions Pi4, many used as desktops, so again, you are talking rubbish. Some people may well have bought one as a desktop, and found it wasn't powerful enough for their particular task, but right now we cannot make the things fast enough, so clearly a LOT of people are getting on fine. Glad you found a x86 machine to do your desktop work, does that mean you'll not be back, because that would be great. Please donate you Pi to somewhere like a school.

Basically, your entire post is a useless rant, with so many disprovable statements it's laughable. Do you actually know anything about the subject in hand? No, clearly not.



So, would it have been better to just delete your post?
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Re: RPI4: Why is everything still 32-bit?

Mon Sep 23, 2019 12:52 pm

ejolson wrote:
Mon Sep 23, 2019 12:06 am
In terms of supporting computer-literacy based curriculum reform, because of the amount of information on Stack Overflow, this and other websites, it is difficult to teach programming using a computer that doesn't have a fast web browser.
Not at all. You don't need to have the fast browser on the machine on which you program.

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Re: RPI4: Why is everything still 32-bit?

Mon Sep 23, 2019 12:55 pm

pica200 wrote:
Mon Sep 23, 2019 12:39 pm
With a 32 bits bus to the RAM you will be bottlenecked even with cache in RAM heavy applications because you will request data from the cache faster than it can fetch from DRAM (cache misses). There is a good reason many other SBCs and smartphones have a dual channel configuration with big caches. Not saying dual channel + big caches fits within the budget since the RPi is meant to be low cost but i would at least expected single channel with 64 bit bus. That would require board layout/routing changes and a possibly more expensive LPDDR4 package (not sure about price difference).
Board layout changes (fitting on the extra lines) is impossible on current board - there simply isn't the space on it. We would need more layers and more expensive RAM, both of which increase costs unacceptably. There is a performance hit, but it's not quite as bad as you imply. Note that the caches on the Pi4 are : 1MB L2 cache, 32KB L1 which is pretty decent.
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Re: RPI4: Why is everything still 32-bit?

Mon Sep 23, 2019 12:58 pm

pica200 wrote:
Mon Sep 23, 2019 12:39 pm
With a 32 bits bus to the RAM you will be bottlenecked even with cache in RAM heavy applications because you will request data from the cache faster than it can fetch from DRAM (cache misses). There is a good reason many other SBCs and smartphones have a dual channel configuration with big caches. Not saying dual channel + big caches fits within the budget since the RPi is meant to be low cost but i would at least expected single channel with 64 bit bus. That would require board layout/routing changes and a possibly more expensive LPDDR4 package (not sure about price difference).
The LPDDR4 SDRAM bus runs at 3200 transfers per second. The internal AXI bus runs at 500MHz. The ARM complex including L1 and L2 caches runs at up to 1500MHz. Each one of these has different internal data path widths. Again, bus widths are not a function of CPU register width when you have completely asynchronous bridging between different clock domains.
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Re: RPI4: Why is everything still 32-bit?

Mon Sep 23, 2019 1:00 pm

jamesh wrote:
Mon Sep 23, 2019 12:50 pm
So to deal with your points;
I think you've wasted your breath. This looks like ChuUK under a new account posting the same nonsense that has already been addressed. He'll ignore everything you said and then go spam another unrelated thread.

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Re: RPI4: Why is everything still 32-bit?

Mon Sep 23, 2019 1:00 pm

PeterO wrote:
Mon Sep 23, 2019 10:38 am
It would be remiss of me not to mention that I still maintain and use a 39 bit machine. It may be in a museum, but it still counts :-) (Pun intended :lol: )
That's an odd number of bits.

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Re: RPI4: Why is everything still 32-bit?

Mon Sep 23, 2019 1:06 pm

jamesh wrote:
Mon Sep 23, 2019 11:01 am
We are not using 6502's any more. You don't get data from memory when you think you get data from memory.
Jamesh Very good point. I started with the very first ARM chips (1, 2 and 3). Back then memory accesses weren't cached. It was a simple pipeline running Fetch, Decode and Execute in three clock cycles and the RAM ran at the same speed as the CPU. (ROM ran slower and you could get a small speed boost by moving various RISCOS drivers from ROM into RAM).

I'm definitely out of touch with the way modern ARM chips work :(

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Re: RPI4: Why is everything still 32-bit?

Mon Sep 23, 2019 1:08 pm

ShiftPlusOne wrote:
Mon Sep 23, 2019 1:00 pm
jamesh wrote:
Mon Sep 23, 2019 12:50 pm
So to deal with your points;
I think you've wasted your breath. This looks like ChuUK under a new account posting the same nonsense that has already been addressed. He'll ignore everything you said and then go spam another unrelated thread.
But it is worth pointing it out. Not for the spammer, but for anyone else who may see this thread and read that post or have similar questions.

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Re: RPI4: Why is everything still 32-bit?

Mon Sep 23, 2019 1:38 pm

rpdom wrote:
Mon Sep 23, 2019 1:08 pm
ShiftPlusOne wrote:
Mon Sep 23, 2019 1:00 pm
jamesh wrote:
Mon Sep 23, 2019 12:50 pm
So to deal with your points;
I think you've wasted your breath. This looks like ChuUK under a new account posting the same nonsense that has already been addressed. He'll ignore everything you said and then go spam another unrelated thread.
But it is worth pointing it out. Not for the spammer, but for anyone else who may see this thread and read that post or have similar questions.
TBH, probably should have just deleted the post, but heyho, points need to be made.
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Re: RPI4: Why is everything still 32-bit?

Mon Sep 23, 2019 1:54 pm

rpdom wrote:
Mon Sep 23, 2019 1:00 pm
PeterO wrote:
Mon Sep 23, 2019 10:38 am
It would be remiss of me not to mention that I still maintain and use a 39 bit machine. It may be in a museum, but it still counts :-) (Pun intended :lol: )
That's an odd number of bits.
It's both odd (not even) and odd (unusual) :-)
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Re: RPI4: Why is everything still 32-bit?

Mon Sep 23, 2019 2:25 pm

PeterO wrote:
Mon Sep 23, 2019 1:54 pm
rpdom wrote:
Mon Sep 23, 2019 1:00 pm
PeterO wrote:
Mon Sep 23, 2019 10:38 am
It would be remiss of me not to mention that I still maintain and use a 39 bit machine. It may be in a museum, but it still counts :-) (Pun intended :lol: )
That's an odd number of bits.
It's both odd (not even) and odd (unusual) :-)
PeterO
If you had eight of them, could you make a 42-bit computer? :roll:
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Re: RPI4: Why is everything still 32-bit?

Mon Sep 23, 2019 2:28 pm

davidcoton wrote:
Mon Sep 23, 2019 2:25 pm
PeterO wrote:
Mon Sep 23, 2019 1:54 pm
rpdom wrote:
Mon Sep 23, 2019 1:00 pm

That's an odd number of bits.
It's both odd (not even) and odd (unusual) :-)
PeterO
If you had eight of them, could you make a 42-bit computer? :roll:
Eh ?
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Re: RPI4: Why is everything still 32-bit?

Mon Sep 23, 2019 2:31 pm

jamesh wrote:
Mon Sep 23, 2019 12:50 pm
32bit - well, the arguments for that go back years. You are a bit late to the party, asare most people who think rants like this are worth writing. The arguments are well known, performance of 64 isn't that much better, the support burden for two systems is beyond what we have staff for, and backwards compatibility to other devices. All perfectly valid reasons; you might not think so but you would be wrong. Because, wouldn't we have actually done an 64bit distribution if it was easy? And of course, we are now working towards one, carefully, because it's important to get it right.
(The way it was done on the Intel 80386 (which introduced 32-bit features) was very easy. While it had 16-bit and 32-bit operating modes, you were able to access some 32-bit featues (ie. 32-bit-wide registers, new general address modes with a flat 4GB address space, and 32-bit data instructions) even while running in normal 16-bit mode.

(You used one instruction prefix to select a 32-bit address mode, another to select a 32-bit data mode. Or both. In true 32-bit mode, those same prefixes did the reverse.)

So while it took years before proper 32-bit OSes (eg Win95) came along and all the other software and tools caught up, I had 32-bit capability in my compilers straightaway, but running under a 16-bit OS. Which sounds like the opposite of what's happening with aarch64.

I'm not aware that ARM devices have this capability (although it wouldn't help now as I'm not au fait with ARM assembly, executable formats or Linux in general; I would still need 64-bit 3rd party tools). Note that AMD64 didn't provide that easy path either for 32- to 64-bit migration.)

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Re: RPI4: Why is everything still 32-bit?

Mon Sep 23, 2019 2:32 pm

PeterO wrote:
Mon Sep 23, 2019 2:28 pm
davidcoton wrote:
Mon Sep 23, 2019 2:25 pm
If you had eight of them, could you make a 42-bit computer? :roll:
Eh ?
PeterO
Simples. Eight instances fill up another three bits. Like the way some people want to join a Pi2 and a Pi4 to make something equivalent to a Pi6 (fictional example, in case you are wondering who).
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Re: RPI4: Why is everything still 32-bit?

Mon Sep 23, 2019 2:46 pm

davidcoton wrote:
Mon Sep 23, 2019 2:32 pm
PeterO wrote:
Mon Sep 23, 2019 2:28 pm
davidcoton wrote:
Mon Sep 23, 2019 2:25 pm
If you had eight of them, could you make a 42-bit computer? :roll:
Eh ?
PeterO
Simples. Eight instances fill up another three bits.
Not sure which planet you're on, or what you've been drinking,but you're not making any sense !
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Re: RPI4: Why is everything still 32-bit?

Mon Sep 23, 2019 2:55 pm

2^3 = 8
How To ask Questions :- http://www.catb.org/esr/faqs/smart-questions.html
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Re: RPI4: Why is everything still 32-bit?

Mon Sep 23, 2019 2:59 pm

jamesh wrote:
Mon Sep 23, 2019 12:50 pm
johhnylatey wrote:
Mon Sep 23, 2019 12:17 pm
OP, you are wasting time and effort in a pointless exercise. This forum is flooded with rabid fanbois that would shame even the saddest iPhone queue-waiting disciple of the Jobs era.

The excuses are never ending and the avoidance tactics and user blaming is also sky high.

The Pi4 is a great machine with one of the worst OS's I've seen. Currently battling xscreensaver: It likes to loks the machine, it likes to ask for the password twice, it likes to ignore the setting in config. It's just a royal pain in the arse.

When I discovered that Raspbian was 32-bit I could not believe it. And then for the Pi faithful to chorus "You don't need it" or the Foundation to say "Sorry, we haven't got enough people - so tough - and we have to support older systems... blah, blah blah.

The number of posts Ive seen from buyers of the Pi4 that have realised that they have bought a mutton dressed as lamb is shocking. You won't see many of their posts here though, cause most of them are deleted, banned or ridiculed.

Pi 1-3 were great. 4 is a joke of a desktop computer and don't let any backroom boy tell you other. Do as many have, dump it and get an x86-based one. I have and it wasn't really much more than the 4G Pi4. It runs Mint... end of story.
7 posts and this. Wow. Not going to delete this one, to simply prove that NO we don't delete posts like this. You have to be a real A-hole to get a post deleted, you are just an amateur.

So to deal with your points;

Worst OS. It's basically Debian with a few changes (which make no real difference to the experience of the OS itself), so basically you are saying Debian is the worst OS ever. That's clearly nonsense.

You have problems with xscreensaver. Is that a problem with xscreensaver, or Raspbian? Have you asked for help on here, or posted a github issue? EDIT: Ah, I see you have posted on here, and yet never went back to the post which did have some suggestions to help you. I'm afraid that's your problem not ours.

32bit - well, the arguments for that go back years. You are a bit late to the party, asare most people who think rants like this are worth writing. The arguments are well known, performance of 64 isn't that much better, the support burden for two systems is beyond what we have staff for, and backwards compatibility to other devices. All perfectly valid reasons; you might not think so but you would be wrong. Because, wouldn't we have actually done an 64bit distribution if it was easy? And of course, we are now working towards one, carefully, because it's important to get it right.

We've sold over a millions Pi4, many used as desktops, so again, you are talking rubbish. Some people may well have bought one as a desktop, and found it wasn't powerful enough for their particular task, but right now we cannot make the things fast enough, so clearly a LOT of people are getting on fine. Glad you found a x86 machine to do your desktop work, does that mean you'll not be back, because that would be great. Please donate you Pi to somewhere like a school.

Basically, your entire post is a useless rant, with so many disprovable statements it's laughable. Do you actually know anything about the subject in hand? No, clearly not.



So, would it have been better to just delete your post?

Do it. Delete my complaints as you have the countless others. Call me a spammer all you like, but I am a disgruntled customer who has received appalling customer service.

Yeah, I came back. Gave you one last chance with the OS, but no. I can't even get a stable screensaver!!!!! Even the chap who wrote it has bad-mouthed Debian.

"Glad you found a x86 machine to do your desktop work, does that mean you'll not be back, because that would be great,."

Another fine example of customer service. Look through my posts. I took time and effort to detail many of the faults with the steaming pile that is Raspbian and no concrete answers where forthcoming, cause you don't have the answers.

I must confess, you have achieved quite a feat: You have most of the work done by the users. Almost like, kinda, I dunno ... Beta level. Yes, you launched a product that barely worked as desktop - Chromium is still pants despite you best efforts - though you did fix the loop between fullscreen and windowed, but come on...

I don't care. I just want to warn others not to b taken in by your BS marketing.

You haven't even got a screensaver working. I shouldn't need support on such a basic thing.

"Basically, your entire post is a useless rant, with so many disprovable statements it's laughable. Do you actually know anything about the subject in hand? No, clearly not."

I do know quite a bit about OS's and especially the GUI part having worked in that part of the industry for neigh on 25 years now - including work that had an audience of 300 million. But this isn't about me - it's you.

The rant isn't useless if 1 potential customer reads it and it makes them think twice. Disprove what I have written then. Send forth your best deniers and fanbois and we shall truly battle. I await...

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