Linked by Thom Holwerda on Fri 10th Apr 2009 15:43 UTC, submitted by Alexander Yerenkow
PC-BSD PC-BSD, the desktop-oriented FreeBSD variant, has released version 7.1, dubbed Galileo. In case you don't know, PC-BSD is a FreeBSD distribution with lots of customisations focussed on the desktop user. Its most defining features is the Push Button Installer, a self-contained package format with handy installers/uninstallers. PC-BSD 7.1 comes loaded with changes and updates.
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RE[3]: Comment by Stephen!
by Doc Pain on Fri 10th Apr 2009 20:50 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by Stephen!"
Doc Pain
Member since:
2006-10-08

What is so great about PBI's?
In Arch Linux, for example, if I want something I just type:
pacman -S something
What is so difficult about that, except that it's less similar to the way Windows and MacOS do it?


In a standard FreeBSD environment, you usually type

pkg_add -r something

to install from a precompiled package, or, for example,

portinstall category/thing

if you wish to compile yourself. This will retrieve dependencies needed.

The goal of PBI is that the package already contains the dependencies.

The fact that PBIs are usually obtained using a web browser for first manually downloading them onto the hard disk and then executing them in order to start the installation is, in my opinion, a means to make "Windows" users feel comfortable. They're usually not used to a central means of searching, installing, deinstalling and upgrading software - that's what FreeBSD has its Ports Collection for. No, they know how to search for software on the web, using search engines and then downloading things from web pages. So PC-BSD allows them to keep it their way while installing a UNIX application, even involving things like "yes, ok, next, next, next, finish" to occupy you with activity during the installation that forces you to be present at the machine. :-)

PBIs could be offered for third party software by different vendors, that wouldn't be a problem because the tools to create PBI files are free. PC-BSD has its own "PBI shop" where you can search for things and download them.

It's worth mentioning that their PBI directory doesn√Ąt cover all the software that's available via Ports or packages, for example teTeX. But those who want LaTeX on their machine, instead of using KOffice, are usually smart enough to "pkg_add -r teTeX", which is again no problem even if you're using PC-BSD.

(I'm not trying to bash here, I really don't understand it, please explain...)


PC-BSD offers what most "Windows" users - who I think is the main target audience - are familiar with. And yes, I really think downloading software from the web and then manually installing it is old fashioned. :-)

Edited 2009-04-10 20:53 UTC

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