Whats the difference between NOOBS and Berryboot? Why would you use one vs the other?

2 Answers 2


Good question.

NOOBS is a (re)installation tool. You can use it to install an OS or nuke/reinstall an OS without wiping or re-imaging the entire SD card. NOOBS is NOT a bootloader.

Berryboot, on the other hand, is a bootloader. Yeah, it can be used to install an OS, but it's much more special than that.

The primary use of Berryboot, unlike NOOBS, is for multiboot. It acts as a menu to select an OS to boot if you have multiple OSes.

  • 1
    Noobs does not use grub. Commented Apr 28, 2016 at 13:39
  • @PeterGreen github.com/raspberrypi/noobs/tree/master/buildroot/boot
    – Aloha
    Commented May 20, 2016 at 4:44
  • 1
    Just because there happens to be a copy of grub (along with copies of a load of other bootloaders) sitting in the buildroot code that is included in the noobs source tree doesn't mean that noobs actually uses it. Commented May 20, 2016 at 9:41

Neither. Both work for their purpose BUT make any subsequent updating more difficult.

If you REALLY want to multiboot Berryboot may be OK, but there is very little reason to do so on the Pi. SD Cards are cheap and easily swapped.

Very few (if any) of the experienced users on this site use either, so it makes it harder to get any help.

  • Last part describes me.
    – Aloha
    Commented Apr 28, 2016 at 14:34

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