I just purchased a Raspberry PI 3 and dropped my old SD card with Raspbian OS, which ran flawlessly on Raspberry PI 2, on Raspberry PI 3. It won't load or do anything. So, what version of Raspbian OS can you run on Raspberry PI 3?

  • Did you make some changes to the OS, or the boot process? Any version of Raspbian should run on either.
    – SiKing
    Sep 14, 2016 at 17:49
  • P2 Processor is ARMv7 Processor rev 5 (v7l) and running Raspbian Version 8 Jessie
    – ThN
    Sep 14, 2016 at 18:47
  • Run grep kernel /boot/config.txt. Do you get anything back?
    – SiKing
    Sep 14, 2016 at 18:51
  • You might also be interested in this raspberrypi.stackexchange.com/q/43959/53481 duplicate?
    – SiKing
    Sep 14, 2016 at 19:59
  • I'm afraid SiKing is completely wrong. The chips on the Pi 2 and Pi 3 are different. You will need to update your OS.
    – recantha
    Sep 15, 2016 at 8:34

2 Answers 2


Try doing:

apt-get update
apt-get upgrade

Before you try putting it into the Pi 3. The Pi 2 and the Pi 3 have two completely different processors, and therefore Raspbian has had updates to cope with this.

  • The processors are not that different. I was able to swap my card from rPi1B+ to rPi3 with no problems. Could you point out the differences in Raspbian to cope with the differences you mention?
    – SiKing
    Sep 14, 2016 at 17:48
  • They really are different. Cortex-A7 versus Cortex-A53. It's a different chip.
    – recantha
    Sep 15, 2016 at 8:33
  • Instead of update and upgrade, I actually downloaded the latest Raspbian after reading hussainpatel's answer to keep it simple and it is running without any issue on Pi 3.
    – ThN
    Sep 15, 2016 at 14:08
  • Weird. I have Wheezy running on an rPi1B+, with some custom software. The OS itself is pretty stock. I moved the SD card to an rPi3, and it still runs fine.
    – SiKing
    Sep 15, 2016 at 15:29

Yes, there are some changes (I would say major changes) for the Raspbian OS with regards to the Pi 3, because of new processor, inbuilt Wi-Fi and Bluetooth, new version of scratch, python, new Linux Kernel v4.4 and many more..

For more detailed information on what updates are in the Raspbian OS and how to upgrade, please refer below link. Raspbian update related to Pi 3

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