May 30, 2013

Pidora: Fedora Linux Optimized for the Raspberry Pi

Fedora lovers can finally get their own Pi-optimized distro with the release of a Fedora 18 Remix called Pidora. Developed by the Seneca Centre for Development of Open Technology (CDOT), Pidora is based on Fedora 18, the upstream contributor to Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL).

Pidora logoPidora is the fifth remix of Fedora for the Pi, but the first to make use of Fedora 18's new support for the ARMv6 architecture used by ARM11 processors. As a result, performance is claimed to be improved over the earlier ARMv5 version.

The distribution includes "almost all of the Fedora 18 package set available via yum" precompiled to take advantage of the Pi, as well as C, Python, and Perl programming environments. Pidora offers graphical firstboot configuration, as well as a compact initial image size that can be automatically resized to take advantage of available storage, says CDOT.

Pidora adds an auto swap creation feature that allows for larger memory usage, as well as the initial release of a headless mode for display-free devices. Other touted features include the Midnight Commander file manager, plugin support for the Gedit text editor for graphical mode, as well as other text editors for console operation. IP address information can be expressed via speakers or LEDs, and libraries are available for motors and robotics I/O, says CDOT.

CDOT is rethinking the distro's name, however, after Russian-speaking readers of a Pidora announcement on LinuxGizmos.com last week noted that Pidora is similar to a derogatory Russian word. It appears, however, that CDOT may choose to change only the Russian version of the name.