Re: Best way to switch from Linux to BSD
- From: Mehmet Erol Sanliturk <m.e.sanliturk@xxxxxxxxx>
- Date: Tue, 29 Mar 2011 16:07:02 -0400
On Tue, Mar 29, 2011 at 12:43 PM, Paul Schmehl <pschmehl_lists@xxxxxxxxx>wrote:
--On March 29, 2011 1:32:23 AM -0400 Jason Hsu <jhsu802701@xxxxxxxxxxxx>...
4. What are the Linux Mint and Puppy Linux of the BSD universe? I
consider these two distros to set the standard in the Linux universe,
because they're so user-friendly. These are the distros I've set out to
compete against in developing Swift Linux.
FreeBSD is first and foremost a server OS. Desktop support is lacking when
compared to the other major OSes (Windows, Mac and Linux). You can make it
work, if you want to, but that's not what its primary function is.
If you want a user friendly desktop OS, FreeBSD is probably not your best
Paul Schmehl, Senior Infosec Analyst
As if it wasn't already obvious, my opinions
are my own and not those of my employer.
Business of an operating system is to manage the resources of the computer
hardware and execute suitably written user programs whatever the subjects of
those programs are .
Therefore distinguishing between ¨Server Operating System¨ and ¨Desktop
Operating System¨ is an artificial discrimination which these may be
attributed to configuration parameters .
If a so-called ¨operating system¨ lacks any capability to manage either of
these parts ( hardware and software ) , it is my opinion that ¨operating
system¨ is not a proper name for it .
When we consider the FreeBSD from point of view of operating systems , it is
a wonderful operating system .
Then what is the trouble which is not widely adopted for desktop usage and
actually by super computers ?
In my opinion , it is the default installation configuration .
The attitude for default configuration seems to make it restrictive against
easy use as much as possible .
The wrong point is ( that design decision ) that make it unusable by the
inexperienced or first time users .
During its design of user interface the above fact is not taken into
consideration very much ( with respect to my opinion ) .
Please do NOT take my ideas against the FreeBSD developers . These ideas are
expressed just to illuminate difficulties and discuss possible remedies .
When a point is difficult for a computer engineer with more than forty years
of computing experience , please think its level of difficulty .
During install , it is possible to ask whether that computer will be used by
multiple users or a single user which this fact is asked explicitly BUT not
utilized sufficiently :
Questions and answers by the installer :
Will be NSF server ? NO .
Will be NSF client ? NO .
Will be FTP server ? NO .
Will be GATEWAY ? NO .
All the information about whether the computer will be used as a server or a
desktop computer is given by the above answers . Therefore , it is VERY EASY
to select installed configuration files with respect to the answers to the
above questions :
For the server : Very restrictive settings , because server administrators
need high level of security ,
For the single user : Very permissive settings for the user land , because
single users need easy usage ,
but very restrictive settings for the root
related parts to prevent malicious software
The point is very clear :
The computer is belong to me :
I can crash it ,
I can destroy it ,
I can throw it to fire , and
the worst case , I can insert another operating system installer and
completely erase FreeBSD on it ,
BUT I can NOT auto mount a USB stick ( which is possible to do it since
1998 in Windows ) ,
I can NOT auto mount a DVD/CD ( which is possible , perhaps it
started with first Windows in 1995 ) ,
although such operations are also possible in FreeBSD always .
Then , it is not possible to understand why FreeBSD is isolating itself from
To see the amount of adoption , please consider the following web site
( in my opinion even it is not necessary to look elsewhere for level of
adoption because from Central Limit Theorem of Statistics , we can conclude
that a sample size of 500 is a complete representative of whole universe
At the right top of its page , there is a Statistics part .
click Generate :From its ( Statistics Type ) part select ( Operating System Family ) and
For 11/2011 among top 500 super computers :
BSD based 1 : OpenSolaris
Mixed 16 .
Generate :From its ( Statistics Type ) part select ( Processor Family ) and click
Intel IA-64 5 : Itanium
Intel EMT64T 392 : amd64 in FreeBSD
AMD x86_64 57 : amd64 in FreeBSD
Intel Core 1 : i386 or amd64 in FreeBSD
I am NOT against Linux or any other operating system , but my concern is
when a very high technology is available in FreeBSD , why it is NOT used
extensively which it is sure that it is useful for society .
Then , what may be the solutions :
Instead of pursuing a solid rock Handbook , please include a facility on
each page to get opinions , questions of users about information given in
that page , and link these responses to TODO pages , to track problems .
These opinions or questions will be more informal with respect to problem
When the SVN is inspected , in some directories there are man pages along
with the corresponding programs .
My impression is that each program of the operating system does not have
such pairs . For the missing pairs , move man pages into the respective
directories and always update man pages when the respective programs are
updated to keep man pages as synchronized .
Some man pages are really very cryptic which is not possible to understand
them . In the ( man page ) display pages of the FreeBSD web site , allow
user opinions and questions to be entered and link these to man page TODO
In the same way , distribute all of the respective Handbook pages into
program directories , and update them with the programs along with man pages
. Some Handbook pages may be directly generated form man pages by combining
the Handbook page and the man page . This will reduce maintenance
The quality of the Handbook is very high ( and very good ) . This makes it
difficult to maintain .
Allow simple tutorial pages to be linked and included into Handbook to
supply application case studies , etc.
At present , these pages are scattered all over the internet and many of
them are related to older versions which they are useful for users of these
older versions , but new versions do not have respective tutorials . A new
user will obviously start from the latest release without having
sufficiently available tutorials .
The Handbook is NOT a sufficiently detailed tutorial book which its purpose
is NOT to be such a detailed tutorial book . It is necessary to enrich it by
supplying tutorial page links to its pages which these pages should be
stored into FreeBSD servers to protect them from frequent disappearing or
modification cases of web sites .
Allow people to submit plain text files for possible inclusion into Handbook
to be used by other ( developers or committers ) to utilize as starting
parts as to be formatted . Every possible contributor may not know SGML
sufficiently well .
During installation distinguish between server related settings and single
user related settings , and select installed configuration files with
respect to this structure .
It is very obvious that any solution attempt requires human time and
monetary allocations .
There is a problem : egg from chicken ,
chicken from egg .
A few months ago , www.wikipedia.org collected more than 15 million dollars
by a contribution help campaign with participants reaching to approximately
2 million ( if I remember correctly ) persons with average contribution
level around 10 dollars . Last year , their need was around 7 million
If it is possible , such campaigns may be arranged yearly by the FreeBSD
Foundation to cover development costs . I believe in that FreeBSD is used
mainly in servers and owners of these servers will participate such
campaigns because outcome will be directly usable by them . The single user
persons need a very easily usable highly secure operating systems ,
therefore they also wish to support the FreeBSD development because their
contributions will return to themselves as more high quality operating
Thank you very much with my best wishes for FreeBSD developers and its users
( with the rest of humanity ) .
Mehmet Erol Sanliturk
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