Is FreeBSD just a sandbox for hackers? - BSD

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  1. Is FreeBSD just a sandbox for hackers?

    Is FreeBSD just a sandbox for hackers?

    Is Linux grabbing all the mindshare because FBSD is perceived as
    being nothing but a server plus a sandbox?

    My connection to FBSD goes a long way back, v1.7 or maybe 1.4. I
    came into daily Unix use via SCO, and then Novell's UnixWare. But
    I wanted source code, so when I found FBSD it was love at first
    sight. I've never had the time to involve myself with the
    project, but my commitment to it has always been solid: if I need
    Unix, I look to FBSD.

    I'm just coming back to it again after a hiatus of years. I'm
    working on a project where I now need a tame AMP webserver, so
    naturally I got out my latest disc set and started installing.
    The base system came up briskly on the old hardware, as it has
    always done.

    But I wanted something a little more sophisticated for the
    console than a 80x25 VGA non-scrollable text-mode display. What
    are my options? Apparently I still don't have any good ones.
    Except for raw X, there's still only Gnome and KDE (maybe later
    there'll be xfce). I'd brought up KDE a couple of years ago and
    it ran like a slug on the old hardware (200MHz P1, Matrox Mill2
    video, 9GB SCSI UW2 disk), so I switched to Gnome, which ran a
    little faster if not so decoratively.

    But this time at the end of all the pkg_adding, it didn't work.
    It's the same hardware, so whatever happened, happened inside the
    software. All right (I thought), to hell with it, I'll build
    "Gnome Lite". That was yesterday at noon. I'm not sure what's
    "lite" about it, because it's been compiling for 21 hours with no
    end in sight. Maybe the only thing that makes it "lite" is that
    it doesn't have all the strange "features" represented by v0.0.1
    code. It certainly has lots of things that I would never put into
    something I was going to call "lite". (One charming "feature" was
    the way it stopped in the middle of the build to ask a
    configuration question. If I hadn't happened to check on
    progress, I'm sure it would still be patiently sitting there,
    having done nothing overnight but consume electricity while
    waiting for me to answer that unimportant question.)

    Now, as I sit here waiting for the build to complete (will it
    ever complete?), I wonder whether I should have just settled for
    raw Xwindows as a console windowing system.

    Even more, though, I wonder what the difference is between the
    Linux and the FBSD communities, that Linux apparently has
    complete, rich, plug-and-play versions but FBSD doesn't (a FBSDer
    writing on the web sheepishly admits that he runs Ubuntu on his
    laptop because it's "more productive").

    Are all the project developers so caught up in increasing the
    "feature" count that they've lost sight of the idea that the
    result should be of practical use? Corel (the graphics-editor
    people) did that some years ago. They owned the market until
    their customer base finally got fed up and stopped buying their
    bug-ridden upgrades. It almost wiped them out.

    Is there nobody at a policy level in the project who focusses on
    making sure what ships is a coherent product rather than a bucket
    of pieces?

    Is the project mired in the Puritan idea that moral worth comes
    from hardship? Do key people who work on FBSD secretly (or maybe
    openly) believe in the old not-quite-joke that since it was hard
    to develop, it should be hard to use, and that anyone who doesn't
    want to spend a week or a month figuring out how to piece things
    together should just admit they're effete lusers and stick to
    Windoze or a Mac? We all know people like that, I'm sure. Yet,
    funnily enough, those same people ride bikes and drive cars
    without having first assembled them from ill-fitting parts.

    It's not any part of my intention to claim that people working on
    the project *DO* have any particular failings, or even any
    failings at all -- they do a lot of heavy lifting for little more
    than the joy of accomplishment and deserve thanks for what they
    do so unselfishly.

    I'm only trying to find a way to explain to myself why such a
    superb system gets so little respect...and is so damned hard to
    bring up in anything but a default configuration. I suspect the
    two factors are not unrelated.



  2. Re: Is FreeBSD just a sandbox for hackers?

    Ranter wrote:
    > But I wanted something a little more sophisticated for the
    > console than a 80x25 VGA non-scrollable text-mode display. What
    > are my options? Apparently I still don't have any good ones.
    > Except for raw X, there's still only Gnome and KDE (maybe later
    > there'll be xfce). I'd brought up KDE a couple of years ago and
    > it ran like a slug on the old hardware (200MHz P1, Matrox Mill2
    > video, 9GB SCSI UW2 disk), so I switched to Gnome, which ran a
    > little faster if not so decoratively.


    On my laptop (which has an Intel graphics system) i can get very
    beautiful console with very fine resolution. This requires recompiling a
    kernel with
    options SC_PIXEL_MODE
    and playing with vidcontrol to find a nice setting which works.

    Such thing like
    font8x16="iso15-thin-8x16.fnt"
    font8x14="iso15-8x14"
    font8x8="iso15-8x8"
    allscreens_flags="MODE_27 green black"
    but with better mode, in /etc/rc.conf


    If you want to run X and the machine is underpowered, there are
    environments far lighter than gnome or KDE, such as fvwm2,
    icewm, fluxbox, xfce, etc.


    >
    > Is the project mired in the Puritan idea that moral worth comes
    > from hardship? Do key people who work on FBSD secretly (or maybe
    > openly) believe in the old not-quite-joke that since it was hard
    > to develop, it should be hard to use, and that anyone who doesn't
    > want to spend a week or a month figuring out how to piece things
    > together should just admit they're effete lusers and stick to
    > Windoze or a Mac? We all know people like that, I'm sure. Yet,
    > funnily enough, those same people ride bikes and drive cars
    > without having first assembled them from ill-fitting parts.



    Let me quote a mail appearing very recently in the FreeBSD mailing
    lists, written by a high profile developer Dag-Erling Smorgrav

    http://docs.freebsd.org/cgi/getmsg.c...reebsd-hackers

    "
    Ian Smith writes:
    > Re your original issue, can you get any mileage out of using
    > acpi_ibm,
    > devd and this post and/or the other one it references:


    The laptop in question does not run FreeBSD. I gave up running FreeBSD
    on any sort of desktop or laptop computer years ago.
    "

    So i think you can safely replace "secretly" by "openly" above. If you
    want no problem, no fuss unixlike system on a laptop, Ubuntu is the
    obvious choice, otherwise a Mac running Mac OS X, if you agree to pay the
    Mac tax. If you want to tinker, and your laptop doesn't have too hard
    ACPI problems, you can get good results with FreeBSD. FreeBSD used to
    work OK on IBM Thinkpads, but here you had to pay the super IBM tax, and
    it seems that newer Lenovo laptops are not well supported. Maybe Dell
    laptops work OK. My Sony Vaio is more or less supported under FreeBSD
    (read no suspend, things work only with FreeBSD-7, etc.) but much better
    with Ubuntu.




    --

    Michel TALON


  3. Re: Is FreeBSD just a sandbox for hackers?

    Ranter wrote:

    > Is FreeBSD just a sandbox for hackers?
    >
    > Is Linux grabbing all the mindshare because FBSD is perceived as
    > being nothing but a server plus a sandbox?
    >
    > My connection to FBSD goes a long way back, v1.7 or maybe 1.4. I
    > came into daily Unix use via SCO, and then Novell's UnixWare. But
    > I wanted source code, so when I found FBSD it was love at first
    > sight. I've never had the time to involve myself with the
    > project, but my commitment to it has always been solid: if I need
    > Unix, I look to FBSD.
    >
    > I'm just coming back to it again after a hiatus of years. I'm
    > working on a project where I now need a tame AMP webserver, so
    > naturally I got out my latest disc set and started installing.
    > The base system came up briskly on the old hardware, as it has
    > always done.
    >
    > But I wanted something a little more sophisticated for the
    > console than a 80x25 VGA non-scrollable text-mode display. What
    > are my options? Apparently I still don't have any good ones.
    > Except for raw X, there's still only Gnome and KDE (maybe later
    > there'll be xfce). I'd brought up KDE a couple of years ago and
    > it ran like a slug on the old hardware (200MHz P1, Matrox Mill2
    > video, 9GB SCSI UW2 disk), so I switched to Gnome, which ran a
    > little faster if not so decoratively.
    >
    >
    >


    VESA is still loadable in boot config.
    I used to play with VESA - 80x43 etc consoles, splash screens and so on...

    xfce and who knows how many other small WM in ports.
    Later xfce esp. is somewhat gnome dependent. Uses gnome File Manager...

    Personally I start in console (rather than X/ K/ GDM).
    Startx runs blackbox with worker, firefox, leafpad/ scite editors, gimp,
    gqview, rxvt (anything that runs w/o gnome/kde base).
    - Pretty minimal WM and suffices for most things!

    Have KDE aboard as well - multimedia/ pretty stuff when required.

    Support for Java flash and so on isn't easy.

    FreeBSD V7 is a good bit slower starting than was 6.x but once up it runs as
    well as Linux various. I've tied.


    --

    Bill
    FreeBSD 7 on AMD-64
    "The road less travelled"

  4. Re: Is FreeBSD just a sandbox for hackers?

    Ranter wrote:
    > Is FreeBSD just a sandbox for hackers?


    Okay, I'll bite.

    > But I wanted something a little more sophisticated for the console than a
    > 80x25 VGA non-scrollable text-mode display. What are my options? Apparently
    > I still don't have any good ones.


    You can run X11. Or you can run syscons in pixel mode. The default 80x25
    system console is scrollable too. Use the scroll lock button which is hiding
    somewhere on your keyboard

    > Except for raw X, there's still only Gnome and KDE (maybe later there'll be
    > xfce).


    I don't understand what you mean here. There are an incredible number of
    window managers in the ports tree (see ports/x11-wm). Xfce is in there, among
    many others.

    > I'd brought up KDE a couple of years ago and it ran like a slug on the old
    > hardware (200MHz P1, Matrox Mill2 video, 9GB SCSI UW2 disk), so I switched
    > to Gnome, which ran a little faster if not so decoratively.


    Both KDE and GNOME are incredible resource hogs. This is not FreeBSD's
    problem. I use Awesome which is lightweight
    and performs very well even on very modest hardware. Of course, it focusses
    on features rather than "decoration".

    > But this time at the end of all the pkg_adding, it didn't work.


    What didn't work?

    > [GNOME "lite"]
    > I'm not sure what's "lite" about it, because it's been compiling for 21
    > hours with no end in sight. Maybe the only thing that makes it "lite" is
    > that it doesn't have all the strange "features" represented by v0.0.1 code.
    > It certainly has lots of things that I would never put into something I was
    > going to call "lite". (One charming "feature" was the way it stopped in the
    > middle of the build to ask a configuration question. If I hadn't happened to
    > check on progress, I'm sure it would still be patiently sitting there,
    > having done nothing overnight but consume electricity while waiting for me
    > to answer that unimportant question.)


    Perhaps you should take this up with the developers of GNOME? This is
    certainly not a FreeBSD problem.

    > Even more, though, I wonder what the difference is between the Linux and the
    > FBSD communities, that Linux apparently has complete, rich, plug-and-play
    > versions but FBSD doesn't (a FBSDer writing on the web sheepishly admits
    > that he runs Ubuntu on his laptop because it's "more productive").


    Have you looked at PC-BSD? I have no idea what kind of drugs you have to take
    to consider Ubuntu "productive", but I'm pretty sure they can't be healthy.

    >


    I've ignored the rest of the troll.

    - Philip

    --
    Philip Paeps Please don't email any replies
    philip@paeps.cx I follow the newsgroup.

    "Are you a physicist?"
    "Me? I don't know anything about science!"
    "Marvellous! Ideal qualification!"
    -- (Terry Pratchett, Johnny and the Dead)

  5. Re: Is FreeBSD just a sandbox for hackers?

    Ranter wrote:
    > Is FreeBSD just a sandbox for hackers?
    >
    > Is Linux grabbing all the mindshare because FBSD is perceived as
    > being nothing but a server plus a sandbox?
    >
    > My connection to FBSD goes a long way back, v1.7 or maybe 1.4. I
    > came into daily Unix use via SCO, and then Novell's UnixWare. But
    > I wanted source code, so when I found FBSD it was love at first
    > sight. I've never had the time to involve myself with the
    > project, but my commitment to it has always been solid: if I need
    > Unix, I look to FBSD.
    >
    > I'm just coming back to it again after a hiatus of years. I'm
    > working on a project where I now need a tame AMP webserver, so
    > naturally I got out my latest disc set and started installing.
    > The base system came up briskly on the old hardware, as it has
    > always done.
    >
    > But I wanted something a little more sophisticated for the
    > console than a 80x25 VGA non-scrollable text-mode display. What
    > are my options? Apparently I still don't have any good ones.
    > Except for raw X, there's still only Gnome and KDE (maybe later
    > there'll be xfce). I'd brought up KDE a couple of years ago and
    > it ran like a slug on the old hardware (200MHz P1, Matrox Mill2
    > video, 9GB SCSI UW2 disk), so I switched to Gnome, which ran a
    > little faster if not so decoratively.
    >
    > But this time at the end of all the pkg_adding, it didn't work.
    > It's the same hardware, so whatever happened, happened inside the
    > software. All right (I thought), to hell with it, I'll build
    > "Gnome Lite". That was yesterday at noon. I'm not sure what's
    > "lite" about it, because it's been compiling for 21 hours with no
    > end in sight. Maybe the only thing that makes it "lite" is that
    > it doesn't have all the strange "features" represented by v0.0.1
    > code. It certainly has lots of things that I would never put into
    > something I was going to call "lite". (One charming "feature" was
    > the way it stopped in the middle of the build to ask a
    > configuration question. If I hadn't happened to check on
    > progress, I'm sure it would still be patiently sitting there,
    > having done nothing overnight but consume electricity while
    > waiting for me to answer that unimportant question.)
    >
    > Now, as I sit here waiting for the build to complete (will it
    > ever complete?), I wonder whether I should have just settled for
    > raw Xwindows as a console windowing system.
    >
    > Even more, though, I wonder what the difference is between the
    > Linux and the FBSD communities, that Linux apparently has
    > complete, rich, plug-and-play versions but FBSD doesn't (a FBSDer
    > writing on the web sheepishly admits that he runs Ubuntu on his
    > laptop because it's "more productive").
    >
    > Are all the project developers so caught up in increasing the
    > "feature" count that they've lost sight of the idea that the
    > result should be of practical use? Corel (the graphics-editor
    > people) did that some years ago. They owned the market until
    > their customer base finally got fed up and stopped buying their
    > bug-ridden upgrades. It almost wiped them out.
    >
    > Is there nobody at a policy level in the project who focusses on
    > making sure what ships is a coherent product rather than a bucket
    > of pieces?
    >
    > Is the project mired in the Puritan idea that moral worth comes
    > from hardship? Do key people who work on FBSD secretly (or maybe
    > openly) believe in the old not-quite-joke that since it was hard
    > to develop, it should be hard to use, and that anyone who doesn't
    > want to spend a week or a month figuring out how to piece things
    > together should just admit they're effete lusers and stick to
    > Windoze or a Mac? We all know people like that, I'm sure. Yet,
    > funnily enough, those same people ride bikes and drive cars
    > without having first assembled them from ill-fitting parts.
    >
    > It's not any part of my intention to claim that people working on
    > the project *DO* have any particular failings, or even any
    > failings at all -- they do a lot of heavy lifting for little more
    > than the joy of accomplishment and deserve thanks for what they
    > do so unselfishly.
    >
    > I'm only trying to find a way to explain to myself why such a
    > superb system gets so little respect...and is so damned hard to
    > bring up in anything but a default configuration. I suspect the
    > two factors are not unrelated.
    >
    >

    It is best not to feed the troll.

  6. Re: Is FreeBSD just a sandbox for hackers?

    On Tue, 28 Oct 2008 13:15:06 GMT
    Ranter wrote:

    > My connection to FBSD goes a long way back, v1.7 or maybe 1.4.


    Hmm the last 1.x was 1.1.5.1, this was followed by 2.0 after the
    whole BSD/ATT lawsuit thing.

    --
    C:>WIN | Directable Mirror Arrays
    The computer obeys and wins. | A better way to focus the sun
    You lose and Bill collects. | licences available see
    | http://www.sohara.org/

  7. Re: Is FreeBSD just a sandbox for hackers?

    Ranter wrote:

    > Is FreeBSD just a sandbox for hackers?
    >
    >
    > Even more, though, I wonder what the difference is between the
    > Linux and the FBSD communities, that Linux apparently has
    > complete, rich, plug-and-play versions but FBSD doesn't (a FBSDer
    > writing on the web sheepishly admits that he runs Ubuntu on his
    > laptop because it's "more productive").


    Likely only if 'productive' means: Simple GUI install, Flash, Java, CD/ DVD
    burning and so on.
    Things like K office/ Kolour paint seem to work just as well under FreeBSD.
    Certainly it's easier to Burn a CD, mount a USB key/ drive etc under Linux,
    Windows.
    - Old fashioned idea: Figure out/ learn how to do seems doomed. Beneficial?
    How many users 'just pull the device' without bothering with the unmount
    nonsense?

    >


    >
    > I'm only trying to find a way to explain to myself why such a
    > superb system gets so little respect...and is so damned hard to
    > bring up in anything but a default configuration. I suspect the
    > two factors are not unrelated.
    >


    Would making FreeBSD user friendly just like windows and a thousand
    different Linux distro's really achieve very much?
    Many of FreeBSD's basic concepts (rc, boot, FS, structure etc) probably
    really only appeal to those who are actually interested in what underlies
    the 'GUI fantasia'.
    I gather PCBSD etc are meant to offer simpler install, package options and
    so on.
    - Mac OS/X seems rather like FreeBSD with an 'almost KDE' desktop...
    With things like Menutos: http://www.menuetos.net
    (Writ in assembler from ground up) There must still be a few people who like
    to mess about with the OS.

    >


    --

    Bill
    FreeBSD 7 on AMD-64
    "The road less travelled"

  8. Re: Is FreeBSD just a sandbox for hackers?

    On Tue, 28 Oct 2008 15:52:41 +0000,
    Steve O'Hara-Smith wrote:

    >On Tue, 28 Oct 2008 13:15:06 GMT
    >Ranter wrote:
    >
    >> My connection to FBSD goes a long way back, v1.7 or maybe 1.4.

    >
    > Hmm the last 1.x was 1.1.5.1, this was followed by 2.0 after the
    >whole BSD/ATT lawsuit thing.


    Maybe it was 1.1.5 then...it's so long ago that I honestly don't
    remember more than that it was v1something. The earliest discs
    I've found that I still have -I didn't think to start archiving
    them all til v4, so these survived by accident- are 2.1, 2.2.1,
    and disk 1 from 2.2.2.

  9. Re: Is FreeBSD just a sandbox for hackers?

    On 2008-10-28, Ranter was urged to write the following:

    > But I wanted something a little more sophisticated for the
    > console than a 80x25 VGA non-scrollable text-mode display. What
    > are my options? Apparently I still don't have any good ones


    You can reconfigure your kernel so that it supports vesa. See the
    handbook on how to do that.

    > Except for raw X, there's still only Gnome and KDE (maybe later
    > there'll be xfce).


    You are ill-informed. There's a plethora of window managers available
    on FreeBSD. Fluxbox is a very good lightweight example. I myself use
    awesome, which is a *very* light tiling wm. If you're looking for a
    more sophisticated console solution, awesome with a bunch of terminal
    emulators is probably what you want.

    > Is there nobody at a policy level in the project who focusses on
    > making sure what ships is a coherent product rather than a bucket
    > of pieces?


    The bucket of pieces would be GNU/Linux. FreeBSD is a lot more
    coherent. This doesn't mean that I dislike GNU/Linux. I'm still using
    Debian Lenny as my main OS, but the more I'm using FreeBSD, the more I
    like it. It's a great OS.

    --
    An investment in knowledge always pays the best interest.
    ~ Benjamin Franklin

  10. Re: Is FreeBSD just a sandbox for hackers?

    The build stopped again (hour 47) to let me do more
    configuration, this time of the Ghostscript drivers. The
    instructions are that I shouldn't be too stingy, because some
    other port *might* fail unless it can find a certain driver, and
    that I should have fun with this new configuration style.

    For my inconvenience, nearly all the more than 200 (I lost count)
    entries were pre-checked. I had no idea that other FBSD
    installations were so well-supplied with printers; I feel
    positively deprived in only having one for my whole lan.

    Or perhaps the fun he urges me to have lies in going through and
    un-checking all those > 200 selections?

  11. Re: Is FreeBSD just a sandbox for hackers?

    Ranter wrote:
    > The build stopped again (hour 47) to let me do more
    > configuration, this time of the Ghostscript drivers. The
    > instructions are that I shouldn't be too stingy, because some
    > other port *might* fail unless it can find a certain driver, and
    > that I should have fun with this new configuration style.
    >
    > For my inconvenience, nearly all the more than 200 (I lost count)
    > entries were pre-checked. I had no idea that other FBSD
    > installations were so well-supplied with printers; I feel
    > positively deprived in only having one for my whole lan.
    >
    > Or perhaps the fun he urges me to have lies in going through and
    > un-checking all those > 200 selections?


    If you want handholding instead of a flexible operating system with a friendly
    licensed kernel, perhaps you should take a look at one of the many Linux
    distributions packed with "userfriendly" goo.

    I'm afraid you'll have to be prepared to put in a bit more effort if you want
    to use FreeBSD.

    - Philip

    --
    Philip Paeps Please don't email any replies
    philip@paeps.cx I follow the newsgroup.

    When you consider there are 24 hours in a day, it's
    sad to know that only one is called the happy hour.

  12. Re: Is FreeBSD just a sandbox for hackers?

    On 29 Oct 2008 15:22:16 GMT,
    Philip Paeps wrote:

    >Ranter wrote:
    >> The build stopped again (hour 47) to let me do more
    >> configuration, this time of the Ghostscript drivers. The
    >> instructions are that I shouldn't be too stingy, because some
    >> other port *might* fail unless it can find a certain driver, and
    >> that I should have fun with this new configuration style.
    >>
    >> For my inconvenience, nearly all the more than 200 (I lost count)
    >> entries were pre-checked. I had no idea that other FBSD
    >> installations were so well-supplied with printers; I feel
    >> positively deprived in only having one for my whole lan.
    >>
    >> Or perhaps the fun he urges me to have lies in going through and
    >> un-checking all those > 200 selections?

    >
    >If you want handholding instead of a flexible operating system with a friendly
    >licensed kernel, perhaps you should take a look at one of the many Linux
    >distributions packed with "userfriendly" goo.
    >
    >I'm afraid you'll have to be prepared to put in a bit more effort if you want
    >to use FreeBSD.


    To what combination of factors do YOU attribute Linux's success
    compared to FBSD, Philip?

    And are you comfortable with the prospect of a future in which
    FBSD is of no more importance than, say, Minix?

  13. Re: Is FreeBSD just a sandbox for hackers?

    In article <1c4hg4ddcskjg2c6t5la8n1tf5mkfnndbl@4ax.com>,
    Ranter writes:
    > On 29 Oct 2008 15:22:16 GMT,
    > Philip Paeps wrote:
    >
    >>Ranter wrote:
    >>> The build stopped again (hour 47) to let me do more
    >>> configuration, this time of the Ghostscript drivers. The
    >>> instructions are that I shouldn't be too stingy, because some
    >>> other port *might* fail unless it can find a certain driver, and
    >>> that I should have fun with this new configuration style.
    >>>
    >>> For my inconvenience, nearly all the more than 200 (I lost count)
    >>> entries were pre-checked. I had no idea that other FBSD
    >>> installations were so well-supplied with printers; I feel
    >>> positively deprived in only having one for my whole lan.
    >>>
    >>> Or perhaps the fun he urges me to have lies in going through and
    >>> un-checking all those > 200 selections?

    >>
    >>If you want handholding instead of a flexible operating system with a friendly
    >>licensed kernel, perhaps you should take a look at one of the many Linux
    >>distributions packed with "userfriendly" goo.
    >>
    >>I'm afraid you'll have to be prepared to put in a bit more effort if you want
    >>to use FreeBSD.

    >
    > To what combination of factors do YOU attribute Linux's success
    > compared to FBSD, Philip?


    I have asked this question of a lot of people. The answer is really
    simple. Marketing. The people pushing Linux are willing to push
    and push very hard. The people using (and behind) BSD aren't interested.
    They are happy to play with it and really don't care if it ever becomes
    the commercial success that Linux is. Sad really, when you consider that
    BSD has provavble technical superiority and a much more commercial
    friendly license than Linux.

    >
    > And are you comfortable with the prospect of a future in which
    > FBSD is of no more importance than, say, Minix?


    I would pfrefer somethign better, but I see no way it is going to
    change. Like many real commercial legacy products, the future of
    BSD is in the hands of people who don't care and afre not likely
    to change the status quo.

    bill

    --
    Bill Gunshannon | de-moc-ra-cy (di mok' ra see) n. Three wolves
    billg999@cs.scranton.edu | and a sheep voting on what's for dinner.
    University of Scranton |
    Scranton, Pennsylvania | #include

  14. Re: Is FreeBSD just a sandbox for hackers?

    On Wed, 29 Oct 2008 15:39:48 GMT, Ranter wrote:
    >On 29 Oct 2008 15:22:16 GMT, Philip Paeps wrote:
    >>Ranter wrote:
    >>> The build stopped again (hour 47) to let me do more configuration,
    >>> this time of the Ghostscript drivers. The instructions are that I
    >>> shouldn't be too stingy, because some other port *might* fail unless
    >>> it can find a certain driver, and that I should have fun with this
    >>> new configuration style.
    >>>
    >>> For my inconvenience, nearly all the more than 200 (I lost count)
    >>> entries were pre-checked. I had no idea that other FBSD
    >>> installations were so well-supplied with printers; I feel positively
    >>> deprived in only having one for my whole lan.
    >>>
    >>> Or perhaps the fun he urges me to have lies in going through and
    >>> un-checking all those > 200 selections?

    >>
    >> If you want handholding instead of a flexible operating system with a
    >> friendly licensed kernel, perhaps you should take a look at one of
    >> the many Linux distributions packed with "userfriendly" goo.
    >>
    >> I'm afraid you'll have to be prepared to put in a bit more effort if
    >> you want to use FreeBSD.

    >
    > To what combination of factors do YOU attribute Linux's success
    > compared to FBSD, Philip?
    >
    > And are you comfortable with the prospect of a future in which FBSD is
    > of no more importance than, say, Minix?


    You are obviously having problems with the installation of some ports.
    It looks like the questions are hiding among the large amounts of text
    you have already posted.

    One of the questions appears to be ``how do I get a framebuffer
    console?''. See the previous posts in the thread for an answer to that.

    If we can hold the ranting horses for a while, and you really want the
    remaining questions answered, maybe now it is a good time to write those
    questions instead of ranting about how wonderful some other OS is. It's
    not like everyone will happily jump around and say ``me, me, *I* am
    going to help this one'' if you make a bad start by offending all the
    people who develop FreeBSD and support FreeBSD users in this group by
    answering their questions.

    So, can we rewind a bit, and get to the *real* stuff?


  15. Re: Is FreeBSD just a sandbox for hackers?

    Well, after 50 hours and 48 minutes and a couple of
    near-sleepless nites for me, the build of Gnome "Lite"



    ....crashed.

    The totem-gstreamer module couldn't find a file it wanted, and
    had no idea how to continue gracefully.


    Now, before someone says that I should have had an inet
    connection open so it could go find the file, I'll just point out
    2 things:

    1) Not everyone has an inet connection, never mind one they can
    leave open for over 50 hours straight running; and

    2) Where I grew up, the last thing a development/porting team
    *always* did before handing off the bits was to check to make
    sure they could actually be installed, built, and run on an
    empty, minimalist system as per spec! It's bog-standard
    engineering practice.


    My memory says this kind of highly preventable error didn't
    happen during the early days, while Jordan was still heavily
    involved.

    Is my memory faulty?

    Or have standards slipped because these days there are too few
    people desperately trying to do too much?

  16. Re: Is FreeBSD just a sandbox for hackers?

    In article ,
    Ranter wrote:
    >My memory says this kind of highly preventable error didn't
    >happen during the early days, while Jordan was still heavily
    >involved.


    I think it had less to do with Jordan and more to do with
    cultural crap. There just wasn't a lot of behemothware
    around back then, and if Gnome is anything it's
    behemothware. The ports collection was a probably
    inevitable response to the mountain of crap out there, with
    its dependencies upon dependencies upon dependencies on
    things that aren't part of a standard Unix distribution.
    I've found it to be basically pretty brittle, with current
    versions of one thing depending on different, incompatible
    versions of something else. I don't use the ports
    collection much anymore because of it.

    I'm also recently back to FreeBSD again after years away
    (OpenBSD) and am more surprised by what's happened with the
    kernel. Where's my bdevsw[] and cdevsw[]? And the proc.h -
    holy cow. I know a lot of changes are there to support
    multicore processors and to provide better support for
    multiprocessing and I don't begrudge it in any way, but it's
    basically a huge, huge surprise.
    --
    Melinda Shore - Software longa, hardware brevis - shore@panix.com

    Prouder than ever to be a member of the reality-based community

  17. Re: Is FreeBSD just a sandbox for hackers?

    On Wed, 29 Oct 2008 18:28:25 +0200,
    Giorgos Keramidas wrote:

    >If we can hold the ranting horses for a while, and you really want the
    >remaining questions answered, maybe now it is a good time to write those
    >questions instead of ranting about how wonderful some other OS is. It's
    >not like everyone will happily jump around and say ``me, me, *I* am
    >going to help this one'' if you make a bad start by offending all the
    >people who develop FreeBSD and support FreeBSD users in this group by
    >answering their questions.
    >
    >So, can we rewind a bit, and get to the *real* stuff?


    Giorgos, I *haven't* been "ranting about how wonderful some
    other OS is". That's your mis-reading. I'm saying Linux is much
    more popular and better-supported than FBSD is, but it shouldn't
    be. Would you disagree with either part of that statement?

    I'm using my current experience with the software to try to make
    what I think is an important point about why FreeBSD - a
    fundmentally superior product - is falling further and further
    behind Linux in support, acceptance, sandbox size, and everything
    else. Philip and Torfinn are helping me illustrate my point,
    though not intentionally.

    If this trend continues, FBSD will eventually join Minix in the
    dustbin of history. I think that would be a *terrible* thing to
    happen. And a pretty stupid one, too, considering I believe that
    fate to be highly preventable.

    But pay no attention to me, talk to Bill Gunshannon. And perhaps
    Michel Talon. Bill certainly sees the problem; I believe Michel
    does, too, though he's been less-blunt about it.

  18. Re: Is FreeBSD just a sandbox for hackers?

    On Wed, 29 Oct 2008 20:12:12 +0000, Ranter wrote:

    > If this trend continues, FBSD will eventually join Minix in the dustbin
    > of history. I think that would be a *terrible* thing to happen. And a
    > pretty stupid one, too, considering I believe that fate to be highly
    > preventable.


    You've seen the "BSD is dying" meme on slashdot?

    BTW, perhaps in some of the 50-ish hours that you've been building GNOME,
    you might have noticed that both FreeBSD *and* all of the GNOME ports are
    available, pre-built as packages? Just like those linux distributions
    that you keep going on about. Sure, lots of BSD folk build from source.
    I know that I do. But the main reason that I do is so that the source is
    available for me to debug whatever it is, if I feel like it. I don't
    imagine that many people feel that particular need.

    Do the owners of the three-wheelers that you hanker to join feel that
    their vehicles are "dying", even though they are a much smaller group
    than the owners of, say, Toyotas?

    --
    Andrew

  19. Re: Is FreeBSD just a sandbox for hackers?

    If you don't want to do the work involved in using FreeBSD then STFU and go troll elsewhere, you moron.

    Ranter wrote:
    > Well, after 50 hours and 48 minutes and a couple of

    snip
    meaningless drivel

  20. Re: Is FreeBSD just a sandbox for hackers?

    On Wed, 29 Oct 2008 19:42:37 +0000, Ranter wrote:

    > My memory says this kind of highly preventable error didn't happen
    > during the early days, while Jordan was still heavily involved.
    >
    > Is my memory faulty?


    It's mostly because in the early days, FreeBSD was just a Unix, maybe
    with X and TWM if you felt like it. It ran fine on a 33MHz single-pipe
    processor with 4M of RAM, and would install on about an 40M disk. The
    kernel fit entirely into the bottom 640k chunk of memory, which
    simplified the boot process no end. There was no sense that a real-time
    media playing framework that could select from dozens of reverse-
    engineered or proprietary codecs on the fly was something that it should
    be able to do. At the time, the big argument (well, the most amusing
    one, anyway) was how to make the interrupt handler and scheduler fast
    enough, and real-time capable enough to deal with the very nasty
    constraints of the floppy disk controller without stalling the rest of
    the system (answer: "no" -- floppies still require spin loops in the
    driver I think, but I doubt that anyone has checked or cared for a very
    long time.)

    Your memory is faulty, though. There were plenty of ports that didn't
    build if you looked at them funny, or selected just the wrong options, or
    had the wrong things set in /etc/make.conf. Always have, always will.
    Use the pre-built packages if that bothers you.

    --
    Andrew

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