I was doing a project on a Raspberry Pi 2. Recently, something happened and now the board is not working. I'm planning to replace it with a RPi Model B+. Can I use the same SD card to boot without formatting it? Do I have to install a fresh OS on the SD card and install all other software, or can I simply insert the previous one and it'll work?

  • 1
    Have you tried it?
    – Jacobm001
    Apr 21, 2016 at 17:18

1 Answer 1


Presuming you are referring to Raspbian, the same SD card should work unless you have removed kernel.img from the boot partition and/or corresponding directories from /lib/modules.

If you are referring to an OS that is Pi 2/3 only (e.g., various forms of Ubuntu) then no, it will not work on a B+.

Also, if you have specified a specific kernel in /boot/config.txt, then comment that line out. You can also check to see if one ended up there some other way.


That's "commented out" (#). This way the bootloader will be able to select the correct kernel.

  • I assumed this was the case, but wasn't sure what kind of shenanigans might be going on with the firmware controller.
    – Jacobm001
    Apr 21, 2016 at 17:33
  • @Jacobm001 There's only one bootcode.bin, so all models use that. I'm pretty sure it does make some distinctions, though (e.g., it is what decides which kernel to load if one isn't specified in config.txt, which I should edit something in about that...). But in any case, if the OP was using raspi-update (or the OS does the equivalent), it will still apply to all of them.
    – goldilocks
    Apr 21, 2016 at 17:37
  • @goldilocks The Pi was running Raspbian on it. I have not removed any files from the SD card. I have already changed the GPU memory to 256MB and arm_freq to 1000Hz. So the changes happened in config.txt will make any problems if I use the SD card in RPI B+? Apr 21, 2016 at 17:55
  • Well, no one promises all B+s will be okay at 1 Ghz but I believe most of them turn out to be. You can also set force_turbo=0 and arm_freq_min=600 so that the kernel can vary the frequency with load. 256MB for the GPU seems excessive but that is up to you -- I think only fairly specialized purposes involving video processing would require that, and it will only hurt the performance of the GUI, which will never need more than 64 MB (if that), sans video playback. CPU RAM is much more important in most contexts.
    – goldilocks
    Apr 21, 2016 at 18:10

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