While Raspberry Pi boards support many different operating systems, Raspbian is by far the most popular option, and in the last two years the distribution was based on Jessie (Debian 8), the Raspberry Pi foundation has just announced it was now replaced by an update to Stretch (Debian 9).
The Jessie version is completely gone from Raspbian Download page, and you’ll only be offered to download “Raspbian Stretch with Desktop” or “Raspbian Stretch Lite”.
So what has changed compared to Jessie? Debian 9 changelog will list the main differences compared to Debian 8, but some modifications have also been made in Raspbian itself:
- Version 3.0.1 of Sonic Pi “Live Coding Music Synth” app – See changelog
- Chrome 60 stable with improved memory usage and more efficient code
- Bluetooth audio is supported by the bluez-alsa package by default instead of PulseAudio
- Better handling of “non-pi users”, as previously many applications assumed to be run by pi user.
- SenseHAT extension added to Scratch 2
- BroadPwn exploit fix to close a vulnerability in the firmware of the BCM43xx wireless chipset
- Other minor bug fixes and UI improvements
If you already have Raspbian Jessie running in your board, and would like to upgrade to Raspbian Stretch, you can try to do so at your own risk by changing all occurrences of ‘jessie’ to ‘stretch’ in /etc/apt/sources.list and /etc/apt/sources.list.d/raspi.list, and running:
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get -y dist-upgrade
The Raspberry Pi foundation however recommends to back up your micro SD card first, as upgrading that way is not guaranteed to work in every circumstance.