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I wonder what ever happened to the NetBSD desktop project mentioned some time back on OSnews?
I guess it didn't have enough interest... It is not that hard to make NetBSD with gnome, kde meta-pkg in packages. However, I have problems with sound (I need to restart pulseaudio after every reboot, video crashes with bigger resolutions, to make flash work was like a nightmare, no cpu scaling (and probably other power saving features with current CPUs), some applications doesn't work as expected and so on). So idea to have NetBSD on desktop needs a much more work without enough recourse on internet.
Given the current scramble to have one OS to rule over all tablets, pads and smartphones, I'm surprised noone is using NetBSD as the base - its small, quick, easier to port to plenty of current and future architectures, has an amenable license?
What makes you think it's easier to port to current and future architectures? Linux surpassed it in actual ports long ago, and the driver support for each architecture is many times better. NetBSD's supposed portability comes from supporting many different CPUs, but the actual hardware support for each of them isn't really all that impressive.
What NetBSD excels at is being small and clean. It's probably far better suited for education than Linux, so it's really reached Linux's original goal of being a better Minix than Minix.
Being small and clean makes it easier to port than linux, which is anything but small and clean.
Exactly. You see - when someone writes that "Linux is more portable than NetBSD/OpenBSD" then you know he didn't give NetBSD a try, or just doesn't know too much about NetBSD/OpenBSD. I don't have to mention about Linux fanboyism ...
No, I write from experience. It might be more easily "portable", but it's not as well ported to several fairly big platforms, like PPC Mac.
'Not as well' is nonsense, it's very well ported. It's just quantity Vs quality. The latter isn't as speedy in development, but it's the best you can get. Why do you think they're using NetBSD/OpenBSD libc in Android and parts of the userland? Quality first! They're using the Linux kernel just because of the quantity of the drivers.
They use NetBSD's libc because lightweight is a more important feature than the bloated glibc's features put together. As for NetBSD's drivers supposedly being better in quality -- some of them, probably, but many of them, even for outdated and common hardware that's been fully supported in Linux for ages, are only half-baked. And that's what I mean when I say it's not well ported. It doesn't actually work reliably on actual hardware.
What makes you think it's easier to port to current and future architectures? Linux surpassed it in actual ports long ago [...]
There's a different between "most ported" and "most portable". Linux is the former, but it's more like "brute-force ported", just more folks working on it.
If a small hardware vendor wants to port an OS to their new device, it will surely be easier for them with NetBSD than with Linux.
Hmm, I have some unpleasant experiences with NetBSD from some time ago. I did a regular install, configured everything properly ... and the beast just *failed* at pkg_add, which is unacceptable.
Normally I use OpenBSD, which is cleaned and ordered fork of NetBSD, but I always wanted to run NetBSD as a lab OS. Well, hopefuly this version will fix that *basic* pkg_add problem.