Some good news. Raspbmc is now in beta. Let’s face it — project updates aren’t that great, users want to see results and try out what’s in the works, rather than hear about them. So that’s what I’m allowing you to do today. I wanted to make this a closed beta, seeing as release isn’t far around the corner. This was originally because I wasn’t too sure about the stability of the build, but I believe that Raspbmc is good enough for public testing.
When trying the beta, please remember that this is a test build. Some things will be broken and performance won’t be at its very best. What I’m trying to say is that this beta will not reflect the final performance of Raspbmc, and remember, Raspbmc performance and features will improve in future updates too.
The beta comes in the form of an Gzipped image file, available for download here. Windows users can restore directly from USB Image Tool, and Linux and OSX guys can just run something along the lines of:
gunzip -c installer-testing.img.gz | dd of=/dev/mmcblk0
md5 hash: 2b50aff2aac3341dce66eae4ee92ec66
Note: you need at least a 2GB SD card. Raspbmc will use the full size of your card.
The installers will be available for release, but not for testing purposes. If you’re not comfortable with putting the image on your SD card, I’d advise you give this one a miss. The UI installer looks a bit rough around the edges at the moment: you expect to see Microsoft Scandisk pop up at any second and tell you its scanning for surface errors.
There is a discussion here on the forums so you can give some feedback on the beta. Please make sure, before you ask something though that you’ve read the Wiki, especially the FAQ section.
If you like what you see, please consider making a small donation to help fund the release. I suspect I am going to have to upgrade the servers, yet again. While the project’s files are mirrors, the blog itself is quite demanding to keep up and the CDN redirection backbone still uses the Raspbmc server.
Other than that, enjoy everything, and thank you for testing Raspbmc.