Linked by Thom Holwerda on Wed 12th Mar 2008 18:14 UTC, submitted by Flatland_Spider
PC-BSD PC-BSD 1.5 has been released. "System Updater tool: keeps system & PBIs up to date; sound detection program! Uses XML backend to identify and load modules; amd64 build of 1.5, including PBIs that are on our auto-build server; PBI icon preview library, now a PBI file shows the embedded icon on your desktop, not the generic 'PBI' format icon; Xorg 7.3; KDE 3.5.8; FreeBSD 6.3 Release."
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A few comments after a short time of use
by Doc Pain on Thu 13th Mar 2008 22:29 UTC
Doc Pain
Member since:
2006-10-08

If somebody is interested, I'd like to share my first impressions of PC-BSD 1.5, which I have installed on a testing machine (AMD Athlon 1200 MHz, 256 MB RAM, S3 GPU, VIA chipcrap, erm, chipset).

Attention, complaining starts in ... three ... two ... one ... zero. =^_^=

The installation process was easy and didn't require much interaction. After first selecting "german" as language, everything went german. While installing, no overall process indicator was shown, just one for the package actually being installed, combined with an output of the processed file names. A progress bar for the entire installation set would have been good. There's enough space for it, which is instead covered by "PC-BSD advertising". At least, the advertising messages are in german, too, but sadly with mistakes.

For those who don't already know: I'm very picky about correct german translation and punctuation. KDE has never been good enough for me in these regards, so I always decided to use english as the native language of all the programs instead a sloppy translation.

Examples: "Entwickler-Freundliche Plattform" should be "entwicklerfreundliche Plattform" (concatenated adjective involving a noun). "Geniessen Sie Ihre Musik." shoud be "Genießen" (ss that cannot be devided are set to ligature ß). Furthermore, many commata were missing.

But don't mind. Except me, nobody in Germany will notice this. :-)

The progress status "setting up kernel" has not been translated. Hey, this confuses Germans! :-)

After installation succeeded, system and KDE startup were working without problems, sound worked out of the box. Regarding the GPU, I was requested to confirm the autodetection, wich worked, too ("savage" driver). If you selected a wrong driver, the respective error message was in english, too, not in german, as it should be.

Additional installation of "freaky software" via pkg_add worked. Neccessary essentially: pkg_add -r mc.

Allthough my test setting is not a very fast system, KDE is usable and responsive, allthough you have to wait for the applications to start, but this doesn't block your system. Music CDs are identified correctly (CDDB) and played via Amarok, but it takes you three clicks though the Settings and another doubleclick to start CD playback. MP3 and OGG playback are realized via Amarok, works, but I'd prefer a much more simple solution like xmms where you find your playing controls at the first sight. AVI and MPEG videos are played via Kaffeine without problems, allthough fullscreen and motion control are not as easy and obvious as in MPlayer, which one plays WMV by default. I'm glad KMplayer is in german now. Good improvement!

And suddenly an error, frightening the average german user: "aRts: sound server fatal error, cpu overloaded, aborting" - hey, what's this?! First, why is it not in german, and furthermore, CPU overload? Hmm...

Then I played with varous digital cameras. No one of them (Canon S3, Logitech webcam, AEG Snap, HP Photosmart, Kodak Easyshare) did do anything. Note: All of them usually work on FreeBSD.

And more confusing stuff: KWord and Krita are still in english. The same for Opera (my favourite browser). Printing works without problems (HP Laserjet 4000-D), locally and via LAN.

I've used a three button standard USB mouse. The middle mouse button did work as a paste button when clicked, but it didn't emulare the mouse wheel when pressed and moved vertically.

The csh lacks nice preconfiguration, such as

set promptchars = "%#"
set prompt = "%n@%m:%~%# "
set autolist

that could be integrated into /etc/csh.cshrc.

Then I portscanned the running system: Open ports were 137/udp (netbios-ns), 138/udp (netbios-dgm), 139/tcp (netbios-ssn) and 445/tcp (microsoft-ds). This looks to me as the system would serve as a Samba server? (I don't know exacly what these ports could be needed for and why they are open by default, maybe it has something to do with MICROS~1 networking, it keeps sending "local master announcement" datagrams to *.255.) Networking stuff like DHCP and NTP did work excellent. Another change I noticed: The system does not send 228 bye IP packets to 0.0.0.0 anymore like PC-BSD 1.3 (or 1.4?) did.

Finally, I didn't find a way to get rid of this ugly white mouse pointer. (I need to add that I'm not a daily KDE user, so it maybe that it's simple, I just don't find the corresponding setting.) And the default desktop looks to me like a mix of "XP"'s colours and "Vista"'s control elements... :-)

And don't take my complaining to seriously. :-) PC-BSD 1.5 is a promising release which offers a BSD based system with an acceptable preconfiguration and preinstallation, fitting the needs of the average home user. I'm inpressed, and I will surely give the CDs to others.

Reply Score: 6