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In Favor of FreeBSD On the Desktop 487

snydeq writes "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.'"
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In Favor of FreeBSD On the Desktop

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  • by elrous0 ( 869638 ) * on Tuesday November 08, 2011 @10:29AM (#37984602)

    I'm sure I'm opening myself up for an onslaught here, but I thought all their OSX-based stuff was basically just a very elaborate FreeBSD distro. And you get the benefit of one of the best GUI's in the desktop world, to boot.

  • m-( (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Lazy Jones ( 8403 ) on Tuesday November 08, 2011 @10:38AM (#37984720) Homepage Journal
    tl;dr - guy uses 10 years old hardware and wonders why an OS that works fine for him doesn't appeal to everyone else...

    We switched our last servers from FreeBSD to Linux about 10 years ago because FreeBSD had crappy SMP support. Seriously, why does something like this get posted to /.?
  • by justin12345 ( 846440 ) on Tuesday November 08, 2011 @11:24AM (#37985368)
    Paul's question, "why more folks aren't using FreeBSD on the desktop?" can be answered in two words: hardware support. My business partner is a huge proponent of BSD, and so am I... but the only on the servers.

    One time we installed NetBSD on an old laptop. It ran ok so long as you kept the power supply in the office freezer. Otherwise it would start to smoke. No graphics card or wifi, but that's to be expected. And USB devices were pretty hit and miss.

    I'm sure BSD (in general) has probably come a long way since then, but I really don't care to find out. Installing a strange new OS doesn't give me satisfaction anymore. I haven't even booted into Linux for a couple years. And I've gotten too lazy to bother with Windows and their crazy DRM schemes. At the risk of sounding like an fanboy, Apple really did something right when they bought NeXTStep. OS X is perfectly positioned at the intersection of power vs convenience. It would be very hard to give up. I'm not exactly thrilled with iOS creeping in, but I suppose if they screw OS X up I can always just install an old version.
  • by tomhudson ( 43916 ) <barbara.hudson@b ... u d s o n . c om> on Tuesday November 08, 2011 @11:29AM (#37985440) Journal
    BSD was unix before the open group ever existed. Any sane person would consider it "grandfathered in."
  • by Archangel Michael ( 180766 ) on Tuesday November 08, 2011 @11:50AM (#37985734) Journal

    1) Three Year Old Server, is time to retire the hardware, and replace it with new equipment.

    2) Same box for 10 years, sounds like disaster waiting to happen (Hardware wise), and I surely wouldn't want anything mission critical on it.

    3) Ten year old box is a PIV era machine, with perhaps 3.6 GB ram, my current laptop has more power and ram and could run that machine in the background in a VM.

    4) A single UPS failure shouldn't break mission critical server, as they would have dual power supplies and run on independent Power circuits, with generator backup.

    However after reading #1 and #2 you realize that this is a theme that is building. THAT is why people don't believe these types of trolls.

  • by finarfinjge ( 612748 ) on Tuesday November 08, 2011 @12:09PM (#37985964)

    Of course, as an experienced FreeBSD user, it's not likely you would have made this post in the first place. How long have you actually been running FreeBSD anyway?

    Yet another example of the helpful attitude of the FreeBSD community.

  • by Rogerborg ( 306625 ) on Tuesday November 08, 2011 @01:26PM (#37987270) Homepage
    You should give a modern Linux distro a try, they Just Work. I mean, obviously not the graphics drivers if you have anything even remotely non-mainstream, and for WiFi you should of course just use Windows drivers though ndiswrapper rather than wasting your time with native ones, plus "support" just means "that version is unlikely to get any more broken", and every time you click "allow update" you run the risk of breaking everything and ending up with a retard-o-interface, but other than that...

Air is water with holes in it.