A PiBox System is an embedded Linux distribution suited to a specific set of hardware and designed with a specific use-case. A PiBox System is not a general purpose Linux distribution. It is comprised of the PiBox Development System layered with a collection of software packages in the OPKG format.
There are 7 PiBox Systems currently available.
- PiBox Development System
- PiBox Media System
- PiBox Player System
- PiBox Kiosk System
- PiBox AutoKiosk System
- PiBox PiSentry System
- PiBox PiStore System
There are other PiBox Systems in development and should be considered highly experimental, such as Xeon for the PinePhone Pro and Ironman for home automation among others.
PiBox Development System
The PiBox Development System provides the core operating system utilities. By itself the PiBox Development System doesn’t do much. It provides base operating system facilities found on most Linux distributions but lacks many of the tools that make those distributions general purpose. It supports an X.org interface with limited hardware acceleration.
Most developers will want to build the Development System customized to their hardware (by editing the toolchain configuration) and required core utilities (by editing the Buildroot configuration).
PiBox Media System
The PiBox Media System provides tools for viewing static image collections, video and music files. It plays videos and music files from local USB sticks and can access other Media and Player systems on the network.
The Media System also provides USB webcam support displayed either on the console or via a remote web browser.
An added feature for some users is the SiriusXM application. This app can be used with an XMPCR device. This USB device was sold in the early part of the 2000’s and provided XM Radio for desktop computers.
PiBox Player System
The PiBox Player System is a smaller version of the Media System. It also plays videos and music files from local USB sticks and can access other Media and Player systems on the network.
PiBox Kiosk System
The PiBox Kiosk System is akin to popular video picture frames and is designed specifically for use with the official Raspberry Pi 7″ Touchscreen display. It provides touch-enabled viewing and browsing of static images and videos from USB sticks.
PiBox AutoKiosk System
The PiBox AutoKiosk System is similar to the Kiosk System but only searches USB sticks for videos. It then plays the videos found automatically on the HDMI port.
There is no UI on the AutoKiosk System. It’s design is intended for use with projectors, such those used for holiday displays.
PiBox PiSentry System
The PiBox PiSentry System is designed for use with a custom LCD display and associated enclosure. A webcam attached to the system can be positioned using a low-frame rate display on the LCD touchscreen. Once positioned, a higher frame rate display can be accessed via the network from a web browser.
PiBox PiStore System
The PiBox PiStore System is designed for use with the same hardware platform as the PiSentry System. However the software packages installed here provide a graphical display of attached USB drives. These drives are also exported via NFS and SMB, making them available for use on the local network.