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In other words, I'm a bit curious about FreeBSD. I downloaded and burned the two 6.0 i386 iso disc's. I already have Gentoo 2005.1 installed on my laptop which is ...
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  1. #1
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    To BSD or not BSD, that is the question??


    In other words, I'm a bit curious about FreeBSD. I downloaded and burned the two 6.0 i386 iso disc's. I already have Gentoo 2005.1 installed on my laptop which is what I'm writing this on, I've been using Gentoo for about a year now. I know that Gentoo has adopted some of it's package management functionality from FreeBSD's own "ports" package management system. Ultimately, I would eventually like to be thouroughly experienced with Gentoo, Debian, Slackware, and FreeBSD. So now I will get to the point, as far as learning curves go, is FreeBSD one of those distros that you should really do your homework on before attempting to tackle it or not???

    I have two spare desktops and I'm installing Slackware 10.2 on one of them and I was thinking of installing FreeBSD 6.0 on the other...

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    freebsd is very nice, it is focused on the desktop and is pretty speedy id sick with gentoo if i were you though, or even beter, debain
    Last edited by techieMoe; 12-22-2005 at 04:38 PM.

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    Linux Guru anomie's Avatar
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    OP wrote:
    So now I will get to the point, as far as learning curves go, is FreeBSD one of those distros that you should really do your homework on before attempting to tackle it or not???
    Yes, you will want to do your homework first. FreeBSD epitomizes RTFM, IMO. There is a very good FreeBSD handbook here to help you: http://www.freebsd.org/doc/en_US.ISO...ooks/handbook/

    And two good books (if you don't mind spending $$) that I recommend are:
    • The Complete FreeBSD, by Greg Lehey
    • FreeBSD Unleashed, by Michael Urban and Brian Tiemann


    Good luck, and don't give up.
    Last edited by techieMoe; 12-22-2005 at 04:39 PM.

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    Linux User Stefann's Avatar
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    Even though I don't use BSD, I'm sure you can do it with the right help and documentation. Always RTFM
    Last edited by techieMoe; 12-22-2005 at 04:42 PM.
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    Linux User George Harrison's Avatar
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    Thumbs down

    FreeBSD is pretty cool but do your homework (the fbsd handbook is the best) and do a lot of reading. Don't go into #freebsd asking a question that can be answered with documentation, people really hate that, especially geeks on #freebsd.

    FreeBSD isn't scary, it's easy and beats out Gentoo IMO. If you're looking for maybe a challenging yet rewarding system FreeBSD is the way to go. Good luck.
    Last edited by techieMoe; 12-22-2005 at 04:43 PM.
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    Linux Guru techieMoe's Avatar
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    Smile

    I've played with FreeBSD and NetBSD, and for me personally, FreeBSD is the closest to what I want in an operating system. It's more desktop-focused and supports more of my hardware. That being said, none of the BSDs I've tried do everything I want, and I don't really consider them up to par (from a desktop perspective) with most of the top 5 Linuxes at the moment. Your mileage may vary. Give them a shot. You might like them.
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    FreeBSD - homework requirements ...

    well, the amount of the homework requirement will depend upon what type of FreeBSD installation that you want.

    Since you burned a couple .iso files onto CDR media, you will run the FreeBSD installer, which will be a no-brainer for a basic text mode setup. If the goal is a basic "text mode setup" for a web server, for instance, FreeBSD will practically install itself!

    If you want a graphical user environment, then FreeBSD will require a little more homework. You will have to know about xorg configurations, window manager configurations, and so forth. A lot of the graphically oriented setup will be a manual operation. FreeBSD can be made to do almost anything with a little work, but for a "look - no hands ma" type of installation you could try PC-BSD, which is FreeBSD with a more automated GUI environment setup.

    Some of the things that are still a pain to do in FreeBSD are mostly GUI and multi-media oriented. For instance, I have a working native mode Real-Networks RealPlayer on my FreeBSD machine, but the setup requirements were pretty close to what I would call ridiculous, as compared to many Linux distros.

    I have the Gnome environment, Nautilus, Metacity, AbiWord, Anjuta C++ IDE, Mozilla, Opera, Acrobat and a host of other graphics mode applications installed from the ports, but a few of them required some manual intervention during the port building process.

    Everybody has their favorite, and despite some of the shortcomings that might be found in FreeBSD, it is absolutely my favorite operating system.

    - rleesBSD

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    Wow, thanks for the input guy's, I always appreciate getting different perspectives based on other people's experiences. However, I have another question. Judging from most of the literature that I've read about FreeBSD, it seems as if this OS is better suited for server use as opposed to desktop use, would you guys agree or disagree and why?

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    Linux Guru anomie's Avatar
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    Judging from most of the literature that I've read about FreeBSD, it seems as if this OS is better suited for server use as opposed to desktop use, would you guys agree or disagree and why?
    FreeBSD is a solid, well-established server operating system. It has also made huge progress, IMO, as a desktop OS, and it is what I use at home.

    I can think of no reason not to run it as your primary desktop (at least to give it a try). As I mentioned, read the materials on this thread because it is different than Linux in many ways.

    ... despite some of the shortcomings that might be found in FreeBSD, it is absolutely my favorite operating system.
    Cheers, ditto. (And I'm talking desktop OS here.)

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    Linux Guru techieMoe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by anomie
    FreeBSD is a solid, well-established server operating system. It has also made huge progress, IMO, as a desktop OS, and it is what I use at home.

    I can think of no reason not to run it as your primary desktop (at least to give it a try). As I mentioned, read the materials on this thread because it is different than Linux in many ways.
    I agree that of the BSDs, Free is the one that's made the most progress in the desktop space, but there are a few things that keep me from using it as a desktop:

    a) The way it handles devices is much too different from Linux for my everyday use. I can't even mount a CDROM as a regular user without some heavy tweaking.

    b) The 3D accelerated video drivers for my Nvidia card aren't updated as frequently as the ones for Linux (not BSD's fault I know, but the end result is the same).

    c) I just have way too much Linux or Windows-centric software (read: games) that don't work in any of the BSDs, regardless of how they claim to have "Linux compatibility".

    Please take this as constructive criticism. If all I did with my PC was surf the net or use it as a server, FreeBSD would be just fine. It just doesn't do what I want an OS to do.
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