I would like to roughly check if the code I plan to run on a RPi stresses it in a reasonable way (CPU, RAM, disk).

I was wondering if there are some "throttled down" Debian VMs which could be used (ideally with Virtual Box) for such tests?


  • I know that there are many parameters which need to be taken into account to closely simulate a system on another one (starting with x86 vs. ARM). I am trying to roughly estimate how the RPi is going to behave before pushing the code on it (specifically in the case I am making major changes and do not want to rollback all the time)
  • I am not looking for emulation of a RPi - at least not in the sense that I want to test cross processor code. I know that my code will run, I am not just sure if the RPi will follow.
  • this is in the context of amateur coding
  • an equivalent of this in the context of network would be to use tc to simulate the bandwidth/packet-loss/latency.
  • 1
    Given the price point of the Pi wouldn't running this on a real Pi make for better data and easier/faster testing easily offestting the cost of the Pi. Also, what does "this is in the context of amateur coding" even mean? Commented Jan 12, 2016 at 14:07
  • 1
    @SteveRobillard I don't think some people are willing to buy a pi simply to test some lines of code, especially if the code is made on a whim.
    – Aloha
    Commented Jan 12, 2016 at 14:12
  • 1
    @SteveRobillard: the context (amateur) was there to indicate that I am not developing a life-sustaining application. Just a simple home automation system, in my spare time. I have a RPi and, sure, could buy a second one but it is much easier to work with a VM.
    – WoJ
    Commented Jan 12, 2016 at 14:15
  • 1
    @WoJ Why not test it on the pi? It's way more effective than any simulation.
    – Aloha
    Commented Jan 12, 2016 at 14:17
  • 1
    @SteveRobillard: no, this is why I am looking for a approximate perspective. If it exceeds the RAM then I know this is not good. If it generates a load of 15 then I know that this is not good either, etc. At least I would have an idea.
    – WoJ
    Commented Jan 12, 2016 at 14:34

1 Answer 1


QEMU is 50% slower than even the oldest Raspberry Pis from 2012.

Suffice to say , if your code works fluently inside QEMU , it should perform better on a real Pi.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.