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FreeBSD needs some additional features like native Flash. I don't like to execute anything with Linux compatibility layer. It's not the same as on the real thing. Once upon a time I was a dedicated FreeBSD enthusiast, but I had to change my interests because of a requirement to develop some Java-based solutions. I switched myself to Linux because of that - and no... Not to Gentoo, Debian or Ubuntu. I was always using Slackware (I don't see troubles in working with simple .tgz packages with tools which are not providing automatic package dependency resolution, as long as I'm working on my workstation or development server), so my decision was really simple. I'm now using Slackware 12.2 without any problems having Java and NetBeans, Flash, VirtualBox... It's nice and clean set of tools. I prefer to spend some time to select my tools and then I'll use them for a long time. That's why Slackware suits my needs. There is also something I like in *BSD systems in Slackware - simplicity, clean structure, this feeling that you're managing your workspace in 100%. Don't get me wrong, I'm ready to come back to FreeBSD (I would even like to), but my list of required additional features are:
- native Flash
- a good virtualization solution (QEMU is not an option) like VirtualBox (this is my personal choice over VMWare, which I consider to be a kind of bloatware now)
- I know that Java support in FreeBSD looks much better now than a few years ago, but I plan to give up Java right now, so this is not as much important for me, like during the time of my "switch to Slackware" decision.
Without these features I can recommend (at least to myself) FreeBSD to be installed on web or database servers etc. I cannot use such system on my workstation.
The main question is - how we can get these features made for FreeBSD as probably a lot of people used, are using or would like to use FreeBSD as their main operating system on their workstations?
And I would also like to ask about some other things.
1) Please tell me, why I've found OpenBSD very usable and nice (I like this system very much in fact) on my routers? I don't need any Java, Flash, VirtualBox etc. in OpenBSD. It's excellent as it is right now. I even prefer OpenBSD over FreeBSD in this field. Hmm... A kind o stereotype. I can't explain this to myself to be honest ;-) I just see OpenBSD suits better here.
2) Why I cannot fall in love with NetBSD, although I've tried several times. Each time I try I see this is great piece of work. I can even install new version and... I have enough. I remember my disappointment on Sushi - I thought it would be nice tool like old-good Smitty in AIX, but it was not - it was hanging each time I was trying to configure network adapter (it was a few years ago). Then... I skipped Sushi. As far as I know they also decided to skip the development of Sushi. Yet, it has some potential.
3) Should I give a try to NetBSD once again and is the latest 5.0 version as scalable and efficient as they showed in their marketing presentation, showing us comparison to other systems like FreeBSD and Fedora Linux? If yes, it has a lot of chances to be my operating system of choice to host MySQL database.
Thanks in advance for all your answers, suggestions and possible discussion to my - so long - post here.
Yes. It's interesting news, but please note, that it's still in development phase. On my Slackware box I have working version of VirtualBox, stable one, same on my MS Windows workstation. In case of FreeBSD we still have development works, moreover, these works are done by developers (respect to them) in their spare time. So we will have to wait some more time. During that time I'll not come back to FreeBSD on my desktop for sure. I'll rather stuck with Slackware for some more time (actually I'm doing this all the time since I discovered Slackware back in the 90s. This is my best GNU/Linux distro in fact).
Please see this statements cited from the URL presented in your reply:
Even though the basic functions are working there are still a lot of
things to do and we do not recommend to use it on production machines.
Furthermore Sun does not officially support FreeBSD yet. This is a
port done by developers in their free time. However if you are a developer or want to test it you can checkout the latest code and build
VirtualBox yourself. A list of working and unimplemented features and
known bugs is below.
- Software virtualization
- The VirtualBox QT4 frontend
- Sound through OSS
- NAT networking
- Bridged and host only networking (the required kernel drivers are
- OpenGL support
- Host CD/DVD access
- Host serial support
- things I forgot
So, it's still far behind MS Windows or GNU/Linux but there is a big progress and there is a hope I'll use FreeBSD once again (not on a server but as a main OS for development and usual work). Of course, once again, BIG respect for developers spending their freetime on this project. It's VERY important in my opinion to have VirtualBox on FreeBSD - and we are another step closer to have native, stable port of this great virtualization solution.
So, I'll watch the progress and wait. Edited 2009-05-05 19:41 UTC