Linked by Thom Holwerda on Thu 24th Apr 2014 23:06 UTC, submitted by sheokand
PC-BSD

The PC-BSD project is developing its own desktop environment from scratch! The ultimate plan is for Lumina to become a full-featured, open-source desktop environment that may ultimately replace KDE as its default desktop environment.

A Phoronix reader, Ryan Bram, wrote in to share word on this new desktop environment being developed by the PC-BSD crew, the popular desktop-focused derivative of FreeBSD. This new desktop is called Lumina and is being developed as a home-grown desktop environment catered toward this BSD operating system.

While it's obviously cool, I wonder if it's a wise idea to undertake such a huge endeavour. I honestly doubt PC-BSD has the developers, testers, and users required for creating, maintaining, and improving an entire desktop environment.

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Morgan
Member since:
2005-06-29

What's holding back Linux or BSD isn't the desktop environment (I haven't heard anyone complain about the interface).


Umm, that's exactly what you did, in two out of four talking points:

2) All DE's seem to be missing some basic but common GUI based Setting (Yast comes close though, but OpenSUSE, has some other issues).
3) There seems to be serious performance issues with most DE's, distros and gaming (Gnome 3 is the only modern DE I could find at the moment, which works at native frame-rate speeds)



Anyway, I'm not saying you're wrong, especially on your third point; I find OpenBox to be the most usable WM by far, and it's one of the most basic. Even on my beast of a workstation, Gnome and KDE are slow, and the latter is just way too complicated for my taste. But that's all personal issues.

Objectively speaking (as much as is possible on a subject like this) I think it makes sense for a BSD provider to roll their own DE that isn't a GNU/Linux port. A native DE that is licensed under BSD rather than GNU GPL, and developed by a BSD team, would be a better fit from both technical and philosophical standpoints.

Reply Parent Score: 4

Auzy Member since:
2008-01-20

What I meant was the interface layout, the actual Design, since from a user perspective, that would be the main reason why you would start a new project.

We have a history of constantly making major changes to the existing GUI's, but then major options go missing in the major updates (which is why its never 100%).

Open source developers can choose to do what they want, but, I'd be hesitant to donate to PC-BSD, if they don't choose to instead improve existing solutions. This is simply more fragmentation, which will be a subset of existing solutions (rather than fixing the remaining problems with the existing ones)...

Edited 2014-04-25 03:31 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 3

Morgan Member since:
2005-06-29

I think it's perfectly reasonable for a BSD team to develop a BSD project instead of borrowing GNU projects. Whether it's the WM/DE or another component, I think BSD in general shouldn't be so dependent on GNU projects. I'm happy that the two ecosystems do get along so well, and can share resources, but there's absolutely nothing wrong with "rolling your own" if you feel it's a logical alternative.

But that's just my take, and not a very popular one among GNU fans, as I've found over the years.

Reply Parent Score: 3

demetrioussharpe Member since:
2009-01-09

Open source developers can choose to do what they want, but, I'd be hesitant to donate to PC-BSD, if they don't choose to instead improve existing solutions. This is simply more fragmentation, which will be a subset of existing solutions (rather than fixing the remaining problems with the existing ones)...


If you've never tried to port Linux-centric code over the BSD, then you have no idea how incredibly ridiculous the process is. It's by far much easier to develop a solution (from scratch) that's tailored for the BSD's, than it is to port something from Linux & try to force it to fit. The best thing about it is that it'd only have to be developed once for the BSDs. It's easy to port system software between the BSDs. Why should they be forced to stick with Linux solutions? The BSD's had their community before Linux even existed; so, it's about time the BSDs go back to developing solutions for themselves. This little sharing experiment has run it's course. I think a lot of people have forgotten that Linux & the BSDs are no more tied to each other than AIX & Solaris are -the BSDs would survive just fine without sharing with Linux. I wonder what a BSD solution to replace the whole X stack would look like...

Reply Parent Score: 2