Linked by snydeq on Tue 8th Nov 2011 01:29 UTC
BSD and Darwin derivatives Deep End's Paul Venezia wonders why more folks aren't using FreeBSD on the desktop. 'There used to be a saying -- at least I've said it many times -- that my workstations run Linux, my servers run FreeBSD. Sure, it's quicker to build a Linux box, do a "yum install x y z" and toss it out into the wild as a fully functional server, but the extra time required to really get a FreeBSD box tuned will come back in spades through performance and stability metrics. You'll get more out of the hardware, be that virtual or physical, than you will on a generic Linux binary installation.'
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RE: I agree, 10 years ago.
by rycamor on Tue 8th Nov 2011 03:02 UTC in reply to "I agree, 10 years ago."
rycamor
Member since:
2005-07-18

Hmm... I have found that KDE, for example, works much more stably on FreeBSD than on Linux. I've been using FreeBSD as a desktop/workstation since 2003 and the ONLY complaints I have are in the area of hardware support, which is unfortunately mostly out of FreeBSD's hands, due to proprietary hardware drivers for video and wireless cards.

However, I personally have no need of a 3D rotating desktop, nor do I need my *nix desktop to be a gaming station (alternate boot to Windows for that). What I *do* need is a stable OS that I can leave running for weeks at a time without worrying about malware or hack attacks, and that supports a broad range of tools for handling information. Nothing beats FreeBSD as a power workstation.

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE[2]: I agree, 10 years ago.
by TechGeek on Tue 8th Nov 2011 03:12 in reply to "RE: I agree, 10 years ago."
TechGeek Member since:
2006-01-14

I respect your right to use FreeBSD, but what tools are you using that don't exist on Linux? I think for most people, they want what you want, but they also want the 3D and cool games and all the extras.

Reply Parent Score: 2

edogawaconan Member since:
2006-10-10

I respect your right to use Linux, but what tools are you using that don't exist on FreeBSD? I think for most people, they want what you want, and if they also want the 3D and cool games and all the extras, they can use nvidia cards which are fully supported in FreeBSD.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[3]: I agree, 10 years ago.
by rycamor on Tue 8th Nov 2011 13:58 in reply to "RE[2]: I agree, 10 years ago."
rycamor Member since:
2005-07-18

I respect your right to use FreeBSD, but what tools are you using that don't exist on Linux? I think for most people, they want what you want, but they also want the 3D and cool games and all the extras.


Oh, of course Linux supports all the same tools FreeBSD does, but doesn't do so nearly as conveniently for me. The ports systems is a great balance between bleeding-edge and older/stable. A tool like Yum in Fedora, for example, gets you in all kinds of trouble if you want to make some of your packages bleeding-edge, some custom-compiled, and some stable. Also, Linux doesn't have anything like FreeBSD jail, which makes for very easy experimentation and branching without departing from your base system.

More importantly for me, I hate hate hate the Linux system layout. FreeBSD adheres to hier very carefully and predictably, while Linux tends to just chuck everything inside /usr. Networking and other rc files are extremely simple and logically organized, while Linux configuration is a mess. Once I got used to the sanity that is BSD, I got more and more frustrated with Linux. I manage quite a few Linux servers on my job, so have had to learn all the ins and outs of RHEL and CentOS. I still love going back to the Zen that is BSD for my home system.

As for the 3D desktop and games, they are absolutely doable in FreeBSD if you can get the hardware drivers. Nvidia used to do a good job of serving the BSD community, but I don't know if they've kept up recently. I just haven't cared to bother with that stuff for the past few iterations of my workstation. Honestly the novelty wears off and what I am left wanting is a desktop that gets me my applications as quickly as possible with minimum fuss. Windowmaker is my WM of choice, although I use many of the KDE apps, due to their great integration of virtual filesystems and networking.

Reply Parent Score: 3

Soulbender Member since:
2005-08-18

but they also want the 3D and cool games and all the extras.


Most people use Windows or a console for gaming, not Linux. The only people who use Linux for gaming are Linux geeks. There really aren't enough games with Linux support for Joe User to consider it a gaming platform.
As for why BSD isn't "big" on the desktop, well, not everyone must have as a goal to dethrone Windows and that hasn't worked out so great for Linux anyway. Linux may be bigger than BSD's on the desktop but it hasn't even dented Windows dominance. Ironically the one to dent Windows dominance a little is OSX and it is more BSD than Linux.

Reply Parent Score: 2