Want to run a stripped-down version of Windows on your Raspberry Pi? Sure you do. Windows 10 IoT Core, a version of Windows for embedded devices, is now available from Microsoft and looks to be an interesting alternative to Raspbian and other Linux-based portable OSes.

What is it, exactly? First, it’s Microsoft’s effort to get ahead of the single-board computer craze. It is essentially Windows without the UI and allows you to program various projects including robotic air hockey tables and weather stations. The platform supports C++, C#, JS and VB as well as Python and node.js.

Developers might miss the Start menu and the like but by tearing out all of the Windows cruft you essentially get a programmable base for powerful projects.

You can check out sample code on Github and download the OS here. It’s obviously wildly important for Microsoft to get their product in front of Raspberry Pi developers simply because familiarity breeds software adoption. By giving devs just enough Windows to be dangerous, Microsoft could turn the Raspberry Pi into a Windows 10 gateway drug.

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Windows 10 Is Now Available For The Raspberry Pi