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Fedora vs Raspbian: What are the differences?


Fedora and Raspbian are two popular operating systems used in different computing devices. While Fedora is designed for general-purpose use on desktops and servers, Raspbian is specifically built for the Raspberry Pi single-board computer. Despite their similarities, there are key differences between the two that set them apart. In this article, we will explore six major differences between Fedora and Raspbian.

  1. Package Management: Fedora uses the DNF package manager, which is a successor to YUM, to manage software packages. On the other hand, Raspbian utilizes the Advanced Package Tool (APT) to handle package management. The APT package manager provides a wide range of software packages specifically tailored for the Raspberry Pi, making it easier to install and update software on the device.

  2. Default Desktop Environment: Fedora comes with the GNOME desktop environment as the default choice, providing a modern and user-friendly interface. In contrast, Raspbian offers the PIXEL desktop environment, which is a customized version of the LXDE environment. PIXEL is designed to be lightweight and efficient, making it a suitable choice for the Raspberry Pi's limited hardware resources.

  3. Hardware Compatibility: Fedora aims to support a wide range of hardware configurations, making it compatible with various desktops, laptops, and servers. On the other hand, Raspbian is specifically optimized for the Raspberry Pi architecture and its peripherals, ensuring seamless compatibility and efficient utilization of the hardware resources available on the device.

  4. ARM Architecture Support: Fedora supports multiple architectures, including the ARM architecture commonly used in embedded devices. However, Raspbian is specifically tailored for the ARM-based Raspberry Pi boards, providing optimal performance and compatibility on these devices.

  5. Community and Support: Fedora is backed by a large and active community of developers and users, offering extensive documentation, forums, and support channels. Conversely, Raspbian benefits from its association with the Raspberry Pi Foundation, providing dedicated support, forums, and an extensive knowledge base specifically focused on Raspberry Pi-related topics.

  6. Release Schedule: Fedora follows a regular release cycle, with new versions released approximately every six months. In contrast, Raspbian has a more conservative release schedule, with major updates less frequent and focused on stability and compatibility with the Raspberry Pi hardware.

In summary, Fedora and Raspbian differ in terms of package management, default desktop environment, hardware compatibility, ARM architecture support, community and support, as well as release schedule. These differences make Fedora a versatile choice for general-purpose use on various devices, while Raspbian is tailored specifically for the Raspberry Pi ecosystem, offering optimized performance and compatibility.

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Pros of Fedora
Pros of Raspbian
  • 22
    Great for developers
  • 10
    Great integration with system tools
  • 10
    Represents the future of rhel/centos
  • 9
    Good release schedule
  • 7
  • 6
  • 5
    Docker integration
  • 4
    Has SeLinux
  • 3
    Latest packages
  • 3
    Updated with Bleeding-edge software
  • 3
    Great for ops teams
  • 3
    Awesome community
  • 2
    Python distribution
  • 2
    Complies with International Standard
  • 7
    Runs well on rpi
  • 2
    Easy to use with little experience
  • 1
    Very Lightweight

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Cons of Fedora
Cons of Raspbian
  • 3
    Bugs get fixed slowly from kernel side
  • 2
    Much less support from Wiki
  • 2
  • 2
  • 1
    Less packages in official repository
  • 1
    A bit complicated
  • 1
    Learning curve for new users
  • 0
    Slightly difficult to install for beginners
  • 4
    Desktop enviroment is unstable
  • 1
    Uses ARMHF architecture, not commonly supported

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What is Fedora?

Fedora is a Linux-based operating system that provides users with access to the latest free and open source software, in a stable, secure and easy to manage form. Fedora is the largest of many free software creations of the Fedora Project. Because of its predominance, the word "Fedora" is often used interchangeably to mean both the Fedora Project and the Fedora operating system.

What is Raspbian?

It is optimized for the Raspberry Pi hardware. It provides more than a pure OS: it comes with over 35,000 packages, pre-compiled software bundled in a nice format for easy installation on your Raspberry Pi.

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What companies use Fedora?
What companies use Raspbian?
See which teams inside your own company are using Fedora or Raspbian.
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What tools integrate with Fedora?
What tools integrate with Raspbian?

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What are some alternatives to Fedora and Raspbian?
The CentOS Project is a community-driven free software effort focused on delivering a robust open source ecosystem. For users, we offer a consistent manageable platform that suits a wide variety of deployments. For open source communities, we offer a solid, predictable base to build upon, along with extensive resources to build, test, release, and maintain their code.
Debian systems currently use the Linux kernel or the FreeBSD kernel. Linux is a piece of software started by Linus Torvalds and supported by thousands of programmers worldwide. FreeBSD is an operating system including a kernel and other software.
The openSUSE project is a worldwide effort that promotes the use of Linux everywhere. openSUSE creates one of the world's best Linux distributions, working together in an open, transparent and friendly manner as part of the worldwide Free and Open Source Software community.
Ubuntu is an ancient African word meaning ‘humanity to others’. It also means ‘I am what I am because of who we all are’. The Ubuntu operating system brings the spirit of Ubuntu to the world of computers.
Linux Mint
The purpose of Linux Mint is to produce a modern, elegant and comfortable operating system which is both powerful and easy to use.
See all alternatives