Before we begin our update of RetroPie, we need to be prepared for the worst outcome. For this reason, it's crucial to perform a complete backup of your Raspberry Pi. After all, you don't want to lose all your RetroPie ROMs and RetroPie game save data!
Visit our guide to learn how to back up your Pi and its contents. Once you’ve got your backup safely tucked away, it’s time to get started.
Earlier editions of RetroPie have a different menu structure than later versions. If your copy of RetroPie was created prior to 4, you'll need to select the option Update RetroPie-Setup Script.
If you are using version 4 or later, skip to the next step.
If your version of RetroPie is 4 or higher, you will need to choose the Update All Installed Packages option. Version 4.4 may say only Update.
This process may take a bit of time depending on several factors. Things like update requirements and network speed can all impact how long this part will take.
Your version may ask you for confirmation before updating individual assets on the Pi. Read the prompts carefully and update everything as needed.
Once the update is complete, you should see a prompt on the screen advising whether or not the update was successful.
Critical system updates like these are best addressed with a fresh reboot. The menu prompt should provide an option to restart. If not, go through the RetroPie menu to restart the Pi.
Updating, while often with good intentions, can sometimes leave us with a few problems. These are some of the most common issues to come with updating RetroPie.
RetroPie refuses to update
If the RetroPie is refusing to start the update, verify you have a connection to your network. If you do have network connection, double check to see if you're able to reach the internet.
If the issue seems unrelated to network issues, you may need to manually install the latest version of RetroPie from scratch.
Update starts but fails
This can sometimes happen with poor internet connections. Verify your Pi is having no issues connecting to the internet.
If the problem persists, you may have to update your Pi manually with the latest RetroPie version.
Certain ROMs are no longer working
This is a reported problem among the community. The going recommendation is to download the latest version of RetroPie for reinstallation instead of updating through the UI.
RetroPie is not functional after updating
Some updates don't work as intended. In this case, the results can be devastating! If your Pi was backed up prior to the update, you should be good to go.
For those who missed the opportunity for a thorough backup, you'll need to download the latest version of RetroPie for a fresh installation.
For more official information on the RetroPie update menu and features, visit the RetroPie GitHub repository for more RetroPie update information.