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Operating Systems Software BSD

FreeBSD 7.1 Released 324

Sol-Invictus writes "The FreeBSD Release Engineering Team is pleased to announce the availability of FreeBSD 7.1-RELEASE. This is the second release from the 7-STABLE branch which improves on the functionality of FreeBSD 7.0 and introduces some new features. Some of the highlights: The ULE scheduler is now the default in GENERIC kernels for amd64 and i386 architectures. The ULE scheduler significantly improves performance on multicore systems for many workloads. Support for using DTrace inside the kernel has been imported from OpenSolaris. DTrace is a comprehensive dynamic tracing framework. A new and much-improved NFS Lock Manager (NLM) client. Boot loader changes allow, among other things, booting from USB devices and booting from GPT-labeled devices. KDE updated to 3.5.10, GNOME updated to 2.22.3. DVD-sized media for the amd64 and i386 architectures."
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FreeBSD 7.1 Released

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  • Re:Benchmarks? (Score:1, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 06, 2009 @11:22AM (#26342917)

    If you're on Kubuntu (me too), you want to try PCBSD. It's FreeBSD, built into a Kubuntu-like system. It will take them a little bit to get updated to FreeBSD release 7.1 (they were on the pre-release, so not too long). Get it here - http://pcbsd.org/

    Vanilla FreeBSD is a lot like vanilla Slackware. You might not enjoy the initial learning curve.

  • by coryking ( 104614 ) * on Tuesday January 06, 2009 @11:41AM (#26343129) Homepage Journal

    All the BSD's win for man pages that actually contain more information then "man pages are obsolete, please use the info documentation". In FreeBSD the entire core system has documentation. All of it written in the format god intended--roff.

    Did you mention all the man pages are online [freebsd.org] and can be searched by version? Comes in handy when you are still using FreeBSD 6.1-RELEASE.

    And did you mention the fact that BSD's aren't like Linux distros? FreeBSD isn't just a pooling of libraries and code from random people, the core of FreeBSD (shell and userland tools) are all done by the same large team. FreeBSD, OpenBSD and NetBSD are *cohesive systems*, not collections.

    Want my year 2009 prediction? This will be the year of the BSD's in the data-center. There is a lot going for BSD based systems, and quite frankly the only reason I can see to go back to a random collection of tools and kernel code (i.e. a Linux distrubtion) is for running code that requires vendor support (Oracle, Dell, etc...). In 2009, I predict (hope) more of these big-name vendors officially support FreeBSD and friends.

  • Re:Hmmm... (Score:3, Interesting)

    by samkass ( 174571 ) on Tuesday January 06, 2009 @11:44AM (#26343187) Homepage Journal

    Isn't FreeBSD a good chunk of the core of the BSD layer in Apple's XNU (Darwin) kernel and some of the user-space utilities? I'm not sure if it's still true, but my understanding was that a substantial amount of code went in both directions between MacOS X and FreeBSD.

  • Contributions (Score:5, Interesting)

    by coryking ( 104614 ) * on Tuesday January 06, 2009 @11:53AM (#26343317) Homepage Journal

    And don't be nervous about making contributions either. My first ports looked like shit, but the port guys were patient and over time I've gotten the hang of the system.

    FreeBSD (and probably the other BSD's) are much easier to work on then the other guys. For starters, since you are using a *system* and not a collection of libraries, all your patches and bug-reports go to the same place [freebsd.org]. In other words, you aren't talking to "the website and the people who maintain the 'tar' utility", you are talking to "the freebsd guys". Your patch for "tar" goes to the same repository as the code for "libc".

    Plus since it is licensed as BSD, you can actually contribute modifications and not worry about the nasty side effects found in other licenses. I've never contributed to a GPL project, but I've contributed tons to BSD projects.

    Bottom line, FreeBSD is a great place to get your feet wet contributing to open source stuff. Good times.

  • Re:Hmmm... (Score:1, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 06, 2009 @11:54AM (#26343331)
  • by coryking ( 104614 ) * on Tuesday January 06, 2009 @11:54AM (#26343337) Homepage Journal

    But honestly, FreeBSD is a server OS. And for servers, it has pretty much any driver you need. Granted not all of it is vendor supported binaries (yet, but hopefully someday), but still, if you have a server from *big-co*, odds are good everything will work.

  • Re:Hmmm... (Score:3, Interesting)

    by despisethesun ( 880261 ) on Tuesday January 06, 2009 @11:57AM (#26343365)
    I think these days the code only goes one way (to Apple) but if some Apple fanboy wants to point me to their recent BSD contributions, I'd be interested in seeing them.
  • by urbanriot ( 924981 ) on Tuesday January 06, 2009 @12:02PM (#26343439)
    I've been sticking with the 6.x branch (6.4 most recently) as it's given me extremely reliable uptime with my Squid proxy servers. FreeBSD 7.0 excited me with their SMP updates and ULE scheduler aiding in performance, however I wasn't convinced that the long standing FreeBSD stability was there after reading a number of newsgroup discussions, and due to its immaturity. Now that 7.1 has been released, I'm going to start taking it more seriously for production use.

    That being said, regarding some of the comments here, FreeBSD (in my opinion) is more suited to uptime, stability, and reliability in servers than it is to offering a performance oriented desktop experience. Want a good starter project? Try to make a FreeBSD stateful firewall with transparent proxy server (pf / squid) for your home using some spare parts you have kicking around.
  • Speaking of uptime (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Rasperin ( 1034758 ) on Tuesday January 06, 2009 @12:29PM (#26343767)
    My current NAS is running FreeBSD 5.3, in constant use, and has: 10:31AM up 2331 days, 28 mins Kinda nice if you ask me, I also use it as a desktop environment on my laptop because it just "works" for me.
  • by TheGratefulNet ( 143330 ) on Tuesday January 06, 2009 @12:38PM (#26343877)

    been a freebsd user since 4.x days.

    I use bsd to run my mail, antispam, dns and other public web services.

    I'd LIKE to also have it be a fast samba server but for some reason, samba on bsd really SUCKS. why is that??

    my similar hardware linux box runs circles all over bsd on samba. that's the last hold-out, really, in wanting to go all-bsd at home.

    is there EVER going to be equiv speed on freebsd as linux has, for smb?

  • by coryking ( 104614 ) * on Tuesday January 06, 2009 @01:05PM (#26344277) Homepage Journal

    (and boy I'm posting in this thread ;-)

    For those who've never used a BSD system but have used Linux, be prepared for the command line to work a little different. BSD utilities are often way more picky about the ordering of arguments.

    With the GNU tools, "chmod 775 * -R" will recurse down a tree and set everything to 775. "chmod -R 775 *" will do the same thing.

    In FreeBSD, only "chmod -R 775 *" will work right.

    In BSD userland, the patten is almost always command [arguments] [strings of goo]. In GNU land, you can usually interchange [arguments] and [string of goo] and get the same result. Some will argue that only the BSD way is proper and the GNU way is sloppy. Whatever your feelings are, if you've gotten used to being sloppy about ordering, it will take some adjustment to get used to BSD tools.

    The good news is the "proper" way will work on either set of tools.

  • by TheRaven64 ( 641858 ) on Tuesday January 06, 2009 @02:59PM (#26346269) Journal
    Depends on your sound card. If you have a card which does hardware mixing, and is supported by ALSA, it works under Linux. If you have every app set up to use PulseAudio, or whatever this week's fad sound daemon is, it works on Linux. If you have a cheap AC97 CODEC which doesn't do hardware mixing, and have applications which just write to /dev/dsp directly, Linux doesn't work. On FreeBSD (since FreeBSD 5), each device that opens /dev/dsp gets its own virtual channel. If the device doesn't do hardware mixing, it falls back to doing it in software. Even with the cheapest sound hardware, you don't have to use a sound daemon on FreeBSD. Applications just use the standard OSS interfaces and it all works. With FreeBSD 4, you needed to manually configure each one to use a separate /dev/dsp.n, but that hasn't been the case for over five years. Last time I tried Linux on my old Thinkpad, it still couldn't have two programs playing sound at the same time unless they were both configured to use the same sound daemon.

Houston, Tranquillity Base here. The Eagle has landed. -- Neil Armstrong