"...I would buy it."

bsdfsse bsdfsse at optonline.net
Tue Oct 12 17:40:05 PDT 2004

Short Version:

If there was an in-depth book on how to configure some of the various 
emulators on FreeBSD - I would buy it.

Long Version:

Recently, I asked for, and received - a lot of help getting VMWare to 
run on FreeBSD.  This information was greatly appreciated by me, because 
it allowed me to take a big step towards running FreeBSD as my primary 
OS - and eliminating Windows as an OS I run natively.  After reading 
through old messages on the FreeBSD-emulation, I became aware of 
FreeBSD's other OS emulation alternatives - free alternatives.

Except for VMWare, I have not tried BOCHS, QEMU, WINE, DosBox, PearPC, 
or any of the other 164 ports in the Emulators collection.  I would like 
to, I plan to, but I do not have the time right at this moment.

It would be really nice to be able to develop an app using say the 
wxWidgets toolkit, and see what it looked like on various OS's. It 
wouldn't matter if it ran slow, it would only matter if it ran at all.

For someone new to Unix in general, and FreeBSD in particular, 
configuring and optimizing the various emulators would be a somewhat 
daunting task.  Even limiting myself to BOCHS, QEMU, and PearPC would 
take time to get client OS's working properly within FreeBSD.

I recently purchased every FreeBSD book that is currently in print, 
minus the "FreeBSD in 24 Hours" book.  I purchased the books as an 
investment in my divestment of Microsoft's hegemony.  As I get time, I 
want to eventually learn FreeBSD as well I knew the DOS environment and 
programming of 15 years ago.  If there was an in-depth book on how to 
configure some of the various emulators on FreeBSD - I would buy it. 
Even a PDF ebook.

My first book on FreeBSD was the "Absolute BSD" PDF book.  That gave me 
enough interest to buy the physical book.  Soon after, I purchased 
"FreeBSD Unleashed", "BSD Hacks", "The Complete FreeBSD", "The Design 
and Implementation of the FreeBSD Operating System", and "The FreeBSD 
Handbook".  If there was a "Running BOCHS on FreeBSD", I would own that, 
too.  I prefer "real" books when possible, but as a newby - accuracy and 
clarity are what is most important to me.

One of the things I like about the spirit of FreeBSD, it the 
semi-commerciality.  People can use it to make money if they like, and 
the core developers do not seem to care - they are going to continue 
making the OS that *they* want, regardless.  I've read that the Windows 
2000 TCP/IP fingerprint pointed to their stack being "borrowed" from 
FreeBSD.  Apple apparently uses (or used) parts of FreeBSD in OS X. 
Whereas this would be heresy in the Linux camp, the FreeBSD crowd chugs 
along amicably.  I like the fact that Greg Lehey can reference his book 
here, while I suspect in a Linux camp that would also be regarded as 

With FreeBSD's natural strengths as an OS, availability of numerous 
emulator ports, and it's innate semi-commerciality  - I hope someone 
eventually produces a quality book focused on running other OS's on 
FreeBSD.  I would pay up to about $300 for such a printed book: that's 
how much my Windows version of VMWare cost, and I paid the same for the 
Linux version of VMWare.  I would expect most non-professional users to 
top out at about $150 (which I believe is the cost of Virtual PC).  An 
ebook should be able to sell for $50.

In other fields I am interested in, I have seen several examples of 
people writing ebooks about a relatively specialized topic - and 
self-producing an ebook.  Often they have a website to collect feedback, 
post errata, and answer questions.  One author said he was not getting 
rich, but he did earn a year's salary while doing something he loved in 
his part-time.

Perhaps someone here can write such a book - or some other book related 
to a niche they have mastered.  A small book on utilizing FreeBSD's 
Linux emulation would be valuable.  Or an ebook on how to configure a 
machine to play OpenGL games using the nVidia driver.  The 
freebsd-questions list would be a good source for ideas on what 
opportunities there are.

With FreeBSD's legendary stability, flexibility, SCO's anti-Linux FUD, 
Google's decreasing efficiency,  and an ever-growing *nix revival - I 
think there will a growing demand for FreeBSD-centric technical information.


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