Linked by Thom Holwerda on Mon 10th Oct 2016 19:05 UTC
FreeBSD

The FreeBSD Release Engineering Team is pleased to announce the availability of FreeBSD 11.0-RELEASE. This is the first release of the stable/11 branch.

Some of the highlights:

  • OpenSSH DSA key generation has been disabled by default. It is important to update OpenSSH keys prior to upgrading. Additionally, Protocol 1 support has been removed.
  • OpenSSH has been updated to 7.2p2.
  • Wireless support for 802.11n has been added.
  • By default, the ifconfig(8) utility will set the default regulatory domain to FCC on wireless interfaces. As a result, newly created wireless interfaces with default settings will have less chance to violate country-specific regulations.
  • The svnlite(1) utility has been updated to version 1.9.4.
  • The libblacklist(3) library and applications have been ported from the NetBSD Project.
  • Support for the AArch64 (arm64) architecture has been added.
  • Native graphics support has been added to the bhyve(8) hypervisor.
  • Broader wireless network driver support has been added.

The release notes provide the in-depth look at the new release, and you can get it from the download page.

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Comment by Lazarus
by Lazarus on Mon 10th Oct 2016 19:36 UTC
Lazarus
Member since:
2005-08-10

By default, the ifconfig(8) utility will set the default regulatory domain to FCC on wireless interfaces. As a result, newly created wireless interfaces with default settings will have less chance to violate country-specific regulations.

For one specific country /eyeroll

Reply Score: 4

RE: Comment by Lazarus
by zdzichu on Tue 11th Oct 2016 05:22 UTC in reply to "Comment by Lazarus"
zdzichu Member since:
2006-11-07

It sets FCC/US by default. Which is quite limited AFAIR, and will be a subset of what's permitted in most other domains.
Curious souls can analyze regulations at https://git.kernel.org/cgit/linux/kernel/git/sforshee/wireless-regdb...
(that's Linux crda file, but the laws apply to FreeBSD, too).

Reply Score: 1

v But why would you use it?
by Auzy on Mon 10th Oct 2016 20:10 UTC
RE: But why would you use it?
by tingo on Mon 10th Oct 2016 20:22 UTC in reply to "But why would you use it? "
tingo Member since:
2007-10-13

So, let's see. My firewall uses FreeBSD (because I know how to secure a FreeBSD machine and how to spot anything out of whack). My fileservers uses FreeBSD (ZFS - it is way easier than anything else). My two NAS boxes uses FreeNAS (which is based on FreeBSD). The servers I use to host virtual machines run FreeBSD (one uses VirtualBox, one bhyve). Most of my application servers run FreeBSD. The only machines that doesn't run FreeBSD are the ones that couldn't :I have a BananaPI for my home automation, at the time I set it up FreeBSD wasn't working on it, my tvheadend server runs Ubuntu, because tvheadend on FreeBSD refused to work (and I couldn't figure out why). Oh, and even though my laptop is dual boot FreeBSD and Fedora, it spends most of its time in Fedora.

Edited 2016-10-10 20:22 UTC

Reply Score: 7

RE: But why would you use it?
by Drumhellar on Mon 10th Oct 2016 21:04 UTC in reply to "But why would you use it? "
Drumhellar Member since:
2005-07-12

It's used pretty much anywhere Linux is used - it is very capable, afterall. For example, Netflix uses it extensively.

It's got great storage capabilities in the form of ZFS, great security features with the TrustedBSD project. Lots of heavy duty networking features. There's obviously enough interest in it still that Microsoft has pre-configured disk images available for Azure. iX Systems uses it extensively in their NAS devices, and servers, too.

Multimedia capabilities aren't as behind as you might think - NVidia has FreeBSD versions of their drivers, and IIRC the Xorg drivers work (FreeBSD tracks the Linux DRI2 and KMS stacks).

Reply Score: 6

RE: But why would you use it?
by C5523 on Mon 10th Oct 2016 21:36 UTC in reply to "But why would you use it? "
C5523 Member since:
2013-04-08

Well, for networking why is it behind? Netflix released a few time ago that network has great performance advantage over Linux.

For security I don't see why is it falling behind? What kind of mechanisms had linux gained?

Plus a lot of users are recurring to FreeBSD to avoid systemd madness and deploy systems that are more stable than most linux distributions I think

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: But why would you use it?
by Darkmage on Mon 10th Oct 2016 21:53 UTC in reply to "RE: But why would you use it? "
Darkmage Member since:
2006-10-20

Using FreeBSD because of systemd is kind of dumb considering: https://devuan.org That said, there are plenty of uses for a BSD licensed kernel, mainly that you can make a commercial product from it and keep your sourcecode closed.

Reply Score: 1

Drumhellar Member since:
2005-07-12

That said, there are plenty of uses for a BSD licensed kernel, mainly that you can make a commercial product from it and keep your sourcecode closed.


Sony did exactly this with the PS4, and even contributed back some of their work, too.

Reply Score: 2

RE: But why would you use it?
by cade on Mon 10th Oct 2016 23:59 UTC in reply to "But why would you use it? "
cade Member since:
2009-02-28

Choice.

As a software developer, and concerning kernel/core subsystems of an OS, I respect more the FreeBSD software development model than the Linux one.

The core FreeBSD maintainers are responsible for release of a working operating system (kernel and minimal userland) which you can optionally build upon with specific software; e.g. your preferred shell environment, your preferred window manager, your preferred programming tools, etc. With Linux, the core maintainers are mainly responsible for release of the kernel and then it is up to other entities to implement the final distribution; e.g. Debian, Ubuntu, Mint, Arch, etc. I prefer the more integrated FreeBSD approach; i.e. a working relatively minimalist OS from the core maintainers that I can then build upon.

I feel more comfortable with an OS that prioritizes on quality rather than quantity. For example, releasing a device driver because it has reached a "quality threshold" rather than releasing it because it's another "feather in the cap" of the OS and quality is possibly a secondary priority.


The viral (forced obligation, etc.) nature of Linux' GPL licence is at odds with many other licences and makes it difficult/impossible to use other software technologies developed by other entities (e.g. ZFS from IllumOS/OpenSolaris).

A related theme is the NIH (not invented here) syndrome that may manifest in Linux. Due to restrictive GPL licence, Linux supporters attempt to implement their own version of the technology that their preferred licence (i.e. GPL) does not allow them to use in their OS. So, many person-years of effort may have been required to develop a certain piece of foreign software technology and then some in the Linux community attempt to copy/clone/? this technology which at least leads to repetition of effort since the "GPL stance" requires it and also has led to failures due to the required knowledge to implement the respective software technology was not adequately available; e.g. the {ZFS, DTrace} technologies were originally developed by Sun Microsystems. They were in a position, unlike many others, to realise the need for these technologies and so went ahead and developed them over the years. It's a bonus that these technologies are available in open source form. Why would I stick with a system like Linux that objects to usage of these technologies, and others, in more-or-less raw form because the GPL mandates this so. Also, unlike some really zealotry Linux-zealots, I tend to appreciate that interesting/useful software technologies were developed outside the Linux domain and I would like to use these technologies with little hassles as possible.


I feel the BSD licence is adequate and have no wish to have the potential of my main software development box compromised by something like the GPL license.


There is also that "systemd" thing that is splitting the Linux community; e.g. UbuntuBSD and PacBSD (formerly ArchBSD) are BSD distros based on the FreeBSD kernel and offerred as a new or alternate way of doing things (BSD kernel, Linux/BSD userland, etc.).


Also remember, there is a much bigger marketing machine behind Linux than (Free)BSD and this may give the impression that FreeBSD has very little usefulness;
example such as Netflix, WhatsApp, Apple, Sony Playstation, BSD communities show this is not the case.

There are probably much more people developing for Linux than the BSDs and this would be one reason why certain things in the BSDs may be "behind" Linux.

FreeBSD is unix-like while Linux has been gradually charting it's own Linux-y route. I prefer to stick with an OS that embraces the familiar "unix" model, or "unix" way of thinking, and incrementally grows in the "spirit" of that model.

Reply Score: 6

RE[2]: But why would you use it?
by Brendan on Tue 11th Oct 2016 00:25 UTC in reply to "RE: But why would you use it? "
Brendan Member since:
2005-11-16

Hi,

I prefer the more integrated FreeBSD approach; i.e. a working relatively minimalist OS from the core maintainers that I can then build upon.


You prefer "organised engineering" to "flock of headless chickens being guided by nothing more than fate"? ;)

- Brendan

Reply Score: 5

kwan_e Member since:
2007-02-18

Hi,

"I prefer the more integrated FreeBSD approach; i.e. a working relatively minimalist OS from the core maintainers that I can then build upon.


You prefer "organised engineering" to "flock of headless chickens being guided by nothing more than fate"? ;)

- Brendan
"

Cathedral vs Bazaar.

Reply Score: 2

Phucked Member since:
2008-09-24

Hi,



You prefer "organised engineering" to "flock of headless chickens being guided by nothing more than fate"? ;)

- Brendan


Funny the flock of chickens make better software then the so called organized engineering committee.

Reply Score: 0

Brendan Member since:
2005-11-16

Hi,

Funny the flock of chickens make better software then the so called organized engineering committee.


It might be funny if it was true.

The fact is that despite a massive amount work (and corporate involvement) over 25+ years and a price of $0; Apple's cathedral (around start of the millennium) had no trouble completely overtaking Linux desktop market share by a very significant margin, Google/Android's cathedral obliterated every "GNU/Linux" alternative for the smartphone market, and SteamOS failed to make even a minor scratch against any (Microsoft, Sony, ...) cathedral for gaming market share.

The only thing left is the server market where the software running on top of the OS (and not the OS) is the only thing that really matters; but even there Linux is still getting its butt kicked by z/OS on mainframes and only tying with Windows for web servers. The only place where Linux has been unarguably successful is supercomputers, which is the extreme end of "OS not important, only software running on top matters".

Mostly; if all the developers involved were paid $10 per hour; Linux would be the single biggest project failure in the history of software development.

- Brendan

Reply Score: 4

0brad0 Member since:
2007-05-05


Funny the flock of chickens make better software then the so called organized engineering committee.


Speak for yourself. The flock of chickens makes craptastic software that makes me want to stab someone in the face every time I have to use it. No thanks. Take your shit back.

Reply Score: 4

RE[4]: But why would you use it?
by grat on Wed 12th Oct 2016 12:50 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: But why would you use it? "
grat Member since:
2006-02-02

Well, that certainly explains the rapid release of kernel 4.8.1 (to fix a bug caused by poor programming practice that Linus missed during the 4.8 cycle).

You shouldn't mistake quantity for quality, but it's a pretty standard consumer mistake these days.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: But why would you use it?
by kwan_e on Tue 11th Oct 2016 01:02 UTC in reply to "RE: But why would you use it? "
kwan_e Member since:
2007-02-18

A related theme is the NIH (not invented here) syndrome that may manifest in Linux. Due to restrictive GPL licence, Linux supporters attempt to implement their own version of the technology that their preferred licence (i.e. GPL) does not allow them to use in their OS.


Which is why it is the BSDs that are getting rid of any GNU code and implement their own version of the technology that their preferred licence (ie, BSD) does not allow them to use in their OS.

Reply Score: 3

Drumhellar Member since:
2005-07-12

their own version of the technology that their preferred licence (ie, BSD) does not allow them to use in their OS.


I hope you aren't trying to imply that it is the BSD license that prevents GPL code from being used? Because, that's pants-on-the-head stupid.

FreeBSD is ditching GPL'd code because the GPL is limiting, not because of NIH syndrome. You'll notice that they dont' have a problem incorporating components such as ZFS or dtrace, which is licensed under the CDDL, and included as-is in the base system.

Reply Score: 3

kwan_e Member since:
2007-02-18

"their own version of the technology that their preferred licence (ie, BSD) does not allow them to use in their OS.


I hope you aren't trying to imply that it is the BSD license that prevents GPL code from being used? Because, that's pants-on-the-head stupid.
"

Are you saying BSD supporters don't see GPL as being incompatible with BSD? Because by the sounds of people here and elsewhere, they have an almost fatally allergic reaction to GPL and want to have BSD versions of everything.

FreeBSD is ditching GPL'd code because the GPL is limiting, not because of NIH syndrome.


But the person I was responding to used NIH as being somehow related to things being GPL. If you have a problem with that usage, take it up to him. I'm merely reflecting his comment back.

You'll notice that they dont' have a problem incorporating components such as ZFS or dtrace, which is licensed under the CDDL, and included as-is in the base system.


There's nothing stopping people from incorporating ZFS or dtrace into their own systems either. There may be issues with shipping it WITH a release of the Linux kernel, but the noise is coming from only a small corner of the GPL world.

Reply Score: 3

RE[5]: But why would you use it?
by cade on Thu 13th Oct 2016 00:02 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: But why would you use it? "
cade Member since:
2009-02-28

There's nothing stopping people from incorporating ZFS or dtrace into their own systems either. There may be issues with shipping it WITH a release of the Linux kernel, but the noise is coming from only a small corner of the GPL world.


Being a software developer myself, my stance is that source code licensing (and copyright) should be taken seriously and so the full legal effect of GPL-like licences, as with other licenses, should be operative.

In a closed environment you can do anything.
It is the other scenario, i.e. distributing the software outside a closed environment, which is the operative issue.

Due to philosophical reasons I do not prefer GPL-like source code licenses but that does not mean I will trash that licence; i.e. use GPL code as if it were BSD code in a BSD-licensed project. Instead, I would just avoid that GPL project and search for suitably licenced libraries to solve a software-coding related problem or ultimately implement my own specific libraries if the final analysis deems that more practical. I respect that GPL supporters (e.g. Stallman) have a strong/vigilant opinion on their preferred license (i.e. GPL) but I do not share that opinion; i.e. we agree to disagree and still be friendly about this disagreement.

The "noise" you mention concerns the legality in mixing non-GPL code (in this case CDDL-licensed code) with GPL code. Many entities, e.g. "software freedom conservancy" group, have indicated that it is a GPL violation to combine ZFS and Linux kernel. This is obvious since Sun Microsystems desired anti-GPL licensing of source codes for their ZFS/DTrace/other technologies and so they chose the CDDL to accomplish this. Sun developed these technologies and they are well within their right to license them with whatever license they desire. Who am I, or anybody else, to criticise an inventor of a useful technology. If the licensing or any other issue prevents you from using the respective technology then move on and find another solution.
As simple as that.

However, for some it is not that simple.
For example ...

The software freedom conservancy group

https://sfconservancy.org/blog/2016/feb/25/zfs-and-linux/

would, presumably, realise that ZFS is a very useful piece of technology at least as evidenced by Canonical's illegal bundling of ZFS withing their Ubuntu Linux-based distribution (a "big" company breaking the law concerning the ZFS/CDDL licence incompatibility).

In this scenario one solution from the group is ...
"As such, we again ask Oracle to respect community norms against license proliferation and simply relicense its copyrights in ZFS under a GPLv2-compatible license." .


Who does this group, and others behaving this way, think they are ? They have hope in "intellectually forcing" an action upon an inventor of a piece of technology.

What's this collectivist/communistic
"respect community norms"
notion ?

ZFS/DTrace/etc. were not developed under the conditions/motivation/etc. of "community norms".

Instead of the lawyers/etc. plainly saying words to the effect ...

"Hey Linux distros, do not touch ZFS technology because it is illegal due to conditions of Linux's GPL licencing."

they accept that Linux distro's like Ubuntu have done WRONG and then desire to change the stance of the inventor of the ZFS technology in an attempt to legalise this WRONG.

I call this hypocrisy.

If this group/others want the ZFS-effect then they should get together and invent their own copyrightable GPL-versioned-ZFS-lookalike and then happily use it in their own Linux distros. Obviously this is not going to happen anytime soon, if ever, due to the highly specialised domain-specific knowledge required to implement technologies like ZFS.

One way Debian got around the GPL/CDDL licence issue
was to suggest the user of the distribution to build the ZFS support using code from "contrib", etc.

http://www.theregister.co.uk/2016/05/16/zfs_comes_to_debian_thanks_...

Their stance is that

"If you choose to compile ZFS and run it, that's your problem."

My opinion is that Debian/others behaving this way are hypocrites and are a detriment to the stance implied by the GPL; eventhough I do not favour the GPL, it exists through it's ideological supporters. I accept the existence of the GPL, in addition to accepting other software licences, because the respective source code authors deem these licenses useful.

I remember years ago when a lawyer associated with the European Parliament was advising software developers to ditch BSD-like licenses and use GPL licensing so that entities like Microsoft could not financially benefit from closed/proprietary software development that involved code from these software developers.
Again, it's up to the software author not lawyer to decide on appropriate licensing. The software author has the freedom to apply whatever license they see fit for the respective software codes.

Microsoft got "big" because of the widespread "sheeple" attitude that embraced and got hooked on Microsoft products. Microsoft/OSX has it's uses. Open sourced OS, as a full-time OS, is not for everybody.
The proprietary OSes are useful for final porting/testing of software {developed, mostly debugged} initially using open-source OS; e.g. FreeBSD/OpenIndiana/Linux.

It's sad that Linux did not conquer the desktop, as was hoped years ago, since it would have allowed hardware to be more open source friendly and so help other open source (hobbyist, non-hobbyist) operating systems.

I am fine to accept the conditions implied by the various licenses (GPL, LGPL, BSD, MIT/X11, zlib, BOOST, etc.) and when any of these conditions do not suite my ideological/philosophical stances then I move on and seek code that satisfies my stances or implement my own code. I have no problems stating my opposition to a specific licence but have no interest in attempting to convert someone's ideology because they support a license I do not prefer. Let's agree to disagree and leave it to that.

Better to redirect time spent on license wars towards
pressuring hardware manufacturers to release more technical info on their hardware.

Reply Score: 1

kwan_e Member since:
2007-02-18

You don't seem to understand how law works in Common Law countries - most countries that are/were part of the British Empire that still retain the legal system from those times. .

Nothing is illegal unless tested in court. It is the opinion of some that distributing ZFS in Ubuntu's manner is against the licence terms, but in the opinion of others (Ubuntu's own lawyers, for one), it is completely within the licence terms.

Until the case actually goes the court and gets a ruling that it is actually illegal, potentially through appeals, it is not illegal.

https://www.softwarefreedom.org/resources/2016/linux-kernel-cddl.htm...

There are also, however, good reasons for a community of GPLv2 licensors so situated not to object:

All users of the binary (which is the form in which the overwhelming preponderance of users interact with the work) have their rights fully protected by GPLv2, which is the only license covering the binary;
There is no proprietary enhancement to the program, or any other frustration of the purpose of copyleft, because all the source code is freely available under license terms that guarantee all future versions will also be free software;
There are also, therefore, no "closed source" issues of maintainability or reliance in unmodifiable code on modifiable interfaces that future kernel development might change;
These files can be kept within the kernel source tree in a GPL'd whole, while managed with their CDDL licensing material intact, as is done with other non-GPL'd free software source files in other GPL-licensed projects following current best practices;
In sum, therefore, no developer and no user is deprived of any rights that either copyleft license, GPLv2 or CDDL, is designed to ensure and protect.

In this specific sense, then, the conduct which falls outside the words of GPLv2 falls within the "equity of the license," or its "spirit." As all Western legal systems have known since Aristotle, literal interpretation of any legal material will sometimes produce unintended unjust results, which can and should be corrected by the invocation of "equity." This present issue is evidently an example in which the tension between literal and equitable interpretation is raised, and it is the consensus of the kernel copyright holders' intention which determines which mode of interpretation is to be employed.


But the interpretation of GPLv2 with respect to Dtrace would be irrelevant if the copyright holder of Dtrace, Oracle, gave permission for Dtrace to be integrated with the kernel on GPL-compatible terms. This, by its own actions, it has done. As part of its Oracle Unbreakable Linux product, and the services it provides to Oracle customers, Oracle has itself made and distributed the combination of the Linux kernel and Dtrace. Those kernels were distributed to its customers under the terms of GPLv2, and Oracle is therefore estopped to deny others the permission to do what it has done. Oracle being the only copyright holder in Dtrace, it has the power to give permission for the combination to be made under terms compatible with GPLv2, and in the context in which it has acted it has, by its acting, done so. No question arises whether the kernel licensors have permitted, would permit, or should permit this combination: the required permission has already come, by way of estoppel, from the other side.


This, coupled with Linus' own aversion for GPL enforcement through lawyers, would likely make ZFS and DTrace distribution quite okay. And Linus, being pragmatic, would probably agree with Eben Moglen's view that the receiver's rights under GPL and CDDL are completely protected in practice.

Edited 2016-10-13 06:56 UTC

Reply Score: 2

Kalessin Member since:
2007-01-18

Are you saying BSD supporters don't see GPL as being incompatible with BSD? Because by the sounds of people here and elsewhere, they have an almost fatally allergic reaction to GPL and want to have BSD versions of everything.


I think that to some extent both camps want everything under their preferred license and would love to replace code using the other license with code using their preferred license. However, in the case of the BSDs, to some extent they need to avoid GPL code (at least in the base system), because there are companies (like Sony) who build products based on a BSD, and having the GPL mixed in there would force them to open source their code if they made changes, which they do not want to be forced to do.

So, having GPL code in the base system is potentially a big problem. But in general, having it in ports is a non-issue aside from whatever folks insist on things being homegrown (and there are always folks who do). In general though, the BSDs are quite willing to take code from elsewhere). In particular, the BSDs and Solaris/Illumos are quite happy to share code (e.g. stuff like dtrace and ZFS), and they have different licenses. The BSDs also share quite a bit among themselves (which mostly doesn't involve differing licenses, though there are multiple versions of the BSD license).

Even ignoring the licensing though, many Linux folks definitely seem to have NIH syndrome. They frequently seem to want to come up with their own solutions when existing solutions would work, and they often even completely ignore what's been done before when implementing their own solutions - something which Bryan Cantrill likes to complain about (e.g. in this interview he rants about how broken Linux's e-poll is when the Linux folks could have learned from what the Solaris, BSD, _and_ Windows guys did before them, but they didn't https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l6XQUciI-Sc&t=57m ).

So, I'd say that both the BSD and Linux camps have problems with NIH - and I generally expect top notch programmers to tend to prefer to write their own stuff - but I get the impression that the Linux folks have a much stronger tendency to insist on writing their own stuff than the BSDs do. And when the BSD folks write their own stuff, they seem to be more likely to pay attention to what was already done by others than the Linux folks seem to be.

Reply Score: 2

phoenix Member since:
2005-07-11

And it's really only GPL3 code that is being avoided, and GPL2 code that has been "frozen" because later versions are GPL3 that is being actively removed.

There's plenty of GPL2 code shipped with FreeBSD releases.

Reply Score: 2

pfgbsd Member since:
2011-03-12

And it's really only GPL3 code that is being avoided, and GPL2 code that has been "frozen" because later versions are GPL3 that is being actively removed.


TBH, with the exception of GCC/binutils, most of the GNU packages haven't received much development in years and the only change to justify version bumps have been the license change or security vulnerabilities. Stuff like GNU diff, patch, grep, gawk, sed and even bash is pretty much dead for some years now.

There's plenty of GPL2 code shipped with FreeBSD releases.


Not plenty: GPL code in FreeBSD's base is decreasing rapidly and it is likely to disappear completely for FreeBSD 12.

For those of you wondering, yes the GPLv3 is being avoided on purpose, but anything that is being shipped under GPLv2 will remain until a suitable replacement is found.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: But why would you use it?
by cade on Wed 12th Oct 2016 07:31 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: But why would you use it? "
cade Member since:
2009-02-28

You are missing my point.

Some background ....

There are the GPL-like licenses which there are very few of
and
there are the {MIT/X11, BSD, CDDL, Boost, zlib/libpng, etc.}-like licenses which there are far more of.

These are just two broad groups I have invented to facilitate the reasoning below.

The former group are of the "viral"/obligatory type while the latter are of the {uber-free, permissive} type; the LGPL-type licences are in between.

Legally, the FreeBSD licensing-stance is compatible with the latter group and not compatible with the former (GPL-type) group.

FreeBSD and similarly licensed OSes would be able to legally incorporate raw/modified source code, having a broad range of source code licensing types, into an OS-related subsystem. This cannot be said for Linux because the "viral"/communistic/obligatory nature of the GPL is not compatible with most/many open source licenses.

Hypothesizing that the basis for the "NIH psychology" is mainly due to an incompatible licence making it illegal to merge foreign differently-licensed source code, then it's obvious that OSes with Linux-like (i.e. GPL-like) licensing will have a close relation with "NIH"; GPL at "war" with most open source licences on the planet and probably on other
planets too :-) .

I would not imply FreeBSD, and other similarly licensed OSes, avoiding the GPL-like licensed source code as "NIH" behaviour since there are many more alternate-licensed source codes that FreeBSD/etc. can optionally access/evaluate and potentially incorporate into an OS-related subsystem.

The GPL/GNU/Linux combination is not the be-all-end-all, unless if someone believes this "combination" represents a somewhat "Microsoft" of the open source world and that it's an "intellectual crime" to ignore this "combination" ... then that's another matter for another day to discuss.

Reply Score: 1

kwan_e Member since:
2007-02-18

I would not imply FreeBSD, and other similarly licensed OSes, avoiding the GPL-like licensed source code as "NIH" behaviour since there are many more alternate-licensed source codes that FreeBSD/etc. can optionally access/evaluate and potentially incorporate into an OS-related subsystem.


Of course you wouldn't imply it because you've started out with the foregone conclusion that isn't. From a neutral point of view, FreeBSD has gone to more effort getting rid of GPL software - because of the GPL - than Linux has gotten rid of BSD - because of the BSD. That's a simple fact.

So the NIH attitude that stems from licence incompatibility is clearly with the BSD side.

There are other reasons why Linux has NIH which are nothing to do with licence. A lot of it is simply due to the architecture being different from the BSDs, as most of you have agreed on, and that's changing at a faster rate than the BSDs. To keep compatibility with itself, it may as well create it's own version of tools that work better with itself than merely porting it.

Furthermore, when some developer "stole" some BSD code and put it into a GPL driver (I believe it was for a wireless driver), there was furore coming from the BSD camp about GPL stealing BSD code. You'd think people with such ideological ideas about freedom (ie freedom must have no limits) would welcome such a move.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: But why would you use it?
by grat on Wed 12th Oct 2016 12:54 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: But why would you use it? "
grat Member since:
2006-02-02

A standard tactic for trolling Stallman used to be pointing out that since FreeBSD had more GNU utilities in the OS than the typical Linux distro, perhaps it should be GNU/FreeBSD.

For those who don't remember, Stallman used to (and may still) insist that people call Linux GNU/Linux.

Reply Score: 2

RE: But why would you use it?
by FlyingJester on Tue 11th Oct 2016 21:20 UTC in reply to "But why would you use it? "
FlyingJester Member since:
2016-05-11

It's ahead in filesystems, network security, and its jails are not really worse than Linux containers, just different.

Additionally, for servers it can be much nicer since it tends to have a much smoother update cycle, and there are fewer large, breaking changes than in Linux.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: But why would you use it?
by grat on Wed 12th Oct 2016 12:55 UTC in reply to "RE: But why would you use it? "
grat Member since:
2006-02-02

I would say the FreeBSD jails are ahead of the Linux containers, since a lot of additional code had to be bolted into the kernel to support the containers, and jails have typically "just worked" for years.

Reply Score: 2

Kalessin Member since:
2007-01-18

From a security standpoint, FreeBSD's jails and Solaris/Illumos' zones are clearly superior to Linux's containers. They were built specifically with security in mind, and it's a core principle of how they function, whereas with Linux containers, the security is much more tacked on, and they've had some serious bugs as a result of that.

Reply Score: 2

RE: But why would you use it?
by ggeldenhuys on Thu 13th Oct 2016 11:39 UTC in reply to "But why would you use it? "
ggeldenhuys Member since:
2006-11-13

Simply because it is way more stable than any Linux distro I've every tried (I started with Linux back in 1995). I also like the strict separation between base operating system and user installed stuff. Linux mixes everything in the file system hierarchy, which is a real pain when it comes to OS (base system) upgrades. I also much prefer the FreeBSD Ports system and that prevents all the dependency hell I experienced with DEB and RPM packages. Then there is ZFS - I just can't live without that, it is absolutely awesome! As for multimedia... my sound works perfectly, I use nNIDIA drivers which works perfectly for driving my graphics card (OpenGL included). My network cards and wifi works perfectly. I get better networking performance under FreeBSD than I did under Linux. I have multiple VM servers running headless FreeBSD for years.

As a software developer, I also got very annoyed that with every Linux distro release, they chop and change underlying sub-systems. How many sound servers has Linux already had? I lost count!!

Reply Score: 2

RE: But why would you use it?
by Kalessin on Thu 13th Oct 2016 20:37 UTC in reply to "But why would you use it? "
Kalessin Member since:
2007-01-18

The main reason that I use FreeBSD is ZFS. It's so much better than any other file system that the rest seem downright primitive, and it's just plain frustrating to have to deal with anything else. I've tried using ZFS with Linux, but it's not properly integrated into Linux like it is with FreeBSD (making stuff like updating hell on Linux, since you risk not being able to mount your filesystem), and Linux's ZFS implementation is missing features that FreeBSD's has, making using ZFS with Linux (especially for the root filesystem) way more of a pain than it is with FreeBSD.

Most programs that run on Linux run on FreeBSD, and for the most part, FreeBSD has comparable driver support (though in some cases, it is behind). So, for many people, there wouldn't be much difference between running FreeBSD and Linux. But not everything that runs on Linux runs on FreeBSD (e.g. Steam), so you sometimes lose out on stuff using FreeBSD instead of Linux. However, most things work on both, and the fact that FreeBSD properly and fully supports ZFS is a killer feature.

Also, as a developer, I think that FreeBSD has a superior development model and that it results in higher quality software, but both FreeBSD and Linux work well enough that most folks wouldn't notice the difference.

Reply Score: 2

Drumhellar Member since:
2005-07-12

But not everything that runs on Linux runs on FreeBSD (e.g. Steam)


Just to add, Steam apparently runs pretty well on FreeBSD with the Linux emulation.

https://www.phoronix.com/scan.php?page=news_item&px=Steam-On-FreeBSD

EDIT: Comment says sound is an issue, as in not working, so, YMMV, but I remember 10 years ago Unreal Tournament 2004 running far, far better on FreeBSD than on Linux - like, 50% faster. Of course, Epic Games, while they didn't port Unreal to FreeBSD natively, considered any bugs resulting from the Linux emulation to be bugs in Unreal.

Edited 2016-10-15 23:52 UTC

Reply Score: 2