BSD & Darwin Archive

NetBSD Gains Hardware Accelerated Virtualization

NetBSD, the highly portable Unix-like Open Source operating system known for its platform diversity, has gained hardware-accelerated virtualization support via an improved NetBSD Virtual Machine Monitor (NVMM). A virtualization API is provided in libnvmm, that allows to easily create and manage virtual machines via NVMM. It’s always nice to see the major BSD distributions gain expanded hardware and software support. It will come as no surprise to anyone that we believe that competition is always a good thing when it comes to operating systems.

DragonFlyBSD 5.0 released

DragonFlyBSD 5.0 is the first release with preliminary boot support for HAMMER2, the project's new filesystem.

Preliminary HAMMER2 support has been released into the wild as-of the 5.0 release. This support is considered EXPERIMENTAL and should generally not yet be used for production machines and important data. The boot loader will support both UFS and HAMMER2 /boot. The installer will still use a UFS /boot even for a HAMMER2 installation because the /boot partition is typically very small and HAMMER2, like HAMMER1, does not instantly free space when files are deleted or replaced.

BSD for Linux users

It's been my impression that the BSD communit{y,ies}, in general, understand Linux far better than the Linux communit{y,ies} understand BSD. I have a few theories on why that is, but that's not really relevant. I think a lot of Linux people get turned off BSD because they don't really understand how and why it's put together. Thus, this rant; as a BSD person, I want to try to explain how BSD works in a way that Linux people can absorb.

While there's overwhelming similarity between the operating systems in most cases, there are also a lot of differences. As you probe more into the differences, you find that they emerge from deep-seated disagreements. Some are disagreements over development methodology, some over deployment and usage, some about what's important, some about who's important, and some about which flavor of ice cream is superior. Just comparing the surface differences doesn't tell you anything; it's the deeper differences that both explain and justify why each group does things the way they do.

The article is undated, but I seem to recall it's actually quite old (2005-ish or so). Still, it's an interesting read.

DragonFly BSD 4.0 released

The DragonFly BSD operating system is a server oriented project. Though originally forked from FreeBSD, DragonFly BSD is an independent operating system that carries a number of unique features, foremost among them is the HammerFS file system. DragonFly BSD 4.0 was released on November 25th and offers several new features.

Version 4 of DragonFly brings Haswell graphics support, 3D acceleration, and improved performance in extremely high-traffic networks. DragonFly now supports up to 256 CPUs, Haswell graphics (i915), concurrent pf operation.

The latest version of DragonFly BSD no longer supports 32-bit x86 machines and is designed to work exclusively on the 64-bit x86 architecture.

DragonFly BSD 3.8.0 released

The new release includes new USB stack (USB4BSD), which supports USB3; updated video drivers for Intel and AMD cards (although latter are still disabled by default); binaries in /bin and /sbin are now dynamic, allowing for PAM and NSS. The HAMMER2 filesystem is also included, but not ready for general use just yet.

2012: a BSD year in retrospective

BSD (Berkely System Distribution) was a research operating system based on the original AT&T Unix, developed by the University of Berkeley, California. It has been Open Source right from the beginning, and after the university lost interest in developing it further, several community projects started up (the very first ones were NetBSD and FreeBSD in the early nineties) to continue developing BSD. Anyway, Linux was born roughly at the same time, but a pending lawsuit about copyright infringements prevented the BSD projects to become as successful as Linux (though you could argue about the exact reasons).

DragonFly BSD 3.2 released

Version 3.2 has arrived. "Big-ticket items Performance improvements under database load Significant work has gone into the scheduler to improve performance, using postgres benchmarking as a measure. DragonFly should be now one of the best selections for Postgres and other databases. New USB stack USB4BSD has been incorporated into this release. More USB devices are compatible with DragonFly, and xhci (USB 3.0) users may be able to take full advantage of their newer hardware. Since this is a new feature, it is available in 3.2 but not built by default."

DragonFly BSD 3.0 released

DragonFly BSD 3.0 was released today, bringing the improved performance on MP systems (MP kernel became the default one in ths release), TrueCrypt-compatible disk encryption, enhanced POSIX compatibility and other improvements. The next big thing for the project will be the major revision of the HAMMER file system (HAMMER2). The DragonFly founder Matthew Dillon said it to be the main focus of his effort for the whole yaer, though the full implementation is expected only in 2013.

PC-BSD 9.0 Released

Hot on the heels of the release of FreeBSD 9, it's the ninth version of its desktop-oriented offspring to jump into the spotlight. "Based upon FreeBSD 9.0-RELEASE, this is the first release of PC-BSD which offers users a variety of desktop environments to choose from, such as KDE, GNOME, XFCE, LXDE and more! Also available are pre-built VirtualBox and VMware images with integrated guest tools for rapid virtual system deployment, and native support for installing directly to OS X BootCamp partitions."

DragonFly BSD MP Performance Significantly Improved

The DragonFly BSD project has recently decided to hold off on the 2.12 release to address a couple of long-standing issues. Some of the disruptive work done to address these issues has also resulted in the MP Token (giant kernel lock) and other major contention points being finally pushed out of the way of all critical paths. The result?

FreeBSD Hypervisor: Call For Testers

Via Ivan Voras' blog (yes a few days late....but this place needs more BSD news). Michael Dexter of CFT has published a tutorial on FreeBSD's upcoming type 2 hypervisor known as BHyVe. The article guides the reader through the procedures to configure, build & boot a hypervisor capable host and guest system. BHyVe currently only supports Intel's x86 virtualization hardware & the project itself is still currently under early development.

In Favor Of FreeBSD On The Desktop

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.'

pfSense 2.0 Released

After three years of hard work and many enhancements, pfSense 2.0 has been released. Of the more impressive stats, more than 108,000 unique IP addresses have downloaded the snapshots during 2011, resulting in some amazing testing, feedback and now reliability with the 2.0 release. Among the many notable features and enhancements: Based on FreeBSD 8.1, Enhancements to IP Aliases, dashboard and widgets, SMTP and growl alerts, new traffic shaper, Layer 7 protocol filtering, major improvements to NAT engine and configuration, certificate manager, VPN improvements, virtual wireless AP support and many others.