Thursday, October 02, 2008

bsdtalk159 - Kris Moore

Interview with Kris Moore. We talk about the recent release of PC-BSD 7.0.

File Info: 12Min, 6MB.

Ogg Link:


Marcello said...

Why my latest unzip from MAC OS X does not works?
Which should I use?

skipping: PCBSD7/FreeBSD.vmdk need PK compat. v4.5 (can do v2.1)
inflating: PCBSD7/FreeBSD.vmx

Marcello said...

What is PK compact, can you use a normal zip?

Anonymous said...

I had the opportunity to compare four OS's: Kubuntu 8.04 and 8.04 remix, PC-BSD, and OpenSolaris.

With OpenSolaris, one expected Java, Flash, and OpenOffice to work well, which they did. The installer does not do anything fancy so that becomes the user's responsibility in setting up any complicated ZFS pools. The nwam daemon had a very on again, off again relationship to my rl10 interface. That was the deciding factor, in addition to the slowness, against using it.

Kubuntu 8.04, both original and remix, had nvidia instability issues. The envy driver is really not suited for Kubuntu; it crashed X. The "standard" nvidia driver works better, KDE 3.5 still remains more stable than KDE 4, which crashed frequently. Neither of these Ubuntu flavors worked as well as the Gnome-based version.

PC-BSD runs KDE 4 better than Kubuntu. There were far less crashes and the PBI's worked well. Flash worked only under wine and that a bit slow. The flash issue will continue to dog the desktop BSD's.

A real bonus with the BSD's is the ability to compile from a modified build file like in ports that allows, for example, TeX-dependent apps to avoid the build-time deps so that one can use TeXLive and its new updating system that tracks CTAN.

It is good that TeXLive has BSD-capable distributions. It has been problematic that the BSD's dawdled with respect to TeXLive. Linux is just annoying because one must do major surgery to the package system in order to use the newest TeXLive. More groupthink.

The only things preventing me from sticking with PC-BSD are:

1. Where it is "friendly" it is so to a greater degree than Linux. If all anyone wants to do is plug in and go, it looks good. Yet they are tripping over the obvious Internet content stuff that this market clearly expects.

2. The installer is too lightweight. Why not have an advanced option that allows the use of sysinstall? Whereas I can do advanced partitioning in mostly any Linux distro, I have to do it by hand, if at all, in PC-BSD. That's a time-waster.

3. Video driver install is easy, but you have to know, for example, whether you want the nv or nvidia driver. Again, there's this veneer of easy over tech-heavy components.

4. OpenGL got too crashy, at least with nvidia.

I would really like to switch to the BSD's on desktop. The BSD's and OpenSolaris have X implementations that have measurably less flicker than any Linux distro I've tried. BSD's are easier and more robust to configure. Even hald works the "BSD way" with /etc/fstab in PC-BSD, which is a plus over many Gnome setups. The more I use Gnome, the more annoying it gets.

But Ubuntu and Gnome still offer me the best of all possible worlds right now with a sensible installer, internet content like Flash, reasonably decent nvidia graphics (when not using envy but rather nvidia-settings and the ":standard" restricted driver). But I will be watching for improvements and waiting for PC-BSD or FreeBSD. Maybe Dragonfly. Who knows?

Anonymous said...

Well, unfortunately - new PC-BSD is just too overwhelming. There`s KDE 4, which is a big FATAL ERROR, and weird "widgets" ...