Linked by Thom Holwerda on Fri 12th May 2006 20:31 UTC, submitted by Joel Dahl
FreeBSD Linux may soon have a stronger open-source competitor on the desktop if FreeBSD's plans come to fruition. FreeBSD developer Scott Long told ZDNet UK on Thursday that the operating system, descended from the Unix derivative BSD, is "quickly approaching" feature parity with Linux. "Lots of work is going on to make FreeBSD more friendly on the desktop," Long said. "Within the year, we expect to have, or be near, parity with Linux."
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RE: This is good news
by zambizzi on Fri 12th May 2006 22:12 UTC in reply to "This is good news"
zambizzi
Member since:
2006-04-23

More control? How so? I could start my own distro tomorrow if I wanted to...and make it do whatever I have the ability or desire to do.

Yeah, it'd be great to have ports-like package-management...like uhm...Portage in Gentoo?

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE[2]: This is good news
by paul.michael.bauer on Fri 12th May 2006 23:47 in reply to "RE: This is good news"
paul.michael.bauer Member since:
2005-07-06

You are right that there are no technical limitations to what you can do with Linux.

However, FreeBSD has recognition as a centralized effort. If the FreeBSD peeps decide to over-haul a major sub-system and take the project in a new direction, they can (see SMPng) and the whole community goes along for the ride. You or I could not just spin off our own 'flavor' and call it FreeBSD (see DragonFlyBSD).

The Gentoo project has made this great Portage system, but they can't insist that Linux as a whole will follow their vision (apt, rpm, tar.gz, etc.).

The sort of dominance the FreeBSD developers have over their entire project (soup to nuts) can't be duplicated by either the Linux community or a specific distriution because Linux and FreeBSD are too different political animals entirely.

Reply Parent Score: 4

RE[3]: This is good news
by hobgoblin on Sat 13th May 2006 00:52 in reply to "RE[2]: This is good news"
hobgoblin Member since:
2005-07-06

nor can you take the linux kernel, add some stuff and call it the pmb kernel...

allso, if you make a change to the linux kernel. and then post the change up on the net, like should be doing if you allso release the alterd kernel, others can see this, maybe add more to it. and if they realy like it, fold it into the linux main source.

not with the BSD's there is all this duplicate effort because they dont like what the others are doing because it breaks with the "spirit" of the BSD. and therefor they spin of a off-shot.

sure it helps to be one big gorilla if you want to get control over the "market". but in the end, the lowest common denominator is the source. as long as the source is out there, it can be worked on and made to work under just about any distro.

no need to demand a single packaging system or anything like that. grab the source, work the source, compile the source. and if you cant, maybe someone can help you?

thats one of the interesting things about gobolinux. i can install source via a recipie, i can install a premade binary, and they can live together. hell i can have the dependencys of a binary package satisfied by a source recipie that have the source it needs automaticaly downloaded from the developers website.

and it uses the filesystem as the basis for its package manager. if i want to clean out a package i only need to delete the directory its in under /programs ;)

ok, so the filesystem is a bit oddball compared to the more ortodox distros, but i kinda like it ;)

and still i can pull down the latest kernel and have it compiled. heh, there is even a recipie for the nvidia drivers.

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE[3]: This is good news
by zambizzi on Sat 13th May 2006 02:15 in reply to "RE[2]: This is good news"
zambizzi Member since:
2006-04-23

I can't comment on the BSDs as it's not a subject I'm at all educated on, I can only speak for Linux which I've been using successfully for years.

You may be correct, however, the market (users & corporate sponsors) have ultimately made their choice, for now. Surely the majority of free *nix offshoots has made a choice and it's pretty clear that the BSDs just aren't getting the attention Linux and it's many thriving distros are getting by personal users and professionals.

Most techies who are interested in alternatives to Windows or Unix would, at this point, not see as much of an advantage using a BSD as they would using Linux just due to the simple fact that there are more people out there to support them in the Linux community.

I'm not saying I'd never be interested in a BSD flavor myself...I'm interested in everything...but Gentoo gives me all of the power and I see no advantage to using a BSD at this point. Gentoo's community has been amazing and is growing fairly rapidly, even today where we now have Ubuntu and a Novell-sponsored SuSE.

In closing...the fact that the BSD "leaders" can swiftly make an abrupt change w/o the permission of its many participants isn't necessarily an advantage. If there were a technical (or social) advantage there I think we would clearly see it rise above. Perhaps we will someday?

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[2]: This is good news
by backdoc on Sat 13th May 2006 02:38 in reply to "RE: This is good news"
backdoc Member since:
2006-01-14

What he meant is that since there is only one FreeBSD, if you Google for help on FreeBSD, the results are always relevant. If you search for help on Linux, you might get SUSE help, Ubuntu help or whatever. Sometimes it applies to your problem, and sometimes it doesn't.

Also, FreeBSD can focus on FreeBSD specific documentation. They are in complete control of everything from start to finish.

Reply Parent Score: 5

RE[3]: This is good news
by zambizzi on Sat 13th May 2006 03:14 in reply to "RE[2]: This is good news"
zambizzi Member since:
2006-04-23

This is exactly how each distro functions as well...each consisting of their own respective communities w/ relevant documentation, forums, mailing lists, etc.

However, the difference is, if you don't care for the community of one distro you have hundreds to choose from and experiment with. This level of competition forces a distro to stay relevant or drop out of the race.

I believe this "open market" environment w/ Linux distros today is what is pushing it forward so quickly and gaining it respect and corporate sponsorship. That, of course, combined with excellent engineering, dedicated programmers, and whordes of techies out there willing to experiment to help improve the quality.

In the BSD space there isn't nearly as much adoption or expansion. The momentum in BSD currently just cannot compare.

Reply Parent Score: 0