Linked by Nathan Mace on Thu 31st Jan 2002 18:45 UTC
FreeBSD By now, anyone who is even remotely related to an IT-type position has heard about Linux, and has most likely used it, if only to see what all the hype is about. However, GNU/Linux is not the only "free" Unix type OS available. FreeBSD and its cousins, NetBSD and OpenBSD are all offshoots of BSD UNIX, a commercial UNIX also known as Berkeley Software Distribution. This article will help you learn more about FreeBSD, its differences from Linux, and it will ease a potential migration process.
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Computer Science Student Opionion
by Russell Jackson on Sun 10th Feb 2002 01:45 UTC

Being an experienced systems administrator for both freebsd and gnu/linux, I would say that freebsd is the "cleaner" system. By clean I mean that everything is more organized and clear cut. Everything in freebsd is put where you would expect it. On the other hand, gnu/linux systems are comprised of bits and pieces that have been bundled together in a some what organized manner.

I'm not claiming either are better than the other, I just believe that freebsd is better suited for a production enviroment where one depends on things working in a sane and predictable way. On the other hand, I have found linux better suited for desktop use purely as a result of binary only released software. The nVidia board drivers, for instance, fall into this category as well as the macromedia flash plug-in for netscape/mozilla.

When it comes to software development, I have also found that freebsd comes into it's own. I have had never ending problems with libraries/headers while trying to program under gnu/linux while having much less trouble under freebsd. Again, this is a result of the more integrated whole that is freebsd instead of the piece meal mess that is gnu/linux.

Most of these arguments I have read on this article seem to be based on incorrect or trivial matters. One I read claimed that freebsd uses an "ancient" tcp/ip stack. While freebsd has it's roots in the traditional BSD UNIX, much of freebsd is new code. It has little in common with the old BSD UNIX system. There are others, but I'm not going to address all of them as I'm sure no one wants to read a ten page argument.

The bottom line is, each system has it's use. Use it for that purpose and stop turning computer operating systems into a reason for religion.