“The NetBSD-Office Project is an approach to provide NetBSD users a common, preconfigured and ready to use Office Environment. The installation CDROM is a modified NetBSD 2.0 installation CD-ROM, which installs the Operating System and a set of preselected third party programs in one step, including preconfiguration for an easy startup. Or short: install – reboot – start using KDE.” A new release with KDE 3.4.1 as well as screenshots is at the side project’s website.
New NetBSD-Office Released
Submitted by Peter Bui 2005-06-28 NetBSD 27 Comments
I would have preferred GNOME, but it isn’t my project. I use NetBSD and it is difficult to install it correctly, beyond most Linux distributions. I think it is a great idea in general for there to be a desktop ‘distribution’ of NetBSD as there are for Linux, but with few or no variations on the core of the system.
Now, I would be REALLY impressed if it was a LiveCD with all that stuff AND installable. (I was a fan of Morphix during my Linux days.) That could probably be done with a smaller, simpler system, e.g. XFCE4 | IceWM | GNUStep, maybe just AbiWord instead of OpenOffice, and some others. That would delight me.
I think my only criticism of the system is the memory requirement, and I don’t know if 256 MB is really honest or not. I know that a really nice desktop system can be built on way less.
This doesn’t make sense to me… I would rather see this as a package in pkgsrc/ rather than a seperate project all together. As a seperate project you need to track the entire source tree for NetBSD and KDE, correct?
I would also like gnome instead. kde is good, it is just my preference. I have noticed that kde is easier to port to NetBSD than gnome. With every release of NetBSD, there always comes a packages iso with some kde stuff, but no gnome. Is it a sign of gnome being too linux-dependent? or is it a sign of gnome having so many dependencies that it is dificult too have them all solved by the time of NetBSD releases? I would also like to see more apps like gnumeric and abiword instead of OpenOffice in a gnome based NeBSD, CD. Anyways, good to see someone thinking of making NetBSD more desktop friendly.
Maybe my assumptions are incorrect, but I had assumed that the installation CD is identical to the normal NetBSD installation CD, except that it installs a lot of extra packages, and there are some random extra goodies. Check the screenshots and installation instructions. So, all of the sources and binaries would come from pkgsrc, but there is a lot more software installed by default.
That’s how I assume it works. I could be wrong.
I think this efford would be better put in a simple iso full of these kde packages and the proper configuration post install. No need to mantain a separated entire NetBSD system.
Regarding your question about gnome, I’m not a part of the project but I think it’s a safe assumption that it has been ruled out because it’s a mess to package. Remember that Pat Volkerding (Slackware) recently dropped it for this very reason.
I haven’t tried packaging it from source for a long time now, but I remember from my last attempt that there were literally hundreds of packages with quite complicated inter-dependencies to do for even a basic gnome.. Why waste that amount of time for something imo inferior when building KDE from source is (comparatively) a breeze? I think we’ll see more of this unless they get their act together.
So NetBSD-Office is like what PC-BSD is to FreeBSD. Nice it’s good to know that people are working on BSD
as a recent convert to linux from windows, imma hafta check this out. only a few short yrs ago i didnt even know that windows was an OS. let aloan the fact that there was other things u could use besides windows. so now i try to atleast check out everything i run across.. (my personal favorite being http://www.menuetos.org/)
I like gnome, but I see it is really a mess to package. I am using the kde that comes in the NetBSD 2.0 with packages iso from the NetBSD ftp. It lacks many packages like kde graphics (can´t read pdf files with a proper kde app or take any screens), koffice, etc. But other than that, it works lightning fast in NetBSD, it works so well despite being so minimal that I don´t think I am going back to linux.
My hope then is for the next release of NetBSD they manage to put an iso with more kde apps in it.
It seems kde goes better with the NetBSD filosophy of doing things cleanly than gnome so give me an iso full of kde apps with every NetBSD release and I will be done.
“Regarding your question about gnome, I’m not a part of the project but I think it’s a safe assumption that it has been ruled out because it’s a mess to package.”
Hmm.. Ok, maybe so. But what about alternative desktops in general? These easy to use desktop variants of BSD seem to always prefer KDE for some reason or other. However, KDE has its share of problems too and many people don’t like it that much (including me, and alhtough the new KDE releases are generally quite ok).
What about XFCE 4? I think that the light XFCE desktop would fit quite nicely with the ideals of BSD. The installation could customize XFCE so that it would not need so much configuration after the installation, by placing essential program launchers to the panel automatically etc.
Or maybe something like the new SymphonyOS? Or how about developing something completely new: BDE (= the BSD desktop environment) – that would blow GNOME, KDE, WinXP and MacOS X out of the water…? 😉 (hmm… ok, that would mean *much* work…:-)
The great thing about NetBSD is its ability to run on other architectures, which the packager of NetBSD-Office doesn’t seem to understand.
The problem with gnome is the lack of integration. It has been build with parts of everywhere. OpenOffice has taken the place Gnome Office should have, firefox has taken the place a native gnome browser should have and the list goes on. You start noticing the consecuences here, when porting gnome to other unix based systems. Kde is more a world on it self. KOffice my not be as good as OpenOffice, but it IS kde, Konqueror my not be as good as FireFox but it IS kde. The result is tha you can compile and port everything at once, with few dependencies and few duplication.
if you scrolled down on the home page you would see that it says:
This CDROM is for the i386 Platform only. Other Platforms like amd64 MAY FOLLOW.
I am very glad to see more being done with NetBSD, and the fact that the project uses KDE is terrific. IMHO Gnome blows in so many ways.
I like the fact that they used OpenOffice.org too.
As a long time NetBSD user, this is the sort of fresh stuff I like to see, maybe get more people interested in NetBSD (and/or other BSD’s, and Linux).
not pointless, you on the other hand suffer from “lack of vision”
It really doesn’t matter. Very few people visiting OSNews are going to experience difficulties running any common desktop
I have to click on all the screenshots. Minor detail.
Does this version of NetBSD install monolithic KDE packages or can you install individual apps (using either split builds or DO_NOT_COMPILE)?
an automatic bleeper would be welcome for the new comment boards….
along with a 3 bleeps rule – more than 3 bleeps in it means it auto posts to the moderated down section or something..
People criticize that NetBSD is difficult to install so they are creating CDs for installing it easily with some office packages included.
Imho NetBSD is not hard to install, I remember the 1.5 and 1.6 days so I think 2.0 should be better too.
I think what “you” *have* to do is to create a simple way to keep your netbsd machine up-to-date with binary upgrades.
Both system and both packages, and not to have to wait quarters at pkgsrc or to login to anoncvs.
I can’t believe that in 2005 those folks are trying to improve the kernel with SMP support, etc, etc, and then you have to log to anoncvs and compile to keep your machine up-to-date.
When the system is installed, you have to keep it up-to-date.
So you can’t create a simple way to install it and then to upgrade it redirect people to anoncvs.
Please please NetBSD folks give me a way to “apt-get” my old netbsd machine (celeron 400, 128mb ram).
I also see that the requirements are saying at least 1Ghz and 256mb so exactly the double of my machine (can’t upgrade it, it’s a notebook).
First of all sorry for my poor English, ;-).
Also I know that this project is part of the NetBSD project, but mine were suggestions to both.
> that this project is part of the NetBSD project
is *NOT* part, sorry again….I’m going to the coffe machine right now !
While FreeBSD is actively working on fixing the ACL problem in the boot CD, NetBSD was what worked for me. Hence I am glad that there is a fuller install CD for this. It takes some of the learning curve for someone from linux world.
Sorry, but this won’t enlarge anyone’s virtual penises. NetBSD won’t make you a elitist supreme hacker. It’s the kind of the tool you don’t mess with if you don’t need to.
I really believe that it’ll make the average user (the one who’d try such a project, typically attracted by those projects that pop up here and there) be frustrated with his experience with NetBSD. It won’t be “like Ubuntu”.
Well, NetBSD is in need of more binaries. Currently their release isn’t syncronized with the release of a new version of the OS. So this project could have contributed that way, creating binaries for some platforms. Much wiser, IMO.
Also, the name is really unfortunate. In first place, it’s not part of the NetBSD project at all, so calling it NetBSD-Office may generate substantial confusion. From what I have seen in those last comments, it’s already generated some confusion.
And at last, but not least at all, the fact that NetBSD, as it’s distributed by the NetBSD project, i.e., not including the third-part packages (available via pkg_src/pkg_add), is already a complete OS. This NetBSD-Office project doesn’t alter the NetBSD part (the underlying system, the OS), it just adds some patched/modified packages to the third-part packages collection. I’d call it an expansion pack of some sort.
That said… I think the guy who created that should put more thought into his next projects. But oh well, that’s too much discussion for such a project that is fated to fade away in short.
>Maybe my assumptions are incorrect, but I had assumed >that the installation CD is identical to the normal >NetBSD installation CD, except that it installs a lot of >extra packages, and there are some random extra goodies. >Check the screenshots and installation instructions. So, >all of the sources and binaries would come from pkgsrc, >but there is a lot more software installed by default.
>That’s how I assume it works. I could be wrong.
You are wrong. NetBSD doesn’t provide such a system until today. You can’t postinstall packages after the installation. They expect, that something similar is being developed for the 3.0 Release.
But the developer of NetBSD-Office (which is not part of the NetBSD Project) wanted to provide exactly this. You can install NetBSD AND alot of packages in one installation Step. He hacked the whole sysinst and the installation process for this.
Unfortunately you can’t choose, which packages to install and which not, so there is a requirement warning on the Project Website, which says that you need at least 2 GB of Diskspace. It is your decision to uninstall packages you don’t need, after that.
>And at last, but not least at all, the fact that NetBSD, as it’s distributed by the NetBSD project, i.e., not including the third-part packages (available via pkg_src/pkg_add), is already a complete OS. This NetBSD-Office project doesn’t alter the NetBSD part (the underlying system, the OS), it just adds some patched/modified packages to the third-part packages collection. I’d call it an expansion pack of some sort.
Yes. Exactly. Only the installer has been hacked. He tries to provide the possibility to use packages like KDE in one installation step.
Why ? would you ask ?
Because NetBSD doesn’t provide such a possibility.
You can’t postinstall anything.
You have to install third party software, after rebooting, configuring and setting up the new system.
And after that, it’s a real pain in the ass to install huge packages like KDE. Most of the time the installation will fail, because of dependency problems, which are caused, because NetBSD removes vulnerable packages from their servers. Their new policy (from 3.0 on) will be to keep those packages, but move them to another directory.
And if you ever tried to compile KDE from source, you know, that it will take at least 28 Hours, if everything works fine.
>It won’t be “like Ubuntu”.
No, it shouldn’t.
The developer tried to achieve exactly this. A more comfortable and faster way to install NetBSD, no more no less.
Things that are essential for other OS are not for NetBSD.
You would know that, if you ever set up a NetBSD machine.
>That said… I think the guy who created that should put more thought into his next projects. But oh well, that’s too much discussion for such a project that is fated to fade away in short
Even if the Project fades away, it has already reflected a lot of interest.
NetBSD does have limitations as a workstation/desktop. However, if those annoy you too much, you should try something else or help the NetBSD project, not create some fuzzy project that’ll die in short.
It’s a shortcut. And, you know, the NetBSD team generally goes for the best way instead of going by the shortcuts. It’s a matter of philosophy. This project goes again NetBSD’s philosophy.
> Even if the Project fades away, it has already reflected a lot of interest.
I see. Almost 30 comments in OSNews.com. It’s a blast.