Raspberry_Pi_Logo.svg FreeBSD is a relative newcomer to the tiny RaspBerry Pi computer, particularly the young Raspberry Pi 2 models. However, FreeBSD developers are working rapidly to bring FreeBSD 11 (-current) to the inexpensive Pi.

DistroWatch has a quick overview of what it is like to install and run FreeBSD on the Raspberry Pi 2 computer board.

Before diving into my experiment with FreeBSD on the Pi, I think it is important to note that FreeBSD is just now getting support for the Raspberry Pi 2. The wiki page for FreeBSD’s status on the Pi has been changing quickly. In fact, the week I purchased my Raspberry Pi 2, virtually no features were reported to work on the device. A week or so later, most of the feature matrix changed from red to green, indicating most of the Pi’s hardware would work with FreeBSD. I think it is also worth mentioning there are no images of FreeBSD’s stable (10.x) branch for the Raspberry Pi 2. There are stable releases for the earlier Raspberry Pi machines, but not the most recent hardware. People who want to use FreeBSD on a Raspberry Pi 2 need to download an image of FreeBSD 11, the development branch of FreeBSD. Running the development (aka Current) branch of FreeBSD may lead to some regressions or unstable behaviour. In short, FreeBSD on the Raspberry Pi 2 is highly experimental and likely to be unstable, use it at your own risk.

Sounds exciting! Read the rest of the article to learn about the benefits and drawbacks of running FreeBSD’s -current branch on the Raspberry Pi 2.