THE LAST BASTION of Windows-free living (apart from an underground bunker) has caved.
Raspberry Pi, the barebones computer designed for makers and learners, is now capable of running Windows 10 for ARM.
Of course, it's been possible for a while but now, at last, there's a decent installer available to make it a cinch, thanks to the same team that successfully brought the full Windows 10 experience to a number of Nokia Lumia handsets.
It's compatible with the Raspberry Pi 3 Model B or B+, and the whole thing can be put, along with an ARM64 Windows image and some third party binaries (included), straight onto an SD card (make it a good one though).
The whole idea is to make running Windows 10 as quick and painless as possible while offering the functionality that's missing from the Windows IoT Core slipstream.
The only problem we can see with this is that Windows 10 is a resource hungry beast, and the limited amounts of RAM available on Raspberry Pi products will almost certainly prevent it from being something you'd want to use very often.
It will, however, prove handy for things like digital signage, where you could turn a Powerpoint presentation into a never-ending information screen. For one job use cases, this will certainly open up a lot more options, especially if you take the time to turn off every unnecessary feature before you get going.
The other issue here is that, because it will run directly from the microSD card, which is invariably slower than any internal memory, choosing the right one will be crucial. An A1 card is what you need, but because microSD codes have got so bewilderingly complicated, check before you buy, just what you're getting.
Trouble is, it could be that you'll need a memory card that cost more than the Raspberry Pi itself. And that's not to mention the cost of a Windows licence, as although there is a free licence available for small screen devices, it's not clear whether this would cover it. μ
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