Linked by Amjith Ramanujam on Tue 26th Aug 2008 23:31 UTC, submitted by vijayd81
PC-BSD "Not all user-friendly desktop operating systems are based on Linux; as demonstrated by PC-BSD, it is entirely feasible to turn a "geek" project into a piece of software that can be installed and used by even less technical computer users. Distrowatch talks to Kris Moore, PC-BSD lead developer, about his love affair with FreeBSD and the upcoming PC-BSD 7.0."
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PBI Builder
by amjith on Tue 26th Aug 2008 23:48 UTC
amjith
Member since:
2005-07-08

PBI Builder is a tool to build your own PBI file if you can't find the .pbi file for your favorite program.

http://www.pcbsd.org/content/view/45/30/

Reply Score: 4

Comment by friday
by friday on Wed 27th Aug 2008 01:38 UTC
friday
Member since:
2008-07-08

Now if there was just a great, easy to install, open sourced internet hosting panel, this would be on my personal server at home instead of Ubuntu. I'd make the switch in a heartbeat.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Comment by friday
by protagonist on Wed 27th Aug 2008 06:14 UTC in reply to "Comment by friday"
protagonist Member since:
2005-07-06

I have not tried it, but the Alpha7 versions have a server installation option as well as a desktop install.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Comment by friday
by phoenix on Wed 27th Aug 2008 19:22 UTC in reply to "Comment by friday"
phoenix Member since:
2005-07-11

Now if there was just a great, easy to install, open sourced internet hosting panel, this would be on my personal server at home instead of Ubuntu. I'd make the switch in a heartbeat.


Virtualmin (http://www.virtualmin.org) is in the ports tree (sysutils/virtualmin), or you can just download the tarball and install it to /usr/local/virtualmin-<version> and have it auto-update itself.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Comment by friday
by friday on Thu 28th Aug 2008 02:01 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by friday"
friday Member since:
2008-07-08

Thanks for the heads up. Once I get some time on a Saturday afternoon, with a couple beers, I'll build a box up and see how it goes!

Reply Score: 1

Comment by TQH !
by TQH ! on Wed 27th Aug 2008 07:25 UTC
TQH !
Member since:
2006-03-16

I laughed when I read this:
"Not all user-friendly desktop operating systems are based on Linux"

Nope. Not all indeed.

Reply Score: 9

RE: Comment by TQH !
by Clinton on Wed 27th Aug 2008 10:40 UTC in reply to "Comment by TQH !"
Clinton Member since:
2005-07-05

I laughed too because all of them are clearly based on either Linux OR FreeBSD. Duh!

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: Comment by TQH !
by evangs on Wed 27th Aug 2008 12:04 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by TQH !"
evangs Member since:
2005-07-07

Slick willy, is that you?

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Comment by TQH !
by Clinton on Wed 27th Aug 2008 21:26 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by TQH !"
Clinton Member since:
2005-07-05

That depends...

Do you want me to be? ;)

Reply Score: 1

BSD for desktop
by Greuceanu on Wed 27th Aug 2008 09:03 UTC
Greuceanu
Member since:
2007-09-27

I tried using FreeBSD for desktop, in form of pure FreeBSD, DesktopBSD and PCBSD. They are all great, but, off course, FreeBSD in pure form needs a little extra. PC-BSD seems very polished but I'm not really impressed by the PBI system. Here I'll take the DekstopBSD ports approach to me much more "orthodox". Unfortunatelly, DesktopBSD team is, I gueess, much smaller than PCBSD team and the project is not that dynamic, though DesktopBSD as it is, it's a great OS.

Anyway, FreeBSD and it's variants would be a great Linux alternative for my desktop users if they only have some kind of free (not OSS necesarely) virtualization, in form of VMWare or VirtualBox, because sometimes I just have to run MSOffice products and I can't 100% trust wine for this. And off course, excellent hardware support is a must.

Reply Score: 5

RE: BSD for desktop
by Clinton on Wed 27th Aug 2008 10:47 UTC in reply to "BSD for desktop"
Clinton Member since:
2005-07-05

If you just want to virtualize several instances of FreeBSD to have a virtualized web server, mail server, and database server, for instance, then FreeBSD jails are a great alternative to virtualization, I think.

If you're looking to run Windows on FreeBSD, then I can see your point; although work is being done to get VirtualBox running on FreeBSD.

Reply Score: 2

RE: BSD for desktop
by Clinton on Wed 27th Aug 2008 11:00 UTC in reply to "BSD for desktop"
Clinton Member since:
2005-07-05

One other comment...

I don't mind the PBI mechanism. It reminds me a little of OS X's install packages. It may not be the most efficient use of space, but who cares when a) they are easier to install, b) you won't run into dependency nightmares, and c) hard drive space is cheap and plentiful? I think this departure from tradition is acceptable for the sake of ease.

I've never tried PC-BSD before, but I was intrigued for some reason by this interview and looked into it further. I was impressed by the ease that PC-BSD offers and also the friendliness of the pbiDIR website, which not only lists all the PBI files available, but also sorts them into categories and allows users to rank them; making it easy for new users to not only find software, but find software that will probably work well for them.

Reply Score: 4

RE: BSD for desktop
by Doc Pain on Fri 29th Aug 2008 11:40 UTC in reply to "BSD for desktop"
Doc Pain Member since:
2006-10-08

I tried using FreeBSD for desktop, in form of pure FreeBSD, DesktopBSD and PCBSD. They are all great, but, off course, FreeBSD in pure form needs a little extra.


This is true, but once you're willing to invest some time, you end up with a taylored system exactly fitting your seeds. I know it, I've done it - using FreeBSD since 4.0 exclusively on servers and, yes, on the desktop, from a 150 MHz P1, a 500 MHz AMD up to a 2000 MHz P4, and I've never missed anything. I never found any preconfigured system that fitted my needs.

Now people may scream about "Flash" stuff, but this has never been of any interest to me. :-)

I've tried several versions of PC-BSD, too, and I was impressed. But NB: You need to have a computer that's up to date. Running PC-BSD on older hardware is not a good idea. I won't say that there are things that don't work, no no, all things do work, but sloooowwww. This is nothing bad per se, but KDE 3 (and 4, I think) are ressource hungry. The most impressive thing using PC-BSD was that if you're only using the GUI tools, everything works completely fine. Even the "most wanted" applications are present from startup, and nearly everything you need can be installed via PBI. Under the hood you still have the power of the FreeBSD OS, so you can do all the "tricks" that a GUI only solution can't. And that's great.

PC-BSD seems very polished but I'm not really impressed by the PBI system.


They invented something new, something users insist on having. From my point of view, surfing a web page, manually download things and be present during the installation is something retarded, but that seems to be what users want. So the PBI system perfectly fits their needs.

As you mentioned further, PBI doesn't interact with ports or packages. Still ports and packages can be installed on a PC-BSD system, but it's recommended to be very careful here.

Here I'll take the DekstopBSD ports approach to me much more "orthodox".


DesktopBSD keeps things more traditional, keeping as much compatibility as possible.

And off course, excellent hardware support is a must.


Well, this depends on the hardware. FreeBSD doesn't talk to my microwave oven, do I complain? No. :-)

But you're right, FreeBSD's hardware support is a bit like Solaris' one. The suppported hardware is well selected, you can't hook every crappy piece of electronic garbage into the system and expect it to work. On the other hand, FreeBSD supprts everything that is compliant to existing standards. The support for wireless is not as good as in OpenBSD, I think, but it becomes better.

Reply Score: 2

.app
by Ishan on Wed 27th Aug 2008 09:46 UTC
Ishan
Member since:
2007-10-24

They should have gone even further in the easy install of applications and do something similar to OSX IMHO. i.e.: no install, a drag and drop of a special directory containing everything. Not orthodox, not the most efficient space wise (but who cares?) but very easy and clean (you don't add anything to the system)

Reply Score: 2

RE: .app
by dagw on Wed 27th Aug 2008 11:38 UTC in reply to ".app"
dagw Member since:
2005-07-06

Even after having used OS X for years I'm still not convinced that drag and drop to a special folder is a better solution than a self contained installer you double click on. Installers offer much more flexibility, like adding shortcuts to menus and connecting mime types to the app etc. Sure you could have a setup program that runs the first time you run the program, but I'm not convince you win anything.

As for uninstalling you could simply have something like right click the apps menu shortcut and select uninstall. Quick, easy and just as intuitive.

Reply Score: 4

RE[2]: .app
by Ishan on Wed 27th Aug 2008 16:48 UTC in reply to "RE: .app"
Ishan Member since:
2007-10-24

Well, I noticed in OSX you just have to d'n'd an application for it to become associated automatically with its file type. I didn't analyze this too much but it's certainly some parameters in one of the .app dir doing that. Very clever but could generate conflict when more than on .app want a file type.

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: .app
by Sabon on Wed 27th Aug 2008 17:29 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: .app"
Sabon Member since:
2005-07-06

Most OSs have problems/conflicts when more than one app ones to link to the same file extension. So installing applications they way OS X does it doesn't change anything. Windows, Linux, etc., will also have that issue.

Note that you can Right click on any data file and choose "open with" and open with any program that has associated itself with this file extension. The first time you open up an application it tells the OS what extensions it recognizes.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: .app
by Sabon on Wed 27th Aug 2008 17:37 UTC in reply to "RE: .app"
Sabon Member since:
2005-07-06

"Even after having used OS X for years I'm still not convinced that drag and drop to a special folder is a better solution than a self contained installer you double click on."

Based on many years of using Windows and some use of Linux, I DEFINITELY am convinced. Trying to clean up after Windows or Linux is a pain compared to Mac OS X.

Yes there is still some stuff left behind on OS X but it is a far cry less than what is left over from uninstalling programs on Windows or Linux. Being a Desktop Analyst I'm constantly cleaning up Registry BLEEP in Windows from applications that get corrupted Registry settings and straight uninstalls, reboots, and re-installs don't fix.

With Mac OS X. Usually all you have to do is delete the corresponding plist file from root/library/preferences and all app preferences are deleted. You open it back up, set your preferences again and most times everything is good. Sometimes you have to do more. But the vast majority of the few times I have to fix apps on Mac OS X this fixes it. Sure is a lot faster than fixing Windows computers.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: .app
by smashIt on Wed 27th Aug 2008 21:27 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: .app"
smashIt Member since:
2005-07-06

isn't that an application-problem instead of an os-problem?
drag&drop-installs are possible even on windows (e.g.: mIRC and Guildwars)

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: .app
by dagw on Thu 28th Aug 2008 10:02 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: .app"
dagw Member since:
2005-07-06

Trying to clean up after Windows or Linux is a pain compared to Mac OS X.


I'm still not convinced that that's a feature of drag and drop installation. That seems more of an effect of shitty uninstall routines. On linux at at least I find that purging (rather than just uninstalling) does pretty good job of cleaning up.

With Mac OS X. Usually all you have to do is delete the corresponding plist file from root/library/preferences and all app preferences are deleted. You open it back up, set your preferences again and most times everything is good. Sometimes you have to do more. But the vast majority of the few times I have to fix apps on Mac OS X this fixes it. Sure is a lot faster than fixing Windows computers.

Agreed. Windows is badly designed in this aspect. But simply adding drag and drop installer wouldn't stop these programs from causing any of the above problems.

Reply Score: 2

Flash
by vermaden on Wed 27th Aug 2008 10:08 UTC
vermaden
Member since:
2006-11-18

The worst thing is that native Flash for FreeBSD is ready and working but Adobe just do not want to release it for some strange reason :ASD

source:
http://daemonforums.org/showpost.php?p=13239&postcount=60

Reply Score: 7

PBI is not the only option.
by Ishan on Wed 27th Aug 2008 11:18 UTC
Ishan
Member since:
2007-10-24

I ran PCBSD for a while on my previous computer and used FreeBSD Port a lot too, you are not forced to use PBI.
There's a few GUI for Port which simplify everything.

Reply Score: 1

nice
by poundsmack on Wed 27th Aug 2008 16:19 UTC
poundsmack
Member since:
2005-07-13

PC-BSD is one of the more exciting projects out there right now. I love their PBI system, even my grandma can instal software using it. I think PC-BSD shows tons of promise and I really like the OS. Through them i found out about iXsystems which i now use one of their servers at work, over all really good stuff.

Reply Score: 2

I hope they get an upgrade install created.
by Sabon on Wed 27th Aug 2008 17:41 UTC
Sabon
Member since:
2005-07-06

"DW: Will it be possible to upgrade an older PC-BSD version to PC-BSD 7.0 or do you recommend a clean installation?

KM: I'm still working on the upgrade system and hope to have it allow upgrades from PC-BSD 1.5.x -> 7. However, I would strongly recommend a clean install, since this is a very large jump forward, and most programs installed on PC-BSD 1.x (based on FreeBSD 6) will most likely not be binary compatible with 7."

I sure hope they get an upgrade install created. Having to do a clean install when I've setup a desktop or server with all my little preferences changed I would really not want to have to do that all over from scratch.

As you can probably tell from my previous I'm a Mac user that is an Systems Analyst that supports Windows too. My favorite OS of all time though is OS/2. It's a long story as to why I don't use that anymore. As a hobby I love playing with OSs. So far I've played with 12. [Multiple distributions or version of an OS don't count as multiple OSs.]

Edited 2008-08-27 17:48 UTC

Reply Score: 2

Excited
by Bayreuth on Sat 30th Aug 2008 22:29 UTC
Bayreuth
Member since:
2008-02-13

I've always wanted to see how those SMP optimizations to the FreeBSD 7 kernel workout for everyday computing.

Reply Score: 1