need help choosing appropriate BSD distro - BSD

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  1. need help choosing appropriate BSD distro

    (You may see a repeat of this message on some of the related BSD
    newsgroups since there are a few different distros out there of BSD).

    I have this scenario. I am considering trying a version of BSD instead
    of Linux.

    Old Dell laptop, about 3.5 Gigs of space available on a small hard
    drive. No option to add a larger hard drive at this time, no
    additional investment can be made right now. Processor speed is 300
    mhz (Pentium II), memory 380 something MB.

    I have tried Ubuntu and Dreamlinux, both of which recognize my
    wireless card, a Netgear WG511T.

    The problem is that the version of Wine that installs with these locks
    up the system. To use my preferred Email/Newsgroup reader program,
    Agent, I need to have a Windows "emulator" like Wine to install and
    use my program. So, even though those two distros support my hardware,
    something is incompatible with Wine. I do have a dual-boot setup with
    Windows 98 SE but prefer to stay out of there if I can.

    Wine works fine in Ubuntu on my desktop, so that's probably what I'll
    stick with on that computer.

    First, is there a Windows emulator that works with BSD like it does in
    Linux?

    Is it different or the same program (Wine)?

    Second, does any of the BSD distros support wireless cards "out of the
    box"? To be successful I have to have a wireless connection working
    right away (after entering the WEP key). I won't be able to download
    support programs for the wireless card since I won't be able to
    connect to the Internet. I would, however, be able to do so with the
    desktop computer, but I don't think I can count on sending anythng
    over the home network (perhaps on a CDROM using sneakernet).

    Any comments on tis, suggestions on which distro to try, or am I out
    on both counts (Windows emulation and wireless card support)?

    Donald

  2. Re: need help choosing appropriate BSD distro

    t2000kw@nospam.invalid wrote:
    > (You may see a repeat of this message on some of the related BSD
    > newsgroups since there are a few different distros out there of BSD).


    Those are not 'distros' [1], and if you want to post to more than one
    group, you should crosspost, not multipost.

    > I have this scenario. I am considering trying a version of BSD instead
    > of Linux.
    >
    > Old Dell laptop, about 3.5 Gigs of space available on a small hard
    > drive. No option to add a larger hard drive at this time, no
    > additional investment can be made right now. Processor speed is 300
    > mhz (Pentium II), memory 380 something MB.
    >
    > I have tried Ubuntu and Dreamlinux, both of which recognize my
    > wireless card, a Netgear WG511T.


    See http://www.openbsd.org/i386.html to find out what hardware is
    supported (this particular one is a good example of why product numbers
    don't mean anything in the wireless world, so do look at the page).

    > The problem is that the version of Wine that installs with these locks
    > up the system. To use my preferred Email/Newsgroup reader program,
    > Agent, I need to have a Windows "emulator" like Wine to install and
    > use my program. So, even though those two distros support my hardware,
    > something is incompatible with Wine. I do have a dual-boot setup with
    > Windows 98 SE but prefer to stay out of there if I can.
    >
    > Wine works fine in Ubuntu on my desktop, so that's probably what I'll
    > stick with on that computer.
    >
    > First, is there a Windows emulator that works with BSD like it does in
    > Linux?
    >
    > Is it different or the same program (Wine)?


    Old versions of WINE worked with OpenBSD; newer versions do not,
    although some work is being done to fix that.

    An alternative is some form of virtualization-ish solution; on OpenBSD,
    the easiest way to do that is installing qemu and installing Windows in
    the virtual machine.

    Do note that qemu is rather slow even on a good day, and even slower on
    systems where the kernel component (kqemu) is not supported - systems
    such as Open- and NetBSD.

    > Second, does any of the BSD distros support wireless cards "out of the
    > box"? To be successful I have to have a wireless connection working
    > right away (after entering the WEP key). I won't be able to download
    > support programs for the wireless card since I won't be able to
    > connect to the Internet. I would, however, be able to do so with the
    > desktop computer, but I don't think I can count on sending anythng
    > over the home network (perhaps on a CDROM using sneakernet).


    That's nonsense, if you can use one of CD-ROM or a USB stick, or even
    floppies, you should be able to complete a install without needing an
    internet connection.

    > Any comments on tis, suggestions on which distro to try, or am I out
    > on both counts (Windows emulation and wireless card support)?


    Try Ubuntu or FreeBSD. OpenBSD is a very good system, but it's not
    primarily focused on the desktop experience, and it doesn't have a
    really good Windows solution. If you ever need a secure, stable,
    well-documented system, though...

    Joachim

    [1] Unlike Linux distributions, which use pretty much the same software
    and are differentiated by default settings, some administrator tools,
    and the package system, the *BSDs have - sometimes very - different
    code. The closest thing to a 'BSD distribution' would be something like
    PC-BSD, which is a FreeBSD clone for the desktop and does share almost
    all code with FreeBSD.

  3. Re: need help choosing appropriate BSD distro

    On 19 Jun 2007 07:38:37 GMT, "Joachim Schipper"
    wrote:

    >Those are not 'distros' [1], and if you want to post to more than one
    >group, you should crosspost, not multipost.


    I haven't had the need to crosspost before, so I don't know how to do
    that. Multiposting appeared to be a reasonable alternative. If I have
    the need in the future to do this I'll look into how to do this. In
    many other groups, crossposting is viewed as something you "should"
    not do. But thanks for the tip.

    As for the term "distros," someone in another newsgroup tipped me off
    that many in this community don't like to refer to the different
    branches of BSD as distros, even though that's what the D in BSD is
    all about. Go figure!

    I do realize that there is a difference between what a branch of BSD
    is all about and what a Linux distro is about. Linux is a kernel and
    the "distribution" is how everything is packaged.

    With BSD, it's a complete OS.

    I do find it a bit humorous that the people who started it all
    referred to their implementation of a Unix-compatible OS as a
    distribution (and still do, since they haven't changed the name of
    it):

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/BSD

    (Berkeley Software Distribution)

  4. Re: need help choosing appropriate BSD distro

    On Wed, 20 Jun 2007 17:59:20 -0400, t2000k wrote:

    > I haven't had the need to crosspost before, so I don't know how to do
    > that. Multiposting appeared to be a reasonable alternative. If I have
    > the need in the future to do this I'll look into how to do this. In
    > many other groups, crossposting is viewed as something you "should"
    > not do. But thanks for the tip.


    The groups where cross-posting is frowned upon are generally Windows
    groups and those people are too ignorant and too dedicated to the
    Microsfot way of refusing to follow net standards.

    See the appropriate RFC, section 3.1.3 NetNews Guidelines where it is
    clearly stated:

    - If you feel an article will be of interest to more than one
    Newsgroup, be sure to CROSSPOST the article rather than individually
    post it to those groups. In general, probably only five-to-six
    groups will have similar enough interests to warrant this.

    http://www.faqs.org/rfcs/rfc1855.html



  5. Re: need help choosing appropriate BSD distro

    t2000kw@nospam.invalid wrote:
    > On 19 Jun 2007 07:38:37 GMT, "Joachim Schipper"
    > wrote:
    >
    >>Those are not 'distros' [1], and if you want to post to more than one
    >>group, you should crosspost, not multipost.

    >
    > I haven't had the need to crosspost before, so I don't know how to do
    > that. Multiposting appeared to be a reasonable alternative. If I have
    > the need in the future to do this I'll look into how to do this. In
    > many other groups, crossposting is viewed as something you "should"
    > not do. But thanks for the tip.


    Okay, not a problem.

    > As for the term "distros," someone in another newsgroup tipped me off
    > that many in this community don't like to refer to the different
    > branches of BSD as distros, even though that's what the D in BSD is
    > all about. Go figure!


    That's true, but that word is used in the Linux community and not in the
    BSD community, and it means something else for Linux guys. Hence the
    correction. But I see it was unnecessary.

    Feel free to post back if you need more advice!

    Joachim

  6. Re: need help choosing appropriate BSD distro

    On 21 Jun 2007 20:13:15 GMT, "Joachim Schipper"
    wrote:


    >Feel free to post back if you need more advice!
    >
    > Joachim


    Thanks!

    It will take me a while to pick up on the different terms (and why
    those terms were chosen) but I'm learning.

    Just a comment--I tried installing PC-BSD this evening in a small
    partition, just short of 4 GB. It said it needed 4 GB minimum, and I
    will be giving it that, but wouldn't it be nice for two things to
    happen before you get to that point?

    1. Tell me as it loads the GUI and before I enter lots of information
    that I don't have enough space. If it can check after all of that is
    entered, it can surely check before!

    2. Give me an opportunity to change the partition sizes by offering me
    some control over partitioning, like Linux (usually) does. Maybe even
    give me the opportunity to shrink my Windows partition like the Linux
    partition manager Gparted does. I realize that BSD is not Linux, even
    though they both emulate Unix to some extent, and neither of these are
    Windows (fortunately!). But this seems to be a simple thing.

    If I end up liking BSD, maybe I'll get involved in the development
    testing of it like a friend of mine does for Ubuntu. Then your ideas
    can make a difference before the next release comes out. (I did that
    for Windows NT and then 95 through XP.)

    I'm going to give it another go, and also perhaps try a few different
    ones before I either settle on one branch (?) of BSD or give up and
    expand my Windows partition on that laptop. At least if I don't like
    any of them, I can get rid of the boot menu by booting a Windows
    startup disk to dos and dong an fdisk /mbr on drive C to restore the
    master boot record to the way it was before.

  7. Re: need help choosing appropriate BSD distro

    t2000kw@nospam.invalid wrote:
    > On 21 Jun 2007 20:13:15 GMT, "Joachim Schipper"
    > wrote:
    >
    >
    >>Feel free to post back if you need more advice!
    >>
    >> Joachim

    >
    > Thanks!
    >
    > It will take me a while to pick up on the different terms (and why
    > those terms were chosen) but I'm learning.
    >
    > Just a comment--I tried installing PC-BSD this evening in a small
    > partition, just short of 4 GB. It said it needed 4 GB minimum, and I
    > will be giving it that, but wouldn't it be nice for two things to
    > happen before you get to that point?
    >
    > 1. Tell me as it loads the GUI and before I enter lots of information
    > that I don't have enough space. If it can check after all of that is
    > entered, it can surely check before!


    > I'm going to give it another go, and also perhaps try a few different
    > ones before I either settle on one branch (?) of BSD or give up and
    > expand my Windows partition on that laptop. At least if I don't like
    > any of them, I can get rid of the boot menu by booting a Windows
    > startup disk to dos and dong an fdisk /mbr on drive C to restore the
    > master boot record to the way it was before.


    As noted, PC-BSD is not OpenBSD. But yes, that complaint would be valid.

    The OpenBSD installer will cheerfully allow you to overlap two
    disklabel'ed slices and place a third smack in your Windows partition,
    only to tell you that they're not large enough to unpack the tarballs.
    But you'll have to work harder to do something like that than to do
    something sane, and OpenBSD doesn't claim to be particularly
    newbie-friendly [1].

    Joachim

    [1] To the extent that OpenBSD is easy, that's mostly a consequence of
    good design. See the OpenBSD installer versus Ubuntu/Red Hat/...'s
    (simple, textual/complex, graphical), or OpenBSD's IPsec vs Linux'
    (simple and powerful configuration/configuring IPsec on Linux is about
    as much fun as writing a novel using ed, which is to say it can be done
    but it's not the right tool for the job).

  8. Re: need help choosing appropriate BSD distro

    On 22 Jun 2007 17:31:15 GMT, "Joachim Schipper"
    wrote:

    >As noted, PC-BSD is not OpenBSD. But yes, that complaint would be valid.


    Speaking of OpenBSD, is there an installation iso file to burn on a
    CD? I see lots of files, some iso files, but nothing very large.

    In this directory (or do BSD users call them folders?) on one of the
    US mirrors :

    /pub/OpenBSD/4.1/i386

    the largest file is under 100 MB.

    And I don't see an "installation" iso image. Maybe I'm looking in the
    wrong place, though.

    Is this an OS that you have to boot with one disk, piece things
    together from another disk or two, etc.?

    Or is there a simple way to install it? I don't need a live CD (would
    be nice, though) but would prefer to not have to learn a lot of things
    just to install it. From the installation instructions on the web
    site, it does not look easy and it looks like it might wipe out
    everything on the hard drive if I understand the wording of the
    instructions:

    "Install: load OpenBSD onto the system, overwriting whatever may have
    been there. Note that it is possible to leave some partitions
    untouched in this process, such as a /home, but otherwise, assume
    everything else is overwritten."

    I'll hold off on doing anything with this until I hear about how to do
    this properly without overwriting everything on the disk. All I want
    to destroy is my second (/) and third partition (/swap) on the drive.

  9. Re: need help choosing appropriate BSD distro

    In article <7n2p73tj9u62sjcm0ho6l7mpl2qifndcr6@4ax.com>,
    wrote:
    >On 22 Jun 2007 17:31:15 GMT, "Joachim Schipper"
    > wrote:
    >
    >>As noted, PC-BSD is not OpenBSD. But yes, that complaint would be valid.

    >
    >Speaking of OpenBSD, is there an installation iso file to burn on a
    >CD? I see lots of files, some iso files, but nothing very large.
    >
    >In this directory (or do BSD users call them folders?) on one of the
    >US mirrors :
    >
    >/pub/OpenBSD/4.1/i386
    >
    >the largest file is under 100 MB.
    >
    >And I don't see an "installation" iso image. Maybe I'm looking in the
    >wrong place, though.


    Go read the FAQ on the website.

    The `official' full CD is sold. It's fairly easy to rebuild something similar
    from the provided files, though just read the instructions.

    It's often not necessary to create a full CD to install, provided you have
    net access. In fact, with modern machines, if you have access to a box that
    can act as tftp, just netboot.

  10. Re: need help choosing appropriate BSD distro

    t2000kw@nospam.invalid wrote:
    > On 22 Jun 2007 17:31:15 GMT, "Joachim Schipper"
    > wrote:
    >>As noted, PC-BSD is not OpenBSD. But yes, that complaint would be valid.

    >
    > Speaking of OpenBSD, is there an installation iso file to burn on a
    > CD? I see lots of files, some iso files, but nothing very large.
    >
    > In this directory (or do BSD users call them folders?) on one of the
    > US mirrors :
    >
    > /pub/OpenBSD/4.1/i386
    >
    > the largest file is under 100 MB.


    I call that a directory, and yes - as already noted, the CDs are not
    available for download. You can do a net install with the floppy or
    various CD-ish things in that directory, though, and you'll end up with
    the same system.

    > Is this an OS that you have to boot with one disk, piece things
    > together from another disk or two, etc.?


    No, using some mechanism for booting an install disk (either one of the
    CD images in the directory above, or a floppy) and doing a net install
    works just fine. It does give you time to make lunch, though.

    > Or is there a simple way to install it? I don't need a live CD (would
    > be nice, though) but would prefer to not have to learn a lot of things
    > just to install it. From the installation instructions on the web
    > site, it does not look easy and it looks like it might wipe out
    > everything on the hard drive if I understand the wording of the
    > instructions:
    >
    > "Install: load OpenBSD onto the system, overwriting whatever may have
    > been there. Note that it is possible to leave some partitions
    > untouched in this process, such as a /home, but otherwise, assume
    > everything else is overwritten."


    On i386, and some other architectures, the disk is divided into parts
    twice. First, you have the division into what DOS, Windows or Linux
    would call partitions; and then, in the chosen DOS-partition, OpenBSD
    writes a so-called disklabel, which divides up that DOS-partition into
    what I will, for the sake of this discussion, call BSD-partitions [1].

    It takes some work to install without doing bad things to the
    BSD-partitions, but unless you answer yes to 'use *all* of wd0 for
    OpenBSD' or do something obviously stupid there is no real danger to
    your DOS-partitions.

    By the way, things like wd0a, wd0d refer to BSD-partitions. To help with
    interoperability, non-disklabel partions (DOS-partitions) might show up
    in the disklabel, typically as BSD-partition 'i'. For instance, a USB
    key will usually be mounted as sd0i (umass(4), the USB mass storage
    driver, uses the scsi(4) layer, hence 's').

    > I'll hold off on doing anything with this until I hear about how to do
    > this properly without overwriting everything on the disk. All I want
    > to destroy is my second (/) and third partition (/swap) on the drive.


    See above - OpenBSD will use only one DOS-partition, and divide that up
    on it's own. So you'll want to delete one of those partitions and
    allocate the rest to OpenBSD.

    The above is broadly applicable to Free- and NetBSD too, but details
    might differ; I'm not familiar enough with either system to be sure.

    Joachim

    [1] Which should not be misinterpreted to mean that all BSDs use the
    same disk label; the idea is of course very similar, but OpenBSD cannot
    read FreeBSD disk labels (and will do really strange things if you try),
    &c.

  11. Re: need help choosing appropriate BSD distro

    On Sat, 23 Jun 2007 10:55:50 +0000 (UTC), espie@lain.home (Marc Espie)
    wrote:

    >The `official' full CD is sold. It's fairly easy to rebuild something similar
    >from the provided files, though just read the instructions.


    As I mentioned, I'm not comfortable with the instructions on the web
    site--I have looked them over already, feel that it's vague in some
    places or I don't understand what it's telling me to do, so I really
    don't want to go that route.

    My requirement for an OS is that it should at least install without
    much tinkering. Customizing it to work better, installing programs,
    etc., would of course need to be done, but if I need to hack or
    tinker, I'll hack or tinker with Linux since I have a fair amount of
    time invested in that OS already. I'll leave the hacking and
    tinkering, compiling, etc. to the more experienced people who have the
    time to do the research and don't require that the OS work right "out
    of the box" and have an installation CD image available. There are
    plenty of more capable people out there that can work with things that
    aren't they way they need them to be out of the box.

    Don't get me wrong, here--I have read a lot on Linux, much of the
    Linux documentation project docs in book format and most of the Ubuntu
    Linux Bible, both very thick books. I don't want to invest the time in
    something that I suspect might lead me to a dead and still not meet my
    requirements for an OS. Ubuntu Linux already does, at least on my
    desktop PC.

    I'm just trying to see if BSD is ready for prime time, and maybe a
    couple branches of it are there or are close (like Ubuntu is with
    Linux, but definitely not ready for the masses yet!), but I haven't
    tried enough of them to give up yet. I'd like to give BSD a fair
    chance before giving up on it. And one of the BSDs recognizes my
    wireless card and Agent runs under Wine on it, I would be willing to
    learn more at that point in time.

    >
    >It's often not necessary to create a full CD to install, provided you have
    >net access. In fact, with modern machines, if you have access to a box that
    >can act as tftp, just netboot.


    You're way over my head with the last few terms, but the net access
    would be on the Ubuntu PC (or XP if I boot to it instead here). The
    laptop doesn't have a burner and I don't have things set up to easily
    share files between it and the desktop computer, so it wouldn't be
    able to connect and get files from here if that's what you're
    suggesting. There are problems that the help forums haven't been able
    to figure out (I do have printer sharing working, though).

    If instead you are suggesting to install a small version of a BSD
    branch on the laptop, get net access, then download something from
    there, I do have one option if my wireless card is not supported--I
    have a USB Ethernet adapter and an extra cable to go to the router.
    But I don't want to be stuck with using that as it doesn't meet my
    requirements for portability.

    I can FTP but never used something called TFTP, nor netboot. If
    netboot requires the laptop to be network connected then it's a
    catch-22 situation. I have network access in Windows 98 on the laptop.
    I have a 4 GB partition with PC-BSD on it that I will wipe out soon
    since it doesn't support my network card. I'm not sure how to get
    something on the partition without using an installation CD.

    Again, if it's that complicated, maybe I'll just try a different
    branch of BSD that has a working install CD iso available. If there's
    a step-by-step procedure that doesn't take hours of research to figure
    out (and there are some poorly-written how-to's out there!), I can
    take a look at it and consider if it's worth trying. But if Open BSD
    is really based on another branch of BSD, the other one would probably
    be as likely to support my hardware, shouldn't it? And if that other
    one has an install iso CD image, I can try that out instead.

    A newer laptop is in my future (not sure when, though), and that
    should give me the ability to run Ubuntu Linux on it and have Wine
    working as it does on the desktop PC (hopefully, at least!). I can
    wait if necessary.

  12. Re: need help choosing appropriate BSD distro

    On 23 Jun 2007 11:57:28 GMT, "Joachim Schipper"
    wrote:

    >No, using some mechanism for booting an install disk (either one of the
    >CD images in the directory above, or a floppy) and doing a net install
    >works just fine. It does give you time to make lunch, though.


    I see an iso image on the file mirrors, but it's only 4.9 megabytes. I
    doubt that it would have support to get me online with the wireless
    card. Looks like another catch-22 situation here. Without net access,
    I can't do the net install. Without the net install, I don't have
    network card support.

    I do have a USB Ethernet adapter, but if I could get it to work with
    an install disk, I wouldn't want to end up with having to use it or go
    to all that trouble and find out after all that I still can't use my
    wireless card and then have to wipe out the BSD partition to either
    try something else or reallocate the space for Windows.

    There are some other non-iso files but I wouldn't know what to do with
    them once I opened the archives, and they also don't look big enough
    to have the stuff to support my wireless network card to get me online
    for a net install.

    Can the net install be done from Windows to the blank partition
    without messing up Windows? That might be a way to do it if it's
    possible to do in the first place. Windows does recognize my wireless
    card (though it wasn't as painless as with Ubuntu or SuSE, believe it
    or not).

  13. Re: need help choosing appropriate BSD distro

    t2000kw@nospam.invalid writes:

    > I see an iso image on the file mirrors, but it's only 4.9 megabytes. I
    > doubt that it would have support to get me online with the wireless
    > card. Looks like another catch-22 situation here. Without net access,
    > I can't do the net install. Without the net install, I don't have
    > network card support.


    Instead of all this hand wringing why not burn a copy of the install
    CD, boot using the burned CD, and see if it supports your network card.
    It may. It supports a lot. On the wireless side the install CD
    supports

    # Atheros AR5k (802.11a/b/g)
    # ADMtek ADM8211 (802.11)
    # WaveLAN IEEE 802.11DS
    # Aironet IEEE 802.11DS
    # Raylink Aviator2.4/Pro 802.11FH
    # Ralink RT2500/RT2501/RT2600
    # Realtek 8180

    for the i386 (since you say laptop I assume you are running
    i386).

    > I do have a USB Ethernet adapter, but if I could get it to work with
    > an install disk, I wouldn't want to end up with having to use it or go
    > to all that trouble and find out after all that I still can't use my
    > wireless card and then have to wipe out the BSD partition to either
    > try something else or reallocate the space for Windows.


    Again, just try it. It takes maybe 30-45 seconds to boot the disk and the
    dmesg will tell you if the network card is detected and supported. If
    not then you've wasted less time than it took you to send the various
    messages to usenet.

    // marc

  14. Re: need help choosing appropriate BSD distro

    On 23 Jun 2007 18:59:59 -0700, Marco S Hyman wrote:

    >
    >Instead of all this hand wringing why not burn a copy of the install
    >CD, boot using the burned CD, and see if it supports your network card.
    >It may. It supports a lot. On the wireless side the install CD
    >supports . . .


    I would if I could--that's not the issue. To save you from reading
    back through this thread, this is the gist of the problem:

    From what I see there is no "install CD" iso image to obtain and I'd
    have to find a way to make a custom install CD. Another person said
    that the only way to get an official install CD is to buy one, but I
    don't want to take the chance. Some of the BSD branches offer install
    CDs.

    I have an Atheros card and NetBSD appears to support it (the lights
    were blinking), but it ran out of room after switching between disc 1
    and 2 fourteen times to install some software packages. (I gave it 4
    GB to use.)

    Here's where I checked for a full install CD iso image:

    http://mirror.planetunix.net/pub/OpenBSD/4.1/i386/

    I see none. Some of the titles appear to be install CDs but take a
    look at the file size and you'll see what I see.

    There are one or two more BSDs to try yet before I give up on it.

  15. Re: need help choosing appropriate BSD distro

    t2000kw@nospam.invalid writes:

    > >Instead of all this hand wringing why not burn a copy of the install
    > >CD, boot using the burned CD, and see if it supports your network card.
    > >It may. It supports a lot. On the wireless side the install CD
    > >supports . . .

    >
    > I would if I could--that's not the issue. To save you from reading
    > back through this thread, this is the gist of the problem:


    It is the issue. You don't understand. The ISO you see on line
    *is* the install CD. Boot it. It either works or it doesn't.
    The CD contains a version of the OS that runs out of a ram disk.
    That version of the OS will either support your network device or
    it wont. If it doesn't support your device reset the machine
    and throw the CD away. You've wasted maybe 10 minutes of time.

    If it does support your network device then the only think you
    need in addition to that CD to install openbsd is a network connection.

    It is that simple.

    The hard part is in disk partitioning/labeling without screwing
    up other operating systems on the same disk.


    // marc

  16. Re: need help choosing appropriate BSD distro

    On Sat, 23 Jun 2007 23:23:59 -0400, t2000k wrote:

    > From what I see there is no "install CD" iso image to obtain and I'd
    > have to find a way to make a custom install CD.


    That is correct, unless you buy the CD set. OTOH, creating an image
    containing the install sets is trivial.

    > Another person said
    > that the only way to get an official install CD is to buy one, but I
    > don't want to take the chance. Some of the BSD branches offer install
    > CDs.


    If you refuse to learn how to create a bootable ISO image, buy the CD set
    or perform an FTP install then that is your best option.

    > Here's where I checked for a full install CD iso image:
    >
    > http://mirror.planetunix.net/pub/OpenBSD/4.1/i386/


    Those are the basic set of files used to create a CD image.

    > I see none. Some of the titles appear to be install CDs but take a
    > look at the file size and you'll see what I see.


    Had you even bothered to read the FAQ, as previously recommended, you
    would have seen descriptions of those files.

    > There are one or two more BSDs to try yet before I give up on it.


    Perhaps you should just stay with your click and drool Linux and Windows.


  17. Re: need help choosing appropriate BSD distro

    t2000kw@nospam.invalid wrote:
    > On 23 Jun 2007 18:59:59 -0700, Marco S Hyman wrote:
    >
    >> Instead of all this hand wringing why not burn a copy of the install
    >> CD, boot using the burned CD, and see if it supports your network card.
    >> It may. It supports a lot. On the wireless side the install CD
    >> supports . . .

    >
    > I would if I could--that's not the issue. To save you from reading
    > back through this thread, this is the gist of the problem:
    >
    > From what I see there is no "install CD" iso image to obtain and I'd
    > have to find a way to make a custom install CD. Another person said
    > that the only way to get an official install CD is to buy one, but I
    > don't want to take the chance. Some of the BSD branches offer install
    > CDs.
    >
    > I have an Atheros card and NetBSD appears to support it (the lights
    > were blinking), but it ran out of room after switching between disc 1
    > and 2 fourteen times to install some software packages. (I gave it 4
    > GB to use.)
    >
    > Here's where I checked for a full install CD iso image:
    >
    > http://mirror.planetunix.net/pub/OpenBSD/4.1/i386/
    >
    > I see none. Some of the titles appear to be install CDs but take a
    > look at the file size and you'll see what I see.
    >
    > There are one or two more BSDs to try yet before I give up on it.

    _____
    Please don't be too hasty!

    I started using OBSD at release 2.6 after RedHat Linux v6.2 and later
    v9.0 about 2000. I used OBSD for a firewall initially. The OBSD
    firewall ran perfectly for six years, and only last fall 2006 i changed
    over to OBSD release 3.9. The firewall performance was so good that i
    decided to use OBSD as my main desktop workstation as well. Read on.

    The best way to figure out how to get going with OBSD is to fetch a copy
    of the boot CD iso (release 4.1), and burn a copy, or instead, fetch a
    copy of the boot floppy (release 4.1) image (if your computer still has
    a floppy drive) and cut a floppy boot disk. I suggest that you practice
    installing OBSD on a machine that has a) a separate hard disk (2 to 4
    Gb) you can afford to clobber (e.g. play with), and b) a supported NIC
    (wireless or otherwise). While reading the (very good) info on the OBSD
    web site on another machine, go through the motions of the installation
    process. You will soon learn how that works. I can now install a base
    system via FTP in less than 20 minutes of actual time in front of the
    machine. You can do the same. I support the OBSD group and purchase an
    official CD about every two years. Most of my installs are via ftp.

    Customising the system so that it becomes a nice workstation (if that is
    your goal) takes some time. You you need to be prepared to spend
    another half day or so to install the various packages you want to use.
    There is a good write up on the net about how to build a good
    workstation. I have modified that procedure a bit, and it is somewhere
    on my system. If you want a copy, i would be more than happy to post it
    on my web server. Your knowledge of Linux will be very valuable in the
    OBSD case.

    If you want to dual boot, say, Windows 2K, XP and OBSD, have a look at
    GAG. That works for me since i use two hard disks in the same machine.
    OBSD is rock solid, easy to understand, and can run Linux binaries
    directly such as OpenOffice. The latter (OO) may now be available as a
    package under OBSD. I saw some notes about that some time ago, but have
    not checked yet.

    There are several really good window managers you can try. I prefer my
    own heavily customised version of fvwm2 (which is the default window
    manager with OBSD). I also tried fluxbox, and like it as well. It has
    features that come from the Windows environment.

    Good luck.
    --
    Regards / JCH

  18. Re: need help choosing appropriate BSD distro

    --{ jch a plopé ceci: }--

    > There is a good write up on the net about how to build a good
    > workstation. I have modified that procedure a bit, and it is somewhere
    > on my system. If you want a copy, i would be more than happy to post it
    > on my web server.


    Please, do that... I'm relatively new to Open, and just run it
    in textmode on headless computers. Now, I'm thinking about
    switching one of my laptop from Debian to Open as a workstation.

    Merci d'avance.

    --
    dans tous les cas mon but du jeu devait consister à se passer de
    la problématique de la factorisation une histoire de calculateur
    phantasmagorique.
    --{ remy, in fr.misc.cryptologie "restons cryptique" }--

  19. Re: need help choosing appropriate BSD distro

    t2000kw@nospam.invalid wrote:

    > I would if I could--that's not the issue. To save you from reading
    > back through this thread, this is the gist of the problem:


    If you had simply read the installation instructions of any of the BSDs
    on which groups you are saying and asking the same things again and
    again, you would have already had success on installing them.

    --
    Saludos,
    Angel

  20. Re: need help choosing appropriate BSD distro

    t2000kw@nospam.invalid wrote:
    > On Sat, 23 Jun 2007 10:55:50 +0000 (UTC), espie@lain.home (Marc Espie)
    > wrote:
    > <...> And one of the BSDs recognizes my
    > wireless card and Agent runs under Wine on it, I would be willing to
    > learn more at that point in time.


    Then skip OpenBSD. I said it at the beginning of this whole venture, and
    I'll say it again - if you have a requirement to run WIndows programs
    tolerably well, try Linux or FreeBSD.

    >>It's often not necessary to create a full CD to install, provided you have
    >>net access. In fact, with modern machines, if you have access to a box that
    >>can act as tftp, just netboot.


    > But if Open BSD
    > is really based on another branch of BSD, the other one would probably
    > be as likely to support my hardware, shouldn't it? And if that other
    > one has an install iso CD image, I can try that out instead.


    OpenBSD could be considered a NetBSD fork, but you'll have to go Linux
    or FreeBSD for the installer.

    However, installing OpenBSD isn't *that* difficult: see the FAQ,
    http://www.openbsd.org/faq/faq4.html.

    Joachim

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