tmux(1) in base

Kevin Oberman oberman at
Mon Sep 21 17:39:57 UTC 2009

> Date: Mon, 21 Sep 2009 13:26:57 +0200
> From: Ed Schouten <ed at>
> Sender: owner-freebsd-current at
> Hi all,
> At the DevSummit in Cambridge we briefly discussed including tmux(1) in
> the base system. We recently had window(1) there, but unfortunately
> window(1) was a very limited tool, compared to tools like screen(1) and
> tmux(1). Why tmux(1) and not screen(1)? Well, simple. The first has a
> better license and very active maintenance.
> I was talking with the author on IRC the other day and it seemed like I
> spoke with him at a fortunate moment, because he was just about to
> release version 1.0. I think it would be nice to import this into HEAD,
> which means FreeBSD 9.0 (maybe 8.1?) will include it by default.
> How to test tmux in base:
> - Download this tarball and extract it to contrib/tmux:
> - Apply the following patch:
> Comments?

While I make fairly heavy use of screen(1), I am unclear on why this
functionality should be included in the base. I can (and do) install it
on most systems I build, but I can't see any systemic justification for
putting it in the base system. It just makes updating tmux
harder. Remember the fun of dealing with Perl when it was in the base
system? (Yes, Perl was probably about the worst possible case.) 

Unless a tool is maintained by the FreeBSD project or is so essential
that most it would be inadvisable to have a base system where it was
not available (ntp, SSL libraries, C compiler, ssh, ...), I really think
adding things to the base is best avoided.
R. Kevin Oberman, Network Engineer
Energy Sciences Network (ESnet)
Ernest O. Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab)
E-mail: oberman at			Phone: +1 510 486-8634
Key fingerprint:059B 2DDF 031C 9BA3 14A4  EADA 927D EBB3 987B 3751

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