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Operating Systems Security Software Unix Upgrades BSD

OpenBSD 5.4 Released 102

Posted by timothy
from the they're-not-in-it-for-the-money dept.
An anonymous reader writes "The release of OpenBSD 5.4 has been announced. New and notable advancements include new or extended platforms like octeon and beagle, moving VAX to ELF format, improved hardware support including Kernel Mode Setting (KMS), overhauled inteldrm(4), experimental support for fuse(4), reworked checksum handling for network protocols, OpenSMTPD 5.3.3, OpenSSH 6.3, over 7,800 ports, and many other improvements and additions."
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OpenBSD 5.4 Released

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  • OpenBSD Rocks. (Score:5, Informative)

    by grub (11606) <slashdot@grub.net> on Saturday November 02, 2013 @09:53AM (#45310717) Homepage Journal

    Rather than slagging OpenBSD, set up a small VM and try it there for a while. It's a fantastic OS, I use it on my gateway/firewall/VPN, other edge-facing devices and a llaptop.

    It's a bit minimal but what you get works.
    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by jones_supa (887896)
      What are the benefits over using Linux?
      • Re:OpenBSD Rocks. (Score:5, Informative)

        by jawtheshark (198669) * <{slashdot} {at} {jawtheshark.com}> on Saturday November 02, 2013 @10:10AM (#45310793) Homepage Journal
        Look into the syntax of pf, then look into the syntax of iptables. Then look back again. If I can, I damn well avoid having Linux firewalls, and I'm a Linux system administrator.
      • Re:OpenBSD Rocks. (Score:5, Informative)

        by gagol (583737) on Saturday November 02, 2013 @10:11AM (#45310799)
        OpenBSD focus on code stability rather than features, uses encryption everywhere it benefits and consider documentation as critical. Overall, it is very stable and secure.
      • by BitZtream (692029)

        Are you a masochist? If you aren't, just use FreeBSD instead. You'll get roughly the same result, minus the pain and suffering Theo inflicts on others who listen to his rants as well as use his code.

      • Re:OpenBSD Rocks. (Score:5, Informative)

        by grub (11606) <slashdot@grub.net> on Saturday November 02, 2013 @10:36AM (#45310919) Homepage Journal

        I'd suggest starting here as a beginning: 9 - Migrating to OpenBSD [openbsd.org]
        One thing I find OpenBSD is head and shoulders above other *nix OSs at: the documentation. Virtually every service, binary, config, library, /etc/*, what-have-you has a thorough manpage included. The emphasis on security and "correctness" shows everywhere: pf is fantastic (iptables is a cancer by comparison), the built-in IPSec is great, it's OpenSSH's "home OS", etc.

        Everything fits very well together (as is also the case with FreeBSD and NetBSD). All the OpenBSD users could post replies to your question but the only way to see for yourself is to try it out.

        Enjoy!
        • by tlhIngan (30335)

          One thing I find OpenBSD is head and shoulders above other *nix OSs at: the documentation. Virtually every service, binary, config, library, /etc/*, what-have-you has a thorough manpage included. The emphasis on security and "correctness" shows everywhere: pf is fantastic (iptables is a cancer by comparison), the built-in IPSec is great, it's OpenSSH's "home OS", etc.

          Technically, documentation is required to ensure correctness - because if it's not documented, how do you know it's working correctly?

          The fac

      • Re:OpenBSD Rocks. (Score:5, Interesting)

        by Anonymous Coward on Saturday November 02, 2013 @11:21AM (#45311177)

        To me it is having a UNIX system that just works.
        Sound, graphics, networking, documentation. Everything is just damn stable. I can update to the next version with no fear that it will break my system. Every new feature is a well thought and all over improvement on the previous version.
        With Linux, it is always chasing a moving target that has many attractive features, but each fighting with each other and against the user. Today my WiFi won't work, tomorrow it will work but my headphones will be mute for no good reason. The day after tomorrow the apt database will get corrupted. Don't get me started on RPM.
        I do have to renounce to some features and software that will only work in Linux, but in the end, it fits my needs the best.
        As a programmer, I also find that when both systems solve a similar problem, the Linux solution usually feels more hackish and ad-hoc while the OpenBSD one(assuredly often in hindsight) feels like a real improvement.
        I do always keep a Linux partition with the latest cool distro(currently Mint) but in the end I spend most of my time on OpenBSD.
        As for FreeBSD, it is somewhere in a middle ground between Linux and OpenBSD, but, at least for me, that middle ground feels even less comfortable than either one.

        • With Linux, it is always chasing a moving target that has many attractive features, but each fighting with each other and against the user.

          That's been the continual story of personal computing since the 1970s. *Somebody* has to go through the pain of integrating new capabilities into common use.

          • Right. I use Debian Stable and OpenBSD. I find that for the most part they're quivalent in the "Damn, they broke shit again" department... Seriously.

            • by Anonymous Coward

              Debian Stable is comparable to OpenBSD in that there is a group of people(and that includes users) making sure the changes won't destroy people's systems before rolling out updates. QC, crazy, huh?
              Similarities end here.
              Debian Stable is effectively dead on arrival. By the time you upgrade to the next version, your software has only been getting back-ported "security" fixes for more than five years. It wouldn't be a bad choice if civilization ends tomorrow and that's the system you are stuck with. But it is h

          • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

            by Anonymous Coward

            You mean like ASLR, drive encryption, stack canaries, W^X? None of these were invented there but they were common and integrated into OpenBSD long before any Linux.

      • Re:OpenBSD Rocks. (Score:5, Informative)

        by cptnapalm (120276) on Saturday November 02, 2013 @11:42AM (#45311329)

        I have this truly bizarre UltraSparc laptop. The only two operating systems which will support it are Solaris, obviously, and OpenBSD. Solaris was extremely sluggish whereas OpenBSD with Awesome is quite spry.

      • by eudaemon (320983)
        Well you can find out for yourself at the OpenBSD home page, which explains their approach to security: http://www.openbsd.org/security.html [openbsd.org] OpenBSD is definitely an educate yourself then ask questions sort of OS. I'm not slagging on you, just saying it makes more sense for me to post a link than try to recreate the contents of the webpage it goes to. Check it out. Decide for yourself.
        • Reading the comments above and reading some material, my impression now is that it is more robust than Linux, but requires more effort to set things up.
      • OpenBSD wasn't developed by the NSA.
    • by drinkypoo (153816)

      Last time I used it, it was a very long time ago, and I had to throw it away because the intel NIC driver that I was using (some kind of 10/100 cards) would choke eventually if you had more than 1 in the system, and I had 4.

      Now I shall try it again on my olde timey original Atom netbook (Acer Aspire) which I've been putting off installing with anything for lack of anything modern that I wanted to run on it. This is close enough. I ought to have one machine I can kind of trust.

    • by ISoldat53 (977164)
      Has it changed much since 2003? That's the last time I tried to use it and that's when my manuals are dated. Not a dig, it's just I haven't tried it since.
      • by grub (11606)
        They release a new version every 6 months, so your last info is about 20 versions behind...
    • by Burz (138833)

      OK. I'll set one up in a Qubes VM... that way the system will stay secure. :D

  • Yay, this is the year of the BSD-Desktop!
    • by kthreadd (1558445)

      It could very well be. I just tried it on one of my desktops. Gnome 3.8 worked really nice on it and even had accelerated 3D graphics.

  • by eshaw (3418617) on Saturday November 02, 2013 @12:17PM (#45311631)
    There's only one solution when it comes to my network and servers, that's OpenBSD. It's secure, stable and correct coding making it an easy choice. I run a VPN, Web and redundant Firewall servers and OpenBSD gives me a piece of mind, ensuring it's stability. Stability and security are paramount for my network. PF is the king of firewall rules and iptables is an absolute mess. It's simple folks. If you want a serious OS for internet facing infrastructure, why choose anything else. OpenBSD is the obvious answer!
    • by Burz (138833)

      I run a VPN, Web and redundant Firewall servers...

      Great. Welcome to 1999!

      • by eshaw (3418617)
        Thanks. I've probably been supporting servers before you were born, but thanks anyway juvenile.
      • by dbIII (701233)

        Great. Welcome to 1999!

        Why not? They have cooler spaceships than we have now.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    From the FAQ:
    "The OpenBSD project does not digitally sign releases. The above command only detects accidental damage, not malicious tampering. If the men in black suits are out to get you, they're going to get you."

    Seems a bit fatalistic not to provide any verification method at all...

    • by Anonymous Coward

      The reason is that you should not rely on any binary release. Download the source code. Audit it. Then build and install it from your own copy.

  • Or, to put it another way:

    What would I be able to do with a box running this that I couldn't do with <operating system X> for any current, contemporary O/S. Let's not talk about potential uses - but real, live, switch it on, press buttons and do stuff type of uses. Things that no other O/S or box running that O/S can do? What are they?

  • by Anonymous Coward

    I don't think most people care about vax moving to elf and fuse is definitely not of any use until at least the next release. for me one of the biggest improvements was in the the rewritten dhcpd/dhclient tools. also some nice incremental performance improvements and lots more posix features added. and as usual the amazing man pages just keep getting better with every release (if that's possible). finally just quoting the number of ports doesn't really give an idea of how current the software collection is.

I took a fish head to the movies and I didn't have to pay. -- Fish Heads, Saturday Night Live, 1977.

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