18 Replies Latest reply on Mar 7, 2021 9:36 PM by schumi0815

    Pi Desktop : how to upgrade to new raspbian (buster)


      Hi All,


      I apologize my poor english. Maybe I don't say the facts with the right words.


      Context :

      My Raspberry Pi 3 is inside an Element14 Pi Desktop, with a Kingston SSD

      Desktop Computer Kit for Raspberry Pi

      This system i using the drivers to boot and shutdown :



      Bad experiment :

      Once, I tried to upgrade to the newest raspian (Buster), but my upgraded system failed to boot, so I thought this was a limit due to the installed driver and I had to go back and I installed again the previous raspbian :

      Raspbian GNU/Linux 9.11 (stretch).


      My question :

      So my question is how to upgrade the raspbian to Buster the right way, without trouble with this driver limit within the Pi Desktop. I would appreciate to know step by step how to do this without breaking again the boot process.


      Thanks for your kind attention.

        • Re: Pi Desktop : how to upgrade to new raspbian (buster)

          Hi Patrick. I'm going to summaries your inquiry post to confirm if I have the details correctly.


          Can you confirm this is correct?

          • You have the Desktop computer kit provided in your description with the Pi Desktop Debian Package v1.1.0 installed.
          • The hardware and software is currently operational. No issues
          • You are looking for the path ( i.e. procedure) to upgrade the installation to the latest operating system referenced as Buster.


          I am not familiar with the hardware configuration you have or the software available from the repository.  I do have experience with Pi's and operating system installations. Can you answer a few questions to assist any later visitors who may have the knowledge to help.


          Are you looking to upgrade what you have or is a fresh install your goal?

          How much experience to you have with the Pi and the operating system?

          Do you have access to additional hardware resources (i.e. SD card)?

          Do you have a current backup of your configuration and can restore the system if an upgrade goes south?

          Are you willing to explore other Desktop installations or are you set on the Desktop you are currently using?


          The hardware you have is nothing special. It is possible to load any number of operating systems other than the one you currently have. I feel you would be able to complete a fresh install of an operating system that has support infrastructure (i.e. upgrade paths) like Raspbian and not be trying to rely on Git Hub repositories for your upgrade path. In order to following this solution I recommend you have an alternate SD card to work with. You might need to do some additional configuration to get the SSD to work but that is minor.

            • Re: Pi Desktop : how to upgrade to new raspbian (buster)

              Hi Sean,

              I try to answer your questions :


              The version installed of the package pidesktop-base is : 1.0.0 (not 1.1.0)

              The hardware and the software are operational.

              I confirm that my goal is to know about the procedure to upgrade this installation to Buster without the bad experience of the boot failing.


              I can backup all my data to an external HD drive and deal with a fresh and clean install. So I could restore the whole things as I did before.

              My Pi hardware experience is fresh (one year) and I am wondering how to open the element14 box without breaking it, because the top case seems made with glassy plastic.

              My knowledge with GNU/Linux OSes is more accurate and it began in the middle of the 90's.

              I have another SD card (16 Gb).

              And to answer your last question : yes, I am willing to go back to another Desktop I used in the past years : WindowMaker with GNUstep core environment.


              Well, You thing that :

              > (I) might need to do some additional configuration to get the SSD to work but that is minor.


              Well, if I understand your suggestion :


              I must not upgrade the raspbian OS as I did before (which failed in my previous attempt : boot failing) but I should try this :


              1) Backup all my data.

              2) Getting a Buster Install image on a fresh SD card : Noob ?

              3) Changing the booting SD card on the Pi card with the new one (Buster)

              4) Booting and making a new fresh install on the SSD

              5) Getting and installing pidesktop-base package to deal with the hardware clean shutdown.


              Is that the right way ?

            • Re: Pi Desktop : how to upgrade to new raspbian (buster)

              pcardona  After looking at the following article, I just decided to flash my SD card with a new image of Buster.  The link below does walk you through the process.



              I also had an issue booting an RPi3.  I thought it was dead.  A clean install of the latest Raspbian Buster (not NOOBS) miraculously healed it.

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